If the two-handed backhand is so inherently superior...

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by thor's hammer, Oct 14, 2011.

  1. thor's hammer

    thor's hammer Semi-Pro

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    ...why doesn't everyone hit a two-handed forehand?
     
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  2. souzahgg

    souzahgg New User

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    Good question!
    And why Fed and Sampras, the best players of all time, use 1HBH???
     
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  3. tennis_balla

    tennis_balla Hall of Fame

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    Think about that for a second. Think of the way your arm travels/moves when you hit a forehand and now think about it hitting a backhand. If you cannot understand that then I can't help you.

    Besides, two-hander isn't superior. Its easier to learn yes, but to go as far as saying superior...bold statement.
     
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  4. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

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    Counter argument: If Fed had 2HBH of equal quality to the rest of his game, he would have won 20-30 Grand Slams and probably never lost to Nadal.

    I just brought that up for the sake of argument.

    Sampras said his coach changed him to 1 hand to make him an attacking player and that makes sense. But, there aren't any attacking players left, so we have a plethora of 2HBH.

    My op: future is 2hbh topspin with 1 hbh slice. 2 hbh may be a wee bit superior in handling high balls and returning serve which are a big part of todays game.
     
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  5. tennis_balla

    tennis_balla Hall of Fame

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    TennisCJC, the future is now ;) or rather has been for a while already
     
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  6. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

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    Palm behind racket on forehand which gives plenty of stability. Palm on top of grip on backhand which means you have to depend on more on timing and technique to hit bh agressively.

    Also, easy to get body rotation into fh. You don't really use hip or shoulder rotation as much on 1 hb.
     
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  7. Mick

    Mick Legend

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    i have seen a lot of amateurs with a good looking 2hbh but not too many with a good looking 1hbh. it is just harder to hit a 1hbh. even djokovic said he switched to a 2hbh when he was younger because he wasn't strong enough to play with a 1hbh.
     
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  8. olliess

    olliess Semi-Pro

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    Maybe, but would he have looked as good doing it? :wink:

    Probably more than a wee bit superior, in terms of shot tolerance and strike zone. Most players simply can't dictate points from the backhand side, against players of their own level. Not consistently, anyway. The closest have overwhelmingly been two-handers.

    There's probably some truth as well to the arguments about one-handers tending to have better touch near the net, simply because they're SO used to playing with one hand on the racquet. But as you said, players who make their living attacking the net are few and far between at the moment.
     
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  9. Brian11785

    Brian11785 Hall of Fame

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    And why don't they hit two-handed serves? :confused:


    Seriously though, I hit two hands on both sides. It works for me. MY 2HFH is vastly superior to MY 1HFH. Reach isn't an issue, and the power and stability of the two hands has improved since I switched over. As said earlier in the thread, people claiming that one shot is universally superior to another is near ridiculous.
     
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  10. split-step

    split-step Professional

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    Wow. This is one of the more unintelligent questions I've seen posted here.
     
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  11. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    Your basic premise is incorrect. The 2-handed BH is not inherently superior to the 1-hander. As tb indicated, it is just easier to learn. Also, you can often get away with a later racket preparation with the 2-hander. OTOH, is will often require more diligent footwork, particularly if you do not also have the 1-handed slice in your arsenal. There are both pros and cons to hitting either 1-handed or 2-handed BHs.
     
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  12. Power Player

    Power Player G.O.A.T.

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    LOl..yeah I was going to say, I guess I am posting this from 2015 or something because I have literally done that since the early 90s.
     
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  13. yemenmocha

    yemenmocha Professional

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    There's no need to learn volleys any longer, at least to the same degree in the past, and a 1hb was one reason why some coaches/parents wanted kids to switch - make the 1h slice easier to learn, and make it easier to learn 1h backhand volley.

    Just this weekend I saw Courier, Chang, Wilander, & Sampras and one of them made the (accurate) snide comment that players don't need to learn to volley any more, like they did in the 80's.
     
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  14. tennis_balla

    tennis_balla Hall of Fame

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    Accurate remark that volleys are no longer needed? Hardly, they were just being sarcastic. By the way, Nadal has some of the best volleys out there (no joke)
     
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  15. Netspirit

    Netspirit Hall of Fame

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    It's superior to the one-handed backhand, but inferior to the single-handed forehand. It is basically a choked (less reach) non-dominant arm "forehand" without the anatomical (scapula) limitations of 1HBH.
     
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  16. tennis_balla

    tennis_balla Hall of Fame

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    The 2 handed forehand is superior to the one handed backhand?

    .........
     
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  17. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Who said the two-handed backhand is inherently superior? :confused:
     
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  18. rfm29

    rfm29 Rookie

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    Oh yes, haven't you heard? The 1hbh is obsolete, inferior, unusable in todays modern, heavy spin game. It simply cannot be used. Two hands are always better then one, unless your not talking about a backhand (apparently federer, haas, and all the rest didn't get the memo. but thats to bad for them, they suck, and can't compete anymore)




    ***Insert sarcasm disclaimer here***
     
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  19. Netspirit

    Netspirit Hall of Fame

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    There are 3 things that have become obsolete in tennis.

    1. Forehand slice in non-defensive situations.
    2. Continental forehand grip.
    3. One-handed backhand.

    It happens in other sports too (for example, the drop-kick in football).
     
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  20. tennis_balla

    tennis_balla Hall of Fame

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    1. Off a low short ball which you cannot get under with a topspin grip, chip it in and come to the net. Used in doubles a ton.
    2. Continental grip forehand? Funny, considering thats the grip a lot use on the volley, serve, stretched out wide balls etc such as off the return.
    3. Wawrinka, Federer, Haas, Dimitrov?
     
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  21. Mike2228

    Mike2228 Rookie

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    I personally haven't found the 2 hander easier than the 1 hander. I guess that just points to the whole thing coming down to preference.
     
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  22. chenc

    chenc New User

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    But OHBH just looks so much sexier!
     
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  23. Mick

    Mick Legend

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    only when someone hits it well because it can also be super ugly too :)
     
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  24. rfm29

    rfm29 Rookie

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    Well...to be honest that goes for really any stroke. Any shot can look good or bad, depending on if it's hit well or not.
     
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  25. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    As the guys in the know mentioned, 2hbh is not superior or inferior, it's another option.
    Quicker to learn, easier to learn when muscles aren't big or developed, it's the choice of the younger generation. And the younger gen tends to get older with time, and keeping is easier than discarding and relearning a new backhand.
     
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  26. Timbo's hopeless slice

    Timbo's hopeless slice Hall of Fame

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    and gasquet, don't forget gasquet, would lose to a D 3 college player..
     
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  27. thug the bunny

    thug the bunny Professional

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    To everything, turn, turn, turn...and a backhand for everything under heaven.
     
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  28. Manus Domini

    Manus Domini Hall of Fame

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    If the 2hbh is so superior and far more stable, why is it that some people (like me) can't comprehend it for our lives?
     
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  29. Netspirit

    Netspirit Hall of Fame

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    Me too. I am not ambidextrous enough - my right arm is too dominant.

    Plus I've never really tried hard, being a rec player. One-hander gives me fun, and that's what tennis is about to me.
     
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  30. fuzz nation

    fuzz nation Legend

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    It's only the superior choice for the players who can hit it better than a one-hander.
     
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  31. Netspirit

    Netspirit Hall of Fame

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    1. Forehand slice is only used in defensive and special situations. It is long obsolete as a primary groundstroke.

    2. Same for Continental grip - it is obsolete as the primary groundstroke grip and only used in defensive and other special situations.

    3. Same for 1HBH - it's quickly losing popularity as the older players are approaching retirement (and their wannabes are not winning). Soon, very soon, there will be zero players with 1HBH in the top 10. There are zero Slam titles currently held by 1HBH players, and zero Masters 1000.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2011
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  32. fuzz nation

    fuzz nation Legend

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    The powers-that-be among tennis academies around the world are apparently re-examining the art of attacking the net. Now that a generation or two with a game based on lateral movement and baseline bashing are racking up hip injuries, etc. like never before, many are recognizing the need to shorten points by moving forward behind a short ball.

    No surprise here, especially with the evolution of the women's game lagging behind the men by a decade or so. Many of the better guys have embraced more of an all-court game, while the women are stuck mostly in the pure baseline power mode. The eventual answer to that will probably be a crop of up and comers who learn the whole package and can volley into daylight... think of Martina Hingis, but with a little more power. Seen Petra Cetkovska in action lately?
     
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  33. netguy

    netguy Semi-Pro

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    I see all the time 2HBH players beating 1HBH ones and visa versa at any level....
     
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  34. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter Legend

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    Because a 2hb is basically a left handed forehand (for a righty). So, it's basically hitting a forehand on both sides.
     
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  35. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Netguy...
    Are you sure it's the 2hbh that beat's 1hbh players, or can it be that some 2hbh players are better than some 1hbh players.
    Can you beat Federer using a 2hbh?
    I've lost to lots of 2hbh players, some double bagels like you say. Of course, some of them were 5.5's, while I"m a bad 4.0.
    Back when I could actually play OK, I lost 5 and 2 to some French guy from DomincanCollege in SanRafael. Just couldn't fathom it, until he told me he was No1 for his country in Juniors and also #2 on the Domincan team. He also made the semis in the WimbledonJuniors.
    I mention this because that's actually the first time i had absolutely no answer to his style of play. Of course, he was 6'3", lefty, and 20 years younger than me.
    He's lucky he had a 2hbh, otherwise, I'd beat him easily....:):)
     
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  36. Timbo's hopeless slice

    Timbo's hopeless slice Hall of Fame

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    jokes aside, I use both, but the 2HBH is a defensive rally shot for me, lots of spin and hit to areas of the court, the 1HBH is my weapon of choice for finishing a point if I have time to hit it. Sure, I can make a 2HBH under pressure more easily and consistently, but give me a swing and I can hit the1HBH so much harder it's scary...

    But I learned 1HBH, and played a lot of squash at one stage so I have a lot more racquet head speed than most folk.

    I think the 2HBH will always be more common because it is easier for more people, but it is the 1HBH players that people will prefer to watch..
     
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  37. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    I should certainly never laugh, but it cracks me up when a 6'5" 200lbs muscular guy uses a 2hbh, acts macho, and stuts around the court with full bravado.
    Of course, I wouldn't get ONE point off him, but it still looks silly.
    Kinda like when a boogie boarder tells everyone he "ripped" the waves. I mean, c'mon, you're not a cripple, try standing up!
    To each his own.
     
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  38. Netspirit

    Netspirit Hall of Fame

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    I can beat a 3 year old kid with forehand slices, conti FH and 1HBH. It does not prove a thing. It just means my form is better. I am stronger, taller and faster, my footwork is better, my hand-eye coordination is better, my tactical knowledge is better, etc.

    In tennis, it is not 1 stroke that beats the opponent, it's the whole package. In that package, there is the backhand stroke.

    And in the modern, topspin-heavy, physical, baseline tennis it is hit with 2 arms behind the racket, because it pays off.

    I am not saying everybody should switch. Nobody owes me anything. I am saying that the evolution of this sport has lead to 2HBH being the weapon of choice.

    You don't have to like it. I, personally, don't like it at all. I play with 1HBH. I love the shot, I love how it feels and looks, I have more spin and control on it than on my forehand (which is too wristy and requires de-Federerization). But I am not blind to argue that 2HBH has not won. It has.
     
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  39. borg number one

    borg number one Legend

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    Using the two handed backhand for drives and topspin (returns especially), with a one handed slice for rallies, approach shots and for "reach shots" is so fun and versatile. It provides for a great deal of variety. I think that most players in the future will play that way. I do agree that we'll have great players with one backhands too though. It takes more than a great backhand to make a great player. It's only one aspect.
     
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  40. DeShaun

    DeShaun Banned

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    Grip changes can be a hindrance.
    Question: Is it easier to transition between grips from a 1hbh to a slice than it is from a 2hbh to a slice? This difference if more than negligible may figure into the comparison between backhands. Good slice off the backhand side is a valuable tool. The tool that can be withdrawn from its holster, so to speak, more easily would also seem to be the more reliable tool.
     
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  41. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    But who cares about the Top 10? :confused:

    What people care about are the millions of recreational players out there, because that's what almost all of us here are.
     
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  42. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    But some people have better backhands than forehands and wish they could hit a 1HBH on both sides. :shock:
     
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  43. tennis_balla

    tennis_balla Hall of Fame

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    ...and everyone in the 90's thought using full western grips on the forehand was going to be the norm. You should state your case as opinions, not facts.
    Also, first you say its obsolete and then you say its obsolete as being the dominant stroke. So which is it?

    Edit:

    Also, the two handed backhand has been the dominant choice for players on the tour since early-mid 90's. You're about 20yrs behind on your theories. However, saying one handed backhand is obsolete means no one is winning anymore with it and it is a useless stroke, which is untrue. I'm sure next you're going to say that serve & volley is obsolete is well....
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2011
    #43
  44. fuzz nation

    fuzz nation Legend

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    Ahh, now there's a truly superior choice!!!
     
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  45. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter Legend

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    If the few I've seen, Gene Mayer, Hans Gildemeister, Monica Seles, are representative of 2hf's generally, then I'd have to say yes.
     
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  46. tennis_balla

    tennis_balla Hall of Fame

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    You're comparing apples to oranges
     
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  47. RF20Lennon

    RF20Lennon Legend

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    dude imagine how uncomfortable that would be plus you cant even hit the ball hard with pace. Here for a righty the two handed backhand your left holds the racket steady while your right hand gives "the shot" now lets do it with the forehand. On the forehand side your right hand will have to hold the racket steady while your left would have to hit the shot very few people can do that. If your a righty your not giong to have much strength in your left right??
     
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  48. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter Legend

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    The comparison was in your rhetorical question. I was just answering it.
     
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  49. tennis_balla

    tennis_balla Hall of Fame

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    Yup, I know but you're still comparing apples to oranges. Thats like saying the forehand is superior to the backhand. Well...umm, gee ok then thats cool but kinda pointless.
     
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  50. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter Legend

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    I neither said, nor implied that. It was merely an answer to your question, nothing more. Beyond that, I agree, it was pretty much pointless.
     
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