Losing control of the racquet head...

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by forthegame, Apr 4, 2014.

  1. forthegame

    forthegame Hall of Fame

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    Hi guys,

    Got a problem, I often feel that I'm not in control of the racquet head; does anyone understand what I mean?

    Especially on touch shots but generally. As if I don't quite know where it is and not controlling it.

    Any helpful advice gratefully received.

    Cheers,

    FTG.
     
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  2. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Hit with a solid, but relaxed grip.
    Once you can do this, the head of the racket is under YOUR control.
     
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  3. forthegame

    forthegame Hall of Fame

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    Solid but relaxed grip... I think I do that mostly. I'll try to be more conscious of that and see if it helps, thanks.
     
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  4. psv255

    psv255 Professional

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    Try more of a pistol grip and let the racket handle rest on the index finger more.
     
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  5. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Best control of rackethead from a pro, McEnroe, held an extreme pistol grip on every shot except backhand volleys.
     
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  6. forthegame

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    Pistol grip?
     
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  7. psv255

    psv255 Professional

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    Yeah like this, with index finger spread out, kind of separate from the other 3 fingers. the three fingers that are together should still be almost perpendicular to handle, not too angled, so your racket is still at angle to forearm.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2014
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  8. forthegame

    forthegame Hall of Fame

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    Thanks psv! I kinda thought that was what you were referring to.

    How does that come into play with the forehand? Not at all?
     
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  9. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Pistol grip, aligning the racket with your forearm, gives you more control because you're aligning the racket to your forearm, making one long solid lever.
    Hammer grip, the opposite, using a lot of angle between forearm and racket, can give more power and more RHS thru the pronation and supination of rolling your shoulder thru the impact zone, like serves and forehands.
    More is less control, but more power.
     
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  10. psv255

    psv255 Professional

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    Actually it does, very much so for me personally. I go btwn strong E and mild SW nowadays (righty) and one of my biggest calluses is at the right side, base of my index finger because that spot became the main fulcrum due to the pistol grip
     
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  11. fuzz nation

    fuzz nation Legend

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    I'm wondering whether your racquet is too light and twitchy?...
     
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  12. Topspin Shot

    Topspin Shot Legend

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    Could this be a case of not keeping the plane the same?
     
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  13. eelhc

    eelhc Hall of Fame

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    I just (re)discovered this a short while back. I was struggling with my forehand and went back and broke it down to to the basics (grip, footwork, etc, etc...)... Like the first day of a beginner's clinic. After noodling around a bit, the only change I made was relax my grip. Whoa!!! what a difference! I was gripping my racquet so firm that my arm was tensing up and ruining my rest of my stroke mechanics. It's something I have to constantly remind myself now... Especially in a match... For me all that nervous energy and adrenaline was choking the racquet.
     
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  14. forthegame

    forthegame Hall of Fame

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    I went lighter to gain maneouvrability. Head LM Instinct - not too light...

    Don't quite understand.

    I do muscle sometimes, funny thing is when I relax and hit a great shot I actually seem to do it reflexly, can't recreate it time and again.
     
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  15. Topspin Shot

    Topspin Shot Legend

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    Generally speaking, the ball goes in the direction your strings are pointed at contact. So if the racket face is vertical, the ball will go forward. If the racket face is closed, the ball will go into the net, and if it's open, the ball will sail out. A good stroke keeps the racket face vertical throughout the contact zone (maybe six inches before and six inches after contact), so if you mistime the ball, the strings will still point forward, and the ball will still go in. If you're rolling the strings over the ball or dishing the strings under the ball, you may feel like you can't control the racket because a slight mistime will result in a sprayed shot.
     
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  16. forthegame

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    Need to think about this a bit....
     
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  17. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

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    as others said above, pistol grip helps with controlling the racket head.

    Also, you can use parts of you hand as guides to controlling the racket face. For example, if you place you palm on the stringbed and slide it down the throat and grab that grip, your palm will be aligned with the stringbed. Then hit using your palm to direct the ball - palm facing DTL at contact and ball goes DTL, palm facing CC at contact and ball goes CC.

    You will have to experiment with your grips. I have a EFH slightly shifted to SW and I visualize the base of the index and next finger to direct the ball. You can use this on topspin, slice of touch shots. If you want to hit topspin, think of palm moving from lower R part of ball and pulling up and across thru top L of ball. On a 1 HBH, using the 1st row of knuckles up from the hand are in alignment, if you use strong conti or EBH. 2 hbh you can use the lower hand knuckles and/or the top hand palm.

    You can take shadow swings with just your hand to get the feel of which part of the hand feels most comfortable.
     
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  18. winstonlim8

    winstonlim8 Semi-Pro

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    Curiously enough, I found a heavier racquet much easier to control. After years of using a 9+ or 10+ oz head-heavy racquet with a small grip because I often hit forehands with a Continental grip and was afraid a heavier but head-light racquet with a bigger grip might make it harder to control the racquet head, I switched to a 10pts head-light 11+ oz (12 oz strung) racquet, wrapped the grip until it was 5inches in diameter, and found that I had better control of the head even with a Continental grip. And best of all, no more tennis elbow or shoulder pain after playing.

    It took me three months to get used to the different balance, but it was worth it. The heavier swing weight and bigger grip was easier to get used to than the change in balance.

    And my forehands improved because I found it easier to switch to an Eastern forehand grip for high balls.
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2014
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  19. forthegame

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    Thanks guys.

    Much to ponder.
     
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