One Handed Backhand vs Two Handed Backhand

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Dechizen, Aug 23, 2010.

?

Which backhand is better?

  1. Two Handed Backhand

    41.1%
  2. One Handed Backhand

    58.9%
  1. Ultra2HolyGrail

    Ultra2HolyGrail Hall of Fame

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    Yup. Goran is a prime example of a player that you would never know had a twohander just based on his serve.. You would swear he had a onehander after watching him serve and volley.
     
    #51
  2. darthpwner

    darthpwner Banned

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    Yeah, and Goran would also hit a lot of 1 handed backhands on the run.
     
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  3. Ultra2HolyGrail

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    Yes, but their backhands are noted as their weakness.
     
    #53
  4. Manus Domini

    Manus Domini Hall of Fame

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    at the baseline game, the one-hander is pretty important for net game, their specialties, you know
     
    #54
  5. Devilito

    Devilito Hall of Fame

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    that's why both Federer and Lendl, two of the greatest baseliners use a 1hbh? I’ve had to switch to a 1hbh from a 2hbh which was actually probably my best shot due to a wrist injury. There are pros and cons to both. Hitting a 1hbh can be a more natural and relaxing shot to hit, give you more reach (less steps to take to set up), easier to hit low balls with. The 2hbh has some serious advantages though. Easier to hit high balls, hard balls that give you less time to set up and the return of serve. Having to swap grips between forehand and backhand is what makes the 1hbh very difficult. On my 2hbh I would barely have to move my grip and would never more it on the return, letting me step in and hit aggressively. The 1hbh return is probably going to be the biggest killer for me, especially against hard servers.

    Timing is another HUGE point. With 2 hands, your forehand and backhand hit the shot at about the same location in front of your body. With a 1hbh you have to time and ball and hit it further in front of you making it a much more diffult to time. That’s why you see so many people shank the one hander. I used to never shank my backhand, now it’s fairly common.
     
    #55
  6. Manus Domini

    Manus Domini Hall of Fame

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    Federer's backhand was his weakness, as noted before. But it still was a beautiful shot to see and created more variety for Fed to use. IMO the only reason Nadal has so much on Fed is because they mainly met on Nadal's strongest surface, clay, and his 2HBH is basically a 2HFH.
     
    #56
  7. Dechizen

    Dechizen Banned

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    #57
  8. pyrokid

    pyrokid Hall of Fame

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    More irrelevent comments.

    When playing someone with a solid one hander, when you hit a deep loopy TS shot the their backhand, it might come back neutrally.

    When you hit the same shot to a 2 hander, there's a good chance they'll put it away.

    On sere returns, if you try and jam someone in the body, then 1hbh wins out by a long shot.
     
    #58
  9. Dechizen

    Dechizen Banned

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    #59
  10. Dreamer

    Dreamer Professional

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    #60
  11. Winky

    Winky Guest

    I consider the 1HBH and the 2HBH to be different shots and therefore I think its in everyone's interest to master both. I predict that the next generation of pros will consider the idea that a player would choose to eschew one or the other to be anachronistic.
     
    #61
  12. Dechizen

    Dechizen Banned

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    #62
  13. Dechizen

    Dechizen Banned

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    The two hander is the better shot, it looks cooler too, just look at Safin, the one hander is a more elegant shot.So you can either have a cool looking shot that's strong or an elegant shot that is weak.
    This sums it up:

    To be cool or elegant
    To be strong or weak
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2010
    #63
  14. GetBetterer

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    This isn't Odds & Ends, stop trying to make us laugh.
     
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  15. Kaz00

    Kaz00 Semi-Pro

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    I say consistency, ability to deal with high balls, and control Two Handed Backhand.

    Now the One handed I don't know but it seems players with one handers hit an approach shot much cleaner than a two handed would and hit some great angles while on the run.
     
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  16. GetBetterer

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    That's actually just about right Kaz.

     
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  17. sjwoo

    sjwoo New User

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    I know this is a rehash of an old thread, but here's a question -- if the two-handed backhand is so markedly superior than the one hand, then why isn't there the same sort of support for the two-handed forehand? The only pros who've used the two-handed forehands that I know of are Monica Seles and Fabrice Santoro.

    - Sung
     
    #67
  18. Zachol82

    Zachol82 Professional

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    The 2hfh is a completely different shot. Since your dominant arm is always on the bottom of the racquet, it would be mechanically difficult to hit a 2hfh as such.
     
    #68
  19. salsainglesa

    salsainglesa Semi-Pro

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    its not the number of hands, its how you use them
     
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  20. ferrytran

    ferrytran New User

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    i think 1hb is better for hitting crazy angles and 2hb is better for power. but thats just my opinion. im still a beginner
     
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  21. Majik

    Majik Rookie

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    How about a 1 1/2 hand back hand, which is a one-hand back hand with an assist from your otherwise unused hand. If you use your left hand (for righties) to push on your right arm (not grabbing the racket), then your one hand back hand become stronger and quicker responding. But you'd still get the whipping action on the racket and thus more topspin. This would be the best of both worlds. Is there anyone on the tour doing that?
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2011
    #71
  22. Strateon

    Strateon New User

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    Wouldn't work. 2HBH is more like a left handed forehand, meaning that ur left hand is the driving force behind the shot, as compared to the SBH. (for righties of course) This means that they are two fundamentally different strokes in terms of both preparation and power source, hence you can't just tack on one part of the stroke to the other and expect to get the best of both worlds.

    Honestly, as a SBH user, I find that its main weakness to be the returning of serves. Most of the time you aren't set to drive the return and after a while tend to get into a rhythm of chipping it back. Other than that, I find that it is superior on offence, and slightly weaker on defense. (Because its difficult to generate good pace and spin without early prep, as compared to 2HBH)
     
    #72
  23. GetBetterer

    GetBetterer Hall of Fame

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    ferrytran:
    I think Wawrinka would disagree.
     
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  24. eman resu

    eman resu Semi-Pro

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    Although I have a pretty good slice, I can't hit a 1hbh top spin approach shot (those closer to the net). What's the key? I seem to hit well from distance and hard, but terrible near the net... the 2hbh seems more natural to me there, it's easier to generate spin.
     
    #74
  25. Majik

    Majik Rookie

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    Don't knock it until you've tried it. It's becoming easier for me to do, and it is a little different. You have to take a little more open stance and use more of a semiwestern grip instead of a classic grip. But the set up and weight shift is pretty much the same as a 1HBH.

    The weight shift is the same because the follow through is the same as the 1HBH. But the set up for it is quicker and takes some time to get use to. The problems you're thinking about probably would come to play if you tried to actually grab your right wrist with your left hand assist and follow through that way. Instead, you let your left hand just push your right wrist or forearm and let your left hand slide along your right forearm until you hit or just before you hit the ball. Then your left arm can go back as your right arm follows through, just like a normal 1HBH. That's why the weight shift is the same.

    A couple of months back I pulled a shoulder muscle and had to start learning the left hand assist. But it is not unlike a backhand when you allow your left hand to break contact with the racket at the waste. The problem with it is that you can get confused as to which one you're setting up for.
     
    #75
  26. tlm

    tlm Legend

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    Bingo you are wrong the 2 hander is more consistent.
     
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  27. KHS

    KHS New User

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    Actually, I sorta disagree about one hander having more pace and penetration, because I've tried learning one hander, but it feels less natural for me because although I'm a left handed player, I do many things with my right hand (ambidextrous), like throwing a ball, or even when I'm playing softball at school or something I use the righty swing (which is my backhand swing). IMO it depends on the person really.
     
    #77
  28. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    Historically, we are seeing the same argument regarding the two-handed forehand as we did the two-handed backhand in the early 1970's.

    (I've written several articles on this as well as discussed it in my two books.)

    We heard the same thing about two-handed backhand when Borg, Connors and Evert emerged. People said the two-handed backhand was weak, couldn't be taken to the highest level, etc. And this was AFTER Borg and Connors and Evert became top players in the WORLD!

    Of course, there are far more two handed forehanders on tour now, all you had to do was watch a little of the Aussi: Peng, Nakamura, Morigami, Bartoli, and a few others made it pretty far in the draw.

    Yet, of course, dynamically speaking for most beginners, it is far easier to create a 'relialbe, repeatable swing path' with two hands. (Just as it is easy to create a reliable, repeatable swing path in golf, baseball and hockey with two hands.)

    But in tennis, many can master and dominate with one hand on the forehand, hence the limited teaching and relative few players using two hands on the forehand side.

    Back to the OP discussion: as a teaching pro who taught 10 years teaching one-handed backhands, (from 1974-1984) and two-handed players for the last 25 years, I can say without a doubt that beginners develop the aptitude for hitting more consistent topspin backhands with greater directional control, height control, and spin control than those who learn with one hand.

    There are exceptions. (I play one handed on both sides but teach two hands on both sides...so, in addition to my fairly extensive teaching background, I think I'm being fairly objective in my discussion.) However, if I had 100 students, I would teach them all two-handed strokes.

    One additional point: almost all two-handers can develop and hit a solid one-handed backhand after learning with two. The same is not as easy for a one-hander to then try and learn with two. (Again, there are exceptions.)

    The object of modern tennis is to develop STROKES that allow a player to hit dependable shots from anywhere on the court. (This includes slices, volleys, drop shot, etc.) Thus, if two hands helps create this, then it is pretty obvious that it works.

    Not to say that a great one-hander can't compete, and dominate. (Fed.) But, you really need to look at the top 100 pros on the ATP and WTA tour and count how many now use two hands.

    Oh, by the way, there are more two-handed FOREHAND players on the top 100 WTA list then there are one-handed backhand players. Something to consider too!
     
    #78
  29. Manus Domini

    Manus Domini Hall of Fame

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    Two words: Pancho Segura. He had the best forehand of his day and age, 2HFH at that. The real question is: are there any 2HFH but 1HBH players? :|

    And the best backhand (there were 2HBHs at that time) belonged to Don Budge.

    That being said, it depends on playing style. If you are an aggressive net rusher, 1HBH is way to go. Ball-bashing baseliner? 2HBH. yes, there are exceptions, yes you can do either, but by and large that is the case. That being said, I can't hit a 2HBH for my life so for me the 1HBH is far more consistent and everything more

    actually, my lefty 2HBH is better than my righty 2HBH
     
    #79
  30. ProgressoR

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    i think the concensus amongst those who understand the game is that those who can, use 1hbh, those who cant, use 2hbh.

    Sometimes those who cant, still try to use a 1hbh and that gives the rest a bad name.
     
    #80
  31. Strateon

    Strateon New User

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    Power in SBH is derived from the opening up of the shoulders. By pushing and then releasing with the left hand, u inhibit that process. I don't see where your power is generated from.

    If you say that its from the left hand, you are better off hitting a 2BH because it is easier to control the racket head with two hands on the racquet during contact. If you say that its from the right hand, more likely than not you are arming the ball for power since you don't allow the shoulders to open.
     
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  32. toly

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    #82
  33. Tennis Dunce

    Tennis Dunce Semi-Pro

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    Yeah and had like a Jimbo Connors 2 handed volley.
     
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  34. Wilander Fan

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    I think its a matter of individual biomechanics. If you are very dominant with one hand, then the 1hb is better. If you have good control with the non-dominant hand, then the 2hb might be better.

    The modern 2hb is really a non-dominant forehand so you better have good control over the non-dominant arm. That being said, I think there are clear benefits and disadvantages to both. The 1hb is harder to read, better touch, better angles and better transition to net. The 2hb has better consistancy, directional control and more controlled power. I think the 1hb suits an aggressive game that tries to shorten points and attack while the 2hb suits a counterpunching defensive game. On the pro level, given how they have slowed everything down, I think the 2hb does have an advantage. On a recreational level, the 1hb is better IMO because a good attacking game makes you think tactically and a better player. I think a good 3.5 player with a practiced 3 shot attack has a good chance against a 4.0 player who is basically a topspin monkey.
     
    #84
  35. Wilander Fan

    Wilander Fan Hall of Fame

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    Same here and I dont even try since the slice approach is so natural. I could really roll the 2hb short approach when I used a 2hb is this seems to be an area where the 2hb is better. I can practice hitting short 1hb putaways but the problem seems to be that while lateral footwork on a 1hb is very natural, its difficult to hit a drive 1hb while moving forward unless you stop and set and hit. On the slice approach, you can literally hit it in stride as you move in.
     
    #85
  36. Majik

    Majik Rookie

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    That's because with the 1hbh you usually have your back to the net when you hit it. But you can hit a 2hbh while facing the net. If you can develop an open stance bh topspin shot, then you can use it to approach the net. I'm starting to develop an open stance 1hbh more for serve returns, though. It requires a semi western grip instead of a classic grip.
     
    #86
  37. 0d1n

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    Yes, and imagine how good Courier or Moya would have been with Kuerten's, Gaudio's or Calleri's backhand.

    Edit...case in point ... :) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2xWwocRdlsI

    Rofl he misses a forehand into the net in the first 10 secs of that video.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2011
    #87
  38. bhallic24

    bhallic24 Guest


    "Those who can... one-hand. Those who can't one-hand ... two-hand. Those who can't two-hand ... can't play tennis."

    Deep down inside everyone really yearns to be able to hit a good one handed backhand. After all, its the most beautiful shot in all of tennis. It just looks elegant and sexy, seductive and luscious. Those who own it draw the envy of others. Its like the hottest chick in class. Might not be the most dependable girl, might go astray more often than not, might cause you some heartbreak, but damn ... She's Sexy as Hell.

    And you know you want her.




    Tennis-wise, problem is, its a very technically difficult stroke and not many can master it. Hence, they go with the 2 handed backhand and work on it and build a relationship with it and in the end subconsciously convince themselves that it is the better shot for them.

    I hit with a 2hbh and its a very dependable shot, very consistent, like a good faithful woman that's always there for you. But I'd be lying if I said I've never dreamed of possessing a gorgeous 1hbh to play with. Thus, I voted ... for the 1hbh.
     
    #88
  39. FedExpress 333

    FedExpress 333 Professional

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    This is a very old thread, no?

    I know, cuz when i was researching which backhand to use, i used this.....

    Basically: Topspin/consistent baseliner: 2 hander.
    All courter/S+V'er: 1 hander.

    1 Handed Backhand:
    Good:

    1.Low Balls
    2.Slice
    3.Reach
    4.Sideways movement.
    5.Volleys
    6.Power
    Bad:

    1.High Balls
    2.Consistency
    3 Heavy topspin
    4. Lateral movement

    2 Hander:

    Good:
    1. High Balls
    2. Topspin
    3. Consistency
    4.Control

    Bad:
    1.Low Balls
    2.Slice
    3.Volleys
     
    #89
  40. Xizel

    Xizel Professional

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    Not really. It's more like those who don't possess it, want it. If you have a two hander, you want the elegant one hander. When you have a one hander and you see a two hander generate so much sheer pace with such a compact swing along with its absolute consistency, you want the two hander.
     
    #90
  41. FedExpress 333

    FedExpress 333 Professional

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    Agreed. When Murray sees Fed hit those ridiculous passing and drop shots with his backhand, he wants it. But when Fed sees Murray be sooo consistent with his 2 hander, he wants it. Its human psychology.
     
    #91
  42. johnchung907

    johnchung907 Rookie

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    If you don't use a one-handed and a two-handed, you really shouldn't be saying anything about which backhand is better. And I mean consistent on both backhands. Since I DO use both (2-handed for rally shots) (1-handed on the run, half-volley, or passing shot) I do find that the 2-handed DOES offer more power even if you don't swing that hard. The only reason why I learned the one-handed was for the things I mentioned before because it performs these tasks better then the 2 handed in my opinion. Overall it would be the 2-hander. The stability, power, and consistency is easier to produce.
     
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  43. ShoeShiner

    ShoeShiner Rookie

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    You should provide more 2 choices, equal and don't know.
     
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  44. thecode

    thecode Banned

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    kids seem to like the 2 hander.
     
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  45. Relinquis

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    * not the technical term.
     
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  46. BevelDevil

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    Perhaps that's just because you have a good 2hbh or a weak 1hbh.

    People have had different experiences. A lot of people have switched from one to the other because they think the other is better/more powerful. If anything, a lot of people have switched to the 1hbh precisely because they perceive an effortless power.


    And I don't see why you have to use both of them concurrently to have an informed opinion on them. Do I have to drink wine and tequila at the same sitting to know which one I think is better?
     
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  47. always_crosscourt

    always_crosscourt Banned

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    What does 'power' mean? More pace? more spin?
     
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  48. 2ndServe

    2ndServe Professional

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    as someone who plays old school 1hbh serve and volley I can say if I had my current knowledge back as a kid I'd learn to return with 2 hands. It's no mystery why all the great returners of all time have 2 handed backhands. Conners, Agassi, Novak, Murray. I think why the current generation is so great at returning is it's 90% + 2 handed bh.

    The 1hander will almost always have a better transition game, better volleys and usually they develop more strength in their dominant arm, hand and wrist. Even with all those positives the 2handed backhand still outweighs the 1 hander on the strength of the return. But I also think the 1 hander takes more skill and talent. I think probably 90%+ of the tour is 2 handed but the top 30 year in and out 25% or greater are the 1hbh.
     
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  49. johnchung907

    johnchung907 Rookie

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    Excuse me good sir but even on the professional levels, two-handers seem to be faster. Oh yeah maybe you haven't heard of marat safin... or david nalbandian. And trust me I heard of richard gasquet and roger federer.
     
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  50. johnchung907

    johnchung907 Rookie

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    I mean more pace and spin.
     

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