Single handed backhand for juniors...

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Ash_Smith, Jun 19, 2011.

  1. NoQuarter

    NoQuarter Rookie

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    I am very interested in this debate because I grew up as a self taught tennis player. Learned by hitting against the side of a building in grass and watching tennis on TV. Still have not had a professional lesson. I have a 1HBH...and have attempted a 2HBH with absolutely no success. I have always thought that a 1HBH is something that people go to because it feels right to them instead of being taught. So along comes my daughter who shows some athletic ability. I try to teach her a 1HBH because I figure that she, like me, will find it comfortable...but she struggles. Showed her how to grip a 2HBH and it clicks with her. Has a great 2HBH. So....another one of my questions is....do coaches/teachers take what "feels" right to a person into consideration when they are learning either a 1 or 2HBH?
     
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  2. FedExpress 333

    FedExpress 333 Professional

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    Well, a backhand that feels right over a backhand that brings early reults.... its obvious. Plus, im surprised that noone has mentioned the footwork needed to make a good 1hbh? it is a lot harder...
     
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  3. junbumkim

    junbumkim Professional

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    Just to clarify, I don't think 1H is superior to 2H. I think 2H provides more relliability and stability whereas 1H allows more room for versatility.

    Yeah..I don't think it's the entire reason, but I won't doubt if it is part of the reason. Some players do switch from 2 hander to 1 hander (Dent, Edberg etc). But, it would be difficult to see a junior with a mediocre 2 hander at 14 or 16 years old trying to switch to one hander unless the transition happens very quickly with success.

    Take Roddick, who's got a mediocre 2 hander. Would he have benefited from a switch to one hander?

    I think it's safe to say one hander usually takes longer time than 2 hander to achieve the same level of consistency and solidity. And, players do stick with 2 hander and may not change because of the difficulty of transition or mastering the stroke. I am not saying anything about superiority.
     
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  4. junbumkim

    junbumkim Professional

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    None of the guys with 2 hander I hit with could execute one hander very well...Guys from 5.0 to 4.0 level...

    I have a one hander, started with one hander. And, when I tried 2 hander for the first time, it actually wasn't all that bad. Coaches have mentioned it looked pretty good and one has actually asked if I ever worked on it...

    A few years later, I started to tinker with it a little bit here and there, and I didn't have much trouble with stroke production at all..Actually, it had gotten better. The difficulty came with footwork and movement with 2 hander, which was different from one hander. And, I didn't have the time or energy trying to switch..

    My one hander gotten better and better somehow, and it's actually not too bad..
     
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  5. slice bh compliment

    slice bh compliment G.O.A.T.

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    One of my kids was raised on the orange ball. With yellow and green balls, he would do mostly 2handers. Good looking.
    WIth orange balls, he's loving the one. He prefers it from a feel and freedom perspective.

    He tries the 1hander with the yellow ball with good results on anything but a high ball. So he slices....or moves back a lot...or moves in to take it early. This is a process, obviously. Then he remembers his two hander is more effective at this age (10u), especially when taking a ball early (before it gets too high).

    I think he's set no matter which one he uses...when he prepares well and moves well to the ball.
    He saw a clip of Borg with me, during the Mac/Borg doc. He wanted to go out and try that release against the garage.

    I don't want to confuse him, though. The 1hbh, the 2hander, the 2hander with the Borg/Youzhny release. This grip, that grip. The continental slice. I'm wondering if this mix is healthy or not. I think it is probably bad for success NOW. But good overall, for volleys, variety, etc.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2011
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  6. BevelDevil

    BevelDevil Hall of Fame

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    I wonder if there is a selection bias effect at work here. Perhaps this is in part because players with a 2hbh are more likely to have had coaching in the past? Or perhaps people who choose a 1hbh have lazy feet and are trying to stretch to the ball?


    Btw, what kind of 2hbh do you teach? Bottom arm straight at contact?
     
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  7. basil J

    basil J Hall of Fame

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    This is an interesting topic. I played hockey my whole life and took up tennis in my late 30's. I shot lefty on the ice so as a right handed player I naturally went out there with a 2 HBH. After a year of lessons with a coach that played a 2 HBH, my backhand was mediorce at best. I switched pros and on the first day of practice, the pro noticed that I retunred serves with one hand , exclusively. He picked up on my natural inclination & it was a 1 HBH and within a month I was hitting it naturally, and now 12 years later it is my best groundstroke by far. I had a coach that was perceptive and found something that worked for me more naturally. I can't even hit a 2HBH now. It feels stiff & limiting. My point is that pro's should monitor their pupils and teach them what is the most natural for them.
     
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  8. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    Interesting. So when you see players completely contort their forearm that makes it painful to even watch, this doesn't put any stress on the outer elbow area of the arm? Interesting.

    Once again, very interesting. So accroding to you, players can't possibly develop pain in any part of their arm (whatever you want to call it) by hitting forehands. But they can develop "tennis elbow" from not hitting backhands. :roll:

    Call it whatever you want (golfers elbow, tennis elbow, dart throwing elbow, typing elbow, etc, etc. etc). Fact is, most people who play tennis mostly hit forehands (unless you are in an alternate universe) and especially in the beginner stages or lower stages of tennis, and they develop PAIN IN THEIR ELBOW REGION (satisfied?) because of poor mechanics and contorting their forearm in all sorts of ungodly ways in order to achieve more topspin. These are the same people that keep companies that make ELBOW brace grips in business.

    In the same way, why would you choose to teach a stroke that does not produce grand slam titles at the same rate as one-handed backhands? I mean, if you want to throw out numbers, then isn't it interesting that with so many two handers (much more than one-handers in the ATP as you point out), much more than half the slams won in the last 20 years have been won by one-handed players?

    Would you attribute this to coaches (who aren't lazy) just not teaching the two-handed back hand as well as those who teach the one-hander?


    Great post. To add, as I alluded to earlier; in your case, you didn't have a "lazy coach". In most other cases, coaches (as well as their students) are more interested in obtaining instant gratification, and just follow what they see on TV..........."80%??? of pros use two handers, so you should too and blah, blah, blah."
     
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  9. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    Considering you don't understand the difference between tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis) and golfer's elbow/server's elbow (medial epicondylitis), or that they are two very different injuries, then you would not be expected to then understand how the forehand and backhand offer different propensities for injuries. The forehand would create and/or aggrevate golfer's elbow...not tennis elbow. The backhand creates and/or aggrevate's tennis elbow, the most common "elbow problem" tennis players encounter. (Satisfied?)

    If you take out two players over the last twenty years, (Sampras and Fed), then we would see a different percentage of two-handed wins. I don't discount that one-handed strokes can be taken to the highest level. Yet, if we want to look at numbers, let's not stop at just looking at grand slam championships...let's look at NCAA championships, women's WTA championships, and just the fact that percentages of ALL professional players that use two hands is revealing too.

    But, I'm certainly not going to waste my time arguing the point with you. You are more than welcome to your opinion and I welcome that. However, if you have not taught tennis for more than 30 years, have produced over 100 top state, national or world-ranked players, or are only discussing tennis from a subjective point of view, then I'll let you believe all you want to believe from what ever point of view you want to look at your beliefs from.
     
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  10. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    Yes, this is the point that pros must consider: there are many examples of players like you that will in fact do much better with one hand. A pro must look at each individual and help identify these trends.

    However, there are many situations too that a player will feel more comfortable with a one or two-handed backhand, but not be producing the stroke in a way that will allow them to advance. Do we let them continue to use what ever stroke "FEELS" more comfortable? Or, do we help them develop a more effective stroke over time, make IT feel more comfortable, and essentially allow them to be a better player?

    In your case, I would go with the one handed backhand since you already worked with two hands and found the one-hander was indeed more effective for you.
     
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  11. FedExpress 333

    FedExpress 333 Professional

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    Thing is, it really isnt appealing to juniors because they want to baseline bash, not develop an all court game. Although the 2 hander is more solid from th baseline, the 1 hander offers more variety and so on.
     
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  12. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    News flash!!!!!!

    "tennis elbow" is not necessarily and injury or aggravation of the elbow caused solely by hitting backhands in tennis as you continue alluding to.

    Now, you were saying or you haven't learned that in your "30 years of teaching tennis, and blah, blah, blah".


    Hmmm, then lets take out Nadal and say Agassi.

    The numbers still don't go your way, and with a lot more players using two handers during the time I cited.

    And BTW, why would you teach your students to only settle for NCAA championships?
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2011
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  13. Patrick Smith

    Patrick Smith New User

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    I am a very new forum member. Please forgive me if, perhaps, I speak a bit too boldly given my unfamiliarity with the forum. This is a subject dear to my heart, though, and I wanted to participate in this great discussion. Please feel free to correct me if I have made any mistakes in this post.

    I am seventeen years old, and planning to take physical therapy courses in college to eventually earn my doctorate (I enter college this fall! :) )

    There are a lot of great points and posts in this discussion, but I wanted to add that if you ask some of the best physical therapists (Dr. Kelly Starrett or Pete Egosque, for example) or probably any physical therapist worth his weight in salt what cause Tennis Elbow or other such typical athletic "overuse" conditions, his/her answer will probably be that these injuries are caused by the following:

    1) Improper biomechanics (i.e. somebody uses poor form that presents too much stress on the major muscles, tendons, or ligaments such that the body is forced to use "sideline" muscles to compensate for the major ones that are not able to handle the stress. The "sideline" muscles are forced to compensate which pulls the joints out of their regular position, which starts its own cascade of problems and improper compensations.)

    That's generally it (at least as according to what I've read in Pete Eqosque's book, "Pain Free" so far). As far as I've read thus far, the most common cause of the so-called overuse injuries or even many of the sudden sport injuries are caused or influenced by

    A) bad biomechanics, which is caused by

    **a) weakness in the major moving muscles of the movement,

    **b) stiffness in strong joint effecting muscles that are pulling the joint out of proper place, or

    ** c) just plain inappropriate form (which is why it is so incredibly important to learn things right the first time, so that you can begin enforcing the appropriate biomechanics)

    A lot of the time, and for most people, there are things in people's past (various forms of biomechanically incorrect movement or non-movement) that cause them to enter a sport already in a bad position. They may have failing arches (in their feet) which causes supination in the foot to compensate for the lack of rotation and support that the arches give, which turns the knee medially (inwardly) into an entirely improper and unsupportable position while walking around every day, on or off the court. When this person enters the court to learn tennis, he is automatically predispositioned to suffering a knee injury during a lunge or jump.

    The body is like a scaffold, if it is not balanced properly in ALL joints with every one of them in its proper place, it will all come apart. There is no such thing as an isolated joint...

    I do not know much of tennis elbow yet, but from what I hear idly, it is strongly related to the condition and health of the shoulder. I expect that I will encounter a description and analysis of the condition in Pain Free, but I have not yet.

    From what I can surmise, though, I would not be surprised if it is a combination of the following.

    1) More people live a sedentry lifestyle today than ever before. Because of this, people are much less adept at moving. They move less and less, and because of the lack of use, muscles atrophy. When they enter the court and...

    2) start trying to hit heavy serves, FH, BH, and who knows what else like the pro's with very poor form, they are not only presenting stress to the body in that the movement pattern is already corrupt, but the body is already having to pull other muscles out of their regular position to compensate for the major ones that have atrophied and are no longer able to perform their function without help. This pulls everything out of position, and then no matter what they do besides going back and correcting the original biomechanics, they will suffer pain, be it in the form of a dodgy hip, back, knee, or elbow.

    Lack of movement = bad biomechanics (move it or lose it, right? ;))

    Bad biomechanics + good form = Injuries

    Bad biomechanics + bad form = much worse injuries

    Let me know if this makes any sense, I've been up since 5 am and I need sleep.... ha! :)
     
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  14. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    Okay, you win. You are 100% correct. You should be teaching tennis. You are obviously superior to me and many others.
     
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  15. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    Never said that, nor have I stated in this thread the one or two hander are better than the other or used ridiculous percentages to defend myself as to why one should teach one over the other.




    BTW Patrick, nice post. Thanks for sharing.
     
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  16. rkelley

    rkelley Hall of Fame

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    drakulie, you don't agree with Dave Smith (CoachingMastery). I hope everyone is fine with that. If you have facts or statistics that you want to post then I think that would help move the conversation forward.

    But respectfully and as gently as possible I'd asked you to re-read your posts. I don't see how words like "ridiculous" and " . . . blah, blah, blah" help make a point or add to the conversation.

    Speaking personally I'm really glad to have folks like Dave, Ash, and the many other professional coaches here on the board. I think the insight of folks who are teaching tennis is a tremendous resource. Are you teaching professionally (honest question, not a dig)? If so then I don't mean to disrespect you. My dad taught me to play. He was an athletic guy but he didn't have clue as to proper tennis technique. I eventually taught myself to play and over the years learned the game, but I could have leaned so much faster with a real coach. My coach on my HS team was a math teacher. Nice guy but didn't know a thing about tennis.

    I taught my kids to play. I knew what proper form was for the most part (I hadn't learned the modern FH yet), but it's one thing to know how and it's another thing to know how to teach it. In retrospect I did some things right (continental grip on the serve from the start) and some other things I struggled to communicate. In the process of teaching I've learned a bunch about the game and have improved as a player, but I really wish I had Dave's book about six years ago.

    My daughter's teams have had coaches that could play (ex college players, and an ex touring pro), but these guys hardly ever taught anything. In three years of JV girls tennis almost every girl I saw used an E. FH grip for a serve and the coaches never said a word. I saw one girl spending extra time practicing her E. FH serve after practice and still the coach said nothing. Even on the varsity squad there were still FH grip serves and a complete fear of volleying.

    Anyway, we can certainly disagree, but let's play nice and I think we should all should give a little extra credence to the folks here that are teaching professionally and giving us the benefit of their experience.
     
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  17. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    How about this, and I'll say it as gently and respectfully as possible.......... why don't you ask him for facts or statistics?

    The real FACT is, he doesn't.

    The one "fact" he does have and threw out here is that a larger percentage of pros use a two hander in a vain attempt to demonstrate why HE prefers to teach the two hander because of the "success it reflects" as evidenced by the number of touring pros using it.

    Well, "fact" is, with more pros using a two hander, one handers have won more slams in the last 20 years so it is a FACT a one hander is more successfull at the highest stage of the game. But of course, he then wanted to toss Sampras and Federer out of the equation to tilt the discussion in his favor, and when I stated that would be fine as long as we threw out Nadal and Agassi, he didn't like it because Fact is, there are still more one handers with slams than two handers in that same period of time.

    Of course, when someone fails to prove thier broken point, they always fall back to "i've taught tennis for 30 years and coached thousands of students, and yada, yada, yada" to demonstrate their superiority over everyone on the boards.

    Here are some points I have made and will make again:

    Most players prefer hitting forehands to backhands (from beginner to pro).
    Most tennis players fall in the range of 3.0 players (not professional).
    These players tend to strongly favor hitting forehands.
    Most players I have seen whom have ELBOW issues have them because of hitting forehands incorrectly and trying to produce topspin by contorting their forearms into pretzels.

    If CoachingMastery thinks he is the end all be all of medically diagnosing every single player he has not even seen hit a tennis ball, which I have, and wants to define it as golfers elbow, so be it. Just shows how full of himslef he is, regardless of how long he has coached for. And NO, I don't need to give any credence to anyone as full of himself as that.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2011
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  18. BevelDevil

    BevelDevil Hall of Fame

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    Regarding the debate over the debate: On a forum, I think arguments should stand on their own, regardless of credentials. CoachingMastery has made very sound arguments and I appreciate them as such (thanks!).

    There's no need to fall back on authority. After all, in the days of the 1hbh, I'm sure there were coaches with strong credentials scoffing at the 2hbh.


    Having said all that, when talking about great pros with 1hbhs we can't ignore the women's side and Henin, who probably had the best of them all. And I don't think she would have been nearly as successful with a 2hbh (nor would Schiavone), imo. If we accept that as true, there's something special about the 1hbh that we shouldn't just gloss over. I'm leaning towards the idea that (at high levels at least) baseline bashers who are short would be better off with a 1hbh with a strong eastern grip.


    Now having said that, I agree that most of the time the 2hbh is the best way to go for beginners. Switching to a 1hbh later is a totally separate debate.

    Finally, I think Ash is right about mini tennis and greater possibilities for teaching the 1hbh.
     
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  19. BevelDevil

    BevelDevil Hall of Fame

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    You have a valid criticism here-- I think this is the weakest part of his argument, however, it is an unnecessary part of his argument. So attacking this doesn't invalidate his other points.

    His many other points (see his first post) seem pretty reasonable.


    Do you think the 1hbh (topspin) is easier to teach to beginners?
     
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  20. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    well, I would say it is a pretty weak argument as well to medically diagnose someone he hasn't even seen hit a tennis ball. But oh well, I don't have a degree/license to practice medicine and diagnose those I haven't seen. I guess coaching for 30 years and having a 100 nationally ranked players under my internet belt gives me this "license".

    and note that I only disagreed with one.


    NO. But I do think that the proper swing on a one-hander is easier to teach and learn than that of a two hander because of it's simplicity. What makes the one-hander more difficult is getting in the proper position, which boils down to footwork. With a two hander, you could have poor footwork and still be succesful at a higher rate more consistently than with a one-hander. This is what I attribute to "laziness" and "instant gratification" on both coaches and their students.
     
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  21. fruitytennis1

    fruitytennis1 Professional

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    Yea...I mean Feds unstoppable 1hbh is the reason he has 16 slams right.
    -This situation isn't realistic..but just think what Fed could have done with a bh like Djoke's.
     
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  22. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    yeah. two slams. :roll:
     
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  23. rkelley

    rkelley Hall of Fame

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    For what it's worth I think the original question that Ash asked was interesting. What if you use mini-tennis and teach a 1hbh from the start?

    I hit a bad 1hbh myself when I started to play years ago (learning with full size wood racquets and real tennis balls), switched to a 2hbh after a few years and got immediate improvement, and then much later learned how to hit a 1hbh properly. I still hit a two hander for TS in tennis, but when I play racquet ball I hit "tennis" 1hbh, and I hit them pretty well. It's kind of like mini-tennis. It makes me wonder how things would have gone if I had started with proper instruction and mini-tennis.

    But Dave makes what I feel is a valid point. Almost all pros, male and female, are hitting a 2hbh. Dave's whole approach is based on looking at what the majority of high level players are doing. It's an approach that makes a lot of sense to me. However drakulie makes a valid counter argument about Federer and Sampras.

    And while I agree that arguments should stand or fall on their own merit, I'm willing to give some credence to folks who actually teach tennis. But everyone doesn't have to share that opinion either.
     
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  24. BevelDevil

    BevelDevil Hall of Fame

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    It shouldn't make too much sense: Prior to the 1990s the tour was dominated by players with 1-handed backhands. Using the reasoning above, coaches of those eras should have treated Borg and Conners as anomalies (like Fed and Sampras) and stuck to teaching the 1hbh, since "that's what most the currrent pros do."

    What's amazing about tennis is the fact that the juniors can actually evolve well beyond what the current tour is doing. Thus, the young kids learning the 2hbh in the late 70s and 80s; and in the 1990s a young Federer hitting a forehand with a straight arm and lots of wrist (two major no-no's of the past eras combined!).

    (Of course, the question is raised: Have we already reached the pinnicle of tennis evolution? )


    If we're going to use pro results as a measure of what should be taught, then every high-level coach out there should be scratching their heads and wondering why two 5'5-1/2" women (Henin and Schiavonne) were able to use their 1hbhs (both with strong Easterns I believe) to dominate much larger women. As I said many times (and no one has ever contradicted), there's no way Henin could have beat the big girls consistently with a 2hbh. Same for Schiavonne. Unlike Sampras, they won because of their 1hbhs, not in spite of it.

    Of course, we shouldn't soley use pro results to determine what to teach beginners since they are such worlds apart.
     
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  25. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    Please understand that I am in no way discounting the one-handed backhand. I hit a one-handed backhand. I've taught the one-handed backhand almost exclusively for about ten years followed by a shift for the last twenty years of teaching two-handed backhands. And we had a number of top ranked players in both eras emerge so I do believe me and my father, (California coach of the year in 1984), were teaching one-handed backhands pretty well at the time.

    My "advice"--and that is all I'm offering here--is that I've found that the proponderance of players learned to hit better backhands as a whole with two hands. I've had a number of two-handers move to one-handed strokes as we saw that they had a better affinity to hit better shots with one hand.

    My understanding of tennis elbow is derived from this 30+ years of seeing thousands of players develop, both by my own teaching and comparitively from other pros and coaches. (As well as having a wife that is a doctor and that I've taught advanced biology for a number of years.)

    You can argue there is no difference between tennis elbow and server's elbow. But, I will respectfully argue not only is there a difference, but that each can be injured or aggrevated by differen general stroke movements.

    I certainly recognize Fed and Sampras as well as guys like Rafter, Edberg, and others. But, the fact is the percentage of players using one-handed backhands is decreasing.

    That is not to say that there might be a swing the other way down the road. (Pardon the pun!) There certainly could be. But, that said, I don't think that we are going to see a huge shift back to one-handed backhands by pros at any time.

    I'm not here to belittle or antagonize. If my sentiments here were construed that way, in my attempt to share my own take and experiences, then I greatly apologize.

    I'm not here to 'be full of myself'...I don't spend that much time here (I certainly don't have 20,000 posts!) to be here to try to toot my own horn. I'm retired from teaching full time and I have other important issues on a day to day basis that don't allow me to come here and hound these boards.

    Every so often I see a post that I think I can add some experience to and I comment. I hate seeing the number of posts that become so inflamed that I myself choose to just stay out of them for a few weeks because it is so degrading to the forum and immature at best.

    Please, take my comments for what they are--comments. No one has to buy into anything I say. Yes, I've had a very successful career and certainly have enjoyed the world-wide response people have made after reading my books or viewing my DVD's or reading articles of mine in various publications and web sites. But, if anyone here has other ideas or experiences that are valid, I'm always open to hearing these ideas. I may not agree with all of them, but I think that everyone has concepts based on their own experiences that create their perceptions.

    Regardless, I simply want to help those understand tennis from my level of participation if it indeed helps them on their path to success.

    No one has to take my advice literally or figuratively. It won't hurt my feelings.

    Cheers to all!
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011
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  26. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    Interesting. Lets see your posts here in this thread:



    TOOT TOOT.
     
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  27. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    And once again, Drak, you have proven me wrong. Congratulations.
     
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  28. slice bh compliment

    slice bh compliment G.O.A.T.

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    Hhaha, that was funny guys. Nice, spirited exchange from a couple of legends around here.

    Anyway, back on topic... so nobody wants to be the guinea pig. We all want to learn from one another. Thanks, Ash, for starting this.

    So, anyone teaching the one-hander? Taking advantage of the low compression balls?

    You know what's hilarious? My son's friend played in an 8u inter-club match with red balls and a 36 ft ct. Good rallies with some of the better kids! Here's the funny part: they do not allow volleys. I thought that was odd. I mean, I get it. They're trying to keep the rallies long and prevent a wise kid from just stepping up and banging volleys down or angling them off. But, long-term, I thought the whole purpose of the soft ball was to promote a more well-rounded game and better court sense.

    So that kid is joining my son on the full court with a confusing, but good blend of orange, green and yellow balls.

    Back to the one-handed BH idea. What do you experts think is better...learning a two and switching (maybe) to a one? Or learning the one with soft balls and switching to two?

    Thanks,
    sbc
     
    #78
  29. Ash_Smith

    Ash_Smith Hall of Fame

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    ^^^ No volleys at red? That almost as ridiculous as not allowing the tramlines when playing doubles at green...oh, wait a sec - welcome to the LTA!!!

    Yes, some interesting (and off topic!) discussion going on here! I am going to give it a go with a couple of kids that I teach just to see how it turns out. Both are 5 and have been playing for about 7 weeks in our mini tennis groups so they should be a roughly blank canvas, but have an idea of the discipline I/we expect when learning a new stroke.

    I have now idea which way around is better, just that I have always done what Dave (and most others do), teach 2h first and then switch later (and play catchup for all those years when they could have been hitting 1 handed and completing their 4000 reps!).

    Maybe my little experiment will confirm that 2h is better to start, or maybe it will change my (our?) minds - whichever, it will be fun to see what happens!

    Cheers
     
    #79
  30. BevelDevil

    BevelDevil Hall of Fame

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    What backhand grip are you going to have them use?

    Also, I'd love to hear your reports on how comfortable these young kids are learning and switching grips, as that aspect seems to confuse a lot of adults.


    thanks a lot for the input, very useful!
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011
    #80
  31. Ash_Smith

    Ash_Smith Hall of Fame

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    Single handers will have base knuckle on bevel 1, so eastern backhand. They have to change grip for a two hander too, I use little stickers to mark the grips where I want the base knuckle(s) to sit, so they can look & check and then learn to feel.

    cheers
     
    #81
  32. BevelDevil

    BevelDevil Hall of Fame

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    ^^^ just curious, why not an extreme eastern? I would think that would be better for kids.
     
    #82
  33. Ash_Smith

    Ash_Smith Hall of Fame

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    ^^^ I Never start with extreme grips, grips will usually (naturally) slide around as required.

    I always start forehands off on bevel 3 or 3/4, knowing it will slip around towards 4 as the player develops and moves through orange, green and finally to yellow ball.
    I'm interested to see if the same happens with a single hander.

    cheers
     
    #83
  34. President

    President Legend

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    Just wanted to add that the 1-handed backhand enjoys a disproportionate level of success at the top of the game compared to the 2 hander. The percentage of players in the top 20 with single handers is 25%, which I am sure is much higher than the overall percentage of total tennis pros that use that stroke. This would indicate that the single hander is relatively more successful at the top of the game, no?
     
    #84
  35. slice bh compliment

    slice bh compliment G.O.A.T.

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    ^That's a cool stat. Very different. Could be because really only the best one handers make it. Those players would have made it with a two hander, too.

    There's nothing uglier than a bad one-hander. It's such a liability. You see it in jrs occasionally. They either switch to a 2, improve the one in a big way or they plateau.

    Now, a good one-hander...that turns into a weapon? Nice.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011
    #85
  36. Patrick Smith

    Patrick Smith New User

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    Thanks, Drakulie. I ,too, am enjoying your posts. 8)

    I am glad that this board allows for "lively" debate and/or conversation. Verbal sparring and confrontation is, as long as it is handled courteously and mindfully of the great goal--which is not to prove the other person wrong or yourself right, but to discern the truth of the matter--is always beneficial to everyone!
     
    #86
  37. rkelley

    rkelley Hall of Fame

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    Not necessarily.

    First off how you cut the data makes a big difference. In the top 10 there's only 1 1hbh (10%). What's the percentage in the top 30 or 50? (25% is the same number I get for the top 20 as of this week).

    And then more importantly, is the 1hbh making these players more successful, does it not matter, or is it dragging them down and they would they be more successful with a two hander? The percentages alone don't really tell you that.

    The one hander is a great shot. I don't think anyone is saying it shouldn't be taught. There is a good discussion on whether it should be taught first or not. Is it superior overall? I think that's really hard to know.
     
    #87
  38. bhupaes

    bhupaes Professional

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    IMO, the two hander is easier to learn and easier on the body. I converted to a two hander, from a pretty good one hander, due to elbow problems. I also believe two handers are more powerful and consistent, on the average.

    Before anyone starts flaming me let me state that when it comes to playing a match, I believe one handed players may well have an advantage: more variety. They usually have better slices, more feel for backhanded touch shots, and volley better - on the average, of course. I remember that during my 1HBH days, I used to run around my backhand a whole lot more, and hit inside out. Now I don't as much, since I like my two hander... I wonder if it's the same with higher level players (I think so, but that's just IMO). Heck, one handed players may be hitting lots more forehands than two handers and reaping the benefits, for all I know.

    So, it's a great question as to what coaches should do. I think it's perfectly okay for a coach to start a kid with the one handed backhand, probably with more emphasis on the slice to begin with, and teach them to topspin when the arm and stabilizer muscles are conditioned enough to handle it. And when the kid wins a grand slam, the coach can say, "See, I taught him that!" :)
     
    #88
  39. President

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    You're right in that the cutting of the data makes a big difference, but I think the top 20 is a relatively good barometer for how effective the stroke is. If I'm not mistaken, many of these players are on the edge of top 10, so its possible that they will dip inside at some point. As for whether the single hander is dragging them down, I think all of them (apart from Federer) have their backhand as their best shot (Gasquet, Almagro, Youzhney, Wawrinka), so I doubt that is the case.

    It definitely has a steeper learning curve, but the rewards can be great. (more pace, more spin, more variety, at the price of less stability) I agree with you that it is a very complicated issue and hard to know.
     
    #89
  40. dennis10is

    dennis10is Banned

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    You have to stop spreading lies to impressionable juniors and beginners. The TW Board experts have concluded that the 1bh is detrimental to your game.

    At my club we have implemented the follow rules, aiming to curb the spread of 1bh addiction.

    1: 1bh have to pay 50 percent more on all purchases, dues, court and instruction fees.
    2: no more than one 1bh is allowed to be in the same court.
    3: If a 1bh is playing, they can only play on the back courts so that the juniors will not see them play.
    4: we have many programs to help 1bh members to swtich to 2bh.
    5: a "don't ask don't tell policy" about how you hit your backhand.
    6: Marriage defense act. A 1bh's marriage is not recognized within the confines of the club.
     
    #90
  41. dennis10is

    dennis10is Banned

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    How about accusing somebody of being a liar?
     
    #91
  42. BevelDevil

    BevelDevil Hall of Fame

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    Do you normally tell them that it's okay if they slip into a different variation?

    I ask this because one of my big regrets is being anal about sticking to the exact grip that I was "supposed" to use (Eastern). At some point, I had accidentally "discovered" the SW grip and played my best tennis with it-- only to force myself to move back to the "correct" grip, which I presumed would pay big dividends in the future for me (it didn't really and, many years later, I eventually consciously switched to SW with great results). I really wish someone had told me earlier about other grips and how they may be good alternatives.
     
    #92
  43. slice bh compliment

    slice bh compliment G.O.A.T.

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    ^Yeah, but you are the bevel devil, so I'm sure your coach just assumed you would improvise.
     
    #93
  44. Patrick Smith

    Patrick Smith New User

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    Hi, Dennis. I am capable of enjoying his posts without approving of every sentiment expressed in them or the way it is expressed. Obviously, calling someone a liar is, at face value, detrimental to the overall effect of the debate; however, I am not familiar with the history of Drakulie/CoachingMastery. Perhaps Drakulie has reason to distrust Mr. Smith's word... I don't know enough to make a judgement of either favor.

    Straight out calling someone a liar may be blunt, but at times it is perfectly appropriate if the individual will not concede a truth and instead presents something else in its place. Again, though, I am new here, and I have no knowledge of whether it would be right for Drakulie to claim that Mr. Smith is lying. I do not know either of them.

    Objectively speaking, Mr. Smith did give me the impression of trying to impress the reader with his teaching credentials and experience--which I do find very impressive, regardless of whether he is correct about this small disagreement of teaching the B-- but I do not think it strictly necessary for him to list it quite so often. He has also responded to posts by Drakulie rather sarcastically and derogatively* (in my humble opinion).

    *when he insinuated that all Drakulie did was hound through the forums all day. i.e. not have a life. This is my impression, that's all.

    I don't want to trod on anyone's toes, since I AM new here. I respect Mr. (Coach?) Smith's experience and credentials and find them impressive indeed, but it doesn't make him right on everything. If he presents a case without proper evidence for it, it is vulnerable to criticism in just the same way as if I had done it. Respect to both of them.

    Patrick
     
    #94
  45. FedExpress 333

    FedExpress 333 Professional

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    Lets get back on topic, coach and drakulie....
     
    #95
  46. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    I've tried to present objective information from my personal experience regarding the OP's post.

    At times, I've included my credentials to a) differenciate myself from others based on experience; b) to hopefully imply that I'm NOT a poser trying to pass myself off as someone whom I'm not. (I notice not too many people are willing to put their real names out there...I am. I don't have anything to hide.) Also, because these are forums that are visited by new people all the time, they may or may not have seen previous posts which may have included this experience.

    I have nothing to gain from someone seeing my credentials. They are there for validity and nothing else.

    I surely don't have a great deal of free time to visit the boards all that often, hence I only have a few hundred (I think) posts.

    And, since many questions are asked over and over by different people, I usually don't offer much advice on strokes as I had years ago when I first visited the site and saw that it was a great place for dialogue.

    Unfortunately, I've seen how people seem to attack others, either indirectly or directly. I really have nothing to gain here other than to see what questions are being asked (I do write for different publications), and learn what people are asking or want to know more about. I've seldom mentioned my books or DVD's that are available here...as I don't want to be accused of trying to use these boards to promote them. (I've only mentioned them when someone else brings them up or if I feel that someone might really want to know that they are available.) I've instead mentioned many other books and web sites that I feel offer valuable information.

    I have attended USPTA conventions for ten years to learn more from people who have experience and ideas. So, while some of you think I'm out here trying to prove I know everything, I'm still trying to learn from others out there who have different backgrounds and experiences.

    Yes, I come from a very competitive area; yes I grew up playing many players who would go on to become very highly world-ranked players; yes, I have coached several world-ranked players and dozens of nationally ranked players, and almost a hundred USTA ranked players.

    I mention this not to boast but to share where my experience comes from. It isn't like I'm watching a few players at a club or watching television or YouTube to get my tennis education or where I base my views from. I've read about 100 books on tennis, conversed with world-class pros and try to then share this information the best I can.

    If this is offfensive to some of you, then I can't help you. I'm not trying to come off as offensive, but if I am, then I certainly have tried to apologize for this in the past. It is often hard to offer advice here, especially from an educated point of view, and not seem a little like a know-it-all. I try hard not to do this and offer as much objective information as I can. I guess I fail at this at times, according to some.

    However, some people still attack and I simply don't have any comeback for this since that's not why I'm here.

    I've seen others get attacked and flamed and then they try and do a one-up-manship...something I try to avoid. This is not why I'm here either.

    Personally, I would prefer that most people simply just take my advice for what it is, try it if it sounds logical, or don't if it doesn't. It really is as simple as that. I really appreciate the many kind words and appreciation for what I've offered. I've had many express both appreciation as well as share their success from such advice. (That is much more fun for me to read than to try and go back and forth with anyone in a titfortat he-said, she-said commentary!)

    If people really don't care for my information, then it is no skin off my teeth to not bother being here at all. It is fun to share with those who understand my intent, but it becomes no fun for me when people start attacking myself or others.

    (Has anyone noticed how many posts end up with a complete negative or attacking flavor?)

    I'm sure someone will even attack this post. Well, I've tried to explain why I've posted what I've posted. If that isn't good enough, then oh well.

    Don't know if I've offered anything to clear the air, but that's the best I can do.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011
    #96
  47. SFrazeur

    SFrazeur Legend

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    I agree with you to an extent. A badly hit backhand (one or two hands, ground stroke or volley) where the arm tries to straighten out through the ball is far more likely to cause damage/trauma to the elbow than a bad forehand.

    Where I kinda disagree is in the categorizing. Many of those low level players that have very bad chronic Tennis Elbow have such bad mechanics to the point where it is hard to categorize their backhand as actually being one or two handed.

    Sure, they will have either one or two hands on the racquet at contact, but it's more complex than that. A "one hander" may be opening up too early (opposite shoulder rotating forward with dominate arm bend) and over rotating too much for a proper one handed backhand. While they only have one hand on the racquet at contact they are using more in the way of "two handed" mechanics. Their intent may have even been to hit with two hands. Blah, blah, intent vs actuality, blah, blah.


    -SF
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011
    #97
  48. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    Good points and agreed. I probably shouldn't have been so robust in this statement. While in my experience it has been pretty much mostly one-handed backhanders that have both the injury as well as usually questionable form, you are correct that it truly is more complex. I've seen players get tennis elbow from non-tennis activites...and, of course, sustain aggrevation through play once they have it. So yes, there are a number of conditions for anyone to get it. Thanks for an objective point of view!
     
    #98
  49. Patrick Smith

    Patrick Smith New User

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    Well said, Sir.

    Biomechanically, you are likely to be right regarding the 1HBH. The movement puts the elbow in a rather unstable position in the average recreational player, even with proper form (as far as I can see). I think it would also place the shoulders in an internally rotated and weak position as well, because a huge amount of elbow injuries are caused by shoulder issues. A professional player could probably condition his elbow to handle the stress of a heavy 1HBH, but only if he took good care of his shoulder and maintained his shoulder girdle balance.

    Disclaimer: I am a student.
     
    #99
  50. SFrazeur

    SFrazeur Legend

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    To be clear, since I was half asleep when I wrote the above post, I do agree that for the most part the onset of Tennis elbow sustained from actual Tennis activity can be traced back to bad backhand mechanics. The worst strain seeming to be caused by forcing and/or straightening the arm through the ball.


    My only disagreement coming from the aspect of "lumping and splitting." I just see too many "no handed" backhands, backhands so mechanically improper and inconsistent where it is difficult to categorize them as one or two handed. I'm sure you know the type of players I am talking about. Same idea as I wrote above, but I would also add the improper use of a backhand slice as a contributing factor as well.

    Yes. My disagreement is largely academic.

    It is more difficult for someone who does not teach to really see that bad backhands cause more Tennis elbow than forehands. I'm sure there are many, many who have gone to two hands from being a one handed to take strain off their dominate elbow. I can look at a long time player using two hands and tell with good accuracy if they have been primarily one handed in the past. I'm sure you can as well. Any tennis elbow injury is more likely to have come from their time as one handed not a two handed. Someone who is not experienced in analyzing mechanics is not likely to notice.

    -SF
     

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