Swing/stroke theory

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by dlam, Sep 21, 2012.

  1. dlam

    dlam Rookie

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    I know this is just semantics but in theory

    Are we trying to swing the handle or the racket head?
    Are we trying to stroke or strike the ball?
     
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  2. Povl Carstensen

    Povl Carstensen Legend

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    We are trying to pull the handle so the racket head swings. And we are trying to strike the ball with a degree of stroke, so we get spin.
     
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  3. Chas Tennis

    Chas Tennis Hall of Fame

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    I believe that you are going to have a hard time finding one word to cover what you are doing in tennis strokes. The definitions of strike and stroke would have to be precisely defined.. something in a reference book or widely on the internet....good luck finding that! If the racket moves forward 90% and laterally 10% is that a strike or a stroke, etc.?

    To understand current tennis stroke theory this book is the best that I have seen. Very readable and clear, a great reference for each stroke.

    From an earlier thread-

    Technique Development in Tennis Stroke Production, B. Elliott, M. Reid & M. Crespo

    The science of tennis stroke analysis has changed significantly in the last 20 years especially in the area of biomechanics. One of the leading researchers is Bruce Elliott.

    This book takes each stroke and discusses the important characteristics that are present in each. It puts the new research results into readable form. It also has coaching information, for example, on the ages that certain skills can be introduced to serious young players based on the stage of the young player's strength development.

    Technique Development in Tennis Stroke Production(2009), B. Elliott, M. Reid and M. Crespo

    Suppliers Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc. all list it as ‘out of stock’. No wonder I had not heard of this 2009 biomechanics book on tennis stroke techniques. I found it for sale at the ITF Store. $20 + $8 shipping. (ITF, get some book retailers!)

    International Tennis Federation store -

    https://store.itftennis.com/category...=/category.asp

    Chapter titles:

    1 Talent Development: A Progressive Approach
    2 Biomechanical and Anatomical Principles
    3 'Heaviness' in Stroke Production
    4 Variability an Integral Feature of Stroke Development
    5 Service Mechanics
    6 Forehand Mechanics (including return of serve)
    7 Backhand Mechanics
    8 Net Play Mechanics
    9 Contemporary Coaching of Technique

    Includes a section identifying the joint motions. Very readable. Overall and detailed perspectives. Extensive references for each chapter.

    Best tennis book that I've seen, a great reference book!
    Last edited by Chas Tennis : 07-19-2012 at 04:33 AM.
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2012
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  4. dominikk1985

    dominikk1985 Legend

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    the best image is trying to swing the sweetspot of the racket. visualize the sweetspot moving through space this should improve timing.

    I don't believe in things like concentrating on the handle or elbow like some suggest. at the beginning this might be a good cue because it teaches racket lag (and thus a proper kinematic chain) but as you advance you want sweetspot awareness.
     
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  5. dlam

    dlam Rookie

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    Lagging rackethead seems possible only by swinging the rackethead.
    So ideally....serve would need max lagging
    Volleys would need the least.
     
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  6. dlam

    dlam Rookie

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    Kinetic chain would be a fancy way to describe the rhythm motion of the tennis stroke.
    Having a constant rhythm would make this game easier.
    Then all the timing issues would be just tempo and anticipated pace/spin of ball.
     
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  7. dlam

    dlam Rookie

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    My take
    Stroking would be a generic term to describe all types of groundstrokes and volleys.
    As in forehand stroke, backhand stroke etc.
    Ballstriking would be a term more commonly used in golf
    However in the 21 century tennis has developed into a power game and "forehand strokes" 50 years ago looked weak compared to the forehand drives in the modern game.
    Stroking the ball denotes a less aggressive defensive action to the ball where the object to keep the ball in play.
    Striking sounds more like a power stroke , in essence a offensive attack where the object is to end the point.
     
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  8. boramiNYC

    boramiNYC Hall of Fame

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    the most important direct awareness is of the position and motion of the hand. not from visual cue but from nerve sensation. the position, angle and distance of the racquet head is acquired or learned awareness. clear understanding of a biomechanically sound swing path and placing a moving ball in that path at the precise spot where the racquet face angle is perfect for intended trajectory and spin of the ball is key to tennis stroke and skill. that's about it but that's what's difficult.
     
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  9. dominikk1985

    dominikk1985 Legend

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    first you lag, then you swing the rackethead:). you feel the centrifugal pull of the rackethead around the hand. that is real whip in your stroke.
     
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  10. dlam

    dlam Rookie

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    How true.
    The serve is the ultimate swing of the racket unlike any other tennis stroke.

    This is one motion where I can feel the centrifugal force of the rackethead moving away from my body and the centripedal force of my core muscle puling my body into the court.
    The beauty of two seemingly opposing directional vector forces working together to give the max swing speed.
     
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  11. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    you start by pulling the handle, then transition to some swinging of the racket
    face during the stroke.
     
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  12. Chas Tennis

    Chas Tennis Hall of Fame

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    All kinesiology references use illustrations when defining motions, the word descriptions alone are not enough for clear communication.

    My reference on kinesiology identifies joints, muscles and motions but does not deal very much with timing and the stretch-shortening cycle.

    An interesting question is - when the body is using pre-stretch to shorten muscles, how does it feel? Is there a lack of feeling when using pre-stretch - the 'relaxed arm' 'free energy' that one of the Bryan twins described? Does it feel as if you are not doing that much when using prestretch?
     
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  13. dlam

    dlam Rookie

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    Been trying to swing the neck of the racket and it it seems to hold up particular well for the serve motion however for groundies is been poor though I feel maybe swinging the handle would work much better for groundies
     
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  14. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    You and others make things way too complicated.

    It's exactly like swinging a hammer to pound a nail or a closer analogy is swinging an axe into a tree.


    Any adult should have used a hammer at least one time. Do you focus on swinging the hammer head or the handle? Are you trying to strike the nail, the tree or paying attention to the swing?
     
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  15. dlam

    dlam Rookie

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    I agree that playing tennis is mostly instinctive and no need to overthink or pay attention to other things other than hitting the ball while playing the game.
    However I am seeing fundamental faults in rec players particular the serving motion as most are trying to swing the handle for the serve.
     
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  16. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    Well, I don't know. For me I keep my eyes on the ball and try to strike it hard with the racket face.

    The serve is tricky cuz we virtually never have to strike anything hard high up, except maybe for those with the pinata tradition. :)
     
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