Taking a hit

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by FogerRederer, Aug 11, 2014.

  1. FogerRederer

    FogerRederer Rookie

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    Dunno what my NTRP is but enjoy nevertheless, insightful criticism is always appreciated.
    Disclaimer: I know my service motion is weird looking(really weird looking) but it gets passable results. Also, I had just finished a 2 hour practice session that took place around noon so I was feeling the fatigue by the time of this video. I'm in the red shorts.

    Serves and groundstrokes with just a touch of volleys:
    http://youtu.be/BQ34G9oQbB4

    Groundstrokes only:
    http://youtu.be/h3HYn4xK7ho
     
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  2. Velvet Ga el

    Velvet Ga el Rookie

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    Your racquet face is way closed on the forehand, which means you're going to struggle on the run and in the return game. I used to have the identical problem. It's simply too difficult for the average player to consistently square the face when under pressure coming from a position that closed.

    If you keep the face squarer during the swing, you'll need to make fewer compensations and your ball contact will be a lot more solid. Compare your face at the end of the backswing with that of Federer. You'll see that his is facing the side fence. Yours is facing the back fence and sometimes the corner behind you and to the left.
     
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  3. FogerRederer

    FogerRederer Rookie

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    Yeah I get what you mean, I've been trying to iron that out over the summer. Thanks for the advice!
     
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  4. Velvet Ga el

    Velvet Ga el Rookie

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    Limit the right forearm rotation in your backswing, and check your grip. I looked at your video on my phone, so I haven't checked your grip on a blown up screen. Even for a western, though, you're still closed.

    It'll take a while to fix it, but once you do, you'll be amazed at how much cleaner you hit the ball, and especially against better players who take your prep time away or hit at varying paces.
     
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  5. FogerRederer

    FogerRederer Rookie

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    Thanks, I'll be sure to get to it. The weather is gonna be crappy where I am for the next week so I'll be watching more tennis than playing. I use a full western btw but I'm thinking of transitioning to a semi-western so i can focus on hitting deeper more penetrating shots for doubles as approaches.
     
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  6. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    It is amazing your serve motion might be ahead of your groundie game, expecially since you hit ONE backhand that I saw, and 1 and a half videos.
    You waste energy jerking to trophy position, energy that you should store to hit your serves, not getting to trophy position.
    From trophy position onward, it's a nice top/slice serve, but do you hit any other serve? You seem to just hit them IN, without regard to placement.
    Forehand, you jerk at the ball, but you do create nice topspin, depth, and good place. Slices might totally mess up your game.
    Backhand, besides not showing many, look stiff and guided.
    Seems you just hammer your forehand, and don't know how to place it hard and deep up the middle, so your lazy partner can actually hit it back towards your forehand side.
    So, summation, nice service pace and spin, nice hard heavy topspin forehands, and you could probably be judged by your hitting bud's tennis level.
     
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  7. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    2nd time around, actually watched the entire first video, and after minute 5, you actually hit some backhands.
    You need to hit more backhands, so you will use it during games when the points are scored. You have almost mirror image forehand and backhand swingpaths, short, violent, heavy spin, not a lot of hitting through the ball.
    This can work, if you lengthen your stroke and relax your body. This cannot work (at 4.5), if you insist on jerking at the ball with a steep violent swingpath.
    In tennis levels 3.5 and up, you start to face tons of backhand shots, you face tons of low slices to your backhand and forehand, and lots of balls come lower than knee high. You need to balance out your game so you are not only hitting with soft loopy hitters.
     
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  8. anubis

    anubis Hall of Fame

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    Your strokes look good, keep up the good work. As for NTRP, don't let a bunch of internet hacks like us tell you what you are. It's easy enough to determine on your own: find a local tennis ladder and challenge 3.0, 3.5 and 4.0 level guys. Whichever group you absolutely destroy, you don't belong there. Whichever group bagels you repeatedly, you don't belong there. Find something in the middle.
     
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  9. Velvet Ga el

    Velvet Ga el Rookie

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    Now that I've had a chance to look at this on my computer, let me give you a comparison point to a guy who uses a similar grip to you. Look at this snapshot and you'll see the hitting face of your racquet almost fully facing the fence to your left:

    [​IMG]

    Now, freeze this video of Djokovic (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yKAqbB07ncM) on his forehand at the 1:23 mark. His racquet face is still extreme because of the grip, but it's pointing down to the ground and maybe slightly to the left.

    You can play with the face as closed as you have it (you'll mostly get huge topspin from it), but it also takes great hands and timing to pull it off. If you play a lot, it's probably somewhat easy for you to time it. Even then, though, I'd bet you still lose a lot of balls into the net. I'd also bet that if you take time off and start back up, you lose balls into the net quite a bit because you aren't able to time the hands to reopen the racquet face to square.

    If you square the face up a bit more in the backswing, you won't have to manipulate the racquet face as much on your forward swing and you should see more consistent contact on all of your shots. You can still get topspin as well, but you won't have the wild misses that you see at 2:12 of your second video.
     
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  10. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    If you want to see a top 4.5 using this Hawaiin grip hitting some good shots, look for "Failed" vids, he posted on here the year before last.
    Failed is trying to switch to SW, two years ago or so. He is borderline D-2 singles material.
     
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  11. FogerRederer

    FogerRederer Rookie

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    Duly noted, so have my racquet face looking towards the back fence during the back swing.
     
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  12. Topspin Shot

    Topspin Shot Legend

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    Your forehand grip is very extreme. I don't normally recommend a player change his grip, but you're actually hitting some balls straight into the ground. Can you shift it at least a little?
     
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  13. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    No, the face points down at the ground, the racket itself is pointed near the back fence, just like you're doing now.
    Even with a SW grip, the racketface points down at the ground as the loop swing commences it's forward direction.
    Pat The Dog
     
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  14. Velvet Ga el

    Velvet Ga el Rookie

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    [​IMG]

    Tip points to the back fence, face actually faces down on the court. Your tip is fine (it points to the back fence), but you've manipulated the face with your forearm rotation and/or grip to point to the left fence. That means you have to manipulate it the other direction in your foreward swing or you'll dump every ball into the net.

    I started doing the same thing because I was under the mistaken impression that you needed to close the face to generate huge topspin. In actuality, what generates the most topspin isn't the face, but the racquet path and racquet head speed. Nadal's racquet face is considerably more "open" than your face, but he still generates huge topspin because of his racquet path and racquet speed.

    Your racquet speed is good, as is your racquet path (for the most part). You already have a good forehand, and it won't bother you against inferior players or guys who can't trouble you to your wide forehand corner. But if you can get the racquet face manipulation out of your swing, you could have a great forehand against all levels of players.
     
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  15. FogerRederer

    FogerRederer Rookie

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    So upon trying out your suggestion(squaring the face, straighten my arm during take-back, etc) and I could already feel the difference. I still had plenty of top-spin but my consistency with both depth and placement was through the roof, my coaches at the club I practice were taken aback.

    The guy I'm hitting with is kinda lazy but he plays primarily doubles so he manages. He's VERY consistent though, and can place the ball very well.

    I'm still using a full western grip, I don't think it's that extreme. The guys I was hitting with (very good juniors, at least 4.0s because they've gone deep in tourneys) noted the improvement as well. It wasn't too drastic a change but was very clear.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2014
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  16. Velvet Ga el

    Velvet Ga el Rookie

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    Good to hear. I don't have any issue with the western grip like some of the others on here do. But if you're going to use that grip, you absolutely cannot close the face with your forearm or you'll beat up the net.

    Keep taking vids of your swing to validate your progress. You've already got a nice forehand, so I think you'll start to see your consistency (and depth as you note) get much better.
     
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