Vince Spadea's tips on FH and Serve

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by boramiNYC, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. FrisbeeFool

    FrisbeeFool Rookie

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    On the Forehand, I think describing it as pulling up and across could help some people, who don't understand phrases like rotate into contact, rotate your core use your core, uncoil, etc etc. One the one handed backhand it's a horrible description and is confusing a lot of beginners on the forum.

    On the forehand I prefer to think of the stroke as coiling early and then rotating back into the stroke, while I extend my arm forward and through. I hit with a modern stroke with plenty of topspin.

    Since Wegner tells people not to prep early or worry about early prep, his approach of just telling students to pull up and across isn't going to work for every student, because in order to uncoil dramatically like in the modern strokes, you have to be coiled in the first place!

    It's harder to uncoil into the modern forehand if you haven't first executed the unit turn. There was a period of time on this forum where me and other posters couldn't use phrases like unit turn, without wegner's followers derailing the thread saying we couldn't call it the unit turn because modern players don't execute a unit turn, they stalk the ball. This is laughable, because the phrase unit turn is very descriptive and helpful for many students, and is common parlance in the coaching word. On the world of these threads stalking is the common parlance among all the Wegnerites, but the real world many coaches prefer the term unit turn.

    If Wegner's approach works for you fine, but most accomplished coaches don't teach it that way. And it prevents beginners from hearing a lot of great advice, if Wenger's followers are ruining every thread claiming theres no unit turn, there's no hitting through the ball, etc. etc. Anyone who has had any access to decent coaching in the real world knows these claims are ridiculous, will damage peoples games, and are counterproductive.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
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  2. TheCheese

    TheCheese Professional

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    You should give Oscar's method a try at least and report back with how you felt about it.
    I think Oscar's method works especially well for beginners because it doesn't clutter their mind with a thousand different things to remember.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
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  3. boramiNYC

    boramiNYC Hall of Fame

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    It's really tomato vs tomaaato you're arguing here. def 'stalking' is not conventional term but both achieve the same goal, the unit turn. And both approaches can help players depending on in what state their strokes are. Except that you are not fan of Oscar, which I'm not either, what else is new?
     
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  4. FrisbeeFool

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    I've spent a lot of time with his material since it is so popular on the forums. The only video positive or helpful was his old ESPN video where he talks about how the pros hit through their one-handed backhands and finish out front.

    I find that most of his terminology is a convoluted, and confused way of describing things other coaches have described in a more fluent, coherent, simple way. That's one of the reasons it's so funny hearing Wegner and his followers demean accomplished coaches like Robert Lansdorp, who have real histories coaching at the highest levels.
     
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  5. TheCheese

    TheCheese Professional

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    The point is in not being descriptive. Tennis, as in most sports, is learned through feel. Reading a book on biomechanics does not make you a great athlete. Often times, it makes you play much worse. I'm sure you've read the Inner Game.
     
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  6. psv255

    psv255 Professional

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    I agree that to describe what is actually happening, accuracy and conciseness is key, but when a coach wishes to teach something, it is much more feel-oriented; to reproduce what was described as actually happening in a student, we must note that the coach is instructing a subjectively thinking, feeling human being, prone to all sorts of "error" and misinterpretation; surely we're not programming an automaton (obviously I'm exaggerating, but I hope you get my point).

    Vince's video reminded me of one of those Powerthirst commercials :)
     
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  7. FrisbeeFool

    FrisbeeFool Rookie

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    Are you aware that Roger Federer was taught by an Australian coach named Peter Carter who advocated hitting through the ball with a long follow through? Oscar Wegner has no connection to Federer that I'm aware of.
     
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  8. FrisbeeFool

    FrisbeeFool Rookie

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    True I agree with you. I think analogies can be helpful coaching tools even if they aren't 100 percent accurate. That's why I think it's so funny all the MTM people insist the MTM terminology is the only way to describe modern tennis. A lot of coaches that have been labeled "traditional" by the MTM folks uses coaching advice that can help a lot of students. I think whatever terminology works the student is great. I question how helpful the MTM terminology is for most people.
     
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  9. TheCheese

    TheCheese Professional

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    And I'm sure many pros were not necessarily taught to brush up and across. Yet, they do intuitively anyway because it's the most efficient way to simultaneously produce ball speed and spin.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
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  10. FrisbeeFool

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    He was also taught to get under the ball and hit topspin. That's what so funny about this discussion. He was taught topspin, just like every player. He just wasn't taught using the confusing, inaccurate, and often hilarious MTM wegnerite terminology people in these forums love so much. I give up, I will no longer use the phrase unit turn or shoulder turn, or coiling even though that's what almost every coach uses in real life. I will use the term stalking the ball because it is MTM approved even though it doesn't evoke the early preparation and coiling that actually take places in modern groundstrokes. You have won. I will no longer comment.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
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  11. TheCheese

    TheCheese Professional

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    Most teaching pros will teach you that whenever possible, you should turn sideways, step into the ball, have your weight going forward, and hit straight through the ball.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6LmJyNoL8U

    That's not what the pros are doing.
     
    #61
  12. FrisbeeFool

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    Got it. The pros don't turn side ways and coil, then transfer their weight into the shot that's not happening. I guess I'll have to revamp my entire game. I guess when Stan Wawrinka's coach says he turns sideways and transfers his weight into the shot, he is inaccurate. Thank you for explaining modern tennis so much better than Peter Lundgren ever could.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f97Krt-SnTM
     
    #62
  13. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    See the slow motion of Djokovic's backhand I had posted in the other thread. The distance of the point of contact on the strings from the back fence increases for a while after contact before decreasing. That is quite the opposite of what a pull should do. The way you are using pull is to describe the centripetal force on a body which moves in an arc in a plane inclined to the ground. I suppose a case could be made for that. That would be like saying I threw a pebble up and it did go up, but the earth was always pulling at it and it eventually come down, so we should say that I pulled the pebble.
     
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  14. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Continuing on this topic, there seems to be a lack of appreciation of the dwell time and string friction, which is the basis for all the different varieties of strings and pro preferences etc.

    Let us take a billiard ball and a cue. How would you impart some rotation to the ball? By hitting it off center so that the line of force does not pass through the center. You won't get much rotation. How would you increase it? You would have to make the contact more grazing or tangential. That is the only way.

    In tennis, the ball and strings deform much more, and there is plenty of friction in the dwell time. This gives an opportunity to be less grazing, but still produce spin by an off center hit. The single arc can create both pace and spin without the need for the arc to be very steep. That is the kind of arc used most frequently. For those who don't understand the strings interaction, the only way would seem to be to yank it abruptly upward.

    Table tennis is somewhat in between.
     
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  15. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Ultimately the only true data points are those of pros we can see and their publicly acknowledged coaches. Anything else cannot be verified or tracked.
     
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  16. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    What happens after the hit has no relevance to the ball. See my analysis above how the path till the impact and during the dwell time creates topspin due to two kinds of separate but very interlinked actions - off center line of force and gripping by friction.
     
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  17. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    What happens after the hit is what most duffers see and think is part of the hitting action on the stroke. They see the rackethead go up and over the path of the hit ball, and think the player strokes like that.
    In reality, that up and over rackethead is a function of physiology and the modern WW finish.
     
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  18. HSCoach

    HSCoach New User

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    Well this is all quite the norm isn't Oscar? Good players compete one way, but teach another. That is what motivated you to write your 1st book isn't it?
    Isn't that what you found when working with Borg for that comeback? That he was trying to follow much of the normal coaching like in this thread, which led him to struggle greatly and kept him from getting back to his earlier form?
    Should really be no surprise that Vince is doing the same thing.
     
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  19. corners

    corners Legend

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    The upper sequence is a return of serve.
     
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  20. HSCoach

    HSCoach New User

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    :) I think this fella is right!
     
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  21. Wegner

    Wegner Rookie

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    Correct. Look at Spadea hitting against a wall. He plays one way, he coaches another way, clearly up and across.


    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2leQK1VZSK8
     
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  22. Wegner

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    Well said. That's where the power comes about. Force is mass times acceleration, not mass times velocity.
     
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  23. Wegner

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    I have no connection to Roger Federer, except that he has my book and the Master Strokes 1 and 2 videos since the Miami Lipton in March 2005, but I don't know if he ever viewed them. And Peter Carter was from South Africa, not Australian, and he advocated a long follow through, just like I do, but not forward like to insist on. Unless you step forward into the ball, another one of your misconceptions, you can't go forward on a full extension, but across (unless you disjoint your elbow). How many misguided posts are you going to write?
     
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  24. boramiNYC

    boramiNYC Hall of Fame

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    You know in collision it's mass times velocity. during contact the ball will only experience the velocity of the racquet and the mass behind the racquet. Why would you use F=ma here?
     
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  25. Wegner

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    What you call the unit turn is the non playing hand holding on to the racquet while you track the ball. If you do the unit turn as the first thing and then run, you waste lots of time and you'll never reach a distant ball. Be practical (if you can), use time in the most efficient way. You don't to use your invented terminology. Just use common parlance from the real world, like the rest of us.
     
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  26. Wegner

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    Because the player accelerates. The impact is not a passive thing where the momentum carries the racquet onwards, as in old or conventional times. That is where I think (I am sure) John Yandell got it wrong.

    Research from Vic Braden and others show that the racquet speed is higher in front of the body than before the impact. I think it is clearly visible, even in the slow motion takes on Murray and Djokovic at the Australian Open. Check Yandell's tennis player website to see if he is changing his mind.
     
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  27. boramiNYC

    boramiNYC Hall of Fame

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    Huh? The duration of contact is extremely short. a few miliseconds. it's safe to say it's instantaneous. any change in velocity during that time must be negligible. in such collision what only matters is the velocity of racquet at that instant and weight behind it. How would the ball experience any kind of acceleration?
     
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  28. TheCheese

    TheCheese Professional

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    Oscar, I know you advocate a bent arm on the forehand because it's more stable. Just curious, how do you categorize straight arm vs bent arm?

    From what I've seen, I'm assuming you would consider Fed and Nadal "double bend" because even though their arms straighten leading up to contact, they pull up and across right before contact by bending at the elbow. Just something that I'd like clarification on, since most of us are calling their pull type techniques "straight arm" forehands.
     
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  29. bhupaes

    bhupaes Professional

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    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think a wee bit of an analogy with lacrosse shots is possible here. In lacrosse, the "strings" (making up the pocket) have no tension. Thus the concept of momentum transfer does not work. The ball has to be caught and flung - the force applied and the duration of contact determines how fast the ball will leave the pocket.

    The strings in the tennis racquet do have tension and therefore stiffness. So some energy transfer can occur even when the racquet has some velocity, with no force being applied to it. However, the strings do deform, and have dwell time associated with them. The longer the dwell time, and the higher the force applied, the more the velocity of the ball after contact is made. Thus catching the ball on the strings, and accelerating the racquet head is also a way to look at the ball/racquet interaction. By bring the racquet across the ball instead of straight through, by closing the racquet face, and probably other means I can't think of now, the dwell time can be increased.

    In practice, the player will accelerate the racquet towards the ball to build up some momentum, and also apply force near contact by pulling the racquet in, thus utilizing both means of transferring energy to the ball. I think what players have found is that they can sacrifice the huge backswing to some extent, for the sake of precision and consistency, and make do with the energy transfer from the last stage acceleration since it is more than adequate.

    All IMO... :)
     
    #79
  30. HSCoach

    HSCoach New User

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    borami, maybe you can help me on this, since you seem to have a working knowledge of these basic physics formulas (more than me anyway :(). Could it be the difference in a cue ball rolling with only speed and mass into a collision where there is no string tramp effect or ball deformation, vs a racquet being powered and accelerated thru the contact with racket flex, string tramp effect and ball deformation?
     
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  31. Gtech

    Gtech Rookie

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    Momentum is just a measure of the energy of a moving object, interesting and useful in other problems but not the tennis ball/racket interaction.
    The key is the force that is applied to the ball by the racket and strings which is given by the old F=ma. That is why the old and still used by the pros rule of thumb is to swing the heavier weight racket you can, that does not reduce or impair the racket acceleration.
    It is the force applied what translates into whether the ball comes out faster or slower after being hit. Also keep in mind that force is a quantity but with a vector. If you hit the ball at anything but a 0 degree impact angle some of the force is not translated to the ball. This is the basics of spinning the shot or flattening the shot. When the mighty Fed hits massive topspin vs. a flatter winner, he is changing the ratio of swinging up vs. forward or thru the ball. I think we all know the same from our own experience.
    The subject of the amount of spin, that is a whole other can of worms, because F=ma assumes non-deformable bodies. Since the ball, the strings, the racket, the arm all deform and absorb energy, the formulas for all these interactions I don't think have ever fully been modeled.
    I think you can hit with more power and spin with poly than multis, just because polys deform and elongate a lot less than multis, the string snaps back much, much faster into the ball and less of the force applied is lost in elongating and deforming the string, etc. But I confess, after reading all the different articles on spin, I am still not sure that anyone has this totally figure out. I think the best guidance is the actual test results vs. the theories as to why.
     
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  32. Wegner

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    Depending on the circumstances, the player may reach for the ball more or less, and also depends on the player's favorite distance to the ball. I prefer the closer ones, it's easier to pull across, than the fully extended one. But I leave it to the player to decide.

    Off till next week (unless I get online over the weekend in Florida). I am going to the Davis Cup in Jacksonville tonight, at the invitation of... guess who?
     
    #82
  33. Gtech

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    Since somebody mentioned "dwell time". This has nothing to do with how fast or slow the ball is going to come up your racket. Meaning increasing "dwell time" by using looser strings and a more flexible racket is not going to increase the speed of the ball leaving the racket.

    What "dwell time" really is, is how you absorb the momentum of the ball. The force of the incoming ball into the racket multipled by the time the ball impacts the racket equals momentum. A very flexible racket/string gives you more time to absorb the momentum of the ball which translates into a smaller force felt by your hand. Again, we know this from experience, stiffer racket/tight strings hard on the arm, because the force you feel on the arm is higher because the "dwell time" of the ball is much smaller than a flexible racket/strings which deform more.

    So "dwell time" is a concept much more aligned to "feeling the impact" of the ball, than on anything related to power you might hit the ball with.

    As to whether higher "dwell time" increases/decreases spin, I don't have a clue. My feeling is that it decreases spin, more of a slingshot effect, at least that in my unscientific experience.
     
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  34. boramiNYC

    boramiNYC Hall of Fame

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    in case of cue ball collision the duration would be even much shorter. Due to all the ball deformation and flex of racquet etc the contact duration comes out to be a few miliseconds. And it should be very close to completely elastic collision>>on a second thought it's not perfectly elastic, but only partially elastic, but closer to elastic than inelastic. in human's physical capability a few miliseconds is a very short time, essentially the same as an instant.

    Two scenarios. accelerating racquet and coasting racquet. If the velocities are the same at contact and assuming the weight behind the racquet is equal, the ball should be shooting away exactly the same. The thing is the weight behind the racquet could be different due to acceleration where muscles are actively tensing compared to more relaxed muscles behind the coasting racquet. Anyways that's whole another issue.

    But, I believe the tennis ball and racquet collision is instantaneous and very close to elastic in nature.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
    #84
  35. Gtech

    Gtech Rookie

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    You really have this totally wrong. The time the ball impacts the racket is not ZERO. Even if it is milliseconds or picoseconds it is a measureable and real entity. So of course there is acceleration and deceleration and a complete change of velocity from something to zero to something again.

    You know this from experience, this why you can hit an incoming ball back faster or slower than you received it. The ball had an incoming velocity and acceleration/deceleration rate, which went to zero when it hit the racket and then left the racket with a new acceleration rate as a function of the force you applied when you hit it.
     
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  36. boramiNYC

    boramiNYC Hall of Fame

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    I didn't say time is ZERO. but any change in velocity over that contact period (a few ms) that can be imparted by human capability is negligible, effectively making the acceleration during contact period Zero. This is a clear collision problem. I still don't see where F=ma come into all this.
     
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  37. Gtech

    Gtech Rookie

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    You are confusing energy and force.
     
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  38. boramiNYC

    boramiNYC Hall of Fame

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    How am I confusing E and F? I didn't even mention E and I said F is not involved in the collision.

    You are the one who's confused. F=ma is not used for collision. Never. F is needed by the muscles to get the racquet reach a certain velocity at the collision. There's no other force that's going into the ball except the E transfer from the collision. There's only one F and that's pushing the racquet.
     
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  39. TheCheese

    TheCheese Professional

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    There's a force parallel to the plane of the racket being imparted on the ball due to friction with the strings, is there not?
     
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  40. boramiNYC

    boramiNYC Hall of Fame

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    That's true. I was assuming a most simplified version: the perfectly flat collision. However, it's no F=ma.
     
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  41. Povl Carstensen

    Povl Carstensen Legend

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    I think it took you a long time to grasp and acknowledge this, sorry. Nobody ever said it is like throwing a cellphone, and it is not like hitting with a door either. There is deflection, going across and over, and it provides spin, and allows the ball to not nescessarily go in the direction of the racket. No one has said otherwise, including that the forward element is important.
     
    #91
  42. Povl Carstensen

    Povl Carstensen Legend

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    I do not think anyone wants to prohibit you in using your terms.
     
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  43. treblings

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    Last edited: Jan 31, 2013
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  44. boramiNYC

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  45. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Absolutely right. When I first studied collisions way back when, if was only velocities v1 and v2 and so on. Couple of years ago, when I was teaching my son, I suddenly wondered how did these velocities appear? Through acceleration of course. But during the collision, all the prior acceleration has been "encapsulated" by the velocity and only the velocity matters. This is Physics 101.
     
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  46. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    The vertical component might be higher, the forward component less, overall less.
     
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  47. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Vince Spadea I suppose
     
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  48. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    That was not the point of the post, not that you wanted to understand it of course.

    The point was that in tennis, it is not necessary to have a steep trajectory to produce top spin. Emphasizing that produces the kind of weak strokes which Spadea wants to correct.
     
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  49. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Dwell time is absolutely important for string action producing spin. All innovations like poly, Wilson Steam 99S, polygonal cross sections, etc, use high speed photography to understand what happens in the dwell time, and optimize it for spin. Whatever happens, happens in the dwell time, but doesn't stay there.
     
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  50. Gtech

    Gtech Rookie

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    You and Sureshs need some remedial physics. You continue to think that momentum which is a measure of energy is not related to force.

    Two cars collide. Each car has some momentum coming into the crash. But what deforms the metal and mangles the cars up? It is not "momentum", it is force applied by one car on the other and vice-versa. This why higher speed crashes destroy cars much more than lower speed crashes. The car deceleration is so much higher resulting a much higher force applied.

    And how can you say there is no acceleration involved just velocity? if there was no acceleration/deceleration all balls would have to be moving at the same constant speed all the time. Obviously not what happens when playing tennis.

    Don't bother replying. I am not going to.
     

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