What is wrong with you?

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by buder, Mar 2, 2006.

  1. buder

    buder Banned

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    I apologize if this in the wrong forum but sometimes categories spill into eachother.

    I've been reading some posts that presume errors can be caused by, say, small tension variations (<3lbs). I agree, but it also might be a Gear Trap, i.e., blaming gear instead of self. As a sidenote, I think it better to err on the side of blaming self -- because this makes one more active and open to adjustment on the court (as opposed to being the whiner who keeps talking about his equipment on changeover. These people are so helpless. I say: take charge! Don't let things like SMALL tension variations get to you. Find a way to adjust).

    Though small tension variations can cause control problems, perhaps those problems fall within the margin of what YOU should be expected to control mechanically -- like adjusting for the wind, which can make balls sail just long.

    Regardless, if you're hitting a ball a few inches long and blaming it on the tension, are you not also assuming every other variable to be constant, i.e., sometimes it's not the tension, it's YOU. That is, the depth of your shot is also a function of swing path, swing speed, angle of attack, shoulder rotation, weight transfer, grip, pressure-of-hand on grip, stance... to name a few. I submit that all the aforementioned categories are not constants; rather, they are a function of opponent, surface, weather, etc. I'm not suggesting that western grippers go continental on a whim, I'm suggesting that we all make minor mechanical adjustments when, say, playing an opponent who makes us hit balls at shoulder level as opposed to below the knees, or someone who gives us no pace or hits with heavy top. We also make adjustments when we switch from high/slow bouncing clay to fast skidding hard courts. We also might change our swing path, swing speed and amount-of-spin in heavy wind. Some people who square-up to hit a 2hander might switch to more of an open stance when playing a massive power hitter who doesn't give them the time to get their lead foot/shoulder out in front. In all these cases, we adjust our mechanics to accommodate constantly changing variables. [Indeed, our shot's depth has MUCH MORE to do with our mechanical response to the incoming ball's angle, height and pace than with our racquet's tension, i.e., sometimes our opponent is the cause of our hitting late or going for too-much, and thus, our opponent is the cause of our hitting long or short > not tension. I say give him/her credit and try harder next time]

    Which is to say, when someone takes all the variables (and the infinite tree of intersecting variables), and, somehow, they blame tension for a ball that lands 2 inches long, I am mystified. [even if they're right, I'd rather have them take responsibility and adjust] We all know people who, after they lose, instead of practicing more or accepting that tennis can sometimes be frustrating, they perpetually march to the stringing machine (or worse, blame their stringer, who I don't envy).

    Don't get me wrong: we've all hit balls that sailed long because, say, we strung our racquet too loose and noticed a trampoline effect > then we increased our tension and/or traded our mushy multi for crisp poly, and the mindless control came back. I'm not saying it is impossible to isolate and modify the tension variable; in fact, at the higher levels, this is a VERY REAL component of success. I'm saying that I'm suspicious of people for whom the tension variable is out of proportion, that is, I'm suspicious of the people who can't OVERCOME THE TENSION VARIABLE WITH THE SAME SKILL THAT THEY MUST OVERCOME EVERY OTHER VARIABLE WHICH AFFECTS THE BALL'S DEPTH. I'm scared of people who reject a string job because of what they perceive as a minor tension variation -- people who won't take responsibility for hitting the ball 4 inches long. This is a very real personality type.

    I guess what I'm saying is this: if you're one of these people, don't ask me to string your frame or play tennis with you. I can't handle the whining.
     
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  2. Chopin

    Chopin Hall of Fame

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    Very good point though you made it a way that's excessively longwinded and convoluted. Essentially what you're saying is, all things being equal: "worry about your strokes and how to adjust them rather than worrying/complaining about string tension.”
     
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  3. gshaffer23

    gshaffer23 Rookie

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    Yea... I like your short and sweet approach too.

    bad stroke = bad shot
     
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  4. SteveI

    SteveI Legend

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    Hi,

    I always say "The Best Piece of Equipement we have is our body".. Have a good one..

    Steve
     
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  5. arnz

    arnz Professional

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    I'm still looking for that racquet that will allow me to serve 130mph, and give me volleys like Sampras, a forehand like Fed, a backhand like Agassi, plus the speed of Hewitt.

    Anybody know what I should demo??:mrgreen:
     
    #5
  6. buder

    buder Banned

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    had a tripple latte for lunch and my parents are cousins
     
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  7. lude popper

    lude popper Banned

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    I think, in addition to saying "don't worry so much about tension", he's also saying that it might not be possible (or as easy as we think) to isolate tension in the first place. One reason you can't isolate it is because a shot's depth comes from a truly complex causal chain-a chain that the complainers may not even be aware of.
     
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  8. Chopin

    Chopin Hall of Fame

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    I agree.
     
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  9. thejerk

    thejerk Semi-Pro

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    How can you say all that. I know it is the equipment because my body is perfect. When it's not the equipment, there is only one other excuse. A gust.
     
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