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jremington12 10-23-2011 10:41 AM

4 years later-Tennis tips/technique help (Video Included)
 
Hi,
About 4 years ago I posted a video of me after I had just started tennis asking for tips/help.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qsLTpEUyF1M

It is now 4 years later and I'm a senior in highschool. I'd appreciate any more help and advice you'd be willing to provide. Here's the link to the NEW video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ww8XDqsRvuU

Thanks!

MarinaHighTennis 10-23-2011 10:50 AM

You can get a lot of chicks

But it looks good, not college material though. Footwork can improve but forehand is a little shaky. I like the first video and how your playing in the rain

AceServer 10-23-2011 10:57 AM

Your forehand right now looks a bit awkward. I think it's your back being forward?

rkelley 10-23-2011 11:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jremington12 (Post 6078130)
Hi,
About 4 years ago I posted a video of me after I had just started tennis asking for tips/help.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qsLTpEUyF1M

It is now 4 years later and I'm a senior in highschool. I'd appreciate any more help and advice you'd be willing to provide. Here's the link to the NEW video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ww8XDqsRvuU

Thanks!

It looks really good. You've come a long way in 4 years.

A couple of things I noticed:
  • Your grip is very western. If I was a coach I want to see you handle low, short balls with it. I'd also like to see how the timing holds up during a match, and if you can flatten it out and put balls away.
  • Also on your forehand I noticed that you're not looking at the ball right at impact. You stop following the ball for the last few feet. This works when you're getting fed really consistent balls, but will likely be a problem in a match with unfamiliar opponents whose balls will vary more.
  • You foot fault on just about every serve.

My only other criticism is common to most of the recruitment videos that I've seen: I can't see where the shots go. It makes it really hard to know how effective the shots are. It'd also be nice to see some point played against a player of similar skill level.

goober 10-23-2011 11:38 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MarinaHighTennis (Post 6078141)

But it looks good, not college material though. Footwork can improve but forehand is a little shaky. I like the first video and how your playing in the rain

If he is ranked 27th section and 530 nationally, he can find a college to play at. It won't be D1, but I don't see why he couldn't play D2 or D3 without any problem. There are some colleges, especially on D3, that have 3.5-4.0 level players on them.

MarinaHighTennis 10-23-2011 11:42 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by goober (Post 6078201)
If he is ranked 27th section and 530 nationally, he can find a college to play at. It won't be D1, but I don't see why he couldn't play D2 or D3 without any problem. There are some colleges, especially on D3, that have 3.5-4.0 level players on them.

Sorry I meant d1. Yeah he can play d2

Limpinhitter 10-23-2011 11:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jremington12 (Post 6078130)
Hi,
About 4 years ago I posted a video of me after I had just started tennis asking for tips/help.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qsLTpEUyF1M

It is now 4 years later and I'm a senior in highschool. I'd appreciate any more help and advice you'd be willing to provide. Here's the link to the NEW video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ww8XDqsRvuU

Thanks!

Are you looking for technique advice? Before getting in to that, the first thing I would tell you is that no matter what your strokes look like, if you are getting great results, then don't make changes. But, because your video doesn't show the ball flight, it's impossible to make that assessment from this video.

Having said that, overall, your strokes look. Like everyone else, there are certain technical aspects of your stroke production that I would at least bring to your attention.

- Your forehand is a classic full Western forehand, and it looks like you hit it very well. However, the video didn't show you taking any balls lower than waist high. That's where a full Western forehand can get difficult if you don't know how to deal with it. I've had success hitting short inside out backhand slices to Western forehands because they have difficulty getting low short balls over the net. The remedy for handling low balls with a Western grip is to drop the racquet head down by suppinating the forearm before contact. If you are doing that, then you should be good.

- Your backhand looks good except that your circular windup is too high and you are overextending your arms. When you play against really hard hitters, that oversized windup is going to cause you to be rushed and late on some of your bh's. I know if feels right and you probably rely on that big windup for your timing and tempo because you've gotten used to it. But, if you are going to play at a higher level, IMO, you should make the circle windup smaller.

- You backhand slice is typical of a primary 2hb player - complete absence of forearm pronation on the backswing and suppination on the forward swing resulting in an arm swing in which you rely on forearm strength, rather than throwing the mass of the racquet, to hit through the ball. It may work when you are able to hit without reaching or stretching, but, that defeats the point of a slice. If you can hit the ball without reaching or stretching, the 2hb is the primary shot anyway.

This commercial with Billy Jean King shows the proper slice technique that I'm talking about. Notice how the racquet head drops below the hand as she rotates her forearm back and then forth (pronation/suppination), throwing the racquet at the ball without trying to muscle it. The swing path is like a reverse "S" on its side with a high finish at about 2 O'clock. This technique is what allows you to get as much power as you want on that side when you are reaching or stretching for the ball, and on high balls above the shoulder. It's just a short clip as part of a Wilson commercial but it's the clearest example I've found. Check it out, imitate it, learn it, own it. If you do, you will have a weapon that virtually no one else has. It will pay off for you:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gIvxP9VMo9I

- Your serve has a minor, but important, defect that should be easy to fix. When you toss the ball, you reset your feet (your heels), to accomodate your shoulder turn. Shoulder turn is essential. But, IMO, resetting your feet defeats part of the benefit of the shoulder turn - to create tension between the upper and lower body. When I was learning the serve, we were taught to increase the tension by stepping forward in to what is now called a pinpoint stance so that the pelvis was facing at about 2 O'clock, but the chest was facing at about 4 O'clock. I'm not saying to change to a pinpoint stance. Just keep your feet where they are and make the same shoulder turn that you're making now.

- Your volleys are competent, but, you don't look particularly comfortable. Here are the basics: when you see what side the ball is coming to: (1) turn your side with both hands on the racquet and no other backswing, (2) move your head toward the ball and let your feet do what they need to do without thinking about them, (3) let go of the racquet with your left hand and hold the racquet in the path of the oncoming ball, (4) carve under the ball at contact by leading with the bottom edge of the racquet head with a 1 foot forward swing, (5) do not chop or swing down.

Hope this helps.

Bergboy123 10-23-2011 12:25 PM

If you had to play yourself, how would you play to win?

jremington12 10-23-2011 01:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by goober (Post 6078201)
If he is ranked 27th section and 530 nationally, he can find a college to play at. It won't be D1, but I don't see why he couldn't play D2 or D3 without any problem. There are some colleges, especially on D3, that have 3.5-4.0 level players on them.

Yeah I'm looking at mostly D2 and NAIA schools. I've talked/met with the coaches so I'll most likely be playing in college.

jremington12 10-23-2011 01:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Limpinhitter (Post 6078209)
Are you looking for technique advice? Before getting in to that, the first thing I would tell you is that no matter what your strokes look like, if you are getting great results, then don't make changes. But, because your video doesn't show the ball flight, it's impossible to make that assessment from this video.

Having said that, overall, your strokes look. Like everyone else, there are certain technical aspects of your stroke production that I would at least bring to your attention.

- Your forehand is a classic full Western forehand, and it looks like you hit it very well. However, the video didn't show you taking any balls lower than waist high. That's where a full Western forehand can get difficult if you don't know how to deal with it. I've had success hitting short inside out backhand slices to Western forehands because they have difficulty getting low short balls over the net. The remedy for handling low balls with a Western grip is to drop the racquet head down by suppinating the forearm before contact. If you are doing that, then you should be good.

- Your backhand looks good except that your circular windup is too high and you are overextending your arms. When you play against really hard hitters, that oversized windup is going to cause you to be rushed and late on some of your bh's. I know if feels right and you probably rely on that big windup for your timing and tempo because you've gotten used to it. But, if you are going to play at a higher level, IMO, you should make the circle windup smaller.

- You backhand slice is typical of a primary 2hb player - complete absence of forearm pronation on the backswing and suppination on the forward swing resulting in an arm swing in which you rely on forearm strength, rather than throwing the mass of the racquet, to hit through the ball. It may work when you are able to hit without reaching or stretching, but, that defeats the point of a slice. If you can hit the ball without reaching or stretching, the 2hb is the primary shot anyway.

This commercial with Billy Jean King shows the proper slice technique that I'm talking about. Notice how the racquet head drops below the hand as she rotates her forearm back and then forth (pronation/suppination), throwing the racquet at the ball without trying to muscle it. The swing path is like a reverse "S" on its side with a high finish at about 2 O'clock. This technique is what allows you to get as much power as you want on that side when you are reaching or stretching for the ball, and on high balls above the shoulder. It's just a short clip as part of a Wilson commercial but it's the clearest example I've found. Check it out, imitate it, learn it, own it. If you do, you will have a weapon that virtually no one else has. It will pay off for you:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gIvxP9VMo9I

- Your serve has a minor, but important, defect that should be easy to fix. When you toss the ball, you reset your feet (your heels), to accomodate your shoulder turn. Shoulder turn is essential. But, IMO, resetting your feet defeats part of the benefit of the shoulder turn - to create tension between the upper and lower body. When I was learning the serve, we were taught to increase the tension by stepping forward in to what is now called a pinpoint stance so that the pelvis was facing at about 2 O'clock, but the chest was facing at about 4 O'clock. I'm not saying to change to a pinpoint stance. Just keep your feet where they are and make the same shoulder turn that you're making now.

- Your volleys are competent, but, you don't look particularly comfortable. Here are the basics: when you see what side the ball is coming to: (1) turn your side with both hands on the racquet and no other backswing, (2) move your head toward the ball and let your feet do what they need to do without thinking about them, (3) let go of the racquet with your left hand and hold the racquet in the path of the oncoming ball, (4) carve under the ball at contact by leading with the bottom edge of the racquet head with a 1 foot forward swing, (5) do not chop or swing down.

Hope this helps.

Thanks. This is extremely helpful!

dozu 10-23-2011 01:15 PM

D1 is certainly within reach for 500th nationally.

but 4 years to reach this level.... remarkable.

rkelley 10-23-2011 05:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Limpinhitter (Post 6078209)
- Your backhand slice is typical of a primary 2hb player - complete absence of forearm pronation on the backswing and suppination on the forward swing resulting in an arm swing in which you rely on forearm strength, rather than throwing the mass of the racquet, to hit through the ball. It may work when you are able to hit without reaching or stretching, but, that defeats the point of a slice. If you can hit the ball without reaching or stretching, the 2hb is the primary shot anyway.

This commercial with Billy Jean King shows the proper slice technique that I'm talking about. Notice how the racquet head drops below the hand as she rotates her forearm back and then forth (pronation/suppination), throwing the racquet at the ball without trying to muscle it. The swing path is like a reverse "S" on its side with a high finish at about 2 O'clock. This technique is what allows you to get as much power as you want on that side when you are reaching or stretching for the ball, and on high balls above the shoulder. It's just a short clip as part of a Wilson commercial but it's the clearest example I've found. Check it out, imitate it, learn it, own it. If you do, you will have a weapon that virtually no one else has. It will pay off for you:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gIvxP9VMo9I

I agree that the slice looks pretty defensive. I don't agree that 2hbh players have to have a weak slice.

I'm no expert in slice technique and its history, but I do know that a lot of current top pros do not use the technique that Billy Jean demonstrates in the commercial. I see guys like Federer prepping with the racquet arm bent at the elbow and the racquet up by the non-dominant side ear. During the stroke the racquet carves down across the ball generally maintaining the angle of the racquet set at the beginning of the stroke. Billy's stroke in the commercial looks like the Ken Rosewall style slice. Certainly an effective stroke in its day, but it does not seem to be in use much today, though please chime in and tell me if I'm wrong.

Honestly I learned the new "prep by the ear" technique just recently based on some threads here and by watching some youtube videos. I've worked on it a bit and frankly it works great. You can hit very aggressive slices, with good pace and a really nasty amount of spin.

dozu 10-23-2011 05:09 PM

this limp guy keeps posting some out-dated technique.... guy thinks he knows tennis, but in fact he is a 3.0 old hack hitting w other old hacks.

BJK's motion is INFERIOR! it's a flipping motion.... and in no way this motion should be taught to juniors.

I have just convinced one of my old dogs that flipping is not good... and finally he is a believer and is playing much better than 6 months ago.

rkelley is right - prep by the ear, constant face angle, aggressive swing is the way to teach the juniors today.... not with some stuff from 40 years ago that doesn't apply any more.

dozu 10-23-2011 05:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jremington12 (Post 6078130)
Hi,
About 4 years ago I posted a video of me after I had just started tennis asking for tips/help.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qsLTpEUyF1M

It is now 4 years later and I'm a senior in highschool. I'd appreciate any more help and advice you'd be willing to provide. Here's the link to the NEW video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ww8XDqsRvuU

Thanks!

can you summarize the work you have done in the past 4 years - hours/frequency of training, what kind of coaching you got, your tournament play etc.

this can serve as a good reference point for all the 'pro tour' dreamers, how much work it takes to just become a good recreational player.

Limpinhitter 10-23-2011 07:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rkelley (Post 6078556)
I agree that the slice looks pretty defensive. I don't agree that 2hbh players have to have a weak slice.

I'm no expert in slice technique and its history, but I do know that a lot of current top pros do not use the technique that Billy Jean demonstrates in the commercial. I see guys like Federer prepping with the racquet arm bent at the elbow and the racquet up by the non-dominant side ear. During the stroke the racquet carves down across the ball generally maintaining the angle of the racquet set at the beginning of the stroke. Billy's stroke in the commercial looks like the Ken Rosewall style slice. Certainly an effective stroke in its day, but it does not seem to be in use much today, though please chime in and tell me if I'm wrong.

Honestly I learned the new "prep by the ear" technique just recently based on some threads here and by watching some youtube videos. I've worked on it a bit and frankly it works great. You can hit very aggressive slices, with good pace and a really nasty amount of spin.

IMO, a proper bh slice is a lost art. No one hits one because it hasn't been taught in many years. I reject the notion that it wouldn't hold up in today's game. To the contrary, it would hold up a lot better than the "chop" that Federer and most other pros hit. It has a low margin for error, limited utility and is no model for others to emulate, IMO.

The technique that BJK used is the traditional slice that all of the pros used up to and including Edberg whose 1hb (topspin and slice) was better than anyone playing the game today. A traditional slice can be both a defensive shot, a touch shot, and an offensive weapon. Most importantly, it is the pronation/suppination of the forearm inherent in the traditional slice, and absent in the Federer chop, is what makes it such an effective shot. When you are too stretched out, or the ball is too high above the shoulder, to hit an effective 2hb, you can still hit a traditional slice with power.

PS: I'm not saying that the chop doesn't have its uses (ie: drop shot, recovery shot, sharp angle), but, not as a bread and butter slice.

jremington12 10-23-2011 07:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dozu (Post 6078590)
can you summarize the work you have done in the past 4 years - hours/frequency of training, what kind of coaching you got, your tournament play etc.

this can serve as a good reference point for all the 'pro tour' dreamers, how much work it takes to just become a good recreational player.

I started playing tennis at the end of my 8th grade year. For about the first 10 months I literally went to the club everyday and hit off the ball machine/served for about 3 hours. I would then proceed to go home and watch instructional tennis videos online. Eventually I started playing rookie tournaments, then challengers. I played highschool tennis and made a lot more tennis connections, which allowed me to call up and play with kids my level everyday. I started getting private lessons once a week. By my sophomore year in highschool I started winning challenger tournaments so I moved up to champs. My training regimin from that time on has been 2.5-3.5 hours on court a day and 45 min off court. I play tournaments about 2 times a month. The only way I was able to get as good as I have in that amount of time was simply because I had the passion and the drive.

dozu 10-23-2011 08:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jremington12 (Post 6078792)
The only way I was able to get as good as I have in that amount of time was simply because I had the passion and the drive.

good stuff - pretty much in line of what I was expecting.... I actually have witnessed some juniors developing to similar levels with similar amount of work.

this oughta be a wake up call for all the 'pro tour' dreamers.

OP - best luck to your college search.

dozu 10-23-2011 08:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Limpinhitter (Post 6078791)
IMO, a proper bh slice is a lost art.

the phrase about old dogs and new tricks is definitely true.... it seems that the human brain loses it's openness and refuse to take in new information as it ages.

it took me almost a year to convince one of my old dogs that flipping is no good, now he is hitting similar to today's pros and is close to getting rid of the flipping that had brought him so much frustration.

in tennis where only the fittest can survive, there is no such thing as 'lost art'.. the obsolete techniques simply get washed out, like the old linear style FH, and the old style 'slapping slice'.

don't take this the wrong way limp.... someday I will be old myself, but I hope to still keep an open mind when the day comes.

Limpinhitter 10-23-2011 08:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jremington12 (Post 6078792)
I started playing tennis at the end of my 8th grade year. For about the first 10 months I literally went to the club everyday and hit off the ball machine/served for about 3 hours. I would then proceed to go home and watch instructional tennis videos online. Eventually I started playing rookie tournaments, then challengers. I played highschool tennis and made a lot more tennis connections, which allowed me to call up and play with kids my level everyday. I started getting private lessons once a week. By my sophomore year in highschool I started winning challenger tournaments so I moved up to champs. My training regimin from that time on has been 2.5-3.5 hours on court a day and 45 min off court. I play tournaments about 2 times a month. The only way I was able to get as good as I have in that amount of time was simply because I had the passion and the drive.

jremington, the reason Dozu asked the question is because he has never actually played a sanctioned tennis match in his life and he was hoping you could tell him what it is like.

dozu 10-23-2011 08:48 PM

it's getting boring limp - come up with something interesting for a change.


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