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-   -   Maximizing Topspin on 2HBH (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=455614)

TheCheese 02-22-2013 10:44 PM

Maximizing Topspin on 2HBH
 
I have a pretty flat 2HBH in comparison to my forehand. What are your guy's methods for generating maximum topspin on the 2HBH?

I'm right handed. I'm using a continental on the lower hand, extreme eastern on top hand. Right arm is straight on the takeback, left arm bent. Around 4.5/5.0 level.

Any tips?

rkelley 02-22-2013 11:27 PM

There were a couple of things that really helped me - some you're already doing.

- I used to use an E. fh grip on my left hand. I went to a extreme E, almost SW grip like you are now.

- I allowed my left hand to control the racquet. I really think of my 2hbh as a left handed fh now. I used to think of the hands more equally controlling the racquet, but the effect of that was that I had no looseness in my wrist, therefore no stretch-shortening to whip the racquet. My right hand grip on the racquet is very loose during take back. I tighten it up just right before contact to help whip the racquet forward.

- I have become more mindful of the contact point - especially allowing the ball to come all the way to me instead of pulling the trigger too soon and taking it too far out front. When I take it too far out front I loose the topspin.

- In my take back I try to keep the head up during prep, then allow the the head to dip below the ball and whip it forward and up. I can control (most of the time) how much topspin I get by how low below the ball the head dips. When I let the head drop during set-up I loose power and spin.

- I stopped worrying about whether my arms were straight or bent. I always kind of thought of my two hander as both arms straight at contact (and certainly there are players where that's true), however after filming myself and noting when things felt right, for me the best backhands where when my left arm was mostly straight and my right was a bit more bent.

With this all said, I still can't generate the same amount of topspin off my backhand as I can my forehand. But I can get good pace and margin over the net when I hit it right, and on good days I can push good players back off the baseline with pace.

What are you experiencing with your bh? When does it feel right? What parts of it work for you right now?

BevelDevil 02-23-2013 12:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TheCheese (Post 7231625)
I'm right handed. I'm using a continental on the lower hand, extreme eastern on top hand. Right arm is straight on the takeback, left arm bent. Around 4.5/5.0 level.

Any tips?

Are you right-handed or left-handed?

And does your straight arm stay straight through contact?

TheCheese 02-23-2013 01:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rkelley (Post 7231641)
There were a couple of things that really helped me - some you're already doing.

- I used to use an E. fh grip on my left hand. I went to a extreme E, almost SW grip like you are now.

- I allowed my left hand to control the racquet. I really think of my 2hbh as a left handed fh now. I used to think of the hands more equally controlling the racquet, but the effect of that was that I had no looseness in my wrist, therefore no stretch-shortening to whip the racquet. My right hand grip on the racquet is very loose during take back. I tighten it up just right before contact to help whip the racquet forward.

- I have become more mindful of the contact point - especially allowing the ball to come all the way to me instead of pulling the trigger too soon and taking it too far out front. When I take it too far out front I loose the topspin.

- In my take back I try to keep the head up during prep, then allow the the head to dip below the ball and whip it forward and up. I can control (most of the time) how much topspin I get by how low below the ball the head dips. When I let the head drop during set-up I loose power and spin.

- I stopped worrying about whether my arms were straight or bent. I always kind of thought of my two hander as both arms straight at contact (and certainly there are players where that's true), however after filming myself and noting when things felt right, for me the best backhands where when my left arm was mostly straight and my right was a bit more bent.

With this all said, I still can't generate the same amount of topspin off my backhand as I can my forehand. But I can get good pace and margin over the net when I hit it right, and on good days I can push good players back off the baseline with pace.

What are you experiencing with your bh? When does it feel right? What parts of it work for you right now?

Thanks, great advice here that I'll have to try.

Right now what I'm experiencing is either a rather flat ball or a slow loopy ball, as well as trouble with low balls. I think part of the problem is that I don't get enough racket head drop. I've had some serious wrist injuries in the past that have been caused by impact when my wrist was impinged, so it's partially a mental thing.

Right now I've got good consistency, directional control and height control. When it breaks down is when I want to add more pace. On my forehand I feel like I can simultaneously increase the spin and pace, whereas I have to have more of a tradeoff on the backhand. This also hurts me on low balls because ideally I'd like to hit the ball with pace and plenty of spin to bring the ball back down, but I'm being forced to hit a much more defensive shot to keep the ball from going long. Also, I definitely have trouble achieving anywhere near the racket head speed that I do on the forehand, but I feel that's a common thing with 2HBHs.



@Bevel

Right handed. At contact, left arm becomes more straight, right arm bends. Pretty standard.

Sim 02-23-2013 02:30 AM

Since there's no video, I'll suggest bending your knees. Getting low and swinging 'up' really helps me generate good topspin with pace on my 2HBH. This might solve your wrist issue as well :)

SystemicAnomaly 02-23-2013 04:48 AM

Try for a steeper, low-to-high swing path -- something akin to a WW swing path on the FH side. Also, make sure that the racket head drops lower than your hands and also lower than the intended contact point. This should enable you to generate more of an upward brushing motion on the back of the ball.

http://www.tennisserver.com/turbo/images/turbo_01_02/Safin3.jpg


rkelley 02-23-2013 09:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TheCheese (Post 7231694)
Thanks, great advice here that I'll have to try.

Right now what I'm experiencing is either a rather flat ball or a slow loopy ball, as well as trouble with low balls. I think part of the problem is that I don't get enough racket head drop. I've had some serious wrist injuries in the past that have been caused by impact when my wrist was impinged, so it's partially a mental thing.

This sounds like what happens to my bh when either my wrists are too tight (so no whip) or if I'm reaching out too much and am forward of my ideal contact zone. The contact zone for a two hander is kind of short so allowing the ball to come all the way in is important.

Quote:

Originally Posted by TheCheese (Post 7231694)
Right now I've got good consistency, directional control and height control. When it breaks down is when I want to add more pace. On my forehand I feel like I can simultaneously increase the spin and pace, whereas I have to have more of a tradeoff on the backhand. This also hurts me on low balls because ideally I'd like to hit the ball with pace and plenty of spin to bring the ball back down, but I'm being forced to hit a much more defensive shot to keep the ball from going long. Also, I definitely have trouble achieving anywhere near the racket head speed that I do on the forehand, but I feel that's a common thing with 2HBHs.

This sounds like more of wrist looseness thing then. Shadow swinging can really help you analyze and start to correct things here.

The low balls - yah they're more difficult with a two hander. I go for aggressive slices on those a good amount of the time and also look to see if I can come in behind them. If someone has really nailed one at you then one of the advantages of a 2hbh is that you can just get low, firm up the wrists, and swing through the shot. It's a Connors type of bh. You're using your opponent's pace and the extra stability that two hands gives you and hitting it back low and hard.

TheCheese 02-23-2013 09:26 PM

Thanks for the advice guys. I'll try them out next time I'm on court and let you know how it goes.

Another questions:

How does the swing type effect the type of ball you can hit? You'll notice that Murray swings very across on his backhand whereas Djokovic will swing more traditionally upwards and over the shoulder.

Which is better and for what scenarios?

Rjtennis 02-23-2013 11:00 PM

Make sure to drop you wrists similars to what you would do on a topspin FH. Also, you want to keep your arms and upper body loose to generate maximum racket head speak. And like others have mentioned the grip is important. Generating topspin on the BH is very helpful. It allows you to get the ball high and deep, pull opponents of the court with safe angles and it let's you create sharp angles and bring to ball up and down quickly on passing shots.

PhrygianDominant 02-24-2013 03:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TheCheese (Post 7232936)
Thanks for the advice guys. I'll try them out next time I'm on court and let you know how it goes.

You already have a lot of great advice. I recently went through a similar process on my 2hbh. You are a better player than me based on your ranking, but I still feel that my point is valid:

Which stance are you using? I was closing my stance, using lateral weight transfer, and hitting with a straight hitting arm (left). The result was a pretty flat ball. Good for passing shots but not so good for protracted rallying from the baseline. Especially not for angles and hitting up the line.

I changed that somewhat intuitively/organically. By that I mean it wasn't intentional. I simply stopped thinking about my arms, and whether they were straight or not. This allowed my hitting arm to bend a bit, Yandell calls it the flex. I now have a small bend in both elbows. I also have a more neutral stance and lead with my hips more. I started focusing on feeling the weight of the racquet in my hitting hand as I allow the racquet to drop, which automatically relaxed my non hitting arm. Now I generate a much better mix of pace and spin, which remain proportional to eachother as I increase swing speed. Hope this helps.

Quote:

Originally Posted by TheCheese (Post 7232936)
Another questions:

How does the swing type effect the type of ball you can hit? You'll notice that Murray swings very across on his backhand whereas Djokovic will swing more traditionally upwards and over the shoulder.

Which is better and for what scenarios?

The obvious answer here would be Murrays more horizantal swing path gives him a flatter ball, which combined with his height is great for cross court where the net is low. Djokovic's more horizantal swing path gives his ball more shape which leads to better margins up the line. This was pretty evident in the 2012 USO final, where Murray was pinning Djokovic out wide with his backhand and Djokovic was more often looking to pull the trigger up the line. More often than Murray anyway. That's how I remember it, I won't be rewatching it to check though.

TheCheese 02-25-2013 02:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PhrygianDominant (Post 7233112)
You already have a lot of great advice. I recently went through a similar process on my 2hbh. You are a better player than me based on your ranking, but I still feel that my point is valid:

Which stance are you using? I was closing my stance, using lateral weight transfer, and hitting with a straight hitting arm (left). The result was a pretty flat ball. Good for passing shots but not so good for protracted rallying from the baseline. Especially not for angles and hitting up the line.

I changed that somewhat intuitively/organically. By that I mean it wasn't intentional. I simply stopped thinking about my arms, and whether they were straight or not. This allowed my hitting arm to bend a bit, Yandell calls it the flex. I now have a small bend in both elbows. I also have a more neutral stance and lead with my hips more. I started focusing on feeling the weight of the racquet in my hitting hand as I allow the racquet to drop, which automatically relaxed my non hitting arm. Now I generate a much better mix of pace and spin, which remain proportional to eachother as I increase swing speed. Hope this helps.

Using a semi-open stance by default. On stretch shots, I'll often go full open if forced.

always_crosscourt 02-25-2013 02:56 PM

I don't know how having both arms straight or bent/straight or both bent relates to topspin production of the 2hbh?

Some people say having both arms bent (or at least one arm bent) increases topspin? Having said that, Simon is double bent, and hit a flat shot...

...Whereas Nadal is pretty much double straight arm, yet is the only pro on tour currently I see hitting with a windshield-wipe finish on his backhands. Despite this, his backhand is nowhere near as heavy as his forehand, and his inability to get the ball kicking way up in his opponent's face was evident against Zeballos, a lefty with a 1hbh.

Here's Nadal hitting backhands so you can see his WW finish;

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j86FuSXtWUM

Do you guys think Bruguera and/or Gulbis hit heavier 2hbh's than Nadal? Bruguera and Gulbis are some other players brought up in conversation when talking about heavy topspin 2hbh's.

Neither Bruguera or Gulbis use a WW finish. Gulbis uses a 'pat-the-dog' type of takeback, however.

And I have no idea what about Bruguera's stroke made his backhand so heavy... Would be grateful if anyone knew...

LeeD 02-25-2013 03:18 PM

My take....
If your 2hbh is going IN right now, and does what you want, don't change a thing.
If your 2hbh is too powerful, and you have to back off the power, then it's time to alter your swingpath and grips.
If your 2hbh is weak and underpowered, do not add topspin.

julian 02-25-2013 03:25 PM

You have to define "HEAVIER"
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by always_crosscourt (Post 7236098)
I don't know how having both arms straight or bent/straight or both bent relates to topspin production of the 2hbh?

Some people say having both arms bent (or at least one arm bent) increases topspin? Having said that, Simon is double bent, and hit a flat shot...

...Whereas Nadal is pretty much double straight arm, yet is the only pro on tour currently I see hitting with a windshield-wipe finish on his backhands. Despite this, his backhand is nowhere near as heavy as his forehand, and his inability to get the ball kicking way up in his opponent's face was evident against Zeballos, a lefty with a 1hbh.

Here's Nadal hitting backhands so you can see his WW finish;

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j86FuSXtWUM

Do you guys think Bruguera and/or Gulbis hit heavier 2hbh's than Nadal? Bruguera and Gulbis are some other players brought up in conversation when talking about heavy topspin 2hbh's.

Neither Bruguera or Gulbis use a WW finish. Gulbis uses a 'pat-the-dog' type of takeback, however.

And I have no idea what about Bruguera's stroke made his backhand so heavy... Would be grateful if anyone knew...

You have to define "HEAVIER" to answer your questions

always_crosscourt 02-25-2013 03:29 PM

Heavier = has more topspin on it.

LeeD 02-25-2013 03:49 PM

Want more topspin? Just switch grips to a stronger one, with both hands, and swing upwards hard and fast.

julian 02-25-2013 04:55 PM

It is one possibility
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by always_crosscourt (Post 7236173)
Heavier = has more topspin on it.

It is one possibility.
The second possibility is some mathematical expression/combination
of a speed of a ball (immediately) after a contact plus a topspin

julian 02-25-2013 04:57 PM

Kvitova
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by always_crosscourt (Post 7236173)
Heavier = has more topspin on it.

So if you watch Li Na and Kvitova according to your definition they do NOT hit
heavy balls.
The same applies PROBABLY to Berdych

rkelley 02-25-2013 05:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TheCheese (Post 7236071)
Using a semi-open stance by default. On stretch shots, I'll often go full open if forced.

You might consider going more closed. I try to be around neutral to slightly closed if I can. If I'm very closed I'll swing my back foot around during the follow through. I try to limit the open stance shots to when I'm pulled wide. I just can't get the upper body rotation that I want on the more open stances, and it tends to shorten an already inherently short swing path.

LeeD 02-25-2013 06:43 PM

That's you.
Maybe for someone else, an openstance is all the shoulder turn needed.
Like your forehand, how much closed stance is needed? The answer is, depends on the player.
A shorter stroke with long followthru might mimic a forehand.


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