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-   -   Should you hit your average rally ball as hard as possible? (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=461704)

Ehh 04-25-2013 01:34 PM

Should you hit your average rally ball as hard as possible?
 
I have been realizing that if I were to classify my game I'd say I was a 'ballbashing pusher.' That may sound a contradiction in terms, so let me explain... I am a pusher in that I always aim to hit the ball in the middle of the court (the biggest possible target) and with huge net clearance. But I am a ballbasher in that I swing at every single ball in the rally as hard as I can.

I used to have a western forehand, but now I'm in the process of nudging it over to Hawaiian, and I used to have a semi-western 1hbh, but now I'm in the process of nudging it over to be essentially an eastern forehand grip, but turned over to hit backhands with.

I have a very narrow focus - all I'm interested in, in the game of tennis is to see how much topspin I can put on a ball, so I try to swing upwards faster and faster, and see how much of a loop I can get on the ball, see how high I can make that sucker kick off the court. I can play a clever rec player with flat shots and sneaky net approaches, and get destroyed, but that doesn't bother me much, because I don't really play tennis to win - I play to hit more and more topspin. We all have different priorities I guess.

I've noticed a lot of rec players sort of hit the ball with a 70 - 80% type of swing - they're clearly not hitting each ball as hard as they possibly can... Is that a bad habit though?

And what about the pro's - what about Federer and Nadal? For their average rally shots (particularly forehand) - aren't they trying to hit the ball as hard as they can each time? Especially Nadal - his entire game is built upon hitting the most topspin out of anyone in order to break down backhands, so surely he is swinging upwards as fast as he possibly can (i.e. maximum effort) on each rally forehand he hits?

StringingIrvine 04-25-2013 01:44 PM

I'm not a certified tennis coach but I don't think you should be hitting the ball as hard as you can 100% of the time. You said you don't play to win so I guess you can do whatever you like.

For example:
Swinging 100% = 25% error
Swinging 90% = 15% error
Swinging 80% = 5% error

Tennis is about %'s. Reducing errors while still keeping pressure on the opponent is key.

How long can you keep the rally going if you are swinging for the fence 100% of the time?

Ehh 04-25-2013 02:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by StringingIrvine (Post 7368029)
I'm not a certified tennis coach but I don't think you should be hitting the ball as hard as you can 100% of the time. You said you don't play to win so I guess you can do whatever you like.

For example:
Swinging 100% = 25% error
Swinging 90% = 15% error
Swinging 80% = 5% error

Tennis is about %'s. Reducing errors while still keeping pressure on the opponent is key.

How long can you keep the rally going if you are swinging for the fence 100% of the time?

Well, I thought the harder you swing at the ball, the more topspin you get on it - and topspin adds consistency (by adding height over the net and dip before the ball goes long), so in theory, swing 100% effort on each ball should make you as consistent as possible...?

psv255 04-25-2013 02:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ehh (Post 7368049)
Well, I thought the harder you swing at the ball, the more topspin you get on it - and topspin adds consistency (by adding height over the net and dip before the ball goes long), so in theory, swing 100% effort on each ball should make you as consistent as possible...?

But if you swing at 100% of what you can humanly muster, chances are you'll shank it at least a third of the time...

Also see: http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=115515

WildVolley 04-25-2013 02:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ehh (Post 7368049)
Well, I thought the harder you swing at the ball, the more topspin you get on it - and topspin adds consistency (by adding height over the net and dip before the ball goes long), so in theory, swing 100% effort on each ball should make you as consistent as possible...?

The harder you swing at a ball with topspin, the more vertical movement of the racket and the more difficult it is to find the strings. You are probably going to shank a lot.

If I take the 100% figure as an exaggeration, then it is probably fine to really try to put heavy topspin on the ball. Did you ever see the video that TW put out on the guy that breaks strings as a tester for Technifibre (?), I think. He hits aggressive topspin again and again and destroys strings in short order. It is worth watching if you love topspin.

I'd like to play you. It is fun to hit down on heavy topspin if I have my timing flowing.

WildVolley 04-25-2013 02:21 PM

Found the video. Here it is. This is how you should hit every shot.:twisted:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ES_QA-VG-Ec

TennezSport 04-25-2013 02:25 PM

Nope!.............
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ehh (Post 7368049)
Well, I thought the harder you swing at the ball, the more topspin you get on it - and topspin adds consistency (by adding height over the net and dip before the ball goes long), so in theory, swing 100% effort on each ball should make you as consistent as possible...?

Dont mistake hitting hard for swinging fast. You want to swing fast with a low to high motion to impart topspin. I can swing very fast and lightly brush the ball and get heavy topspin, where the ball will bounce high but will land short. If I swing fast with a low to high motion and move forward through the swing you will get a little less spin, but more power.

Cheers, TennezSport :cool:

BU-Tennis 04-25-2013 09:12 PM

The key is to hit with as much power if you have the time while still being able to maintain your technique.

With that said, hitting hard down the middle is how a lot of people win matches at the rec level and isn't at all a bad play

WesternCK 04-25-2013 10:15 PM

If your sole goal in tennis is to hit as much topspin as possible, then I don't think you're making a smart decision by changing your one hand backhand from a semi-western backhand grip to an eastern forehand grip. No matter what your purpose is actually, I don't think that's a good idea. Your wrist is going to inhibit your stroke.

As for hitting a "rally" ball, you should not be hitting it at full power. Putting a figure on it is pretty arbitrary, but I'd say a rally ball should be hit from anywhere between 50-100%, but usually between 75-90.

Lukhas 04-25-2013 10:17 PM

Hitting the right shot =/= hitting as hard as you can.

mightyrick 04-26-2013 04:22 AM

A professional never has the goal to hit the ball as hard as they can. A professional seeks to hit the exact shot they need to in order to win the point.

Povl Carstensen 04-26-2013 11:54 AM

Of course you should not hit your average rally ball as hard as you can. You will exhaust yourself and consistancy will suffer. Hitting as hard as you can is more or less reserved for the psychological satisfaction of nailing an all out winner, if you pull it off. And I guess most of us know the temptation of that.

Ehh 04-26-2013 11:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Povl Carstensen (Post 7369863)
Of course you should not hit your average rally ball as hard as you can. You will exhaust yourself and consistancy will suffer. Hitting as hard as you can is more or less reserved for the psychological satisfaction of nailing an all out winner, if you pull it off. And I guess most of us know the temptation of that.

Consistency will not suffer though, because more racket head speed means more topspin, and more topspin means more consistency?

GoaLaSSo 04-26-2013 12:37 PM

It kinda depends on the grip and swing style you use. Keep in mind there is no definite right way to hit the ball.

With a full western grip, rally shots should use 90-95 % of your effort with a focus on topspin. This is why so many players switch to western. They can swing out and hard on shots and keep the ball in consistently. The downside that I find with western is that it is hard to really just smack a ball like you can with eastern and semi.

With semi, rally shots should be 70-80 % effort with a focus on a mix of spin and pace. Semi western can be varied a lot, but I would say the typical player just wants to hit a comfortable balanced shot for rally balls. If a player with semi is swinging with 100% effort it should be a pretty flat trajectory rip.

With eastern, rally shots are somewhere below or at the same level of effort as semi, but i'm not sure where.

Povl Carstensen 04-26-2013 11:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ehh (Post 7369871)
Consistency will not suffer though, because more racket head speed means more topspin, and more topspin means more consistency?

Well "as hard as you can" does not spell consistancy to me. What is more important is the ratio between the shots speed, height and topspin.

Maui19 04-27-2013 02:40 AM

The harder you swing, the less control you have over your swing mechanics. The whole point of a rally ball is to find a comfortable swing speed that allows you to reproduce your swing mechanics over and over while producing an optimum combination of pace and spin.

pvaudio 04-27-2013 06:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BU-Tennis (Post 7368601)
The key is to hit with as much power if you have the time while still being able to maintain your technique.

With that said, hitting hard down the middle is how a lot of people win matches at the rec level and isn't at all a bad play

This is just a saying for life in general: do the best that you can without getting burned out and going beyond your abilities.

Povl Carstensen 04-27-2013 07:45 AM

Yes, "play within yourself" is a lesson for all of us. And not doing that is as common a reason for loosing as any other, even (perhaps even especially) at the highest levels.

5263 04-27-2013 09:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ehh (Post 7369871)
Consistency will not suffer though, because more racket head speed means more topspin, and more topspin means more consistency?

covered and debated fairly well in this thread-

http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=413112

cgwhitey99 04-27-2013 09:20 AM

i know the discussion has focused on the effect of "hitting the ball as hard as you can" has on the ball, but what effect, over time, will it have on your body? if you are exerting yourself to your absolute maximum, theres a chance you may not be able to enjoy playing tennis as long as possible. its just something to think about i suppose. you may have to adapt your game as you get older in order to continue to enjoy playing tennis.


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