Thread: crowd sourcing
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Old 01-08-2013, 06:40 AM   #25
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Utah
Posts: 1,076

Originally Posted by luvforty View Post
I actually tried what Mr. Smith suggested - switching the 2 hands around.... he didn't wonna do it lol... it's ok, there is time

you know what, I am gonna show him Dave's post, telling him that a famous coach (instead of dad) is asking him to do so lol.

I think the idea is that when kid grows older, can always take left hand off and transition to 1hfh.
In speaking to various USPTA conventions and tennis clubs, I've come across a number of two-handed forehand players who do it the way your son is doing it. (One was a top singles player at Pepperdine College.)

I actually like having two backhands, (a la Jan Michael Gambill, and I believe Akiko Nakamura does it that way too, on the WTA tour), in terms of the reach and overall stroke aspect. However, the need to switch hands positions does pose a problem under various circumstances, something that Bartoli, Seles, Peng, Santoro, et al, don't--or didn't--have to deal with.

So, I tend to recommend beginners to do the more conventional 2hfh for this reason. It isn't that the other way can't be done, (even Gene Mayer did it this way back in the 70's!), but overall, I prefer to see players keep their dominant hand on the bottom. It also helps them transition, if they find they want to, to the one-handed forehand much more seamless.

I hope your son will keep an open mind and give the conventional grip pattern a decent shot...He won't regret it. Have him work the grip solid for a week or two. It will, of course, feel different to him. But, over time, the unfamiliar with not only become familiar, but it will probably help him over time.

One drill you might do to emphasize this is to feed quick balls to his forehand and backhand, letting him see how it can become a burden and difficult to make the hand switch under this situation. Explain that when he starts playing better and better, he will be playing kids who hit harder and faster, this burden can become more difficult as he plays more competitive players.

Good luck!!(Tell him that I want to see him become GREAT!)
Dave Smith: Author, Tennis Mastery/Coaching Mastery;
Senior Editor, TennisOne; Dunlop Master Professional
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