Originally Posted by Cindysphinx
I have a few people I hit with on occasion. I have noticed differences in expectations. Maybe a bit of discussion on how practice hitting should go would be helpful? I have several partners, but for our purposes let's roll all of the issues onto the back of one hypothetical practice partner.
1. Say my partner and I have balls in our pockets. If a rally ends and there is a ball near me, I will pick up the nearby ball and walk back to position even if we both still have balls in our pockets. This seems to annoy my practice partner, who has a ball in her hand and is ready to feed. She will sometimes respond by walking over to a more distant ball and picking it up while I wait for her.
2. Sometimes a rally will end on her error. I pull a ball out of my pocket and feed right away, only to have her not play it or swat it away because she wasn't ready. Is there some cue I am missing that tells me when she is ready or not ready?
3. Say I hit a ball that pulls her well off the court. If she gets it back, I will return it within her reach so we can continue rallying. When the reverse situation happens, she will smack the ball well out of my reach for a winner.
4. When we are hitting groundstrokes, she will sometimes throw in a short slice or drop shot. I do not race forward to hit these balls. Instead, I bounce them twice and return it back to her at the baseline. I sense some irritation that I am not trying to reach the ball on the first bounce.
5. Say we are practicing overheads, with one feeding and one hitting. I would like her to smash back to me so I can practice hitting lob off of a smash. She doesn't like to hit the smash to me because she says she would never do that in a match. Part of the issue here is that she feels like hitting directly to a practice partner trains you to hit directly to opponents.
1. You should move balls in your way. Sometimes, they are marginally in your way. If she breaks the rhythm to move one, I've been known to get one even farther away. I mean, the rhythm is broken anyway. Sometimes, I will keep the rhythm going even though there is a ball marginally in my way. I will play around it...usually forward.
2. I've hit balls across the net without thinking. It's a reminder to get eye contact first.
3. It's tolerable once. After that she's a jerk.
4. Yeah, I will ignore drop shots. Short balls are good for transition practice. I'll hit the approach dtl and come in. A good practice partner will nail strokes at me and I'll volley them back. That is until someone hits one out of the middle, then anything goes.
5. I'm with you. People don't seem to realize that if you can control the ball to the middle, you can control it away from the middle.