For groundies, stay low and balanced or explode up?

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by HunterST, Oct 5, 2013.

  1. HunterST

    HunterST Hall of Fame

    Jun 12, 2009
    There seem to be two conflicting, yet credible ideas about how to use the legs on a stroke. One idea is to stay low and balanced through strokes, and the other is to push off with the legs to gain power and spin.

    When I watch good 4.5 and 5.0 players, they always seem balanced. They rarely fall back, go airborne, etc. The mostly stay low and maintain balance throughout the shot. I have heard tennis pros suggest this.

    I have also heard pros suggest players "sit and lift" out of a shot, meaning to explode up with the legs. I also see pros do this fairly often and high level juniors (at least in the 12s and under) do it on almost every stroke.

    So, which do you think is correct? I feel like it's much easier to be consistent when a player is not doing things that add extra movement like pushing off with the lgs.
  2. WildVolley

    WildVolley Legend

    Jun 22, 2007
    Don't you have to do both?

    I see pros stay low on low shots and try to maintain balance. But during a dynamic point, you need to move dynamically. I see Nadal scramble backwards and hit off the rear foot. I see Federer jump to lower the contact point. I see Djokovic lunge to get to a ball with funny spin.

    The sit-and-lift motion is not wild. It is a controlled jump and you should maintain balance. During a dynamic point, you're going to have to move aggressively against a big hitter.
  3. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

    Apr 20, 2010
    I think leg lift is critical to power. You don't always have time and aren't always able to get into position to use it but when I have time, I find using leg lift is when I hit my best shots.
  4. boramiNYC

    boramiNYC Hall of Fame

    Jun 29, 2011
    good question is not which is better but which one to focus more on first. it's a matter of priority. once you get very good at staying low and balanced you can try jump and balanced. too many rec players and juniors try more difficult stuff without mastering more basic stuff sufficiently which leads to inconsistency and doubt in your technique and confidence.
  5. See the guy in your avatar. Sits down on the forehand boom gets up and rips it.

    The answer is it depends.
    Generally though, a player tries to use his legs trunk upper body arm and wrist in all tennis shots.

    If you are using your legs well, you will come off the ground on some shots whether you want to or not.

    Personally I like to use the legs and I come off the ground sometimes especially on inside out forehands.

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