Forehand arm

E

eaglesburg

Guest
I won't be able to take a video until Friday at the earliest, but do you think I should switch to a straight arm forehand? I have a double bend right now. However, the bend is very slight. It is noticeable enough that no one would mistake it for a straight arm but it is just a tad away from being a straight arm. Not locked out physically but straight visually.
Please advise.
 

aimr75

Hall of Fame
More leverage and power and spin and my arm seems really close to it so I don't think the switch would be that hard.

whatever youre looking for, you wont find it by trying to switch to a straight arm forehand.. concentrate on better timing, contact point and other fundamentals and it will improve all of the above.
 

SystemicAnomaly

Bionic Poster
^ Good advice from aimr75. The straight-arm FH is not for everyone. Many found it more difficult to develop a consistent FH with this technique. While a straight-arm might provide greater leverage, it is actually easier to quickly rotate the body and move the shoulder with a bent arm. This is a matter of physics. With a bent arm, the body has a lower rotational inertia -- easier to spin the body.

The arm should be more relaxed with a bend. It should also be easier to make fine adjustments for different contact point if the arm is not locked out. Swing path can more easily be adjusted if the body position wrt the ball is not ideal.

Note that Federer often does not lock the elbow:
roger+federer+forehand.jpg


http://www.hi-techtennis.com/?video_id=1164

Not sure about Nadal but I've seen plenty of images of Federer with a mild bend in the elbow at contact. A bent elbow at contact probably puts less stress on the elbow. The following links provide more pros and cons for straight vs bent:

http://www.top-tennis-training.org/strokes/forehand/forehand-bend-or-extend/
http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=144635
 

SystemicAnomaly

Bionic Poster
^ In the video above, it appears that Roger unlocks the elbow shortly before contact -- he may be accelerating the forearm wrt the rest of the arm before (and during) contact.

This can probably be accomplished with a double-bend FH as well.
.
 

spacediver

Hall of Fame
... it is actually easier to quickly rotate the body and move the shoulder with a bent arm. This is a matter of physics. With a bent arm, the body has a lower rotational inertia -- easier to spin the body.

yep, and there is more "mass" behind the shot when you make contact, which can have its own benefits.
 

5263

G.O.A.T.
Many found it more difficult to develop a consistent FH with this technique. While a straight-arm might provide greater leverage, it is actually easier to quickly rotate the body and move the shoulder with a bent arm. This is a matter of physics. With a bent arm, the body has a lower rotational inertia -- easier to spin the body.

The arm should be more relaxed with a bend. It should also be easier to make fine adjustments for different contact point if the arm is not locked out. Swing path can more easily be adjusted if the body position wrt the ball is not ideal.

Really like this post and how it covers the issue. I'd say don't TRY to go to the SA, but if someone just finds it very natural and prefers it, then sure....do what feels confident and consistent. Imo the Double Bend is superior to the SA.
 

sureshs

Bionic Poster
^ Good advice from aimr75. The straight-arm FH is not for everyone. Many found it more difficult to develop a consistent FH with this technique. While a straight-arm might provide greater leverage, it is actually easier to quickly rotate the body and move the shoulder with a bent arm. This is a matter of physics. With a bent arm, the body has a lower rotational inertia -- easier to spin the body.

You may be correct, but I don't think that is the reason. It does not seem to me to be an issue in a small partial turn of the body.
 

winstonlim8

Professional
I've only started (5 days) trying to hit with an Eastern grip and a bent or slightly bowed arm (butt cap leading) and I still haven't got the timing right but I did notice that when I get it right, I'm hitting forehands harder and better than before.

I tried it for years with a straight arm but could never get comfortable with the Eastern grip or the relaxed bent arm forward-and-around whipping motion, so I stuck to my straight arm Continental forehand until I decided enough was enough.
 
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SystemicAnomaly

Bionic Poster
You may be correct, but I don't think that is the reason. It does not seem to me to be an issue in a small partial turn of the body.

It depends, in part, on how the SA Fh is implemented. For some players the elbow moves away, and stays away, from the body early -- during the prep phase. This would definitely slow down how quickly the body uncoils and how quickly the arm can accelerate during its forward motion. This would be true moreso for medium and high shots than for low shots (closer to the body).

Roger and Rafa will often have the elbow bent for the top part (and falling part) of their Fh loop swing. The elbow straightens at the bottom part of their loop swing and is often, fairly close to the body. With this implementation, they can generate a quick uncoil and forward motion of the arm. On medium and high shots, the elbow would start to move away from the body as the forward swing continues.

For serves, the racket head is dropped somewhat close to the body. As this happens and, as the racket arm is moving upward, the tossing arm is pulled down and tucked into the body. These actions help minimize the rotational inertia so that the torso and cartwheel action can rotate more quickly.
 
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