Holding/absorbing the ball

I wasn't trying to give credit to the poster - rather to the overall thread in a kind of indirect way - the experience of reading through it made me think and ultimately learn more (mostly from Doug King, who I'd never heard of).
 
Thread is hardly incredible - heck teaching pros have whole videos on compressing and rolling. As explained way earlier in the thread - thinking about hitting the ball in a certain way can help people. But in reality the ball is gone in a few milliseconds. This is merely the forehand variation of 'carve the ball' on the slice serve.
 
I wasn't trying to give credit to the poster - rather to the overall thread in a kind of indirect way - the experience of reading through it made me think and ultimately learn more (mostly from Doug King, who I'd never heard of).
As they say, you may find diamonds even in a big pile of dinosaur dump
 
On my two handed backhand - I try to brush the ball very fine.

The more racquet head speed I attempt on this stroke - the finer I brush the ball for increased topspin production and therefore increased control.
 
My best friend, who is a wildly successful division one tennis coach, talks about "nurturing" the ball at contact. He describes it as imagining the ball as if it were a compressible fruit on the strings. The exact phrase he uses is "nurturant; fruit like". Had I not been dismissed out of hand by Collo earlier I would have perhaps been something of an advocate for his highly entertaining suggestions. :) however, to be clear, at no time does my friend suggest the ball stays on the strings longer as a result of this manner of approaching the shot
 
My best friend, who is a wildly successful division one tennis coach, talks about "nurturing" the ball at contact. He describes it as imagining the ball as if it were a compressible fruit on the strings. The exact phrase he uses is "nurturant; fruit like". Had I not been dismissed out of hand by Collo earlier I would have perhaps been something of an advocate for his highly entertaining suggestions. :) however, to be clear, at no time does my friend suggest the ball stays on the strings longer as a result of this manner of approaching the shot
What does he mean by the phrase would be the question.
 
I've been reading through this whole thread. It has been quite interesting to read everyone's pts of view. Maybe Collo is an Australian citizen, but speaks English as a 2nd language -- when I read over his different explanations some are much easier for me to grasp the concept. I don't think the real issue here that he putting forward is calculating dwell time in mll.seconds and low tension strings, any actual pauses, etc., though.

The person who posted the Feel-Tennis video seems to have provided the best illustration of Collo's concept (?) And someone else who paraphrased the concept with "saving up some torque by not rotating fully until you feel the ball is 'grabbed' then rotate all the way in order to sling the ball," makes sense on paper to me.

Also, Collo introduces 'gentle hands' concept kind of on the side, and that seems to be sthg important here. Would love to understand that better. Take my time to be more aware of wrist flex under weight of the ball--with grip/hand totally relaxed-- and then 'slinging' ball with (addt'l) body rotation?

It seems to me when he talks about 'touch' (related to gentle hands) it is an 'awareness' concept, like trying to quiet down a monster swing?? Lagging the rotation itself??

I found the thread whilst reading another one on how to INITIATE rotation into the ball vs. arming.

Would love some drills to grasp the concepts. The Agassi anecdote with duct tape on the shldr is helpful.

THKS
 
Ignoring BS like "dwell time" IMO the whole thread is about building "lag"/store energy (using kinetic chain* to constantly make the racquet head lag behind hand - keyword inertia) while player is still unaware what the exact point of contact will be. Player has decided what the exact point of contact and intended hitting direction of ball is: racquet head rotates (RHS) into ball.

*legs-hips-core-shoulder-arm-hand-racquet (chain shortens depending on the situation your opponent created for you)

Problem with players using arm-hand-racquet only: they have to use the links that are intended for control/fine tuning (racquet face orientation, position of end of handle) to create racquet head speed and therefore lack control.

My abstract may be a bit off due to plenty of beer. Cheers.
 
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Ignoring BS like "dwell time" IMO the whole thread is about building "lag"/store energy (using kinetic chain* to constantly make the racquet head lag behind hand - keyword inertia) while player is still unaware what the exact point of contact will be. Player has decided what the exact point of contact and intended hitting direction of ball is: racquet head rotates (RHS) into ball.

*legs-hips-core-shoulder-arm-hand-racquet (chain shortens depending on the situation your opponent created for you)

My abstract may be a bit off due to plenty of beer.
Thanks for that -- makes sense. Build lag.

At one point there was talk of 45° as ideal contact point, if I read it correctly. Does this refer to rotating back to 90°, then initiating forward rotation and making contact at 45°? should I be striving for this instead of having chest facing fully forward at contact? Is this part of the concept, i.e. reserving additional degrees of rotation forward to "grab and throw?" "sling" or 'give direction,' whatever the appropriate term is...?
 
Thanks for that -- makes sense. Build lag.

At one point there was talk of 45° as ideal contact point, if I read it correctly. Does this refer to rotating back to 90°, then initiating forward rotation and making contact at 45°? should I be striving for this instead of having chest facing fully forward at contact? Is this part of the concept, i.e. reserving additional degrees of rotation forward to "grab and throw?" "sling" or 'give direction,' whatever the appropriate term is...?
...I also am English as 2nd language, so I should re-read my posts before sending them! apologies if not clear
 
Thanks for that -- makes sense. Build lag.

At one point there was talk of 45° as ideal contact point, if I read it correctly. Does this refer to rotating back to 90°, then initiating forward rotation and making contact at 45°? should I be striving for this instead of having chest facing fully forward at contact? Is this part of the concept, i.e. reserving additional degrees of rotation forward to "grab and throw?" "sling" or 'give direction,' whatever the appropriate term is...?
I don't find these numbers useful at all. Tactile feedback is good enough for me plus my opponents try to make me improvise anyway...
 
I'm an Australian tennis coach based in Singapore and for all beginners and rec players the biggest fundamental flaw I notice that prohibits this level on improving any stroke is the ability to hold/absorb the ball. Push and turn on the ball is key. Create the most resistance on the ball then accelerate with the most mass. Like rowing or Swimming, "catch the water" (special mentions to coach Doug King for originally highlighting how important this is in my coaching.

The amount of people I have seen improve from total beginner or rec player is through the ability to hold the ball on the string.

Two of the most evil words a coach can say is swinging and hitting and they are used the most by coaches.
All this does is makes people accelerate the racquet further from the ball thus the ball just bounces of the stings and the larger body parts don't work with the ball, your hand and arm become he main power source.

Very effective coaching cues I use and it works like gold-
" wait for the ball, catch the ball, coil into the ball slowly, rotate on the ball, ask your-self are you hitting the ball or catching the ball, the slower you go into the ball the better you will absorb it.
" are u rotating before the ball or on the ball" catch the ball with the most coils then you have more potential energy to move the ball with less effort.

Once someone achieves understanding of catching you will find any strokes are much easier for a student to develop well. You want your student to prevent any chance of a swinging, absorb the ball and a big thrust with the big guys.

I found this from the legend coach Doug King and it sums up perfectly what I'm talking about-

His quote and pic sums up everything, pure gold -

"In the modern game, the swing of racquet is minimised. The result is better contact between the racquet and the ball- that translates into less slapping into and pulling of the Ball and fewer off center hits. The hand positions the racquet to the ball and allows a leveraged drive and turn of the ball initiated with the body" Doug King


Yo if you are still around, i was watching this vid and a couple of shots sound different like I am barely contacting the ball. Like the one at 31sec and 34sec. Very different sounds. Is that what you are talking about the one at 31 sec? Is that absorbing the ball vs the one at 34?

 
Yo if you are still around, i was watching this vid and a couple of shots sound different like I am barely contacting the ball. Like the one at 31sec and 34sec. Very different sounds. Is that what you are talking about the one at 31 sec? Is that absorbing the ball vs the one at 34?

Do you have some high speed video coverage of strokes that display what you mean?
 
Yo if you are still around, i was watching this vid and a couple of shots sound different like I am barely contacting the ball. Like the one at 31sec and 34sec. Very different sounds. Is that what you are talking about the one at 31 sec? Is that absorbing the ball vs the one at 34?

Collo has left the building. Not seen him for nearly 3 months now. Shall we poke @oserver? See if he'll come out of hibernation to enlighten us all?

Or perhaps it's time to resurrect Chinese physics = Jumpulse.
 
Omg. If collo would hace just posted that. Even then...
He's stating exactly what most of us were saying and which collo argued against. He says around the 5:12 mark how if you try to catch the ball with the racquet the ball will actually 'shoot away' as it gets hit. He uses the words 'attiude that I'm catching" and "trick myself to think I'm catching" to explain how he wants to develop soft hands.
 
He's stating exactly what most of us were saying and which collo argued against. He says around the 5:12 mark how if you try to catch the ball with the racquet the ball will actually 'shoot away' as it gets hit. He uses the words 'attiude that I'm catching" and "trick myself to think I'm catching" to explain how he wants to develop soft hands.
Yeah it makes more sense but tbh i dont understand it anyhow. Like yeah i understand the words but it means nothing in terms of playing tennis. You hit the ball so pretending to catch it makes no sense. Just hit it. This touch feely MTM stuff makes no sense.
 
Yeah it makes more sense but tbh i dont understand it anyhow. Like yeah i understand the words but it means nothing in terms of playing tennis. You hit the ball so pretending to catch it makes no sense. Just hit it. This touch feely MTM stuff makes no sense.
I've seen some coaches play this way, and they also seem to increase the pace with just a nudge and not drastically changing their swing. Just an effortless way of playing. I don't know what cues they have in their mind when they do it. I do believe you need a heavier racquet to play this style since you need both feel and bulk in the racquet to play such a style.
 
More than catching or any other cues, developing control over the racquet head is what I take most out of any such articles/videos. Grip the racquet softly, have a small loop in your swing, and let the racquet do the bulk of the work for you. Yesteryear players with the smaller sized wooden racquets didn't have the power that we see today, but they seemed to have excellent control of the racquet head.

The 2 bh drives that Rosewall hits from the :58 mark to the 1:02 mark

The fh that Vijay hits around the 1:34 mark
 
He's stating exactly what most of us were saying and which collo argued against. He says around the 5:12 mark how if you try to catch the ball with the racquet the ball will actually 'shoot away' as it gets hit. He uses the words 'attiude that I'm catching" and "trick myself to think I'm catching" to explain how he wants to develop soft hands.
The problem is that collo vacillated between stating he could catch the ball and pretending. So it was impossible to pin him down and discuss because as soon as you tried, he'd switch interpretations.
 
The problem is that collo vacillated between stating he could catch the ball and pretending. So it was impossible to pin him down and discuss because as soon as you tried, he'd switch interpretations.
Probably due to personality trait than actual instruction lol.

I think i understand what he's saying, but if you can hit a decent ball already and you have the kinetic chain worked out it probably doesn't make a huge difference
 
Found him. I believe this is what the OP was talking about:

In a way, it is all about cues to make you focus on the ball in a way that gives you the best result at the brief moment of contact. Directing focus, keeping it on the ball. Like this, or in simpler ways like "bounce-hit", "watch the ball through impact" (please, no discussion about the possibility of this), "watch the ball, specially after the bounce". Because so many of us have the tendency to take focus of the ball too early, eager as we are to see the result. Imo. The goal being to teach our subconcious to stay in the shot untill it has been made. Or make a concious effort to do so.
Just speculating on my afternoon cup of coffee...
 
In a way, it is all about cues to make you focus on the ball in a way that gives you the best result at the brief moment of contact. Directing focus, keeping it on the ball. Like this, or in simpler ways like "bounce-hit", "watch the ball through impact" (please, no discussion about the possibility of this), "watch the ball, specially after the bounce". Because so many of us have the tendency to take focus of the ball too early, eager as we are to see the result. Imo. The goal being to teach our subconcious to stay in the shot untill it has been made. Or make a concious effort to do so.
Just speculating on my afternoon cup of coffee...
Ain't coffee great?

Rather than worrying about "catching/holding/absorbing", I find it much more beneficial to try and watch the ball as I make contact and not to transfer my attention to where the ball is going until well after contact. If I do things by habit, I will take my eye off of the contact point before contact and lift my head up to watch my beautiful shot.

it's amazing how difficult this habit is to break.
 
Ain't coffee great?

Rather than worrying about "catching/holding/absorbing", I find it much more beneficial to try and watch the ball as I make contact and not to transfer my attention to where the ball is going until well after contact. If I do things by habit, I will take my eye off of the contact point before contact and lift my head up to watch my beautiful shot.

it's amazing how difficult this habit is to break.
Yep. And sometimes its not even watching the outgoing shot! I just seem to not be able to look at contact. Often thats volleys and half volleys. Drives me crazy
 
The problem is that collo vacillated between stating he could catch the ball and pretending. So it was impossible to pin him down and discuss because as soon as you tried, he'd switch interpretations.
yes rather annoying

on the other hand I have been playing with some beginning tennis players and have told them to absorb the ball as they often end up swinging just their arm or not accounting for their momentum when running up on a ball and hitting the ball too far

so I think its a valid visualization technique but then that was never the issue
 
But sometimes a cue, or a more general description of focus can help one to "watch the ball". I mean "watch the ball" is perhaps not the most inspiring cue.
Heres a couple of thoughts. After being often lost in some technical aspects of my hitting, I realised that tennis is basically a game of hitting the ball. So a big part of the joy of it should be in the experience of hitting the ball (well). Again and again. And if you are not watching the ball in contact, you are not really experiencing the hit. So focus on experiencing and actually enjoying the hit. As Nadal says (do not remember the exact words): Every shot is different.
I am a part time musician, so I am quite focused on rythm. And there is a lot of rythm in tennis, just in the sound of it. "Bounce-hit" is sort of a take on that. The sound or rythm becomes connected to your stroke. And the focus on "hit" means you are focused at the moment of impact, so I believe it helps you in watching the ball.
I have my own take on it, which have three elements, rather than "bounce-hit". You could call it "Lift-turn-hit". "Lift" is when you lift/pull back the racket, when it leaves the left hand in preparation for the shot. "Turn" is when you start turning the body to swing the racket forward, start the unit turn. "Hit" is when you (the lagging racket) actually hits the ball. Lift-turn-hit, lift-turn-hit. You can say it internally also when the opponent hits the ball, and practice it when watching tennis on the television, to get into the rythm of the game.
In practice "lift" (preparation) is usually a longer sound or followed by a pause, while "turn-hit" comes closer after each other. And "lift-turn-hit" does not sound very good and is quite akward to say/imagine. So to make it more intuitive, you can just imagine a sound of your own choice, like a drum. So "lift-turn-hit" becomes something like: donn-g-dong, donn-g-dong, donn-g-dong, donn-g-dong. Actually the rythm is like a ride cymbal in jazz: tinkeding - tinkeding - tinkeding - tinkeding. But "tinkeding" does not sound "heavy". So perhaps better imagening Gene Krupa/Buddy Rich on a floor tom. Or something.
Caution: You can say the sound internally, and not out loud.
Ah, danish coffee...
 
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A

Attila_the_gorilla

Guest
But sometimes a cue, or a more general description of focus can help one to "watch the ball". I mean "watch the ball" is perhaps not the most inspiring cue.
Heres a couple of thoughts. After being often lost in some technical aspects of my hitting, I realised that tennis is basically a game of hitting the ball. So a big part of the joy of it should be in the experience of hitting the ball (well). Again and again. And if you are not watching the ball in contact, you are not really experiencing the hit. So focus on experiencing and actually enjoying the hit. As Nadal says (do not remember the exact words): Every shot is different.
I am a part time musician, so I am quite focused on rythm. And there is a lot of rythm in tennis, just in the sound of it. "Bounce-hit" is sort of a take on that. The sound or rythm becomes connected to your stroke. And the focus on "hit" means you are focused at the moment of impact, so I believe it helps you in watching the ball.
I have my own take on it, which have three elements, rather than "bounce-hit". You could call it "Lift-turn-hit". "Lift" is when you lift/pull back the racket, when it leaves the left hand in preparation for the shot. "Turn" is when you start turning the body to swing the racket forward, start the unit turn. "Hit" is when you (the lagging racket) actually hits the ball. Lift-turn-hit, lift-turn-hit. You can say it internally also when the opponent hits the ball, and practice it when watching tennis on the television, to get into the rythm of the game.
In practice "lift" (preparation) is usually a longer sound or followed by a pause, while "turn-hit" comes closer after each other. And "lift-turn-hit" does not sound very good and is quite akward to say/imagine. So to make it more intuitive, you can just imagine a sound of your own choice, like a drum. So "lift-turn-hit" becomes something like: donn-g-dong, donn-g-dong, donn-g-dong, donn-g-dong. Actually the rythm is like a ride cymbal in jazz: tinkeding - tinkeding - tinkeding - tinkeding. But "tinkeding" does not sound "heavy". So better imagening Gene Krupa/Buddy Rich on a floor tom.
Caution: You can say the sound internally, and not out loud.
Ah, danish coffee...
Tennis may be tough for a musician. Like you say, you are used to rhythm, and I assume you are also used to strict music notes that you must adhere to.
Whereas tennis is very much improvised. There are repeating tactical patterns of play, but the actual execution of each shot is unique, apart from the serve.
 
Just hit it. This touch feely stuff makes no sense.
Ok, so it's not for you....But can't you see that this "feel" stuff works wonders for lots of people? So like with lots of tips, they work for some and not so much for others. What doesn't make sense is for you to come in be negative about very productive tips that work for lots of people. In many cases, they work so well that the ones helped are very motivated to share them with enthusiasm.
 
Ok, so it's not for you....But can't you see that this "feel" stuff works wonders for lots of people? So like with lots of tips, they work for some and not so much for others. What doesn't make sense is for you to come in be negative about very productive tips that work for lots of people. In many cases, they work so well that the ones helped are very motivated to share them with enthusiasm.
Its not negative to explain that the methodology doesnt work for me. Its honest. And based on this thread alot dont get it either. And I am trying and hoping to understand.

Like I said the concept of catching the ball is nonsensical. You move back when catching things and well its not even possible to catch the ball with a racquet. Anyhow it works for some and that is great. Definitely not for me.

One would think a solid methodology wouldnt be sooooo polarizing. Yet its 2000+ poasts and even the DOug King vid that this whole thing is based on doesnt clear up anything.

One would think too that you would want to vary your method so its easier for people to understand. Or at least give a disclaimer that these are just teaching ques and none of this really happens but if you try it it might work. Collo was saying you could catch the ball...
 
Its not negative to explain that the methodology doesnt work for me. Its honest. And based on this thread alot dont get it either. And I am trying and hoping to understand.

Like I said the concept of catching the ball is nonsensical. You move back when catching things and well its not even possible to catch the ball with a racquet. Anyhow it works for some and that is great. Definitely not for me.

One would think a solid methodology wouldnt be sooooo polarizing. Yet its 2000+ poasts and even the DOug King vid that this whole thing is based on doesnt clear up anything.

One would think too that you would want to vary your method so its easier for people to understand. Or at least give a disclaimer that these are just teaching ques and none of this really happens but if you try it it might work. Collo was saying you could catch the ball...
I still can't get over how great i am finding that doug king video burried on the internet for years unfound in a 2000+ post thread about that very instruction. Wow.

Its the little things in life y'know?
 
Actually Doug King does address the conflict between the catch imagery, and the fact that you are actually hitting the ball. But cool if that is not for everyone.
Yeah i watched it a couple of times and saw that. It just makes it harder to understand. Why not just say draw the hands in and be light on the feet? Why invent an analogy that isnt even remotely close to what happens??
 
Watch the oserver WETS video serve first. Will get you to 122 at least. He is on to something applying federers forehand mechanics to the serve. Totally makes sense. And ironically this thread inspired him and he tries to absorb the ball on the serve.
I haven't mastered the 360 turn as I'm playing S&V. This is going to take some time.
 
If you master it the volley isnt needed. Its just serve
Why are we wasting time with ground strokes, volleys and footwork? We only need two shots: serve and serve return


I'm waiting for the day when a poast-POMO arrives on the tour with an nonreturnable serve, and winner return of serves. Doesn't even try to rally unless it lands within a meter of where he's standing. Doesn't need to. The opponent getting into a rally was just a fluke. Inspires old guys everywhere to take the sport up again
 
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