Is nadal's backhand a good one to emulate

thomas daniels

Semi-Pro
People are always praising djokovics and nishikoris backhand but Rafa has been ripping his backhand lately and would it be a good idea to copy some aspects of it (shoulder turn, racket take back)
I agree and I notice something else. It has gotten better over time before it was consistent, but he couldn't create the angles that he can with it now. His backhand and his serve and his net game are 3 areas that he have improve on over the years. And that is why is number 1 in the world.
 
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PittsburghDad

Guest
What do you want to emulate about it. What specific aspects. Or checkpoints. Or motions. Or angles. What specifically?
 
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PittsburghDad

Guest
I agree and I notice something else. It has gotten better over time before it was consistent, but he couldn't create the angles that he can with it now. His backhand and his serve and his net game are 3 areas that he have improve on over the years. And that is why is number 1 in the world.
What do you think he does to create those angles. Be specific.
 

Bender

G.O.A.T.
Get ripped and have huge muscles. That'll help.
I'm getting tired of people reducing Nadal's strokes to mere muscling of the ball without technique. The guy as perfect technique on all the shots--they can look ugly because he's a lefty but mirrored videos suggest otherwise.

Is there really anything fundamentally wrong about his backhand here?

 

SinjinCooper

Hall of Fame
I'm getting tired of people reducing Nadal's strokes to mere muscling of the ball without technique. The guy as perfect technique on all the shots--they can look ugly because he's a lefty but mirrored videos suggest otherwise.

Is there really anything fundamentally wrong about his backhand here?

Every stroke Rafa hits -- literally every one -- ranges from slightly to highly unorthodox. And some of them sincerely shouldn't be recommended to any developing player.

That said, his BH isn't troublesome to me as an instructor. Less reliant on certain aspects a Djokovic or Murray has turned into the "textbook" modern pro backhand, and in many ways better suited to a consistent, rolling, rally backhand. But that's by no means a bad thing.

The big "warning" any amateur trying to model the Nadal BH needs to mind is the tendency for such a stroke to overemphasize spin production at the expense of depth. Rafa overcomes this with the most explosive and tireless rotational power plant in pro sports history. Since no amateur can replicate this (nor should they try), focus on net clearance becomes the order of the day in order to achieve depth and consistency.
 

styksnstryngs

Professional
I'm getting tired of people reducing Nadal's strokes to mere muscling of the ball without technique. The guy as perfect technique on all the shots--they can look ugly because he's a lefty but mirrored videos suggest otherwise.

Is there really anything fundamentally wrong about his backhand here?

I wasn't trying to imply that he muscles the ball. But just having that muscle mass adds to the power you can get behind the ball. Everything adds up, and that is a big part of it. I was thinking more about the defensive backhands he can hit, which are often muscled just because of court positioning and lack of time, where he can still hit a big ball.
 

TennisCJC

Legend
I don't think any of Rafa's strokes are good models except for maybe his volleys. I like his volleys because he is very compact and has relatively still hands when volleying. Of course, his FH and 2HBH are fundamentally sound but I think his swings can be a bit big on both at times. He drops the racket head a lot on 2HBH to get lots of spin frequently. I think better models would be Agassi or Safin or Djoko as they have more compact motions.
 
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