Need control on bent-arm forehand

sarag

Rookie
I played with a straight arm for years and was able to have good control and spin (windshield-wiper) using a 3/4 western grip, but was not getting as much flat power as i'd have liked. I switched to a bent arm forehand recently and can hit with more power now and also higher balls. But I can't "feel" the ball anymore and have no control. I use an eastern grip and try to finish with my racket over my shoulder, although my arm tries to do a windshield wiper (when this happens, my grip automatically goes more western which i'm trying to avoid because i want to hit a little flatter).
I've practiced a lot with ball-machines and everything feels great, but in matches, my forehand is so inconsistent especially when the balls are low. At some point i even have to switch back to my straight-arm forehand to avoid errors. Anybody know what's going on?
 

Crocodile

G.O.A.T.
No 1: stay away from those ball machines, it's no good for you.
No 2: there is no need to emphasise a big follow through, instead focus on anticipation, loading and rotating.
No 3: Go with your semi western grip instead of eastern
 
I played with a straight arm for years and was able to have good control and spin (windshield-wiper) using a 3/4 western grip, but was not getting as much flat power as i'd have liked. I switched to a bent arm forehand recently and can hit with more power now and also higher balls. But I can't "feel" the ball anymore and have no control. I use an eastern grip and try to finish with my racket over my shoulder, although my arm tries to do a windshield wiper (when this happens, my grip automatically goes more western which i'm trying to avoid because i want to hit a little flatter).
I've practiced a lot with ball-machines and everything feels great, but in matches, my forehand is so inconsistent especially when the balls are low. At some point i even have to switch back to my straight-arm forehand to avoid errors. Anybody know what's going on?
Playing with a straight arm won't help you. If you do this, you're likely to stiff-arm the ball.
 

SinjinCooper

Hall of Fame
Anybody know what's going on?

Not from just the info given, unfortunately. It makes sense you'd have trouble finding consistency with a radical change in form, and it makes sense you'd have trouble finding consistency in changing from a grip/swing designed to create more spin to a less spinny one.

It might just be about practicing it till your form clicks, and it might be something technical. Post a vid if you've got one. Until then, look up vids that highlight the Sampras forehand. Bent arm, over the shoulder finish, more flat power...sounds like very much the stroke you'd like to emulate. See on your own if you're doing something very differently from the way he's doing it, and you might be able to sort your issue out on your own.

These are just warmup forehands at some old-guy exhibition, but especially the FH beginning around 0:50 is very much classic Sampras form...

 
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