Never be late again

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by StringSnapper, Jul 12, 2018.

  1. StringSnapper

    StringSnapper Professional

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    "be unit-turned and ready to strike BEFORE the ball bounces on your side of the court"

    is this the single best piece of advice for rec players?

    If you're never late, how can you lose the majority or rallies?


    Maybe you could also say... to hit on the rise, you have to start swinging up the moment the ball bounces on your side of the court. A little before, maybe
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
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  2. Curious

    Curious Hall of Fame

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    I believe so. One should do drills where they move around the court with that unit-turned position. Actually I was thinking of doing that but a bit worried I would look weird!:)
     
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  3. StringSnapper

    StringSnapper Professional

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    I just did 200 forehand shadow swings in the living room focusing on going from my ready position "snapping" to takeback position with shoulders turned 90deg

    It was a good workout for my core. I think you need fast twitch muscles in your core to unit turn fast
     
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  4. StringSnapper

    StringSnapper Professional

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    Just putting this here for how good advice it sounds like
     
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  5. Curious

    Curious Hall of Fame

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    It was also interesting for me when I was trying it. I noticed I couldn't turn really fast no matter how hard I tried. I bitterly realised there was a limit. Then I tried some other motions like getting up from a squat as fast as possible or bending forward etc.
     
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  6. Hmgraphite1

    Hmgraphite1 Professional

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    Noticed i was patting the dog on the forehand just before bounce the other day. I wasn't hitting too hard but the early prep seemed to give me time to direct better. Since then I haven't been that early, need to correlate with ball speed. Had the the machine throwing at 35, 42, 52 mph. Its amazing that a 3 mph difference is as noticible as it is.
     
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  7. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Count to 5 after the bounce before taking your racket back
     
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  8. Curious

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    Counting by fives, I guess?!
     
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  9. S&V-not_dead_yet

    S&V-not_dead_yet Legend

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    In general, I think it's great because most people, myself included, are late rather than early.

    Where I see it failing miserably is when people, especially those with a 2HBH, dogmatically stick to that while trying to run down something at the outer reaches of their range: it doesn't matter squat how prepared you are if you can't reach the ball before the 2nd bounce. Yet I see people trundling along in their perfect take back position, ready to hit a great looking BH, and losing the point because the ball bounced twice.

    It's likely their coach's fault for not pointing out this exception. It would seem unlikely that an uncoached player would make this mistake because that person would intuitively realize that reaching the ball trumped good form [which they may lack anyway].
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2018
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  10. ptuanminh

    ptuanminh Professional

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    To hit 2 or 3 bounces, thats what you do.
     
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  11. Fintft

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    I wanted to reply something among your lines, b/c it's not only about early preparation but timing your split step well and either having to get to the ball or having to get out of the way (if you are jammed and you need a couple of adjustments steps to make space?):


     
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  12. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo Talk Tennis Guru

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    Heard this from a coach drilling HS players this winter. Early prep
     
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  13. mcs1970

    mcs1970 Professional

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    Depends upon the return coming back. IMO anticipation and judgement of where the ball will land is much more important than some theoretical advice to do unit turn first. Most incoming balls you have to run at what you judge to be the most optimal angle to get to the ball, stop and then do an unit turn. For eg, if you're running forward at an angle, I guess you can call it an unit turn, but there's still another more proper unit turn required once you reach the ball.
     
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  14. Curious

    Curious Hall of Fame

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    So you believe there is such a thing as too early prep/shoulder turn?
     
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  15. mcs1970

    mcs1970 Professional

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    Every ball is different. It's a running sport. Do what it takes to get to the ball as quickly as you can first and foremost. If turning your shoulders by following some rote instruction impedes you in that, then it is the wrong thing to do.
     
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  16. Curious

    Curious Hall of Fame

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    That's true but rec players tend more to jam up than be too far away from the ball during the shot.
     
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  17. mcs1970

    mcs1970 Professional

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    Only on shots near them where they don't have to run much. Most rec players seem to have an issue with running and getting to the ball than getting jammed up. Even on the jammed balls it's more an issue with footwork than anything else.
     
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  18. Curious

    Curious Hall of Fame

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    Interesting point. I will watch some rec tennis match videos
     
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  19. Knox

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    Deliberately misrepresenting that tip for the sake of trolling? Or are you really that misinformed?
     
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  20. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo Talk Tennis Guru

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    There is a video..............................................juss saying
     
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  21. Knox

    Knox Rookie

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    What video, what are you saying?
     
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  22. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo Talk Tennis Guru

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    Them that know ain't saying, them that don't have said enuff
     
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  23. Knox

    Knox Rookie

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    Oh, so you're trolling too. Cool.
     
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  24. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    What tip?
     
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  25. Knox

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    Deliberately pretending to be dull too? Damn sureshs your trolling is next level.

    The counting to 5 tip, obviously
     
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  26. S&V-not_dead_yet

    S&V-not_dead_yet Legend

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    I only got to 4 because no one told me the thumb is a finger also.
     
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  27. StringSnapper

    StringSnapper Professional

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    Maybe its just a matter of getting used to it? Seems to work for Kei Nishikori. I think there are two seperate movements too... unit turn, then the "down to up" arc of the racquet which actually goes into the ball. You can combine them but i think it makes your chances of being late higher
     
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  28. mcs1970

    mcs1970 Professional

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    I agree with your overall point...be focused on your movement and not just stare at the ball (as a lot of us are guilty of doing). Tomaz (and I know many here don't like him) has a drill where as soon as the ball is approaching the net, the student has to say loudly what shot they're going to hit next, so as to start rotating their shoulders immediately. I think drills like that will help you not just stare at the ball and forever be late on prep.

    However, there are also drills for you to know if you have to play a defensive shot or an offensive shot and be ready to move forward or backwards depending upon your judgement of where the ball will fall.

    The bottom line is there are many things you have to combine to not be late or be in an optimal position to hit the ball. There is no one easy fix. The main thing that will help is running and footwork drills. The higher level players have a fluidity to their movement and their strokes that is greater than the sum of the individual parts of those movements and strokes. For improving your overall mobility, the base is just ladder and speed drills.
     
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  29. StringSnapper

    StringSnapper Professional

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    Its funny people dont like Tomaz. I watched one of his serve videos again last night... it looks like he has really good technique. He also breaks it down well.

    But yeah, if you unit turn but forget to move to the ball it wont help.
     
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  30. S&V-not_dead_yet

    S&V-not_dead_yet Legend

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    Who specifically doesn't like Tomaz? I think he's got fantastic material and always patiently explained.
     
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  31. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    @mcs1970 is right. You turn when you are ready to initiate the swing, and of course [slightly] early is better. But when you have to run to get to the ball first, you really can't turn. You gotta do running first!!! LOL

    Different players have different problems and need specific answers to the problems. I don't know if there's anything such as "single best piece of advice" for everyone. If there's one, it's actually increase your stamina and speed.
     
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  32. Curious

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    I believe you may still be late if you try to run first then turn. In other words it's still quite possible not to turn properly even when you ran and got to the ball in time.
     
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  33. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Who gives that tip?

    Sent from my SM-G935V using Tapatalk
     
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  34. ProfessorC

    ProfessorC New User

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    People are late because they are afraid to “take the racket back early” - they think that’s old school teaching. Get the racket back calmly and wait for the ball - is the correct idea. Or you can follow modern advice and end up with a take back that is as fast as the forward swing. There should be no effort used in reversing the direction of the racket - backward to forward.
     
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  35. ProfessorC

    ProfessorC New User

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    Pic of Roanic that probably won’t post
     
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  36. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    If you don't first run to a ball that's 10 feet away, all the unit turning in the world won't help you hit the ball. No?
     
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  37. Curious

    Curious Hall of Fame

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    Sure, that's also correct.
     
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  38. StringSnapper

    StringSnapper Professional

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    Not necessarily, for example someone like Kei Nishikori ive often seen him run while unit turned... in my books he's one of the top baseliners in the game.

    Coaches have often talked about separating the top half from the bottom half in tennis. No one runs to a tennis ball like a sprinter does running 100m. For a start theyre carrying a racquet, so that motion isnt really possible
     
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  39. Hmgraphite1

    Hmgraphite1 Professional

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    I think it depends sometimes you unit turn and run sometimes you don't. The more often you can and get to the ball the better.
     
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  40. tlm

    tlm G.O.A.T.

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    No you have it backwards, there is a good chance that you will be late getting to the ball if you waste valuable time worrying about turning instead of immediately getting to the ball and then doing unit turn.
     
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  41. Curious

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    How about this? Get to the ball in time and make sure your chest doesnt face the net when you start your forward swing. That's my aim anyway.
     
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  42. tlm

    tlm G.O.A.T.

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    That sounds good and much more correct than worrying about doing unit turn first. I’ve noticed this when I practice with my wife, she is trying to become better at doubles after being mostly a singles player.

    I get a basket of balls and start feeding her shots she can volley and lobs so she can work on overheads. So many times she is late or miss times her shots because instead of stepping first to get in the right spot she starts reaching first.

    You can really see this when feeding balls to a player. Like on a lob I notice she try’s to get the racket up right away and she ends up being late because she didn’t get to the right spot first and then get racket ready for hitting overhead.
     
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  43. Knox

    Knox Rookie

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    Good coaches
     
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  44. Chas Tennis

    Chas Tennis Legend

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    Why not start by seeing what top 100 ATP players are doing? Watch a few videos of match play. Time the turn back relative to the bounce, before, at bounce or after bounce. Look at a few players to see some variety.

    Turn back timing must depend on pace.

    Hint - does anybody know what a 'rec' player is, is doing or should be doing regarding the turn back. Nada....

    Some instructors may know but I have not seen instructions that claim to be intended for the 'rec' player. (Exception - Pat Dougherty Hammer that Serve.)

    Turn back twists the spine, OK for rec players?
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2018 at 1:07 PM
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  45. S&V-not_dead_yet

    S&V-not_dead_yet Legend

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    Agreed but I think it's more applicable to running like crazy to get to a ball and still having enough touch to hit a drop shot, for example. People who aren't good at separating the two will invariably, if they clear the net, hit it out, because since their legs are pumping hard, their arms are pumping hard also.

    I try to do precisely that: to run as if I was sprinting. The more successful I am, the more ground I can cover.

    To say it's not really possible is to ignore, for example, 400m relay runners who are carrying a baton. If you edited out the baton, wouldn't they look like any other 400m sprinter?

    IMO, the most important thing is to get to the ball before the 2nd bounce. If you can't do that, nothing else matters. If you can and you have time to get the racquet back early, bonus! But I'd rather have late racquet prep and reach the ball than early racquet prep and not reaching the ball. And the problem I sometimes see is players concentrating more on early racquet prep than sprinting efficiently, probably because of coaching dogma ["Get your racquet back!!!"].
     
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  46. Dou

    Dou New User

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    there is the late prep and late hit... yes early turn can make you prep early.

    but late hit is a bigger problem. most recs try to swing/accelerate thru the impact. that doesn't work... need to release the racket and put the follow-thru on the ball.
     
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  47. StringSnapper

    StringSnapper Professional

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    i do watch pro tennis lol. Yes they all seem to be turned before the ball bounces in most situations, or at least at the bounce.

    Tomaz from feel tennis is an instructor for the rec tennis player, and he said to try and turn before the ball bounces.
     
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  48. StringSnapper

    StringSnapper Professional

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    Yes obviously getting to the ball is number 1. If really stretched, i just chase it down with a conti grip and slice it back.

    By "never being late" i mean a ball thar is hit at you or near you that you intend to return with a normal stroke (which uses a unit turn) but maybe due to the pace of the ball, you're late on your swing.

    Otherwise i would have called this thread something like "never be too far away when chasing a ball again"... for me they are two different scenarios
     
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  49. StringSnapper

    StringSnapper Professional

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    I like this comment. Its like the lag hits the ball, it hits by itself

    I guess the new question is... when do you release? This is probably just something you learn by experience and have to judge differently on each ball
     
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  50. Chas Tennis

    Chas Tennis Legend

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    Djokovic Championship Highlights at Wimbledon
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    Djokovic forehand has started turn back around ball going over net. For balls bouncing around 1/2 way past service line he is turned back at the bounce, maybe racket is high. If he has to turn body to shoulder's line turns early.....?

    He uses off arm acceleration to get the ice skater boost.

    It is easy to count frames. On Youtube press the "." and "," keys.
     
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