Opponents who doesn't get the purpose of the warm-up.

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
My opponent today went all out hitting spraying balls everywhere on the warm-up and then played warm-up shots the whole match. Very odd.
I've seen those guys. Played one on Tuesday. Ripping flat FH's at me (or more commonly, the net) in warmup, then pushing moon balls back the rest of the game (and encouraging his partner to do so as well). At least it helped me dial in my FH's for my club tournament match 2 days later.

I wonder if its an ego thing of not wanting to be "out-hit" in warmup. I do hit a reasonably deep heavy ball in warmup and maybe some guys view that as a challenge to their manhood.
 

davced1

Hall of Fame
I think some players that haven't played in a while get overexcited to be back on court and just hit it as hard as they can in the warm-up but then the importance of the match set's in and they play it safe.
 

davced1

Hall of Fame
I've seen those guys. Played one on Tuesday. Ripping flat FH's at me (or more commonly, the net) in warmup, then pushing moon balls back the rest of the game (and encouraging his partner to do so as well). At least it helped me dial in my FH's for my club tournament match 2 days later.

I wonder if its an ego thing of not wanting to be "out-hit" in warmup. I do hit a reasonably deep heavy ball in warmup and maybe some guys view that as a challenge to their manhood.
I don't mind some pace just hit down the middle. If they can't do both then hit with less pace.
 

ryukensfj

New User
Well the purpose of the warm-up is to figure out your opponent strengths and weaknesses. It's not really to warm up. 10 minutes is really not enough time to get a full warm-up in. When I played league against unfamiliar players I would test my opponent by hitting shots to their FH, BH, slices, and wide shots to see how well they move. I would be warmed from hitting with my own team before the match starts. I also personally warm-up with my own team by hitting at 50% at most.
 

davced1

Hall of Fame
Well the purpose of the warm-up is to figure out your opponent strengths and weaknesses. It's not really to warm up. 10 minutes is really not enough time to get a full warm-up in. When I played league against unfamiliar players I would test my opponent by hitting shots to their FH, BH, slices, and wide shots to see how well they move. I would be warmed from hitting with my own team before the match starts. I also personally warm-up with my own team by hitting at 50% at most.
I don't play on a team and the courts are fully booked before the match so it becomes essential in the warm-up to hit some balls to get in the groove. I agree that it's a good oppurtunity to get a sense of their game.
 
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On the warm-up scale, he's a clueless, narcissist, user. If he pulls it again, sit down on the bench and tell him you're ready to play--or grab a dozen balls and warm-up your serve while he figures it out.
 
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R1FF

Professional
I have a regular opponent like this. Rips a winner on every return. Wont let me get in any rhythm. It’s gotten to the point where I dont wanna play him.

I cant tell if he’s doing it for gamesmanship or oblivious. But it’s something he only recently started doing once our matches were getting consistently close.

Then once he’s blasted a few he tries pressuring me into starting the match as quickly as possible.

If we’re only gonna do a 5 min warmup, both players gotta get their flow going. It should be just bouncing a variety of balls back and losening up. Not me spending most of it picking up his balls after he blasts them into the fence.
 
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zaskar1

Semi-Pro
i have found that if you want a warmup before a match, schedule it with some team members prior to the match.

with opponents, you never know what you will get, so assume you wont get anything useful, and you wont be
taken out of rhythm, and give up the first few games of the set.
the worse opponents are those who spray the ball all over the place, you only are picking up balls
during the allotted warmup time.
for me, i like to warm up about 15-20 min prior, so i usually ask some team members to show up 30 minutes prior
to get a useful warmup
z
 

R1FF

Professional
i have found that if you want a warmup before a match, schedule it with some team members prior to the match.

with opponents, you never know what you will get, so assume you wont get anything useful, and you wont be
taken out of rhythm, and give up the first few games of the set.
the worse opponents are those who spray the ball all over the place, you only are picking up balls
during the allotted warmup time.
for me, i like to warm up about 15-20 min prior, so i usually ask some team members to show up 30 minutes prior
to get a useful warmup
z
I've taken this approach at tournaments and ironically never had an issue during warmup with anyone.

It's the casual matches where I know the opponent personally where all the BS starts. I could show up early and get warmed up but I dont care to chase down their balls they wanna spray everywhere either.
 

Kobble

Hall of Fame
Just warm up with a friend before the tournament. My friend would just call me up the day before a tournament and we would go out early do what he needed.
 

WhiteOut

Semi-Pro
even if the 5-10 min warm up with the opponent is the greatest ever, it's still only a few mins. i try to show up early, bc a real warm up for me takes about 20 mins of solid hitting, then about 5-10 mins rest before taking the court...basically a condensed practice session ... crosscourts each side, volleys, overheads, serves **and returns**. sometimes that's just not possible, so you do what you can.

if the opponent is clearly spraying winners for his own edification, i'll tank a few balls on purpose and say oops sorry, trying to get us into a good rally here...if he doesn't get the hint after that, i'll go straight to serves.
 

Moveforwardalways

Hall of Fame
Well the purpose of the warm-up is to figure out your opponent strengths and weaknesses. It's not really to warm up. 10 minutes is really not enough time to get a full warm-up in. When I played league against unfamiliar players I would test my opponent by hitting shots to their FH, BH, slices, and wide shots to see how well they move. I would be warmed from hitting with my own team before the match starts. I also personally warm-up with my own team by hitting at 50% at most.
No, the purpose of a warm up is to warm up. Court time is sparse. I don’t know where you live that there is a convenient court to spend 30 minutes just warming up with your teammates. Preventing your opponent from getting a few warm up shots in during the warm up period is unsportsmanlike.
 

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
Well the purpose of the warm-up is to figure out your opponent strengths and weaknesses. It's not really to warm up. 10 minutes is really not enough time to get a full warm-up in. When I played league against unfamiliar players I would test my opponent by hitting shots to their FH, BH, slices, and wide shots to see how well they move. I would be warmed from hitting with my own team before the match starts. I also personally warm-up with my own team by hitting at 50% at most.
Someone's been taking the "Winning Ugly" mentality too seriously.

My matches are often too close to the end of my work day to arrange a 30 min warmup session away from where the match is to be played. So I need to warm up and focus on my game, rather than try to pick apart my opponents.

And to be honest, I play most of my matches with the attitude that I will play to my strengths and dare you to beat it. The odd match where that hasn't been the best strategy was because the opponent was just better and my switching tactics to attack perceived weaknesses with my weaker shots did not solve the problem.
 
Tell your opponent a good warmup is very important to you because your eyes take time to get adjusted. So without that warmup, you may find it harder to make good line calls. He'll get the message.
Good warmup meaning a 25 minutes+ Boomer style "give me some more at the net please, (I don't want to pay for lessons)" thing instead of the 5-10 minutes it is supposed to be?

And if he doesn't understand or believe your threat of de facto cheating, he can easily call in a monitor when you miscall the lines if in a tournament, or just cheat you back if in a league.
 
Good warmup meaning a 25 minutes+ Boomer style "give me some more at the net please, (I don't want to pay for lessons)" thing instead of the 5-10 minutes it is supposed to be?

And if he doesn't understand or believe your threat of de facto cheating, he can easily call in a monitor when you miscall the lines if in a tournament, or just cheat you back if in a league.
I'm 24 years old and played college tennis so I'm referring to a normal warmup. Having said that, my original reply wasn't entirely serious. I'd only say that to a friend in jest or to someone I already know is a cheater. In most cases I would first tell the guy to give me a proper warmup. And if he still won't, I'd tell him we can either play with good sportsmanship or not, and I'm capable of playing either way.
 

ptuanminh

Hall of Fame
What about those people who will attempt a winner during warm up, but when the ball comes back, they just give up????
 

Cashman

Hall of Fame
And to be honest, I play most of my matches with the attitude that I will play to my strengths and dare you to beat it. The odd match where that hasn't been the best strategy was because the opponent was just better and my switching tactics to attack perceived weaknesses with my weaker shots did not solve the problem.
I think playing to your strengths is good advice for everyone. I wouldn't say that makes their weaknesses irrelevant though. I mean, I hit a good lefty slice serve but it's still helpful to know if they struggle more with the jammed forehand or the wide backhand.
 
Someone's been taking the "Winning Ugly" mentality too seriously.
I used to try that "scouting agent during practice" stuff until I realized what the other guy does doesn't matter, it's what I do, and what the other guys do during the warmup doesn't really reveal how they play anyway. They always come across better in warmup, unless a rare case of sucking during it hides a much better game.
 

Cawlin

Semi-Pro
I always heard about those players who were great in warmup, but then played the match totally differently. I DEFINITELY need the warmup - I'm often not able to do any warmup before arriving for a match, or am playing late enough in the day after other lines that I've been sitting, so without the warmup, I'd be basically cold, stiff, and nervous. My warmups start out atrociously - embarrassingly bad, and by the end, I've usually settled down and am ready to play. Last men's season I had a pre-match warmup where I couldn't hit two balls back in a row... I was mortified... my serve warmups were AWFUL... I was definitely more nervous after the warmup than at the beginning of it. We won the toss, we chose to serve first, the opponents chose to put my partner (a righty) in the sun court for the first service game. He looked at me and said "It's not the sun court for you, why don't you serve first?" I was nervous as could be about this - figuring at least I could get a few games in before I had to serve, but saw the wisdom of what my partner suggested and decided to just man up about it. I proceeded to have one of my best matches in a long time, with solid serving against guys who crumbled in the actual match after having really first rate warmups...
 

Nostradamus

Bionic Poster
My opponent today went all out hitting spraying balls everywhere on the warm-up and then played warm-up shots the whole match. Very odd.
it maybe a intimidation tactic. but the guys that behave like this usually aren't very good so you can beat them fairly in routine fashion. Still it is no fun playing these types of guys, so I make sure I don't play them again ever
 

Moveforwardalways

Hall of Fame
Anything below 4.5 is won by not missing. Using warm up to “figure out the opponent’s weaknesses” or what you want to call it is nonsense. Don’t kid yourself - everyone has clear obvious weakness and they are all similar. No one can hit rally balls. There, I solved it for you. Pay my clinic fee on Venmo bruh.
 

blablavla

Legend
No, the purpose of a warm up is to warm up. Court time is sparse. I don’t know where you live that there is a convenient court to spend 30 minutes just warming up with your teammates. Preventing your opponent from getting a few warm up shots in during the warm up period is unsportsmanlike.
I notice an increasing amount of players that will do everything possible to prevent you from warm-up and getting the rhytm.
Play as inconsistent and random as possible, only to have you "cold" at the beginning of the match.

So, when possible, I prefer to warm-up before.
Ideally 30-45 min with mates, when not possible at least 20 min with the wall.
In the later case I just use the "warm-up" to get used to the court surface & bounce.
 

Moveforwardalways

Hall of Fame
I notice an increasing amount of players that will do everything possible to prevent you from warm-up and getting the rhytm.
Play as inconsistent and random as possible, only to have you "cold" at the beginning of the match.

So, when possible, I prefer to warm-up before.
Ideally 30-45 min with mates, when not possible at least 20 min with the wall.
In the later case I just use the "warm-up" to get used to the court surface & bounce.
But where do you warm up 30-45 minutes prior to a match? Is tennis just not popular in your area so there are spare unused courts nearby? Where I am it goes like this: Show up from straight from work at 6:15 for a 6:30 match to check in with captain. All other courts are already booked solid with other matches/USTA leagues. Nearest other courts are 30 minutes away when factoring traffic. As soon as the clock says 6:30 walk on court. Drop bag and grab racquet. Crack open can of new balls. Hit for 5 minutes to include volleys and overheads, warm up serve for 3-5 minutes (about 6-9 serves per side). By 6:40 serve first ball. No time for anything else. If someone was intentionally not hitting appropriate warm up balls, people would be mad and that person would be reported or at the very least be black balled from further play. Very unsportsmanlike.
 

blablavla

Legend
But where do you warm up 30-45 minutes prior to a match? Is tennis just not popular in your area so there are spare unused courts nearby? Where I am it goes like this: Show up from straight from work at 6:15 for a 6:30 match to check in with captain. All other courts are already booked solid with other matches/USTA leagues. Nearest other courts are 30 minutes away when factoring traffic. As soon as the clock says 6:30 walk on court. Drop bag and grab racquet. Crack open can of new balls. Hit for 5 minutes to include volleys and overheads, warm up serve for 3-5 minutes (about 6-9 serves per side). By 6:40 serve first ball. No time for anything else. If someone was intentionally not hitting appropriate warm up balls, people would be mad and that person would be reported or at the very least be black balled from further play. Very unsportsmanlike.
30 min drive is OK, when in competitive mood.
So if my team mates are available, and there is an available court in our club -> there I have my warm up.
If not, then it is the wall.

I just don't like when people do a lot of inconsistent shots during 5-10 min warm-up, to suddenly remember how to hit the ball at the first point of the first set.
That is my solution.
Give & take.
When my mates need a warm-up, I'll try to be there.
 
For tournaments I warm-up the body with a jog around the block or 15 minutes in the site gym on a bike or treadmill. You can do a virtual joint warm-up by swinging your racket through a full range of motion of strokes--just be careful not to wack anyone nearby.
 

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
I think playing to your strengths is good advice for everyone. I wouldn't say that makes their weaknesses irrelevant though. I mean, I hit a good lefty slice serve but it's still helpful to know if they struggle more with the jammed forehand or the wide backhand.
Hard to figure that out in a warm up. I don't routinely return practice serves as it wastes time if I send it wide or into the net. I gather the serves and serve them back. I'll maybe just take one practice return near the end of serve return. So you aren't going to know what bothers me until the match starts.

Same thing with most of the other parts of the warm up since I'm not focusing on doing what I do best, but rather focusing on "warming up". You likely will get a false sense of what I do and do not like. If you hit any sort of challenging ball to me in warm up, I'll likely just bunt it back to keep the rally going.
 

jm1980

G.O.A.T.
Well the purpose of the warm-up is to figure out your opponent strengths and weaknesses. It's not really to warm up. 10 minutes is really not enough time to get a full warm-up in. When I played league against unfamiliar players I would test my opponent by hitting shots to their FH, BH, slices, and wide shots to see how well they move.
I see. You are one of those people... :cautious:

Honestly I'd take the guy who sprays the ball during the warmup over these characters. Not because of the warmup itself, but because of the mentality attached to someone who does this. I know ahead of time that the match will be a chore.
 

ronray43

New User
I'll simply say, "Hey, this is a warm up, not practice." Then, if he hits another winner-type shot, I just walk off and stop the warm up until he's ready to start the match, even if we've only been out there a minute or two . . . works pretty well once your opponent knows you're not gonna take that cra*--I'm too old to put up with stupid . . . .
 

Cashman

Hall of Fame
Hard to figure that out in a warm up. I don't routinely return practice serves as it wastes time if I send it wide or into the net. I gather the serves and serve them back. I'll maybe just take one practice return near the end of serve return. So you aren't going to know what bothers me until the match starts.

Same thing with most of the other parts of the warm up since I'm not focusing on doing what I do best, but rather focusing on "warming up". You likely will get a false sense of what I do and do not like. If you hit any sort of challenging ball to me in warm up, I'll likely just bunt it back to keep the rally going.
Whilst you have to take what people do before the racquet toss with a grain of salt, I don't think I've ever had a match with a stranger where I haven't gleaned at least one or two useful things from the warm-up. If someone doesn't appear to bend their knees well to low balls, or shanks a bunch of volleys, I'm going to test that out early in the match. If they actually play that stuff really well, so be it. I haven't lost anything by making sure.

I definitely don't advocate depriving your opponent of a decent hit, but there is no harm giving them some varied balls and keeping your eyes open. The number of times someone has remarked to me halfway through the first set that they didn't realise I was left handed is a little scary.
 

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
The number of times someone has remarked to me halfway through the first set that they didn't realise I was left handed is a little scary.
Hey I'm that guy. I've gotten better at that over the years but originally I was clueless about paying attention to that. It didn't really matter until I got to play better lefties that had more than a flat serve. Take a lefty kick serve in the chest and you'll start paying attention.

I agree that it probably pays to be attentive to your opponent as early as the warm up, but I wouldn't deny an opponent a decent warmup just to try crap on him.
 

undecided

Semi-Pro
My opponent today went all out hitting spraying balls everywhere on the warm-up and then played warm-up shots the whole match. Very odd.
As one of those 'weird' players i can say in my defense that I do not do well hitting slow balls. I have to hit at least medium speed even at the warm up. It's a remnant from when I had tennis elbow and I had found that racket head speed helped minimize or eliminate pain as the racquet mass & speed were moving the ball instead of my arm doing it. Unfortunately, that approach has lingered even after TE healed so I can't just slowly massage the ball, I need the racquet head speed and that implies at least medium pace balls.
 

davced1

Hall of Fame
As one of those 'weird' players i can say in my defense that I do not do well hitting slow balls. I have to hit at least medium speed even at the warm up. It's a remnant from when I had tennis elbow and I had found that racket head speed helped minimize or eliminate pain as the racquet mass & speed were moving the ball instead of my arm doing it. Unfortunately, that approach has lingered even after TE healed so I can't just slowly massage the ball, I need the racquet head speed and that implies at least medium pace balls.
Pace is fine as long as it is down the middle! This guy I played had no control over it and that is probably why he resorted to pushing once the match started.
 
I have to hit at least medium speed even at the warm up. It's a remnant from when I had tennis elbow and I had found that racket head speed helped minimize or eliminate pain as the racquet mass & speed were moving the ball instead of my arm doing it.
I'm sure you TRY to hit the ball back to your opponent's vicinity, otherwise you wouldn't be at this message board. You need to get a coach who knows how to teach. You got tennis elbow from wrong technique, continuing it will just compound the problem. I bet you wear one of those voo-doo devices on your arm and/or kt tape. Gravity is all you need to make a proper tennis stroke with a slight assist from your biceps, triceps and wrist to drive the ball when a little power is needed--any nine year old can hit the ball out of the park. Find a coach who teaches technique and ask him to teach you the loop--it's the same stroke EVERY pro uses--none use the "get the racket back" b.s.--but thats what they teach--or just watch RFed and do what he does--WARNING : THIS IS A VAST OVERSIMPLIFICATION--your results may vary depending on who your coach is followed by 10,000 practice hours.
 

undecided

Semi-Pro
I'm sure you TRY to hit the ball back to your opponent's vicinity, otherwise you wouldn't be at this message board. You need to get a coach who knows how to teach. You got tennis elbow from wrong technique, continuing it will just compound the problem. I bet you wear one of those voo-doo devices on your arm and/or kt tape. Gravity is all you need to make a proper tennis stroke with a slight assist from your biceps, triceps and wrist to drive the ball when a little power is needed--any nine year old can hit the ball out of the park. Find a coach who teaches technique and ask him to teach you the loop--it's the same stroke EVERY pro uses--none use the "get the racket back" b.s.--but thats what they teach--or just watch RFed and do what he does--WARNING : THIS IS A VAST OVERSIMPLIFICATION--your results may vary depending on who your coach is followed by 10,000 practice hours.
Nope, no device or tape. And, I don't have TE right now, it came and went but while I had it, my attempt to prevent it while still playing a lot was to let the racquet head speed & weight hit the ball and really avoid using the arm much. In mini tennis it's all about arming the racquet as far as i can tell which my brain refuses to do.
 
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