Playing On the Wall

magnut

Hall of Fame
sorry, i thought you were trying to get a laugh.

what are you trying to accomplish with what your doing on the wall?
 

jrs

Professional
The Cara Black - exercise looks like a joke - unless you see her video.

I think essential Tennis and Andre Agassi has wall practice videos on youtube.

I'll leave it to the experts to comment on the stroke mechanics - looks good to me.
 
sorry, i thought you were trying to get a laugh.

what are you trying to accomplish with what your doing on the wall?
The volley drills were to build forearm strength and improve reaction time. The groundstrokes were to break a sweat, pressure my footwork, and hit the target on the wall. Also to see what my strokes look like when I'm treeing, in other words, to expose the flaws that wouldn't be as pronouned if I were hitting at a lighter pace. And the Cara Black imitation was to see what it's like to try what she did. I've found she is absolutely incredible.
 

maggmaster

Hall of Fame
When I first got back into tennis after a 12 year break I hit in a racket ball court a lot. It really does help with timing and footwork. I did a serve and volley drill off the wall last year when I was working on building that part of my game. These videos look good.
 

Rivers Scott

New User
It's strange, your opponent has such poor footwork but still gets everything back. You seem to be working much harder and they just block back
 
It's strange, your opponent has such poor footwork but still gets everything back. You seem to be working much harder and they just block back
I know, right? Once I hit a lob over the wall, which I thought was a winner, but then the wall called it out and made me chase it. :)
 

DonDiego

Hall of Fame
I'll try to help in my limited capacity.
I notice that your backhand swing/follow through is very short compared to your forehand. You seem to hit a very flat ball with a very linear swing, does it work well during matches? Do you have trouble getting enough depth on your backhand shots compared to your forehand?
 

caugas

Semi-Pro
I'll try to help in my limited capacity.
I notice that your backhand swing/follow through is very short compared to your forehand. You seem to hit a very flat ball with a very linear swing, does it work well during matches? Do you have trouble getting enough depth on your backhand shots compared to your forehand?
First of all, I think it's great that Top Spin post video - he clearly can play...
My back hand is very much like his (his looks like murray a little), as I hit it flat and my take back is pretty much straight back and very little supination... sometime it does get me in trouble cause I don't get much depth, but sometime it helps cause the ball moves quick if I can aim for the corners it gets me into an offensive position.
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
Backhand is fine, consistent height over net gives depth.
That wall is taking a beating.
On volleys, really try to stand with good posture, don't lean forward, and keep your head still on each shot. Bend knees, lower torso, but don't lean forwards and side to side, since you can target your feet to your racket after the bounce.
 
I'll try to help in my limited capacity.
I notice that your backhand swing/follow through is very short compared to your forehand. You seem to hit a very flat ball with a very linear swing, does it work well during matches? Do you have trouble getting enough depth on your backhand shots compared to your forehand?
My backhand is usually a strength relative to the rest of my game (some of my weaknesses are flattening out forehands, putting the ball away, serving aces, transition volleys, exhausting myself by grinding too much, and handling hard deep balls to my forehand side--the bigger backswing sometimes hurts me there). I actually struggle with depth more on the forehand side as I hit it with a lot of spin though overall my forehand is more versatile and I run around backhands to hit it. But I don't generate pace that well on my backhand; I like a faster incoming ball on that side. I'd like to be able to hit the shot with a slightly bigger swing for certain situations; I think you're on target there. Thanks for the advice.
 
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Backhand is fine, consistent height over net gives depth.
That wall is taking a beating.
On volleys, really try to stand with good posture, don't lean forward, and keep your head still on each shot. Bend knees, lower torso, but don't lean forwards and side to side, since you can target your feet to your racket after the bounce.
I am leaning forward a little too much on the volleys; thanks for pointing it out.
 

DonDiego

Hall of Fame
My back hand is very much like his (his looks like murray a little), as I hit it flat and my take back is pretty much straight back and very little supination... sometime it does get me in trouble cause I don't get much depth, but sometime it helps cause the ball moves quick if I can aim for the corners it gets me into an offensive position.
I am myself slowly transitioning to a 2-hander, and although I also first thought of copying Murray, I switched to this model: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=liz9wWSvbuU (Start video at 1:04)

I find her aggressive stance/preparation when waiting for the ball really helps the shot.
 

caugas

Semi-Pro
I am myself slowly transitioning to a 2-hander, and although I also first thought of copying Murray, I switched to this model: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=liz9wWSvbuU (Start video at 1:04)

I find her aggressive stance/preparation when waiting for the ball really helps the shot.
If I had to blue print 1 pro to copy it would be the joker, however my backhand more resembles and ugly Murray or Nadel BH, as it's more straight back motion vs high to low
 

Curiosity

Professional
Since you asked: It is difficult to critique because you may hit differently against the wall than during match play. If so, ignore my comment:

On the forehand side (and in both series of videos) you set up well (though with off arm too far forward), but when you swing your hitting arm/elbow gets ahead of your UB rotation almost immediately. Most of your UB rotation happens after the ball is gone. I can understand that as an adaptation to playing a fast wall, but not letting the UB power the upper arm around (longer...) places a serious limitation on power.

By 'limitation' I mean this: Instead of using UB rotation to accelerate the upper arm, then exploiting your shoulder and arm muscles for additional acceleration into the hit once you are at least 45 degrees around, you are drawing on the shoulder and arm muscles almost immediately.

I've watched each several times and used freeze frame to check the relative position of your hitting upper-arm/elbow vis a vis your UB, so I'm quite sure of my comment, but I'm not sure you do this playing against an actual opponent when you have slightly more time to set up, adjust your position.

Maybe it is simply the fast wall that's forcing this reality? I'm reminded of the "ESR to lock the upper arm at the shoulder, letting the UB power the upper arm around" bit.

EDIT: Your speed volleying at the wall is remarkable. Are you also a squash player?
 
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Since you asked: It is difficult to critique because you may hit differently against the wall than during match play. If so, ignore my comment:

On the forehand side (and in both series of videos) you set up well (though with off arm too far forward), but when you swing your hitting arm/elbow gets ahead of your UB rotation almost immediately. Most of your UB rotation happens after the ball is gone. I can understand that as an adaptation to playing a fast wall, but not letting the UB power the upper arm around (longer...) places a serious limitation on power.

By 'limitation' I mean this: Instead of using UB rotation to accelerate the upper arm, then exploiting your shoulder and arm muscles for additional acceleration into the hit once you are at least 45 degrees around, you are drawing on the shoulder and arm muscles almost immediately.

I've watched each several times and used freeze frame to check the relative position of your hitting upper-arm/elbow vis a vis your UB, so I'm quite sure of my comment, but I'm not sure you do this playing against an actual opponent when you have slightly more time to set up, adjust your position.

Maybe it is simply the fast wall that's forcing this reality? I'm reminded of the "ESR to lock the upper arm at the shoulder, letting the UB power the upper arm around" bit.

EDIT: Your speed volleying at the wall is remarkable. Are you also a squash player?
Thanks for pointing out a possible timing issue with my upper body rotation. I'll have to get some video of myself hitting or at least feed myself some sitters off the wall and see how I swing at those. And no, I'm not a squash player, but thanks for the compliment. :)
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
You gotta work on your overheads. Now, you hit them semi open stance, and NO college coach worth 4.0 would allow you to hit overheads like a 65 year old cripple.
1. You don't point the left hand upwards.
2. You take an abbreviated short volley stroke, it's more eForehand slap than anything resembling an overhead.
3. Your feet are semi open, not giving you the ability to move back and forwards quickly enough to play at 4.5 levels.
 

caugas

Semi-Pro
Here are a couple more wall videos. A high-intensity point with groundstrokes and volleys, an overhead practice, and a close-up of a flat, slice, topspin, and twist serve.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eIfMOvKxCko&list=UUuFVCRX5zNr10dxmbeM1B9Q
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ppMpl14rkvc&index=3&list=UUuFVCRX5zNr10dxmbeM1B9Q
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8p3ili8Gdq0&index=2&list=UUuFVCRX5zNr10dxmbeM1B9Q
Top spin, when I see you hit the wall, I can't help to ask you have anger issues? That may be the most aggressive wall hitting I've seen, as I usually hit the ball after 2 bounces :).
Side bar, where do you live - I want to come visit and hit with you, how far to your local courts from New England?
 
You gotta work on your overheads. Now, you hit them semi open stance, and NO college coach worth 4.0 would allow you to hit overheads like a 65 year old cripple.
1. You don't point the left hand upwards.
2. You take an abbreviated short volley stroke, it's more eForehand slap than anything resembling an overhead.
3. Your feet are semi open, not giving you the ability to move back and forwards quickly enough to play at 4.5 levels.
Yeah, I know. My overhead is my worst shot. It only costs me a point or two over the course of a match though as I don't come in that often, when I do come in I don't get lobbed that often, and when I get lobbed I can still put away sitters and push the tough ones back deep. Some of my opponents have killer overheads though, which I would like to have as well.
 

TennisProdigy

Professional
What was the score of the set? The wall is clearly a 4.0 pusher. You need to mix it up with some slice and off-pace shots and come to the net to finish the point.
 
Top spin, when I see you hit the wall, I can't help to ask you have anger issues? That may be the most aggressive wall hitting I've seen, as I usually hit the ball after 2 bounces :).
Side bar, where do you live - I want to come visit and hit with you, how far to your local courts from New England?
No anger issues. Just working on my conditioning and shot tolerance. :) I'm from southern New York, so 200 miles give or take.
 
What was the score of the set? The wall is clearly a 4.0 pusher. You need to mix it up with some slice and off-pace shots and come to the net to finish the point.
The wall won 6-0, 6-0. I tried coming into net to finish it off with a smash, but it somehow got that back too. It called all my drop shots out. :(
 
Hitting the wall is great practice. If you give me 30-60 minutes on the wall I feel like I can fix several issue with my stroke mechanics. Once a week on the wall improves my consistency during matchplay significantly. The wall practice gives you more repetitions per unit time than any other type of practice, plus challenges your footwork and stamina.

My main issue with hitting the wall is keeping an early preparation on my strokes. I tend to get a little lazy as I get used to the timing here. You seem to do a good job. I got tired just watching you for 2 minutes.

Thanks for posting!
 

Sander001

Hall of Fame
I think the wall is a very underrated tool and players of many levels benefit from it. Having said that, it does have its limits as the video shows: Hitting with dead balls is quite a bit easier and could give you a false sense of confidence.

Personally I think the wall is best used for the volley for more experienced players.
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
Have we seen a video of TopspinShot against a live player, one of equal skill level?
I think that is the best indicator of tennis level.
 
I think the wall is a very underrated tool and players of many levels benefit from it. Having said that, it does have its limits as the video shows: Hitting with dead balls is quite a bit easier and could give you a false sense of confidence.

Personally I think the wall is best used for the volley for more experienced players.
Obviously I don't hit as hard in match play as I was treeing on the wall. I was challenging myself to hit the target though, so there was some control involved there, and I don't think any of those shots were going out. Lee's right though, the best indicator of my skill level aside from match results (some of which are out there on the net, but I'm not giving away my name here) would be a video of myself playing a peer. I'm not sure if any of my partners would take too well to me posting a video of us playing on Talk Tennis though.
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
Edit skills can show BOTH of you making good shots and neither of you making bonehead shots.
 

Sander001

Hall of Fame
Obviously I don't hit as hard in match play as I was treeing on the wall. I was challenging myself to hit the target though, so there was some control involved there, and I don't think any of those shots were going out.
That is good, just saying that hitting with dead balls is much easier and different so your drilling may not translate to benefit on court with new balls.

I mean it's great for footwork, preparation and even your strokes, but the way dead balls come off your strings is often very different than new balls. Power, spin, dwell time, effective weight of the ball won't be the same and can throw off your timing.
 
That is good, just saying that hitting with dead balls is much easier and different so your drilling may not translate to benefit on court with new balls.

I mean it's great for footwork, preparation and even your strokes, but the way dead balls come off your strings is often very different than new balls. Power, spin, dwell time, effective weight of the ball won't be the same and can throw off your timing.
You're absolutely right. My normal rally ball is slower and spinnier than the shots I was drilling into the wall. But as you said, it's a great tool for some aspects of the game.
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
When I choke up like TsShot on serves, I get a quicker racket snap with less effort.
When I hold down at the buttcap, I like to think I get a higher strikepoint, longer lever, and a "chance" to hit harder and keep it IN.
No final decision has been made yet. Tennis is an ongoing evolving sport.
I do see that LOTS of weak serving people SHOULD choke up on the handle a bit to get faster RHS with more control, expecially lower level players, but including lot of WTA pros.
 
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