Please help me with my forehand, friends

muph

Rookie
Back in the early 90s I was taught a very rigid SW/W double-bend forehand with a stiff wrist/arm. Didn't play at all for like 15 years then 3 years ago I saw a video of a Fed forehand and decided on spot I was gonna learn how to play this Eastern grip modern ATP straight-arm forehand. It was simply the coolest way of hitting a tennis ball I had ever seen! :alien: I used to be a very flat hitter getting a lot of ball acceleration by snapping the wrist forward through contact but of course losing (almost all :giggle:) control in the process. My backhand feels like a very natural swing whereas any change to my forehand was probably a good thing :D

So this is where I stand now. It seems like my biggest challenge is a loose swing which is especially apparent in my follow-through. So I can concentrate on the mechanics of the stroke more I've been using the ball machine a lot (first part of the clip). If I play an opponent I tense up quite a bit (second part). I've hit lessons with 3 different pro coaches and it definitely improved my stroke but I feel they can't help me much from here on out. I would very much appreciate any advice on where the root of my evil forehand lies. :unsure: :D

Cheers!

 

Dragy

Legend
Your swing looks good. Ball trajectory also shows enough net clearance for a hard drive. Ease up a bit, hit more casually, yet aim higher over the net. Find those other options but smacking the ball with full drive. It’s feel and try approach.
If you want more shape, do the following:
- add more leg upward drive, load down, then push up;
- as you start your uncoil, don’t immediately lock/tense up your arm, but guide it lower towards your hip, then propel it out and up towards the ball. It’s analytical approach.
 

user92626

G.O.A.T.
OP,

Your FH is actually on a much better side of the rec group.

IMO, I would get rid of the wobbliness of the racket at the end of the drop which means you pre-set and keep your wrist laid back since takeback and it only goes to neutral as going thru the contact. Also, smooth out the transition from the drop and the forward swing.
 

5263

G.O.A.T.
You don't "lag to drag" the racket, but instead you are using the inferior "lag and snap" technique. Creates lots of erratic pace that is near impossible for consistent execution.
 

Fintft

Legend
You don't "lag to drag" the racket, but instead you are using the inferior "lag and snap" technique. Creates lots of erratic pace that is near impossible for consistent execution.
You mean he should keep the ball more on the strings/extend more through the ball?

Sorry I am a bit of loss about your " lag to drag"....
 

Curious

Legend
You mean he should keep the ball more on the strings/extend more through the ball?

Sorry I am a bit of loss about your " lag to drag"....
Could this drag thing be a myth? It looks like an illusion to me. Federer’s swing is fast and the wrist is very loose which causes the lag and the racket simply catches up later giving an impression of dragging.
 

muph

Rookie
That's great stuff, thanks everyone!

Your swing looks good. Ball trajectory also shows enough net clearance for a hard drive. Ease up a bit, hit more casually, yet aim higher over the net. Find those other options but smacking the ball with full drive. It’s feel and try approach.
If you want more shape, do the following:
- add more leg upward drive, load down, then push up;
- as you start your uncoil, don’t immediately lock/tense up your arm, but guide it lower towards your hip, then propel it out and up towards the ball. It’s analytical approach.
Yes, easing up is just so HARD TO DO :D seriously. It seems I cannot keep my arm from bending when I start the forward swing. The harder I try to accelerate the racquet the more pronounced it becomes. I pat-the-dog with a near extended arm, once I start the forward acceleration I bend my elbow, and then at times completely extend my arm through contact in a forward-pushing motion almost like a punch or a shove.

OP,

Your FH is actually on a much better side of the rec group.

IMO, I would get rid of the wobbliness of the racket at the end of the drop which means you pre-set and keep your wrist laid back since takeback and it only goes to neutral as going thru the contact. Also, smooth out the transition from the drop and the forward swing.
Thank you, you're so right. I don't drop the racquet far enough and when I start the forward swing I let the racquet head take a little dip from which I can generate some spin. I realize I have a very flat stroke path but whenever I try to 'force' a more low-to-high stroke I shank so much :censored: the whole takeback actually feels a bit constructed to me if that makes sense. I'm still moving through separate pieces of a swing that only works as a whole.

I used to have a very controlled and mechanical approach to tennis that has been starting to change lately. But since I have all those learned movement patterns for a couple decades I can't just 'relax' and 'don't think' else I just fall back into those old patterns and hit the way I always did. I will pay more attention to the takeback.

You don't "lag to drag" the racket, but instead you are using the inferior "lag and snap" technique. Creates lots of erratic pace that is near impossible for consistent execution.
That's real interesting. Could you maybe try to describe the different feeling of those 2 techniques?
 

Dragy

Legend
It seems I cannot keep my arm from bending when I start the forward swing. The harder I try to accelerate the racquet the more pronounced it becomes. I pat-the-dog with a near extended arm, once I start the forward acceleration I bend my elbow, and then at times completely extend my arm through contact in a forward-pushing motion almost like a punch or a shove.
When arm gets accelerated from behind you, it naturally tends to bend, just as racquet tends to lag. This gets mass closer to the rotation axis, makes path straighter.
To avoid this you need to shift the timing a bit, and get the arm closer to rotation axis before major acceleration from torso rotation, by dropping it low closer to the hip. The following would happen:
- Arm with racquet would pick up some speed before the drag from shoulder, hence centrifugal force would come up together with gravity assisting arm staying straight.
- Major acceleration from leg drive and torso rotation would pick up as hand approaches its lowest point of swing, hence propel arm up and out on top of dragging it forward and through.

I suggest that you practice some midcourt pendulum forehands, just rolling arm and racquet from high takeback down and up again, with no emphasis on torso rotation, leg drive or WW. Then, as it feels fluid and comfortable, inject torso power as it rolls, not from the very top of backswing.
 

Chas Tennis

G.O.A.T.
Your camera frame rate is too slow and has too much motion blur to see the fastest parts of the stroke. 240 fps for strokes works well. Outdoor direct sunlight has 50-100 times the light levels of indoor court lighting and it will allow the automatic exposure control of your camera to select a much faster shutter speed and reduce motion blur.

Is you racket face open or closed at impact? The angle of the racket face should be closed 5-10 degrees at impact for the forehand drive. That would be one observation requiring high frame rates and small motion blur. A 240 fps frame rate with small motion blur does not catch all details of impact. It does a great job of almost always catching the ball on the strings and particularly showing the racket close to the ball on the frame before impact. This shows the most critical positioning of a tennis stroke.

The off arm has a function of speeding up the uppermost body turn as is is brought in. The timing of off arm acceleration and pull in is important to how well it functions. How does yours compare to high level forehands?

I recently bought 2 used Casio FH100 cameras for around $100 and they work well. They have full manual exposure control and a shutter speed as fast as 25 microseconds. The low resolution works well enough and the file sizes are small.

Your forehand is good enough that you need to compare your stroke to high level forehands.

You can do side by side video using Kinovea taking two videos and placing them on the same video. The videos can be arranges so the impact on both occurs on the same frame.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I just realized that you can do frame-by-frame comparisons if presented with two videos on the forum. To single frame on Vimeo hold down the SHIFT KEY and use the ARROW KEYS. To single frame on Youtube use the "." & "," keys. Go to impact and single frame backwards. You can compare videos of different frame rates but you should know the frame rates. Find videos of the same high speed frame rates.



Find a video on right hander Federer. Post both and you will be able to do comparisons using the forum. Kinovea is much, much better........................

You can compare videos of different frame rates but you should know the frame rates. Get videos of the same high speed frame rates.
 
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peoplespeace

Professional
Alot of good advice here that i agree with. As u prepare u are bending a little bit forward in the hip but then at contact u are completely erect. Try staying bend in the hips a little longer (also bending a bit more) and then straightening through contact (and not before contact as u do now). That will give u more lift plus more power. Otherwise, whatever u do, dont change the nice relaxed swing, control will come eventually. Also remember that every incoming ball is diffent in terms of speed, spin, trajectory and so each shot needs to be tweeked accordingly. Eg on a fast flat incomming ball it may be correct that u have the feeling of pushing or punching.
 
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Oval_Solid

Semi-Pro
i would say u need to use your legs more u have an aggressive swing but the lower part of ur body looks lazy
- use a lower stance
- try the open stance
- find a hitting partner thats better than u are if u want to improve
 

peoplespeace

Professional
Could this drag thing be a myth? It looks like an illusion to me. Federer’s swing is fast and the wrist is very loose which causes the lag and the racket simply catches up later giving an impression of dragging.
What u say is correct! What does the drag theory say? That the racket doesnt catch up?! In certain situations it might not catch up, when control is more important than power but otherwise yes that reacket catches up.
 

muph

Rookie
Wow, thank you so much for the great in-depth advice, you guys rock! Let me break this down 1 by 1 :giggle:

When arm gets accelerated from behind you, it naturally tends to bend, just as racquet tends to lag. This gets mass closer to the rotation axis, makes path straighter.
To avoid this you need to shift the timing a bit, and get the arm closer to rotation axis before major acceleration from torso rotation, by dropping it low closer to the hip. The following would happen:
- Arm with racquet would pick up some speed before the drag from shoulder, hence centrifugal force would come up together with gravity assisting arm staying straight.
- Major acceleration from leg drive and torso rotation would pick up as hand approaches its lowest point of swing, hence propel arm up and out on top of dragging it forward and through.

I suggest that you practice some midcourt pendulum forehands, just rolling arm and racquet from high takeback down and up again, with no emphasis on torso rotation, leg drive or WW. Then, as it feels fluid and comfortable, inject torso power as it rolls, not from the very top of backswing.
I had been wondering quite a bit how far out to the side would be a good contact point and now reading your explanation it makes a lot of sense to swing the arm closer to the torso resulting in a more low-to-high swingpath I assmue (that's what you mean by "makes path straighter", right?). Come to think of it the lower the contact point the easier in fact it is for me to swing through with a relaxed extended arm. I just still have trouble understanding how this works when I hit the ball higher (let's say above hip height). Does the swing always change from a (vertical plane) low-to-high to a more (horizontal plane) right-to-left path the higher I hit the ball?

Your camera frame rate is too slow and has too much motion blur to see the fastest parts of the stroke. 240 fps for strokes works well. Outdoor direct sunlight has 50-100 times the light levels of indoor court lighting and it will allow the automatic exposure control of your camera to select a much faster shutter speed and reduce motion blur.

Is you racket face open or closed at impact? The angle of the racket face should be closed 5-10 degrees at impact for the forehand drive. That would be one observation requiring high frame rates and small motion blur. A 240 fps frame rate with small motion blur does not catch all details of impact. It does a great job of almost always catching the ball on the strings and particularly showing the racket close to the ball on the frame before impact. This shows the most critical positioning of a tennis stroke.

The off arm has a function of speeding up the uppermost body turn as is is brought in. The timing of off arm acceleration and pull in is important to how well it functions. How does yours compare to high level forehands?

I recently bought 2 used Casio FH100 cameras for around $100 and they work well. They have full manual exposure control and a shutter speed as fast as 25 microseconds. The low resolution works well enough and the file sizes are small.

Your forehand is good enough that you need to compare your stroke to high level forehands.

You can do side by side video using Kinovea taking two videos and placing them on the same video. The videos can be arranges so the impact on both occurs on the same frame.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I just realized that you can do frame-by-frame comparisons if presented with two videos on the forum. To single frame on Vimeo hold down the SHIFT KEY and use the ARROW KEYS. To single frame on Youtube use the "." & "," keys. Go to impact and single frame backwards. You can compare videos of different frame rates but you should know the frame rates. Find videos of the same high speed frame rates.



Find a video on right hander Federer. Post both and you will be able to do comparisons using the forum. Kinovea is much, much better........................

You can compare videos of different frame rates but you should know the frame rates. Get videos of the same high speed frame rates.
Actually I have 240 fps footage from that same ball machine session (1st part of the clip). Looks like Vimeo doesn't support frame rates above 60 fps. If I slow down the 240 fps footage to 1/4 of realtime I end up with a pretty detailed 60 fps slo-mo clip. Would it help to post that?

As long as the ball trajectory is ok also the racquet face angle on contact has to be correct or am I missing something?

By "pull in the off arm" you are talking about bending the left elbow and bringing the hand close to the left shoulder to transfer momentum to the rotation of the trunk? I will take a closer look at how my timing compares to what the pros do.

Cool tip with Kinovea, never heard about it before. Just installed it and will post once I had time to play around with it! I knew about the YouTube shortcuts, cool that Vimeo offers the same function. Is it possible to adjust playback speed also, like on YouTube?

Edit: you have to pay for at least the PRO version of Vimeo to enable playback speed controls.

Alot of good advice here that i agree with. As u prepare u are bending a little bit forward in the hip but then at contact u are completely erect. Try staying bend in the hips a little longer (also bending a bit more) and then straightening through contact (and not before contact as u do now). That will give u more lift plus more power. Otherwise, whatever u do, dont change the nice relaxed swing, control will come eventually. Also remember that every incoming ball is diffent in terms of speed, spin, trajectory and so each shot needs to be tweeked accordingly. Eg on a fast flat incomming ball it may be correct that u have the feeling of pushing or punching.
The bending and extending of the hip is a detail I completely missed! Thanks for bringing that up! As @Oval_Solid already pointed out rightly, so far I have limited my stroke very much to the upper body. Now it's time I implement the whole body.

i would say u need to use your legs more u have an aggressive swing but the lower part of ur body looks lazy
- use a lower stance
- try the open stance
- find a hitting partner thats better than u are if u want to improve
Yes. My legs are lazy. :X3: That's what 13 years of professional motocross riding in heavy boots get you! :-D I used to exclusively play from neutral/closed stance and still it feels a bit weird opening up my stance but I realized it's a good thing for me to get more comfortable on. It also seems to help me with the fluidity of the swing maybe because the hip doesn't block the shoulder rotation as early.
The friend I hit with in the video isn't my regular partner, we play once in a while. Would you say it only really helps my game if I play guys that are better than me?
 
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Dragy

Legend
I had been wondering quite a bit how far out to the side would be a good contact point and now reading your explanation it makes a lot of sense to swing the arm closer to the torso resulting in a more low-to-high swingpath I assmue (that's what you mean by "makes path straighter", right?). Come to think of it the lower the contact point the easier in fact it is for me to swing through with a relaxed extended arm. I just still have trouble understanding how this works when I hit the ball higher (let's say above hip height). Does the swing always change from a (vertical plane) low-to-high to a more (horizontal plane) right-to-left path the higher I hit the ball?
I won't dive into ocean of options, the most important items I'd consider are the following:
- Swing towards contact should be outward, not straight from behind the ball. The natural product of torso rotation is arm swung out from rotation axis by centrifugal force, and accordingly, up as it's connected to shoulder and cannot just go away without raising. Drop the racquet down somewhere close to the hip, rotate torso to propel it out and up towards the ball, guide arm and racquet pivot (once again, connected to shoulder it's set to pivot) into contact to achieve intended RF orientation for contact.
- There's optimum range for contact height where things happen most naturally. Lower is tough as arm doesn't naturally stay that low with upward torso posture as torso rotates. Higher (shoulder level and above) takes more power to achieve required lift, also shoulder socket works differently, and RF tends to open more.

So keep good spacing, even more for higher balls. Move so that you aren't forced to hit too low or too high balls (hit on the rise or fall back and hit on descend on high bouncers; hit on peak, get lower and/or tilt your torso towards the ball on lowish ones). Don't rush the leg drive and torso turn to power the shot, set the swing through the bottom (wherever it is for intended shot shape) first.
 

Dragy

Legend
I had been wondering quite a bit how far out to the side would be a good contact point and now reading your explanation it makes a lot of sense to swing the arm closer to the torso resulting in a more low-to-high swingpath I assmue (that's what you mean by "makes path straighter", right?).
How far to the side is strongly associated with:
- Height of contact relative to the body.
- Bend degree at elbow.
- How far in front is the contact.
If the former 2 are given, it's a more front/more to the side balancing. More front provides more vertical swing at contact and more open RF. Stronger grips used to compensate. More conservative grips work with more side-ward contact, naturally give flattish swingpath around contact, which however can be compensated with lower closer to hip swing initial phase (more out and up swing) and strong WW action to achieve rather strong spin.
 

peoplespeace

Professional
Wow, thank you so much for the great in-depth advice, you guys rock! Let me break this down 1 by 1 :giggle:


I had been wondering quite a bit how far out to the side would be a good contact point and now reading your explanation it makes a lot of sense to swing the arm closer to the torso resulting in a more low-to-high swingpath I assmue (that's what you mean by "makes path straighter", right?). Come to think of it the lower the contact point the easier in fact it is for me to swing through with a relaxed extended arm. I just still have trouble understanding how this works when I hit the ball higher (let's say above hip height). Does the swing always change from a (vertical plane) low-to-high to a more (horizontal plane) right-to-left path the higher I hit the ball?


Actually I have 240 fps footage from that same ball machine session (1st part of the clip). Looks like Vimeo doesn't support frame rates above 60 fps. If I slow down the 240 fps footage to 1/4 of realtime I end up with a pretty detailed 60 fps slo-mo clip. Would it help to post that?

As long as the ball trajectory is ok also the racquet face angle on contact has to be correct or am I missing something?

By "pull in the off arm" you are talking about bending the left elbow and bringing the hand close to the left shoulder to transfer momentum to the rotation of the trunk? I will take a closer look at how my timing compares to what the pros do.

Cool tip with Kinovea, never heard about it before. Just installed it and will post once I had time to play around with it! I knew about the YouTube shortcuts, cool that Vimeo offers the same function. Is it possible to adjust playback speed also, like on YouTube?


The bending and extending of the hip is a detail I completely missed! Thanks for bringing that up! As @Oval_Solid already pointed out rightly, so far I have limited my stroke very much to the upper body. Now it's time I implement the whole body.


Yes. My legs are lazy. :X3: That's what 13 years of professional motocross riding in heavy boots get you! :-D I used to exclusively play from closed stance and still it feels a bit weird opening up my stance but I realized it's a good thing for me to get more comfortable on. It also seems to help me with the fluidity of the swing maybe because the hip doesn't block the shoulder rotation as early.
The friend I hit with in the video isn't my regular partner, we play once in a while. Would you say it only really helps my game if I play guys that are better than me?
It is not just the bendiñg and extension of the hip. See what happens when u bring ur racket arm forward through torsorotation while bending in the hip. At a point the hitting arm shoulder will be almost under the other shoulder just like when u do the shoulder over shoulder rotation for the serv. As u approach the ball u are straightening ur hip and continuing the torsorotation and ur shoulders end up level. When u do this through contact u add alot of lift and power to the shot as opposed to swinging through contact with the shoulders already rotating on the same plane.
 
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Oval_Solid

Semi-Pro
Would you say it only really helps my game if I play guys that are better than me?
[/QUOTE]

practicing with a better player will help u develop consistency, its harder to do with a lower level player because it be harder for them to handle your shot for a consistent rally which means you have to limit your shots so they can handle it for a rally
but any practice can still be good if u focus on various things to work on
 

tennishabit

Hall of Fame
Back in the early 90s I was taught a very rigid SW/W double-bend forehand with a stiff wrist/arm. Didn't play at all for like 15 years then 3 years ago I saw a video of a Fed forehand and decided on spot I was gonna learn how to play this Eastern grip modern ATP straight-arm forehand. It was simply the coolest way of hitting a tennis ball I had ever seen! :alien: I used to be a very flat hitter getting a lot of ball acceleration by snapping the wrist forward through contact but of course losing (almost all :giggle:) control in the process. My backhand feels like a very natural swing whereas any change to my forehand was probably a good thing :D

So this is where I stand now. It seems like my biggest challenge is a loose swing which is especially apparent in my follow-through. So I can concentrate on the mechanics of the stroke more I've been using the ball machine a lot (first part of the clip). If I play an opponent I tense up quite a bit (second part). I've hit lessons with 3 different pro coaches and it definitely improved my stroke but I feel they can't help me much from here on out. I would very much appreciate any advice on where the root of my evil forehand lies. :unsure: :D

Cheers!

body weight center not shifting forward or fell backward:?)) ie footwork:?)) 2c opinion, man8-B8-B8-B8-B..........
 

Chas Tennis

G.O.A.T.
.........................................................................................................................................
Actually I have 240 fps footage from that same ball machine session (1st part of the clip). Looks like Vimeo doesn't support frame rates above 60 fps. If I slow down the 240 fps footage to 1/4 of realtime I end up with a pretty detailed 60 fps slo-mo clip. Would it help to post that?

As long as the ball trajectory is ok also the racquet face angle on contact has to be correct or am I missing something?

By "pull in the off arm" you are talking about bending the left elbow and bringing the hand close to the left shoulder to transfer momentum to the rotation of the trunk? I will take a closer look at how my timing compares to what the pros do.

Cool tip with Kinovea, never heard about it before. Just installed it and will post once I had time to play around with it! I knew about the YouTube shortcuts, cool that Vimeo offers the same function. Is it possible to adjust playback speed also, like on YouTube?

Edit: you have to pay for at least the PRO version of Vimeo to enable playback speed controls.
................................................................................................
I am not familiar with smartphone high speed video. ?

Usually, a high speed video camera records at high frame rates, such as 240 fps, and then processes the raw recorded video to produce a 'playback' video that is usually 30 fps (in the USA). Most of the videos I have on Vimeo were recorded at 240 fps, some at 420 fps and a few at other frame rates. They were all output from the camera for 30 fps playback. Kinovea adjusts for two different camera frame rates. Often you can right click on a video and see a selection that will display the playback speed for the camera's output video or Youtube ("Stats for nerds") or Vimeo feed. Think '240 fps' recording and '30 fps' playback and you will probably have it. In Europe and some other areas it might be 25 fps playback. Smartphones may be different. ?

The indoor lighting in your high speed video was weak and it looks as if your camera extended the exposure time to collect enough light. This long exposure time also probably introduced the double images for the ball and racket because the indoor lighting pulses with 120 Hz (USA) or 100 Hz (Europe). Your 240 fps will probably not have a fast enough shutter speed to reduce the motion blur indoors.

Usually, the camera user's manuals are available on the internet.

One problem with 240 fps HD is that the video files are larger than for lower resolution video cameras. Vimeo limits its free storage to 5 GB, the last I heard.

Did you get Kinovea version 0.9.1? It said something about using .NET 4.8 . I believe that is a Microsoft program to support video. I saw where to download it from Microsoft.
 
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muph

Rookie
I won't dive into ocean of options, the most important items I'd consider are the following:
- Swing towards contact should be outward, not straight from behind the ball. The natural product of torso rotation is arm swung out from rotation axis by centrifugal force, and accordingly, up as it's connected to shoulder and cannot just go away without raising. Drop the racquet down somewhere close to the hip, rotate torso to propel it out and up towards the ball, guide arm and racquet pivot (once again, connected to shoulder it's set to pivot) into contact to achieve intended RF orientation for contact.
- There's optimum range for contact height where things happen most naturally. Lower is tough as arm doesn't naturally stay that low with upward torso posture as torso rotates. Higher (shoulder level and above) takes more power to achieve required lift, also shoulder socket works differently, and RF tends to open more.

So keep good spacing, even more for higher balls. Move so that you aren't forced to hit too low or too high balls (hit on the rise or fall back and hit on descend on high bouncers; hit on peak, get lower and/or tilt your torso towards the ball on lowish ones). Don't rush the leg drive and torso turn to power the shot, set the swing through the bottom (wherever it is for intended shot shape) first.
I will look at this more closely, thanks for the input. To me it seems a lot of pros (I mainly watch the guys with a straight arm forehand) also tilt the shoulder axis down for a low and up for a high contact point so that could help with a steady swing.

It is not just the bendiñg and extension of the hip. See what happens when u bring ur racket arm forward through torsorotation while bending in the hip. At a point the hitting arm shoulder will be almost under the other shoulder just like when u do the shoulder over shoulder rotation for the serv. As u approach the ball u are straightening ur hip and continuing the torsorotation and ur shoulders end up level. When u do this through contact u add alot of lift and power to the shot as opposed to swinging through contact with the shoulders already rotating on the same plane.
Cool, I gotta try this. Thanks!

body weight center not shifting forward or fell backward:?)) ie footwork:?)) 2c opinion, man8-B8-B8-B8-B..........
Sorry bro, I'm having trouble decrypting this :oops::D are you saying I need to work on my footwork so my body will stay centered more through the shots? Am I leaning back and forth a lot?

I am not familiar with smartphone high speed video. ?

Usually, a high speed video camera records at high frame rates, such as 240 fps, and then processes the raw recorded video to produce a 'playback' video that is usually 30 fps (in the USA). Most of the videos I have on Vimeo were recorded at 240 fps, some at 420 fps and a few at other frame rates. They were all output from the camera for 30 fps playback. Kinovea adjusts for two different camera frame rates. Often you can right click on a video and see a selection that will display the playback speed for the camera's output video or Youtube ("Stats for nerds") or Vimeo feed. Think '240 fps' recording and '30 fps' playback and you will probably have it. In Europe and some other areas it might be 25 fps playback. Smartphones may be different. ?

The indoor lighting in your high speed video was weak and it looks as if your camera extended the exposure time to collect enough light. This long exposure time also probably introduced the double images for the ball and racket because the indoor lighting pulses with 120 Hz (USA) or 100 Hz (Europe). Your 240 fps will probably not have a fast enough shutter speed to reduce the motion blur indoors.

Usually, the camera user's manuals are available on the internet.

One problem with 240 fps HD is that the video files are larger than for lower resolution video cameras. Vimeo limits its free storage to 5 GB, the last I heard.

Did you get Kinovea version 0.9.1? It said something about using .NET 4.8 . I believe that is a Microsoft program to support video. I saw where to download it from Microsoft.
Yes, you're right, indoors the lighting is always subpar and it shows especially on the high speed footage resulting in motion blur. I guess it will have to do until I can hit outdoors again.

Yes, Vimeo limits weekly uploads to 500 MB and total of 5 GB for the free version. Unfortunately playback speed controls are not available in the free version. I only set up the Vimeo account to post these clips so I'm not concerned about the 5 GB (yet :D).

I uploaded a video which shows the transformation my forehand underwent since I started playing again 3 years ago, didn't want to bother people with a 5 min clip right off the start. But I guess it makes it easier to see where my technical mistakes come from and the slo-mo parts probably help as well.

 

Dondon

Semi-Pro
It depends whether you are using trainers or pressurised balls.
Trainers are slower n bounce differently.
The play completely different.
 

tennishabit

Hall of Fame
Sorry bro, I'm having trouble decrypting this :oops::D are you saying I need to work on my footwork so my body will stay centered more through the shots? Am I leaning back and forth a lot?
right opposite man, body weight center should right behind every shot n moving forward @ same direction the ball goes. it works for me n might be different for others:?)):-D:-D:-D:-D:-D:-D:-D:-D...................
 

peoplespeace

Professional
I will look at this more closely, thanks for the input. To me it seems a lot of pros (I mainly watch the guys with a straight arm forehand) also tilt the shoulder axis down for a low and up for a high contact point so that could help with a steady swing.


Cool, I gotta try this. Thanks!


Sorry bro, I'm having trouble decrypting this :oops::D are you saying I need to work on my footwork so my body will stay centered more through the shots? Am I leaning back and forth a lot?


Yes, you're right, indoors the lighting is always subpar and it shows especially on the high speed footage resulting in motion blur. I guess it will have to do until I can hit outdoors again.

Yes, Vimeo limits weekly uploads to 500 MB and total of 5 GB for the free version. Unfortunately playback speed controls are not available in the free version. I only set up the Vimeo account to post these clips so I'm not concerned about the 5 GB (yet :D).

I uploaded a video which shows the transformation my forehand underwent since I started playing again 3 years ago, didn't want to bother people with a 5 min clip right off the start. But I guess it makes it easier to see where my technical mistakes come from and the slo-mo parts probably help as well.

You said "I will look at this more closely, thanks for the input. To me it seems a lot of pros (I mainly watch the guys with a straight arm forehand) also tilt the shoulder axis down for a low and up for a high contact point so that could help with a steady swing."
This is what i was referring to! U can only do this by bending in the hips (or in the side, but that is not what they do) and rotating ur torso!
 
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Fintft

Legend
I won't dive into ocean of options, the most important items I'd consider are the following:
- Swing towards contact should be outward, not straight from behind the ball. The natural product of torso rotation is arm swung out from rotation axis by centrifugal force, and accordingly, up as it's connected to shoulder and cannot just go away without raising. Drop the racquet down somewhere close to the hip, rotate torso to propel it out and up towards the ball, guide arm and racquet pivot (once again, connected to shoulder it's set to pivot) into contact to achieve intended RF orientation for contact.
- There's optimum range for contact height where things happen most naturally. Lower is tough as arm doesn't naturally stay that low with upward torso posture as torso rotates. Higher (shoulder level and above) takes more power to achieve required lift, also shoulder socket works differently, and RF tends to open more.

So keep good spacing, even more for higher balls. Move so that you aren't forced to hit too low or too high balls (hit on the rise or fall back and hit on descend on high bouncers; hit on peak, get lower and/or tilt your torso towards the ball on lowish ones). Don't rush the leg drive and torso turn to power the shot, set the swing through the bottom (wherever it is for intended shot shape) first.
Like the OP, I also like this bolded part.
 

vex

Hall of Fame
Back in the early 90s I was taught a very rigid SW/W double-bend forehand with a stiff wrist/arm. Didn't play at all for like 15 years then 3 years ago I saw a video of a Fed forehand and decided on spot I was gonna learn how to play this Eastern grip modern ATP straight-arm forehand. It was simply the coolest way of hitting a tennis ball I had ever seen! :alien: I used to be a very flat hitter getting a lot of ball acceleration by snapping the wrist forward through contact but of course losing (almost all :giggle:) control in the process. My backhand feels like a very natural swing whereas any change to my forehand was probably a good thing :D

So this is where I stand now. It seems like my biggest challenge is a loose swing which is especially apparent in my follow-through. So I can concentrate on the mechanics of the stroke more I've been using the ball machine a lot (first part of the clip). If I play an opponent I tense up quite a bit (second part). I've hit lessons with 3 different pro coaches and it definitely improved my stroke but I feel they can't help me much from here on out. I would very much appreciate any advice on where the root of my evil forehand lies. :unsure: :D

Cheers!

I’m not understanding what you dont like about your FH. For starters, it looks very good. Maybe a bit more wristy than ideal but it’s mechanically solid. You can win with that forehand. Accuracy is what you need now. You could hit a little flat on high balls but that’s nitpicking. Frankly you don’t need much more pace than you already have. You don’t hit THROUGH good opponents you dictate with accuracy and make them hit on the run.
 

peoplespeace

Professional
Can anyone like to videos backing up that u should swing outwards (actively and intentionally) on and atp forehand? I can see why u would do this on a wta fh but not an ATP fh.
 

Dragy

Legend
Can anyone like to videos backing up that u should swing outwards (actively and intentionally) on and atp forehand? I can see why u would do this on a wta fh but not an ATP fh.
What you really want to discuss? The outwardness or the intention?
Here is a down-the-middle shot from 4:50 in the video below. Whole video is good to watch for the swing trajectories.


For the intention part, you conciously practice it if you struggle to find relaxed, fluid and smoothly low-to-high swing. Once ingrained, you may not focus any more like you don't focus on walking. Still I find it as good focus point against tense bunting and lack of racquet drop. Swing outward towards the ball, make arm and racuet pivot into contact to direct and shape the ball as you intend.
 

peoplespeace

Professional
What you really want to discuss? The outwardness or the intention?
Here is a down-the-middle shot from 4:50 in the video below. Whole video is good to watch for the swing trajectories.


For the intention part, you conciously practice it if you struggle to find relaxed, fluid and smoothly low-to-high swing. Once ingrained, you may not focus any more like you don't focus on walking. Still I find it as good focus point against tense bunting and lack of racquet drop. Swing outward towards the ball, make arm and racuet pivot into contact to direct and shape the ball as you intend.
Would u have some vid or otherwise from coaches saying the same thing?

I have some further comments but dont have time to write them right now.
 

pencilcheck

Hall of Fame
I would suggest first think about if your current body can really sustain the force of ball. Your natural instinct is telling you tricep but you are forcing using your front shoulder.

Fed forehand is not suitable for casual players who have not have their muscle developed, as I noticed his strokes are very segmented. I would recommend starting out with Djokokvic forehand, where his idea is to hit where arm is fixed relative to the body and hit only with body rotation.
 

a12345

Professional
Back in the early 90s I was taught a very rigid SW/W double-bend forehand with a stiff wrist/arm. Didn't play at all for like 15 years then 3 years ago I saw a video of a Fed forehand and decided on spot I was gonna learn how to play this Eastern grip modern ATP straight-arm forehand. It was simply the coolest way of hitting a tennis ball I had ever seen! :alien: I used to be a very flat hitter getting a lot of ball acceleration by snapping the wrist forward through contact but of course losing (almost all :giggle:) control in the process. My backhand feels like a very natural swing whereas any change to my forehand was probably a good thing :D

So this is where I stand now. It seems like my biggest challenge is a loose swing which is especially apparent in my follow-through. So I can concentrate on the mechanics of the stroke more I've been using the ball machine a lot (first part of the clip). If I play an opponent I tense up quite a bit (second part). I've hit lessons with 3 different pro coaches and it definitely improved my stroke but I feel they can't help me much from here on out. I would very much appreciate any advice on where the root of my evil forehand lies. :unsure: :D

Cheers!

Your swing looks good in my opinion however youre going to lose control of the ball as you are turning your body though the shot and essentially dragging your arm through the ball. Its why you are kind of reaching for the ball, off balance, and will be robbed of power.

For the ATP forehand to work you must not turn your body through the ball like WTA players or traditional forehanders do.

You need to separate the body from your arm. The sequence is turn the body> stop turning the body > then swing your arm at the ball. The body must stop turning before contact point and the last part of the swing is just the arm swinging freely at the ball (or as I prefer to see it, throwing the racket at the ball)

The turning of the body begins the swing motion and the stopping of the body provides a stable base in which to swing the arm from.

So it works like the much talked of kinetic chain. The body needs to stop turning to pass the energy to the arm. By separating the arm from the body it will also give you greater control of the stoke, more power, better timing and so on.
 
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a12345

Professional
And so as not to confuse as it can sometimes sound more complicated than it really is. The sequencing for turning the body and then using the arm is exactly the same as you would throwing a ball over arm or throwing a baseball.

Completely naturally, you turn the body, stop turning the body and youll have a stable platform and great control from which to throw the ball using the arm.

Follow the same sequence for your forehand, but instead of overhead you are throwing from the side.
 
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peoplespeace

Professional
Just a straight-forward search:
With all due respect, and i dont doubt u have alot of knowledge, imo, the inside out swing path is complete nonsense. In the vid u link to his arm stays more or less in the same relation to the body all up to contact. This is a normal swing. He or pro players dont "try" and swing out to the side, they swing forward whlie rotating the torso.
 

Dragy

Legend
With all due respect, and i dont doubt u have alot of knowledge, imo, the inside out swing path is complete nonsense. In the vid u link to his arm stays more or less in the same relation to the body all up to contact. This is a normal swing. He or pro players dont "try" and swing out to the side, they swing forward whlie rotating the torso.
In Rafa vid it’s obvious what happens, how arm rises away from hip towards contact.
Of course it’s a normal swing. Whether you need to try it deliberately depends on whether you struggle to produce normal proper swing. I’ve been struggling for some time, proper focus helped to improve.
 

peoplespeace

Professional
In Rafa vid it’s obvious what happens, how arm rises away from hip towards contact.
Of course it’s a normal swing. Whether you need to try it deliberately depends on whether you struggle to produce normal proper swing. I’ve been struggling for some time, proper focus helped to improve.
But if its a visualisation "trick" or progression then i guess it really doesnt matter what happens in Rafa's swing. But re the Rafa pics of course his arm will be further from is side late in the swing since the arm starts independent movement as it approaches contact but that doesnt imply that Rafa has swung out to the side. Intentionally swinging to the side has physiological effects and pros dont do that. They swing forward.
 
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muph

Rookie
I would suggest first think about if your current body can really sustain the force of ball. Your natural instinct is telling you tricep but you are forcing using your front shoulder.

Fed forehand is not suitable for casual players who have not have their muscle developed, as I noticed his strokes are very segmented. I would recommend starting out with Djokokvic forehand, where his idea is to hit where arm is fixed relative to the body and hit only with body rotation.
Could you explain that a little more? :unsure:
 

muph

Rookie
Your swing looks good in my opinion however youre going to lose control of the ball as you are turning your body though the shot and essentially dragging your arm through the ball. Its why you are kind of reaching for the ball, off balance, and will be robbed of power.

For the ATP forehand to work you must not turn your body through the ball like WTA players or traditional forehanders do.

You need to separate the body from your arm. The sequence is turn the body> stop turning the body > then swing your arm at the ball. The body must stop turning before contact point and the last part of the swing is just the arm swinging freely at the ball (or as I prefer to see it, throwing the racket at the ball)

The turning of the body begins the swing motion and the stopping of the body provides a stable base in which to swing the arm from.

So it works like the much talked of kinetic chain. The body needs to stop turning to pass the energy to the arm. By separating the arm from the body it will also give you greater control of the stoke, more power, better timing and so on.
Thanks for pointing it out @a12345 , I also consider this to be a fundamental aspect (power increase is enormous that's why it's just way too much fun to NOT do it) and it took me a long time to figure this out (in the 2nd video I posted I'd say from 3:33 onwards), I think it just hasn't fully turned into a fixed habit yet... :X3::D
 
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pencilcheck

Hall of Fame
Could you explain that a little more? :unsure:
There are many examples. But one of the big one that you can easily spot in slow mo is that Fed specifically start and stop body then move the arm right around contact

Fed also consistently segmented upper body rotation from bottom legs rotation you will notice he almost look like he is holding his legs from rotation until the ball already contacted.

I can’t explain why he did those weird stuff but that is Fed style and it shows since he hit with feel and he is strong.

I just noticed but maybe this will help you: you hit too late, if you can move your contact point a bit further away (into the court) it will help your contact a lot better. You hit too late
 

ubercat

Professional
Deffo inside to outside swing. think about that thing you did as a kid swing the bucket of water in a circle and none of the water came out. then when you let it go bucket and water and everything shot off in a straight line at high speed. Same principle your body is rotating your arms getting dragged behind it

it also helps a lot for those situations where you need to aim towards the edge of the ball to get some side spin
 

peoplespeace

Professional
Deffo inside to outside swing. think about that thing you did as a kid swing the bucket of water in a circle and none of the water came out. then when you let it go bucket and water and everything shot off in a straight line at high speed. Same principle your body is rotating your arms getting dragged behind it

it also helps a lot for those situations where you need to aim towards the edge of the ball to get some side spin
Lol, anybody who wants to hit a proper fh pls dont do this! Seriously, where do u pick up these things :)))
 

Dragy

Legend
Lol, anybody who wants to hit a proper fh pls dont do this! Seriously, where do u pick up these things :)))
Don’t get mad bro. You have your own concept, that’s ok. You can describe it more explicitly, if you wish to.
If you need some extra hooks to get into understanding outward swing, consider serving. The swing for proper serve is “up the mountain”, not forward, not downward. Then racquet rotates into contact on top of the swing to cut across the ball, or to smash it flush for flat serve.
 
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