Practice Video hitting to corners

tlm

G.O.A.T.
Here is another practice video, this is towards the end of our hitting session were we worked on hitting more to the corners and being more aggressive. Hopefully this will be more in line with a couple of posters who think it is really weak to hit down the middle of the court.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s1Q36ms0itk
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
Good hustle fellas!
We were just going for our shots at the end of our practice. Not quite the same intensity of playing points but this was after almost an hour of hitting so we were getting a little lazy.

But it was fun we usually rally for at least 40 minutes even though I found out that it is a waste of time to hit down the middle LOl. Then we will play some tie breakers or just try to hit more aggressively to the corners like we did in this video.
 

Flatballs

Banned
Tlm, do you have a foundation gameplan? Just that it seems like your hitting is random. Lots of hitting down the line, approaching down the middle etc.

As an example, my foundation rallying gameplan is to play the percentages. Crosscourt to crosscourt (over the longest part of the court, and lowest part of the net), approach down the line on shortballs and move into the net to cover the pass. This is my go-to play. And its what I put a lot of hours into practicing, so in matches its drilled into me to subconsciously execute.
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
Tlm, do you have a foundation gameplan? Just that it seems like your hitting is random. Lots of hitting down the line, approaching down the middle etc.

As an example, my foundation rallying gameplan is to play the percentages. Crosscourt to crosscourt (over the longest part of the court, and lowest part of the net), approach down the line on shortballs and move into the net to cover the pass. This is my go-to play. And its what I put a lot of hours into practicing, so in matches its drilled into me to subconsciously execute.

I go inside out more instead of cross court, I like to start with looping topspin to my opponents backhand and see how they handle that shot. Then try to get them to cheat over and then attack crosscourt. I don't go to the net much just work the point until I get a ball I can attack or cause an error.
But your right I do a lot of random hitting, I like to hit the ball a lot of times and gradually set up my shots. No particular game plan other than being as consistent as I can and attack when I feel I have a good chance at making the shot.
 
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tlm

G.O.A.T.
Whats wrong with down the middle?

Also heres a thought, maybe try getting some throw down dots for targets for this kind of stuff, its amazing how much it can direct a practice and raise the quality of execution
I have been informed that hitting down the middle is if no benefit and it is for lazy players.
 
V

VexlanderPrime

Guest
If you're going to hit with that much topspin (good thing) you need to close the racketface a few degress to compensate for the upward pull. Then you can hit harder. Right now you're hitting High-Topspin, Low Pace, looping moonballs b/c your racket is flat and your upward brushing is lifting the ball way up. Close the racket, hit a bit harder. You'll get a nice high pace banana shot. Basically, put that topspin to work.
 

Shroud

G.O.A.T.
try hitting clan winners when youre 1-2 feet behind the baseline up the middle, try even build from there, nightmare.
I am sure a lot if us can relate to hitting down the middle out of habit in matches because of these kind of practices. Middle shots become habit and well you are right...
 
This clip highlights the point: Both of you make tons more errors on these balls where you're forced to move your feet. Guess what, everybody does! That's the real challenge of the game, footwork on balls that really hurry you. In the matches most everybody is forced to move, and if you don't move your feet in practice...

Well, if you just like to hit and be lazy instead of improving, then go hit down the middle most of the time. Your choice. :)
 

jga111

Hall of Fame
I had a hit with a guy earlier in the week. He had a sound game, great technique, very polished. He was up for playing a game, practice, drills, whatever. I said wanted to focus on my ground strokes and he mentioned to me the way the Spanish trained on clay and if I fancied doing of those drills. Did it for an hour and it was great. Basically involves:

* Inside cross-court forehand exchanges
* Cross-court backhands
* Mixture of the two, with change of direction.
* Mixture of the two with change of direction and DTL.

I have to say, it was one of the best sessions I had in my two years, thoroughly enjoyed it. Great for fitness, concentration, consistency and strongly recommend it.
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
This clip highlights the point: Both of you make tons more errors on these balls where you're forced to move your feet. Guess what, everybody does! That's the real challenge of the game, footwork on balls that really hurry you. In the matches most everybody is forced to move, and if you don't move your feet in practice...

Well, if you just like to hit and be lazy instead of improving, then go hit down the middle most of the time. Your choice. :)

There are also more errors because we are hitting more aggressively and hitting closer to the lines.
 
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tlm

G.O.A.T.
I am sure a lot if us can relate to hitting down the middle out of habit in matches because of these kind of practices. Middle shots become habit and well you are right...

The pro players hit down the middle pretty often to, it is not that big of a deal like some make it out to be. Many times if you hit to one side or the other and it is not that great of a shot you just opened up a chance for your opponent to create a good angled shot that would not be there on a shot hit down the middle.
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
If you're going to hit with that much topspin (good thing) you need to close the racketface a few degress to compensate for the upward pull. Then you can hit harder. Right now you're hitting High-Topspin, Low Pace, looping moonballs b/c your racket is flat and your upward brushing is lifting the ball way up. Close the racket, hit a bit harder. You'll get a nice high pace banana shot. Basically, put that topspin to work.

A lot of times I actually use a Hawaiin grip and I do hit harder like your saying. But I don't always get the grip change complete and end up with the racket not as closed as I would like.
 

LoboLaw1984

Rookie
I don't think I have seen a single poster catch as much flak for his videos as this guy does. TLM posts a video of himself hitting down the middle --> "Why are you only hitting down the middle?! That's weak!!!" --> TLM posts a video hitting to the corners --> "You have no game plan!!! you suck!!!"

Okay, that is an exaggeration, but you get my point.
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
I don't think I have seen a single poster catch as much flak for his videos as this guy does. TLM posts a video of himself hitting down the middle --> "Why are you only hitting down the middle?! That's weak!!!" --> TLM posts a video hitting to the corners --> "You have no game plan!!! you suck!!!"

Okay, that is an exaggeration, but you get my point.
It's the crazy world of TT. Most sitting at a keyboard are at least 6.0 level players. It is kinda funny how some of the biggest experts do not post any video though.
 
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President

Legend
torpantennis is wrong in saying that hitting down the middle is a waste of time. Tennis is a sport where repetition and muscle memory are absolutely essential, and you aren't going to groove the stroke well enough if you are constantly hitting the corners; there will be no rhythm at all. Every 4.0+ player should be able to hit 30+ decent topspin strokes in a row IMO. Both casual hitting down the middle and playing actual points are needed IMO.
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
Hey Josh....!
THIRTY? While it's possible, I'd consider ending the point in around a maximum of 6, maybe 4 shots.
If I had your forehand, I'd end every point within 3 shots. But, I don't, so I have to approach net and volley away the point ending shot.
 
torpantennis is wrong in saying that hitting down the middle is a waste of time. Tennis is a sport where repetition and muscle memory are absolutely essential, and you aren't going to groove the stroke well enough if you are constantly hitting the corners; there will be no rhythm at all. Every 4.0+ player should be able to hit 30+ decent topspin strokes in a row IMO. Both casual hitting down the middle and playing actual points are needed IMO.
Absolutely. Even really advanced players practice down the middle at times. Though I don't think all 4.0 players are capable of 30 in a row. :)
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
30 in a row is normal if you hit at that speed, although with less spin than Tlm produces. Tlm's game is somewhat unique, lots of spin, not much pace, and very high arc over the net.
Most 4.0's would rather hit 15 mph faster, lower the net clearance height to 2-3' above the net, and still have the groundies land in mid to deep NML.
 

heninfan99

Talk Tennis Guru
hitting down the middle in a match takes away extreme angles from the opponent. Some pros try this tactic against Djokovic here and there.
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
Most players need one or two down the middle, so they groove in and are then able to hit the corners.
Hitting corners the first ball usually means your opponent is overmatched.
Gotta practice both, which is why I favor 2 vs 1 hitting.
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
Absolutely. Even really advanced players practice down the middle at times. Though I don't think all 4.0 players are capable of 30 in a row. :)
I agree 30 shots in a row is more than a lot of players can hit. I think more players should try counting sometimes and they will be surprised.
 

President

Legend
30 may be be a bit of an overstatement, it was just a number I pulled out of the air. Maybe 20ish decent groundstrokes in a row is more reasonable, but the point still stands.
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
30 may be be a bit of an overstatement, it was just a number I pulled out of the air. Maybe 20ish decent groundstrokes in a row is more reasonable, but the point still stands.
Well there is a big variance in the 4.0 level, so I am sure the better 4.0 level guys should be able to carry a long rally. My point is that it is harder than a lot of people think. I always thought that I could easily hit 30 in a row until I actually started counting.
 

BurnNotice

New User
I enjoy your videos because your technique is simply different than the norm. I get a laugh when people criticize your footwork/technique because you get the ball back in play with spin and placement.

Do you win a lot of matches? I have a feeling you would be a tough opponent to handle for a lot of people.

As long as you can put the shot where you want it, with pace and spin, I don't care what your technique is. That's the way I see it.
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
I enjoy your videos because your technique is simply different than the norm. I get a laugh when people criticize your footwork/technique because you get the ball back in play with spin and placement.

Do you win a lot of matches? I have a feeling you would be a tough opponent to handle for a lot of people.

As long as you can put the shot where you want it, with pace and spin, I don't care what your technique is. That's the way I see it.

I win my fair share of matches and have beat quite a few players with better strokes and technique. I would love to have better mechanics and technique and I continue to work on my game. But I took the game up in my 40's and I think it is a lot tougher to learn at an older age.

When I started I thought this game can't be that tough if I put a couple of years in I will be a pretty good player by then, boy was I wrong this game is much tougher than I thought.

So I use what I have and keep trying to improve. I figured out that with my limited skills I will never be the polished all court player like the guys that learned the game at a younger age.

So I do the best I can with what I have which is consistent play, court coverage and conditioning. It's definitely not pretty but I can compete and even give some pretty good players a battle sometimes. Plus I get great exercise because I usually hit 5 times a week all year long and just love the challenge of this very difficult sport.
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
30 in a row is normal if you hit at that speed, although with less spin than Tlm produces. Tlm's game is somewhat unique, lots of spin, not much pace, and very high arc over the net.
Most 4.0's would rather hit 15 mph faster, lower the net clearance height to 2-3' above the net, and still have the groundies land in mid to deep NML.
This is a pretty accurate assessment of 4.0 level players that I have hit with. I have noticed that when I flatten my shots out more that they hit the lower trajectory shot much better. Probably because like you said that is the kind of shot that they are used to.
 

President

Legend
Do any other players your age play with a similar style tlm? I haven't seen one, so its impressive that you are able to pull this off so well. My dad just turned 53 and is always bothered by my "new style topspin nonsense", he says it messes up his rhythm. I'll have to show him your vid since you are in the same age range as him :)
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
Do any other players your age play with a similar style tlm? I haven't seen one, so its impressive that you are able to pull this off so well. My dad just turned 53 and is always bothered by my "new style topspin nonsense", he says it messes up his rhythm. I'll have to show him your vid since you are in the same age range as him :)
The older players I have hit with like the flatter faster shots, but absolutely do not like looping topspin shots. They hit with minimal spin I have not found any older guys that hit with much topspin. Some like to hit chopping backspin and slices but not topspin.
 

Shroud

G.O.A.T.
hitting down the middle in a match takes away extreme angles from the opponent. Some pros try this tactic against Djokovic here and there.
Well you are right of course but at the rec level??? I would much rather have my opponents have to take a few steps then not have to. The shots you see are almost always better when they don't have to move. You can see this in the last two vids tlm posted

If I hit middle after middle in practice then in a match I mostly hit in the middle out of habit....
 

GuyClinch

Legend
torpantennis is wrong in saying that hitting down the middle is a waste of time. Tennis is a sport where repetition and muscle memory are absolutely essential, and you aren't going to groove the stroke well enough if you are constantly hitting the corners; there will be no rhythm at all. Every 4.0+ player should be able to hit 30+ decent topspin strokes in a row IMO. Both casual hitting down the middle and playing actual points are needed IMO.
Of course he was wrong - only two guys in the thread were saying that. TLM's game is actually very good considering his style. But lots of people don't like his style. I have a 3.5 friend who plays a very textbook game. He isn't that awesome (3.5) but man does he LOOK awesome. Everything is with good technique - he is just a big inconsistent.

TLM's style is offputting - so he gets hate on this forum. But its pretty effective in singles..
 
torpantennis is wrong in saying that hitting down the middle is a waste of time. Tennis is a sport where repetition and muscle memory are absolutely essential, and you aren't going to groove the stroke well enough if you are constantly hitting the corners; there will be no rhythm at all. Every 4.0+ player should be able to hit 30+ decent topspin strokes in a row IMO. Both casual hitting down the middle and playing actual points are needed IMO.
Nope. Tennis is a sport of grooving HABITS, good habits or bad habits. If you move your feet minimally and hit most of the time in the middle during practices, it'll build you bad habits of lazy footwork and hitting most balls back in the middle also in matches. I used to hit tons of balls in the middle with my hitting partners, and back then I was very frustrated when I found out that: "Why am I playing much worse in matches than in practices?". The reason of course was that the match opponents forced me to move my feet much more than the practice sessions, and that gave me tons more errors.

I've since then started going closer to sidelines (smarter targets) with my hitting friends in practices, and we try to get into each and every ball on the first bounce, even on the balls that go wide from the sideline. This has built good habits of active footwork and forcing the opponent to move his feet with my shots. Surprise surprise, my match performance and level of hitting in practices are now much closer. That's the whole point of it: You're good in what you practice, and practice builds the habits for shot choices.

And I fully agree with this:
Well you are right of course but at the rec level??? I would much rather have my opponents have to take a few steps then not have to. The shots you see are almost always better when they don't have to move. You can see this in the last two vids tlm posted

If I hit middle after middle in practice then in a match I mostly hit in the middle out of habit....
 

caugas

Semi-Pro
I don't think I have seen a single poster catch as much flak for his videos as this guy does. TLM posts a video of himself hitting down the middle --> "Why are you only hitting down the middle?! That's weak!!!" --> TLM posts a video hitting to the corners --> "You have no game plan!!! you suck!!!"

Okay, that is an exaggeration, but you get my point.
I agree all haters and Monday mornin QBs
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
Nope. Tennis is a sport of grooving HABITS, good habits or bad habits. If you move your feet minimally and hit most of the time in the middle during practices, it'll build you bad habits of lazy footwork and hitting most balls back in the middle also in matches. I used to hit tons of balls in the middle with my hitting partners, and back then I was very frustrated when I found out that: "Why am I playing much worse in matches than in practices?". The reason of course was that the match opponents forced me to move my feet much more than the practice sessions, and that gave me tons more errors.

I've since then started going closer to sidelines (smarter targets) with my hitting friends in practices, and we try to get into each and every ball on the first bounce, even on the balls that go wide from the sideline. This has built good habits of active footwork and forcing the opponent to move his feet with my shots. Surprise surprise, my match performance and level of hitting in practices are now much closer. That's the whole point of it: You're good in what you practice, and practice builds the habits for shot choices.

And I fully agree with this:


Really well in my first video we were hitting more down the middle, then in the 2nd video we had no problem hitting to the corners. So it does not seem that hard to change from one to the other.

In the 2nd video you pointed out how less consistent we were and your claim was because it was that we had to hit on the move more which there is some truth to. But you completely miss the point that we were also not as consistent because we were hitting towards the corners more and hitting more aggressively.

I know that wether I am on the move or all set up that when I start going for the sidelines or hitting deep close to the baseline I will make a lot more errors, on the move or not.
 

racket king

Banned
Here is another practice video, this is towards the end of our hitting session were we worked on hitting more to the corners and being more aggressive. Hopefully this will be more in line with a couple of posters who think it is really weak to hit down the middle of the court.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s1Q36ms0itk
You have such an extreme vertical racket path when you hit the ball. All very well and good if every ball you hit resulted in a heavy, rising ball off the bounce that pushed your opponent 6ft behind the baseline, but I'd guess <30% of your shots are like that.

Against better players, I don't see how you win points because they'll soon realize that you can't hit through them, and once they realize that, they're going to pick you off point after point.

Not that you've asked for any advice, but if you want to improve and add another dimension to your game, I would suggest you work on driving through the ball. Work on a having a flatter racket path where you're hitting through the point of contact and extending out more towards your target (rather than simply swinging up). You'll probably need to change your choice of strings and tension as a result though - your string will feel like a board once you start hitting flatter.

There are also other occasions in the video where you're leaning or falling backwards. You want to concentrate on having a good structure and be over the ball at the point of contact.
 

5263

G.O.A.T.
I agree all haters and Monday mornin QBs
It's amazing to watch isn't, but if you think that is ugly, you should see how haters like this act when they lose to players like tlm. Why do you think they hate so much?:)
 

Power Player

Talk Tennis Guru
I just hit with a 4.5 and a 3.5 today. The 3.5 could not consistently hit down the middle. His timing and footwork was not good enough and he was not hitting the ball where he wanted to.

The 4.5 and I were able to rally back and forth with much less effort and gradually widen it up and hit the corners.
 
I just hit with a 4.5 and a 3.5 today. The 3.5 could not consistently hit down the middle. His timing and footwork was not good enough and he was not hitting the ball where he wanted to.

The 4.5 and I were able to rally back and forth with much less effort and gradually widen it up and hit the corners.
Did you use your 4.5 pace/spin against 3.5, or did you try to give him his own level balls to handle?
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
You have such an extreme vertical racket path when you hit the ball. All very well and good if every ball you hit resulted in a heavy, rising ball off the bounce that pushed your opponent 6ft behind the baseline, but I'd guess <30% of your shots are like that.

Against better players, I don't see how you win points because they'll soon realize that you can't hit through them, and once they realize that, they're going to pick you off point after point.

Not that you've asked for any advice, but if you want to improve and add another dimension to your game, I would suggest you work on driving through the ball. Work on a having a flatter racket path where you're hitting through the point of contact and extending out more towards your target (rather than simply swinging up). You'll probably need to change your choice of strings and tension as a result though - your string will feel like a board once you start hitting flatter.

There are also other occasions in the video where you're leaning or falling backwards. You want to concentrate on having a good structure and be over the ball at the point of contact.

Do you mean hitting through more like this? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h0TXwOU_91k

Believe it or not I have won a lot of matches without hitting very many winners. I can hit shots well enough through the court that though they may not be outright winners they are hit good enough so they don't come back over in the court.

Actually I have worked on hitting more flatter low trajectory shots for when I open the court up. Still need some work but have improved some. I rally back and forth with looping shots and low slices mixed in and a lot of players end up making to many errors because they are trying to attack shots that are above their shoulders.

Especially if the match goes on for a long time. A lot of guys get tired and cannot handle the high ball as well as when they are fresh.
 

tlm

G.O.A.T.
It's amazing to watch isn't, but if you think that is ugly, you should see how haters like this act when they lose to players like tlm. Why do you think they hate so much?:)
Your right about that, I have had quite a few players that were more mechanically sound than me with much better looking strokes that I beat and they were in disbelief.

Some I was probably lucky to beat and caught them on an off day but I will take it anyway. If you don't have the polished game then you have to use your ugly game to full strength in order to win.
 

caugas

Semi-Pro
I just hit with a 4.5 and a 3.5 today. The 3.5 could not consistently hit down the middle. His timing and footwork was not good enough and he was not hitting the ball where he wanted to.

The 4.5 and I were able to rally back and forth with much less effort and gradually widen it up and hit the corners.
I've seen your stokes pp you are more in line with 4.5 style hitting
 

caugas

Semi-Pro
It's amazing to watch isn't, but if you think that is ugly, you should see how haters like this act when they lose to players like tlm. Why do you think they hate so much?:)
TLM is a grinder and his consistency is an assit
 
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