Pro FHs ... shoulder|arm|elbow|hand move in sync ... prove me wrong

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
I have thought for a while that the concept of "lag" in the modern FH is sometimes falsely identified as the arm or elbow or hand lagging behind the shoulder turn. I bring this up, because I think it leads players down a wrong path trying to have the arm lag. It did for me. I think the racquet lags behind the hand (pointing backwards w/flip ***) ... but the arm, elbow and hand does not lag behind the shoulder ... it moves in sync with the shoulder turn. The upper arm is attached to the shoulder, so it pretty much has to travel with the shoulder turn. The upper arm could lag in the sense that it could point backwards as the shoulder turn started forward, but I have never found a video example of that.

So that's the class assignment. Find a Pro hitting a neutral full stroke FH where there is arm, or elbow or hand lag behind the shoulder turn. Before contact, a straight arm player like Fed will have his upper arm turn from shoulder forward before contact ... but I'm talking about "lag behind".

*** As I was stating that the racquet lags behind hand above with the ATP w/flip, it occurs to me that with the WTA the racquet does not lag either. The wrist/hand position set early and remains until contact without the lag created by the flip rh path.

Here is an example of what I mean. If we thought arm|elbow|hand lag happened, surely Theim would be a player we would expect it from. Frame 1 is right when the shoulder turn is about to start. To me, shoulder|upper arm|elbow|hand all moving together in sync.



This is the video. Set it to .025 speed ... and use "<" and ">" keys to step through the video.

@00:33 - 00:34

 

SinjinCooper

Hall of Fame
... but the arm, elbow and hand does not lag behind the shoulder ... it moves in sync with the shoulder turn. The upper arm is attached to the shoulder, so it pretty much has to travel with the shoulder turn. The upper arm could lag in the sense that it could point backwards as the shoulder turn started forward, but I have never found a video example of that.

So that's the class assignment. Find a Pro hitting a neutral full stroke FH where there is arm, or elbow or hand lag behind the shoulder turn. Before contact, a straight arm player like Fed will have his upper arm turn from shoulder forward before contact ... but I'm talking about "lag behind".

*** As I was stating that the racquet lags behind hand above with the ATP w/flip, it occurs to me that with the WTA the racquet does not lag either. The wrist/hand position set early and remains until contact without the lag created by the flip rh path.

Here is an example of what I mean. If we thought arm|elbow|hand lag happened, surely Theim would be a player we would expect it from. Frame 1 is right when the shoulder turn is about to start. To me, shoulder|upper arm|elbow|hand all moving together in sync.



This is the video. Set it to .025 speed ... and use "<" and ">" keys to step through the video.

@00:33 - 00:34

Definitely no lag of the upper arm. Depending on grip, swing velocity, etc., you may see more or less exaggerated passive lag from the elbow down. You can sort of see it in your second image above, though the angle isn't ideal, and I don't know the extent to which Thiem's FH exhibits it anyway. Never studied it. It's very easy to see in slow motion clips of, say, Sock or Kyrgios -- the shoulder and upper arm clearly pull the elbow out ahead of the wrist briefly. But again, it's 100% passive and inertia based. The lag you're trying to generate refers to the racquet head, not part of the body.

For reference...


 

dimkin

Hall of Fame
Definitely no lag of the upper arm. Depending on grip, swing velocity, etc., you may see more or less exaggerated passive lag from the elbow down. You can sort of see it in your second image above, though the angle isn't ideal, and I don't know the extent to which Thiem's FH exhibits it anyway. Never studied it. It's very easy to see in slow motion clips of, say, Sock or Kyrgios -- the shoulder and upper arm clearly pull the elbow out ahead of the wrist briefly. But again, it's 100% passive and inertia based. The lag you're trying to generate refers to the racquet head, not part of the body.

For reference...


God ... those FHs should be hidden from recreational players for they will eff them up ...
 

Lord Anomander

Professional
If I were to use Sock's forehand, my shoulder, elbow and arm would be broken within hours. For me, personally, a loose arm is the most important thing. I don't really care about the whole lag things. I think wrist lag occurs naturally to some degree, but it's certainly not extreme. I still generate enough power for my level - I couldn't rally with pros though, but that's not one of my goals. ;)
 

dimkin

Hall of Fame
If I were to use Sock's forehand, my shoulder, elbow and arm would be broken within hours. For me, personally, a loose arm is the most important thing. I don't really care about the whole lag things. I think wrist lag occurs naturally to some degree, but it's certainly not extreme. I still generate enough power for my level - I couldn't rally with pros though, but that's not one of my goals. ;)
Sock himself needs to ice his elbow/shoulder a lot ... imagine a rec player attempts this .... yawzers
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
Definitely no lag of the upper arm. Depending on grip, swing velocity, etc., you may see more or less exaggerated passive lag from the elbow down. You can sort of see it in your second image above, though the angle isn't ideal, and I don't know the extent to which Thiem's FH exhibits it anyway. Never studied it. It's very easy to see in slow motion clips of, say, Sock or Kyrgios -- the shoulder and upper arm clearly pull the elbow out ahead of the wrist briefly. But again, it's 100% passive and inertia based. The lag you're trying to generate refers to the racquet head, not part of the body.

For reference...


Hey ... you are right. Good catch. Kyrgios and Sock pop that elbow forward briefly. Of course ... they are freaks of nature, perhaps they should not be included in the bell curve. Also... we have to kick Fed out for the opposite reason... perfection should not be a data point.

That said ... I think it kind of makes my point. The racquet lags ... not the arm and hand (damn ... guess I have to drop saying elbow doesn't lag :confused:).
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
Sock himself needs to ice his elbow/shoulder a lot ... imagine a rec player attempts this .... yawzers
Sock is going to have a 5 year career. That said ... I have noticed his 2hbh showing signs of pretty decent improvement. Not just more steady ... like I think Tsonga has ... but actually looked like it could become a weapon. No matter what level his 2hbh ends up at ... it's certainly not Courier or Roddick ugly.
 

ChaelAZ

Legend
Great choice to model after. Can you imagine a 6' 4" version of him.
Yeah, I think even 6'0 or so would give him that little extra ooph. As is though, he is one of my all-time favorite players for just about every aspect of the game. Just exemplary in technique, footwork, well-round in skills and court IQ, and one heckuva sportsman personality. I love that he has taken Theim under his wing too. That will bode well for the young man.
 

Tennisanity

Legend
Are you @Bender? :p Anything that happens that isn't bone alignment doesn't count as lag. Those are the rules for my thread. :p:p:p

btw ... I knew this was coming ... just couldn't remember if it was going to be ESR or ISR.
No, not Bender. But I think the most important aspect of the 'lag' whether it is visible or not is that is accentuates the arm being along for the ride with the torso. And if the arm truly is in full ESR, not sure you can have the additional lag you are looking for like with the racquet - just physiologically not possible.
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
No, not Bender. But I think the most important aspect of the 'lag' whether it is visible or not is that is accentuates the arm being along for the ride with the torso. And if the arm truly is in full ESR, not sure you can have the additional lag you are looking for like with the racquet - just physiologically not possible.
Yep ...you are @Bender. :D
 

Lord Anomander

Professional
Del Potro's forehand is much simpler to execute and has a little lag prior to impact. Very simple looking prep.....results speak for themselves.
Yes, I like to take Delpo as a model. I think the technique is applicable on rec level and you don't have to focus on too many things. :)
 

Bender

G.O.A.T.
I have thought for a while that the concept of "lag" in the modern FH is sometimes falsely identified as the arm or elbow or hand lagging behind the shoulder turn. I bring this up, because I think it leads players down a wrong path trying to have the arm lag. It did for me. I think the racquet lags behind the hand (pointing backwards w/flip ***) ... but the arm, elbow and hand does not lag behind the shoulder ... it moves in sync with the shoulder turn. The upper arm is attached to the shoulder, so it pretty much has to travel with the shoulder turn. The upper arm could lag in the sense that it could point backwards as the shoulder turn started forward, but I have never found a video example of that.

So that's the class assignment. Find a Pro hitting a neutral full stroke FH where there is arm, or elbow or hand lag behind the shoulder turn. Before contact, a straight arm player like Fed will have his upper arm turn from shoulder forward before contact ... but I'm talking about "lag behind".

*** As I was stating that the racquet lags behind hand above with the ATP w/flip, it occurs to me that with the WTA the racquet does not lag either. The wrist/hand position set early and remains until contact without the lag created by the flip rh path.

Here is an example of what I mean. If we thought arm|elbow|hand lag happened, surely Theim would be a player we would expect it from. Frame 1 is right when the shoulder turn is about to start. To me, shoulder|upper arm|elbow|hand all moving together in sync.



This is the video. Set it to .025 speed ... and use "<" and ">" keys to step through the video.

@00:33 - 00:34

Okay, I'll bite.

Since we last butted heads over what can only be described as pointless pedantry, I have had quite a lot of time to experiment with our respective POVs in this area. I will bulletpoint my current view to keep it concise:
  1. Limp noodle arm still the way to go for 'effortless' spin and pace
  2. Arm muscles should be used mostly to make minute adjustments to the racquet head's swingpath
  3. Arm muscles should only really be used as a source for additional power when trying to generate your own high powered / spin shots off a ball with no pace
  4. Locking your shoulder with the upper arm is personal choice, but regardless of whether you do or do not do this, your arm will travel more or less in sync with your shoulder until that short window prior to contact, where it overtakes the shoulder (otherwise you would end up making contact directly to your side, and not in front)
  5. Forearm lag is almost impossible even if you want to make it lag
  6. #4 and #5 can be influenced by whether you hit a straight or double bend FH
  7. Your upper arm at the end of your takeback should more or less be aligned to your shoulders--there is some leeway to take back your arm past your shoulder, but this can cause shoulder injuries and a loss in RHA
  8. Racquet / hand lag is optional, and produces minor (but not negligible) benefits on a normal (read: neutral rally) FH
  9. Racquet / hand lag is a symptom of playing with a loose wrist and more conservative FH grips, and is almost never an active motion
  10. Certain players (like Wawrinka, Thiem, and most WTA players) have their wrists cocked back during takeback to the maximum angle the wrist would bend during racquet lag, thereby making it appear as if racquet lag is not taking place
  11. Other players choose to lock their wrist during takeback and throughout the forward motion, which will minimise racquet lag but not eliminate it altogether
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
Okay, I'll bite.

Since we last butted heads over what can only be described as pointless pedantry, I have had quite a lot of time to experiment with our respective POVs in this area. I will bulletpoint my current view to keep it concise:
  1. Limp noodle arm still the way to go for 'effortless' spin and pace
  2. Arm muscles should be used mostly to make minute adjustments to the racquet head's swingpath
  3. Arm muscles should only really be used as a source for additional power when trying to generate your own high powered / spin shots off a ball with no pace
  4. Locking your shoulder with the upper arm is personal choice, but regardless of whether you do or do not do this, your arm will travel more or less in sync with your shoulder until that short window prior to contact, where it overtakes the shoulder (otherwise you would end up making contact directly to your side, and not in front)
  5. Forearm lag is almost impossible even if you want to make it lag
  6. #4 and #5 can be influenced by whether you hit a straight or double bend FH
  7. Your upper arm at the end of your takeback should more or less be aligned to your shoulders--there is some leeway to take back your arm past your shoulder, but this can cause shoulder injuries and a loss in RHA
  8. Racquet / hand lag is optional, and produces minor (but not negligible) benefits on a normal (read: neutral rally) FH
  9. Racquet / hand lag is a symptom of playing with a loose wrist and more conservative FH grips, and is almost never an active motion
  10. Certain players (like Wawrinka, Thiem, and most WTA players) have their wrists cocked back during takeback to the maximum angle the wrist would bend during racquet lag, thereby making it appear as if racquet lag is not taking place
  11. Other players choose to lock their wrist during takeback and throughout the forward motion, which will minimise racquet lag but not eliminate it altogether
That was your concise? :rolleyes:
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
Okay, I'll bite.

Since we last butted heads over what can only be described as pointless pedantry, I have had quite a lot of time to experiment with our respective POVs in this area. I will bulletpoint my current view to keep it concise:
  1. Limp noodle arm still the way to go for 'effortless' spin and pace
  2. Arm muscles should be used mostly to make minute adjustments to the racquet head's swingpath
  3. Arm muscles should only really be used as a source for additional power when trying to generate your own high powered / spin shots off a ball with no pace
  4. Locking your shoulder with the upper arm is personal choice, but regardless of whether you do or do not do this, your arm will travel more or less in sync with your shoulder until that short window prior to contact, where it overtakes the shoulder (otherwise you would end up making contact directly to your side, and not in front)
  5. Forearm lag is almost impossible even if you want to make it lag
  6. #4 and #5 can be influenced by whether you hit a straight or double bend FH
  7. Your upper arm at the end of your takeback should more or less be aligned to your shoulders--there is some leeway to take back your arm past your shoulder, but this can cause shoulder injuries and a loss in RHA
  8. Racquet / hand lag is optional, and produces minor (but not negligible) benefits on a normal (read: neutral rally) FH
  9. Racquet / hand lag is a symptom of playing with a loose wrist and more conservative FH grips, and is almost never an active motion
  10. Certain players (like Wawrinka, Thiem, and most WTA players) have their wrists cocked back during takeback to the maximum angle the wrist would bend during racquet lag, thereby making it appear as if racquet lag is not taking place
  11. Other players choose to lock their wrist during takeback and throughout the forward motion, which will minimise racquet lag but not eliminate it altogether
Funny we get in each others heads. @nytennisaddict was in my mini tennis and service toss yesterday. I warmed up with mini tennis with my friend (because I really like him). My new 2hbh was doing it's full mini stroke thing ... even graceful half volleys. Then I hit my slice serve ... and as I looked up at my toss ... I had the thought "oh look nyta ... I don't have a lesser carve around". I was proud ... I have a full grown man ATPish slice.

It's ironic you mentioned #7 above. When I created this thread, I remembered seeing some pros take the upperarm past shoulder line at backswing. I thought that might be a good thread/question by itself. I don't see why that would cause injury.
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
Okay, I'll bite.

Since we last butted heads over what can only be described as pointless pedantry, I have had quite a lot of time to experiment with our respective POVs in this area. I will bulletpoint my current view to keep it concise:
  1. Limp noodle arm still the way to go for 'effortless' spin and pace
  2. Arm muscles should be used mostly to make minute adjustments to the racquet head's swingpath
  3. Arm muscles should only really be used as a source for additional power when trying to generate your own high powered / spin shots off a ball with no pace
  4. Locking your shoulder with the upper arm is personal choice, but regardless of whether you do or do not do this, your arm will travel more or less in sync with your shoulder until that short window prior to contact, where it overtakes the shoulder (otherwise you would end up making contact directly to your side, and not in front)
  5. Forearm lag is almost impossible even if you want to make it lag
  6. #4 and #5 can be influenced by whether you hit a straight or double bend FH
  7. Your upper arm at the end of your takeback should more or less be aligned to your shoulders--there is some leeway to take back your arm past your shoulder, but this can cause shoulder injuries and a loss in RHA
  8. Racquet / hand lag is optional, and produces minor (but not negligible) benefits on a normal (read: neutral rally) FH
  9. Racquet / hand lag is a symptom of playing with a loose wrist and more conservative FH grips, and is almost never an active motion
  10. Certain players (like Wawrinka, Thiem, and most WTA players) have their wrists cocked back during takeback to the maximum angle the wrist would bend during racquet lag, thereby making it appear as if racquet lag is not taking place
  11. Other players choose to lock their wrist during takeback and throughout the forward motion, which will minimise racquet lag but not eliminate it altogether
I think you are using quite a bit of arm/muscle at the start of the forward swing for the arm and hand to move with shoulder. I then think ... during the swing ... momentum has been passed to the 8-10lb arm/lever. It's on it's way ... does not require as much active arm/muscle. In fact, I wonder if the arm/lever reverts to pulling/assisting shoulder turn.
 

5263

G.O.A.T.
I have thought for a while that the concept of "lag" in the modern FH is sometimes falsely identified as the arm or elbow or hand lagging behind the shoulder turn.
Right, it is the racket head that lags behind the hand....not the hand or arm behind the shoulder.
 
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