straight arm/double bend on forehand/backhand

tennispal

Rookie
what are the advantages and disadvantages of using straight arm or double bend on forehand and backhand? why is it taht almost every WTA player uses a doubled bend forehand and backhand, while more ATP players use straight arm forehand/backhand?
 

s7evin

Rookie
I'm no expert but i think that on the straight arm most of the impact force goes to your elbow and with the bent arm most force goes to your muscles...
So figure it out.
 

Oui c'est moi.

Hall of Fame
"What is the Double Bend?

Using the semi to full western grip, the hand is positioned under the racquet. This position allows for a lower racquet head prior to contact and a pre-stretch of the forearm which creates a ‘whip-like’ potential for the forehand.

As you can see, this position sets the butt-cap of the racquet facing the target and the racquet head laid well back. It is this initial position that creates a problem for many players who don’t understand the swing mechanics for this grip.

From this double bend position, too many players roll the wrist when they swing in order to get the racquet head ahead of the hitting hand. Instead, players must learn to maintain the integrity of this position through contact and just beyond.

This is accomplished by the player driving the butt-cap forward with the forearm instead of trying to swing the tip of the racquet around too early.

With the semi and full western grips, the contact point must be made further out in front of the body than it would be using an eastern or continental grip. If the player does not incorporate this contact position, they will indeed try to flip the racquet around with the wrist.

While the attempt to hit ‘around the outside of the ball’ is ideally an excellent stroke aspect, the execution of it must be done so as to not use the wrist or the elbow in such a way that the stroke pattern is compromised."


Thing is i see this technique used by a number of male pros.
 

Ash_Smith

Legend
Tennispal

are you meaning bent/bent arm structure vs straight/bent arm structure on the two handed backhand? If so you are right about the difference between WTA and ATP tours. If you are refering to the double bend structure of the hitting arm on the forehand that is pretty much in equal use on both tours with the obvious exceptions of Roger and Rafa. I can't off the top of my head think of any WTA pro's hot have a straight arm at contact on their forehand.
 
C

chico9166

Guest
Can't say I'd recommend it, but the straight arm forehand certainly is more leveraged than the double bend structure. Jeff Counts, has written extensively about both hitting structures in Tennisplayer. Check it out, its some good reads.
 

tennispal

Rookie
Tennispal

are you meaning bent/bent arm structure vs straight/bent arm structure on the two handed backhand? If so you are right about the difference between WTA and ATP tours. If you are refering to the double bend structure of the hitting arm on the forehand that is pretty much in equal use on both tours with the obvious exceptions of Roger and Rafa. I can't off the top of my head think of any WTA pro's hot have a straight arm at contact on their forehand.

i meant for both. i think verdasco has straight arm too. the thing is all three have amazing forehands.

hmm so no one is able to explain the trend?
 

tricky

Hall of Fame
In short, straight-arm FH opens up the limitations associated with different grips and increases overall power.

For conservative Eastern grips, it enables more natural forearm rotation, thereby increasing effective spin without giving up pace. For extreme grips, it increases your contact zone, enabling you to hit flat shots at waist or below level as well as your spinners at and above the shoulder level. In terms of overall power, it increases the effective line toward the ball, thereby enabling you to further accelerate the racquet and extend into the shot.

Naturally, it also have its disadvantages. It moves the contact zone further out. For somebody like Nadal, it's so far out that it's difficult for him to actually step into anything but a short ball. For somebody learning the WW FH, it reinforces very, very bad habits (especially overrotation of the torso), and can lead to somebody effectively screwing up their groundstroke. Once you can hit a WW FH in your sleep, it's a natural progression. Most people who use a straight-arm FH only use it to hit certain shots, and Federer himself doesn't use it as often as people assume. When he wants to hit an inside-out FH, he'll switch to a straight-arm, so that he can get the spin to pull down a wide angle. When he rallies CC shots with somebody else, he doesn't use it as much.

In terms of evolution, my impression is that straight-arm FH mostly arose from the Spanish variation of the FH (or what is taught in Spanish academies.) The trademark of the Spanish FH is a very, very heavy ball, whether it's a Nadal bouncer or a flatter Ferrero shot. There, they also emphasize more comeback strokes and emphasis on using extension through ball to generate most of pace. So, in that sense, the straight-arm variation is the logical extension of it.
 

tricky

Hall of Fame
you would not recomment a straight arm forehand to recreational players?
Realistically, it's only a viable option if you have a proper WW FH. And that includes proper footwork patterns and not arming the ball. Otherwise, it just reinforces bad habits.

For somebody who already executes a solid WW FH, the difference is very simple. Just don't tuck. Voila -- straight arm FH.
 

FH2FH

Professional
I think it's because of the difference in strength. Women might keep the racquet closer to their body for control. Men can keep it futher away because they have greater strength. They are able to take advantage of the extra leverage.

Away...
Disadvantages: lack of control, more difficult to time, requires more strength.
Advantage: power, spin, reach.

Near...
D/A: lack of reach, less spin/power.
Adv: jammed less often, less strength required.
 
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