Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Ariel, Feb 21, 2004.
What in your opinion are the best tips/drills for improving footwork? Thanks!
i think suicides are the best drills for tennis. after about 10 and I am about to die from the lack of oxygen. :lol:
Another drill that involves racquets is to place a cone at the baseline centre tab and have someone feed balls to your backhand or forehand corner and you have to run around the cone after every hit, you would be surprised at how tiring this gets.
And if that isnt enough tie sandbags around your ankles while doing this and you will drop dead after about 2 mins :lol:
Run up and down stairs, jump rope, sprints
Most people can move their feet pretty well, just can't keep up intensity in the movement. Since tennis is mainly anaerobic think about all the short burst movement.
I treat footwork like any other technique. I practice various movements slowly & go for good form increasing speed as I get better. I also go hard at the end for speed & endurance training.
Very important & mostly overlooked
EVERY shot, ensure your shoulder's get turned.
The feet might follow, but might not, depending if you're athletic or just lazy.
I remember when I wanted to learn the split step. I practiced doing court sprints with an app that told me to go left or right so I didn't know ahead of time which way to go. I reached a point where I wouldn't possibly want to do the drill without using a split step - it was way too slow. But whenever I got on court I couldn't do it.
Eventually I realized that watching your opponent and the ball is the prerequisite for good footwork. You have to get your body in sync with them. For me what worked was doing drills with a buddy, but a coach would work even better. The movement patterns were more predictable in a drill and I could get "in sync" with my hitting partner. I learned to move with him and the ball. We eventually ratcheted up the difficulty and he would hit down the line instead of cross-court, but slowly so I had a chance. (I would do the same for him) Then with more and more pressure. Eventually it got to be a lot like a game and somehow it sunk in.
I think Bungalo Bill has a lot about this, and he gets way more scientific and precise. But that's how I learned.
TL;DR good footwork comes from getting in sync with your opponent, not learning a movement pattern.
Drills: Plyo - ladder drills
Very true. I sort of "flow" with the ball and the opponent, and when I focus on the ball, I can react very quickly to where it is going. Somedays it is better than others, but I think I begin to understand what pros mean when they say "i was moving well".
Common misconception. At competitive levels tennis is both aerobic and anaerobic. The aerobic system is utilized for 40-60% of the energy needs for these athletes. For less competitive tennis players who move less or cannot sustain rallies that last more that 2 or 3 shots, the aerobic component is probably quite a bit less.
BTW, the OP hasn't posted in the past 10 years at all. Doubtful that he will see any of these new posts.
Good footwork involves keeping your knees bent and not having your feet parallel or too close to each other. It also helps to turn around and get your racquet back quickly after the opponent hits the ball.
Tennis has a 60/40 anaerobic/aerobic balance - the same as rugby.
"Tennis is approximately 70% Anaerobic (Alactic) 20% Anaerobic (Lactic) and 10% Aerobic".
^^^ I was going by data from an ITF study from a few years back. Would be interesting to know where Mick got his data from.
The 70:20:10 ratio is mentioned in quite a few places. For example, Kraemer et al have the same ratio in the USTA's paper "Tennis Recovery: A Comprehensive Review of the Research" (ed: Kovacs et al):
https://s3.amazonaws.com/ustaassets/assets/1/dps/usta_master/sitecore_usta/recovery project final.pdf
I believe that figure originally comes from the research and studies done by Fox, Foss and Bowers who author several publications in this field.
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