Volley practice video

meltphace 6

Hall of Fame
The most surprising thing in this thread is the number of people that commented how the fh volley is ok but the bh volley is a problem.

OP got the essence of a block volley on his backhand side. Unfortunately he sees himself swinging on the bh (https://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/index.php?threads/volley-practice-video.613898/#post-12170240) when actually it's his fh volley that has a tendency to swing (two examples posted here https://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/index.php?threads/volley-practice-video.613898/#post-12171032).

So, some good things going on on the bh that could be transferred to the fh. OP needs to understand that he doesn't swing on his bh.

Get a better understanding for the difference between swing and block.
 

Curious

Legend
I actually think it’s because he doesn’t lay back his wrist enough rather than using the wrong grip. Volleys always look a bit “off” when the wrist isn’t laid back.
I agree. On the fh side I can naturally lay my wrist back but I somehow tend to flex the wrist on bh volleys and I don't know why. Spot on.
 

Curious

Legend
The most surprising thing in this thread is the number of people that commented how the fh volley is ok but the bh volley is a problem.

OP got the essence of a block volley on his backhand side. Unfortunately he sees himself swinging on the bh (https://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/index.php?threads/volley-practice-video.613898/#post-12170240) when actually it's his fh volley that has a tendency to swing (two examples posted here https://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/index.php?threads/volley-practice-video.613898/#post-12171032).

So, some good things going on on the bh that could be transferred to the fh. OP needs to understand that he doesn't swing on his bh.

Get a better understanding for the difference between swing and block.
I think this is another incorrect observation. I feel that on forehand I'm more confident and can just guide the ball with the racket and that's just a natural foreward movement/followthrough of the racket. Backhand is definitely a struggle and I'm about to fix it.
 

meltphace 6

Hall of Fame
I think this is another incorrect observation. I feel that on forehand I'm more confident and can just guide the ball with the racket and that's just a natural foreward movement/followthrough of the racket. Backhand is definitely a struggle and I'm about to fix it.
My post was about how you got the block thing down on your bh.

Plenty of people feel confident and can guide the ball with their frying pan serve...

Enjoy.
 

mad dog1

G.O.A.T.
I think this is another incorrect observation. I feel that on forehand I'm more confident and can just guide the ball with the racket and that's just a natural foreward movement/followthrough of the racket. Backhand is definitely a struggle and I'm about to fix it.
Actually you do swing a little bit on your fh volley. There are quite a few things to fix still but it’s best to work on fixing things one at a time. Impossible to work on fixing everything at once. :)
 

mad dog1

G.O.A.T.
Sure. Work in progress.
My coach would tell there were a bunch of things wrong with my volleys. But he wouldn’t point them all out at once. He would work with me on 1 specific major problem first. When that problem was improved enough where it was a major liability, he would move on to another major problem until over time, all the major problems were more minor. And then he would repeat the cycle again to further refine and improve the volley. The work is never complete! :)
 

snvplayer

Hall of Fame
On the backhand side, it doesn't look like your hips are turning at all - your right foot is pointing forward when it should be pointing about 45 degrees in ward.
This is preventing you from getting your shoulder behind the ball, and making you to swing sideways.

Also, look at your left leg, you are hardly pushing off of it. As a result, you are reaching with your arm rather than using your legs to get there.
If you see your forehand volley, you can see that you are pushing off your right leg. This is what you should be doing with your left leg on the backhand side.

The contact should be made when the foot is still in the air NOT after you step on the ground.
 
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Deleted member 23235

Guest
I can't believe that I've read through 85 posts and no one has mentioned your main obvious glaring error. Tennis is all about having a CORRECT GRIP for the shot you are trying to hit. I would give Mountain Ghost partial credit because he got one thing right when he said that you need to change your backhand grip more toward eastern backhand. Not to an eastern backhand but you need to go to at least an Australian grip (index knuckle on bevel 2 1/2) or a true continental type grip (index knuckle on bevel 2). It appears you are trying to hit your backhand with pretty much a standard eastern forehand grip. This opens up the racket face too much on your backhands and is the reason you pop up so many of your volleys on that side.

But MG is wrong by apparently suggesting that you need to use a different grip for forehand and backhand shots. This you do not want to do. You want to keep the same grip on both sides like you are doing now, so making the change to your backhand will also screw up your forehand for a while.

Having said all this I doubt if you will make this necessary change. Grip changes, even small ones, are difficult. Usually you will take a big step backwards before you can start to move forward again. The new grip will feel awkward, you'll find yourself slipping back into the old grip because it feels better, etc. If you are currently using this same grip for serves and overheads you need to change to the new grip on these shots as well which further complicates things.

Anyway that's my NSHO. I'll close now so the other experts can tell me how full of it I am.
i noticed that too, but it's tough to make that call when the cams so far away.... i could affect the same look by just cocking my wrist more/less on fh/bh side.
OP... just make sure you're using the same grip you would use hammering a nail :)
that said, i've read, and talked to folks who've played atp, that mention that given time there is a slight tweak in the grip going from fh/bh volley (ie. like heel of palm transitions betwen bevel 1 and bevel 3 (or somewhere in between)... that said, anyone not 5.0 or higher, should just focus on a neutral conti grip (like holding a hammer,... or index knuckle and palm heel on bevel 2)... and when you become a master at that, then you're probably good enough to break the rules (slightly... ie. just like the way beginners are taught conti grip for serve... but some folks tweak their grip to be slightly closer to ebh for more spin... but that doesn't usually happen until well after you're decent at serving). in my case i think i do tweak my grip slightly, but not consciously... just my body/wrist trying to find an efficient way to square the racquet face at contact (ie. like on a low half volley at the service line)
 

Hmgraphite1

Hall of Fame
i noticed that too, but it's tough to make that call when the cams so far away.... i could affect the same look by just cocking my wrist more/less on fh/bh side.
OP... just make sure you're using the same grip you would use hammering a nail :)
that said, i've read, and talked to folks who've played atp, that mention that given time there is a slight tweak in the grip going from fh/bh volley (ie. like heel of palm transitions betwen bevel 1 and bevel 3 (or somewhere in between)... that said, anyone not 5.0 or higher, should just focus on a neutral conti grip (like holding a hammer,... or index knuckle and palm heel on bevel 2)... and when you become a master at that, then you're probably good enough to break the rules (slightly... ie. just like the way beginners are taught conti grip for serve... but some folks tweak their grip to be slightly closer to ebh for more spin... but that doesn't usually happen until well after you're decent at serving). in my case i think i do tweak my grip slightly, but not consciously... just my body/wrist trying to find an efficient way to square the racquet face at contact (ie. like on a low half volley at the service line)
Noticed that I need to tweak conti for volley also maybe a1/4 grip to have a little more control. Also my forearm doesn't supinate very far so may have something to do with it.
 
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Deleted member 23235

Guest
Noticed that I need to tweak conti for volley also maybe a1/4 grip to have a little more control. Also my forearm doesn't supinate very far so may have something to do with it.
yeah, probably depends on a bunch of variables... flex, strength, size of hands, etc...
 

Hmgraphite1

Hall of Fame
Watched your video again, one thing I noticed on all shots your letting the racquet head drop, as you hit try to keep it more upright, this gives a lot of control to t h e shot. So need to get that grip lower with racquet up.
 

TennisCJC

Legend
lots of good feedback.

others have pointed out, your could turn the shoulders a bit more on your BH volley and your BH volley is a bit too long. Your shoulders stay open and you drag the racket head across the contact zone with a fairly long finish. Turn and shorten the stroke will help.

I also like to think of the concept of "staying behind contact" more to shorten my stroke. I accept that a volley is a deflection with a glancing blow and I am not advocating that you move the racket head on a direct linear path toward contact but I get more "stick" when I shorten the racket head movement and stay through contact a bit more. my racket head will move from outside the ball to inside the ball and slightly downward but if I minimize the deflection angles it seems to help add stick.

I will actually try to stop my racket head shortly after contact. this stopping action actually can add "pop" as long as the racket head is moving forward at contact.

I have a friend who drags the racket head a long way after both his FH and BH volleys. He can hit some great volleys at times but he drags a lot long, wide or into the net. I think a smaller more compact action with the racket head would help him enormously.
 

onehandbh

Legend
adding to this...
for these feeds, i think a "punch volley" makes sense... (ie.contact is above the net, and close to the net - ie. at contact he can pretty much touch the net)
but to s&v point... OP should practice volleys, especially with the ball machine, starting from 2-3ft from behind the service line, and make your way in to the "put away zone"...
and choose at least 4 targets (left/right, deep/short)
imo the best tip i've gotten for volleying is instead of punching or slicing it... just trying "catching" the ball like the racquet is a butterfly net... and you control depth by how much "give" you allow the racquet to have (ie. firm == racquet wins the collision,... soft == ball wins the collision)...
if you need more pace it should be with your feet (not a larger swing)
As others have mentioned, people often take too big of a swing on volleys and either mis-time their volley or are late when the incoming ball is faster.

If this is your struggle you can try the following progression:
  1. start right at the net and have someone feed balls to you. First just work on forehand volleys. Hold the racquet in the position you want to contact the ball and take ZERO swing. Just move your feet slightly left or right to adjust to the feed, which should be more or less right to you.
  2. Then move back a couple feet. Still working on forehand volleys, this time, instead of just moving left or right to adjust, also try to move foreward to meet the ball as well, trying to get as close to the net as possible when you contact the ball. Again, minimal or ZERO swing. Dont' worry to much about footwork. Just try to be balanced.
  3. Once you have hit volleys comfortably from each position, then slowly move back farther the next time. Focus on moving the feet/body to meet the ball. Keep swing minimal.
 

FiReFTW

Legend
Here is another video from volley practice today. I now feel much more comfortable with backhand volleys.

Your volleys are technically quite solid imo, you do have a bit of a big backswing tho, you can get away with much less of a backswing and be more accurate, but if you can hit such targets good with such a backswing then its fine.. its hard to say because don't see the ball speed how slow it is, but with fast balls you could not get away with this anyway, and even here you got caught late a few times.
But overall its fine, maybe just focus on less of a backswing and start to practice target practice, hitting different spots, and different heights and speeds of the incoming balls, would be my advice, in order to improve them.
 

Curious

Legend
Your volleys are technically quite solid imo, you do have a bit of a big backswing tho, you can get away with much less of a backswing and be more accurate, but if you can hit such targets good with such a backswing then its fine.. its hard to say because don't see the ball speed how slow it is, but with fast balls you could not get away with this anyway, and even here you got caught late a few times.
But overall its fine, maybe just focus on less of a backswing and start to practice target practice, hitting different spots, and different heights and speeds of the incoming balls, would be my advice, in order to improve them.
Yeah, backswing really looks big. I should focus more on trying to catch the ball type of movement. You don't need backswing for that!
 

movdqa

Talk Tennis Guru
Looks good. I would say that you're a bit too open (racquet face) on the backhand and that you could firm it up a bit so that it's more like your forehand but the practice allows you to find the range - and that's something that takes a lot of practice.
 

FiReFTW

Legend
Yes I agree with @movdqa on BH ur too open at times so the ball floats too much.

Fix that and just adjust the swing to ball speed, if its rly slow u can have a bigger swing.

Overall the volleys look very solid and great, much better than the majority of rec players, great fundation to just practice on placement now.
 

Curious

Legend
Looks good. I would say that you're a bit too open (racquet face) on the backhand and that you could firm it up a bit so that it's more like your forehand but the practice allows you to find the range - and that's something that takes a lot of practice.
I notice I flex the wrist a little on backhand volley, which opens the racket face too and I don't know why I do that. It makes the racket less stable on contact. But I believe I have improved on the backhand volley mainly by keeping the elbow bent until contact and swinging/pushing from the shoulder, key for a compact volley IMO. It made a day and night difference. My biggest 'aha' moment on volleys.
 

zalive

Hall of Fame
Here is another video from volley practice today. I now feel much more comfortable with backhand volleys.

Your volleys are technically quite solid imo, you do have a bit of a big backswing tho,
Just the BH side, FH side backswing seems fine to me...looks like a good practice session to me, all in all...well implemented body/shoulders rotation on BH volleys, like it :)
 

movdqa

Talk Tennis Guru
I notice I flex the wrist a little on backhand volley, which opens the racket face too and I don't know why I do that. It makes the racket less stable on contact. But I believe I have improved on the backhand volley mainly by keeping the elbow bent until contact and swinging/pushing from the shoulder, key for a compact volley IMO. It made a day and night difference. My biggest 'aha' moment on volleys.
Are you changing grips on the backhand volley? I notice that you spin the racquet after you hit a BH volley. Is that for a grip change?
 

Curious

Legend
Are you changing grips on the backhand volley? I notice that you spin the racquet after you hit a BH volley. Is that for a grip change?
No, grip is the same but flexing the wrist to lay the racket back for some reason. I will fix it next.
 

TennisCJC

Legend
Here is another video from volley practice today. I now feel much more comfortable with backhand volleys.

Swing is too big. Hand is dragging racket head through after contact. The "cadence" of both FH and BH volley is the word "stop". Try to say "stop" internally and stop the racket head. Watch the video above of Stepanek and look how he stops or slows his volleys almost immediately after contact.
 
Here is another video from volley practice today. I now feel much more comfortable with backhand volleys.

Good footwork and out-in-front contact! I agree that the backswing is too big if the ball was coming in faster. If you can adjust your backswing to different speeds, then a larger backswing for a slower incoming ball is fine.

I notice that after contact, your racquet kind of hits a brick wall. This means a fair amount of tension which A) subtracts from your accuracy; and B) can lead to elbow strain. I try to allow the racquet to continue along its path.
 

FiReFTW

Legend
Good footwork and out-in-front contact! I agree that the backswing is too big if the ball was coming in faster. If you can adjust your backswing to different speeds, then a larger backswing for a slower incoming ball is fine.

I notice that after contact, your racquet kind of hits a brick wall. This means a fair amount of tension which A) subtracts from your accuracy; and B) can lead to elbow strain. I try to allow the racquet to continue along its path.
Great advice, you dont have that nicckname for nothing.
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
Good first step.
But, that incoming ball is barely flying, allowing you plenty of time. Ball moves faster in play.
Also, when you're standing that close to net, your swing needs to be shorter.
Backhand volley is too much chop, with tiny contact point, given all those floaters you hit.
Real play involves lots of low and half volleys, so practice position needs to be just in front of service line.
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
In doubles, netman stands center of service box, like this vid, putaway position.
In singles, most 1st volleys within 2 feet of service line, then second volley from center of service box depth.
How can you hit a 2nd volley if you don't practice the 1st?
Which is more important? The setup volley you almost always need to hit..or the easy putaway volley?
 

movdqa

Talk Tennis Guru
In doubles, netman stands center of service box, like this vid, putaway position.
In singles, most 1st volleys within 2 feet of service line, then second volley from center of service box depth.
How can you hit a 2nd volley if you don't practice the 1st?
Which is more important? The setup volley you almost always need to hit..or the easy putaway volley?
I think that the stronger baseline game of the past two decades has resulted in players becoming more selective on which shots they take to come in on. If you're coming in on a ball that bounces on the service line, then you're going to wind up closer to the net for the first volley. In serve and volley singles, and in doubles, you do wind up hitting more volleys around the service line.
 

FiReFTW

Legend
In doubles, netman stands center of service box, like this vid, putaway position.
In singles, most 1st volleys within 2 feet of service line, then second volley from center of service box depth.
How can you hit a 2nd volley if you don't practice the 1st?
Which is more important? The setup volley you almost always need to hit..or the easy putaway volley?
Its rare that you hit such a deep 1st volley, even when you serve and volley (which is the fastest shot u get back so ur the furthest away), Curious is volleying from the service line, which is where the usual 1st volley comes, and 2nd volley is closer, yeah maybe he could stand slightly further, but not by a huge margin.

Look at Fed here:

 

zalive

Hall of Fame
In doubles, netman stands center of service box, like this vid, putaway position.
Netman on the serving side stands much closer: centre of the service box or even closer. He wants aggressive position.
As for the receiving side, I can tell you as a netman in doubles I stood at the service line, sometimes even step behind...but the main reason for this was serving side netman kissing the net (that's how my hitting partners play it). Now if he stood in the middle of the service box, I'd certainly step in the service box myself, looking for more aggressive position.

But in singles, whoever comes to net comes inside the service box after the approach shot if he wishes the best for him. He wants to close down the angles as much as possible and he can't do that from the service line. He must come closer. Stepping back after first volley? Who does this?
 
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