Went playing tennis after many years

FiReFTW

Legend
So I did not play tennis for many years due to some issues, now im finally good and decided to start a bit again.

Went to play for the first time after a long time, of course I was quite bad but suprizingly I was not that bad, better than expected, maybe 20% of my previous level, I thought it would be more like 2% and missing everything.

Suprizingly my backhand worked decently well, but I struggled alot on my forehand (my suposed weapon), especially because i started slowly so with slow pace, balls etc... it was very inconsistent with many errors.

And I remember that even when I did play alot even tho my forehand was a weapon it did struggle alot with consistency and especially slow and dead balls etc... was too whippy and spinny which was nice for fast balls but against slow balls it was quite prone to errors.

So im wondering if a little fix I can try for next time I go play would make sense, as in that I tend to hold my forehand grip very extreme with part of my palm outside the buttcap of the racquet, which makes it very whippy and fast racquet speed, but im thinking if I put it more on the handle then it may solve my problems which is basically to whippy and spinny and hard to flatten it out and inconsistent against slow balls etc... Im wondering if this makes any sense to any of you?

Btw here are examples, part of the palm hanging off the buttcap, pinky hanging off the buttcap and handle etc.... which is how I hold my racquet :

TELEMMGLPICT000198655546_trans_NvBQzQNjv4BqFpD80NKTcqAzQqPjMGntoDNjsXzefZnb5dP44TGimXc.jpeg


And more normal and what I was thinking of trying in order to make it less whippy, more easy to flatten out and more consistent :

Carlos+Alcaraz+Forehand.jpeg


Medvedev+Heel+Pad.png
 

ballmachineguy

Hall of Fame
It’s a bit harder to over-tighten your grip to the point the racquet doesn’t move fluidly when you have some hand hanging off the grip. Also, the racquet head moves down and up a touch more for creating topspin when the lever is longer.
 

zoingy

New User
I'm gonna plug my somewhat relevant replies from this other thread and this other thread here:

Not exactly what you wanted to hear, but I used to have my pinky almost off the grip but I switched to a bit of a middle ground for a few reasons.

1. Increase in swingweight is too much for me. It's mx(2(b-10) + x) for every x centimeters you move away from a balance point of b. With my current racquet being m=~.340kg strung and a ~32.5cm balance, the difference between index knuckle centered at the standard 10cm from buttcap to a pinky-off choked-down 8cm, would be a ~32 kg/cm^2 increase in swingweight. 9.5cm works ok though.
2. On Head racquets at least, the buttcap flare starts at around 2cm from the end, so having pinky off would mean my ring finger wouldn't be able to wrap most of the way around the grip. So when trying to do a windshield wiper type of motion, the butt end of the grip would start slipping out of my hand a bit. I think the flare isn't quite as pronounced on most other brands' racquet grips tho.
3. Generally in my takebacks, the two contact points between the grip and my hand are the buttcap of the racquet with my palm, and my index/middle/thumb. Choking down reduces the moment arm between these two points & makes takebacks feel more floppy. I also lose some feel over where my racquet head is, which is pretty bad for my serve. Probably not as big of a deal on the forehand if you have more of a Djokovic/Sinner style takeback, or keep your left hand on the racquet for almost the entire takeback.
4. Any slight inconsistencies in my grip while choked down are really amplified by the above.

I think [whether players like Alcaraz are truly choking up is] a bit of an optical illusion. The important part for me imo is the ring finger tip needs to be secure around the main part of the grip, and should not be so far down as to be too far on top of the flared part of the buttcap. That's so that the ring/middle finger + the index knuckle can be the two points of contact that allow the hand to rotate the racquet, so to speak.

Someone like Fed has a bit more of a pistol grip, so the buttcap is a bit more hidden in his palm. Alcaraz looks slightly more towards a hammer grip, so the buttcap peeks out from the side of his pinky a bit more. But their ring finger positioning relative to buttcap flare doesn't look all too different to me.

That being said, if you have Nadal's immense swingweight racquet and his goated coordination & timing, maybe it's not so crazy to let go of your hand's ability to rotate the racquet and control it through sheer timing and swing speed
 

Curious

G.O.A.T.
It’s a bit harder to over-tighten your grip to the point the racquet doesn’t move fluidly when you have some hand hanging off the grip. Also, the racquet head moves down and up a touch more for creating topspin when the lever is longer.
That way the grip becomes looser (almost like an extra hinge) and helps with racket drop, lag and racket head speed but I’m wondering if that grip is steady enough at contact unless you have great timing and coordination and hit the middle of sweet spot, and with the right racket face angle.
 
Last edited:

ACT

Rookie
The overhang is completely fine if you have no issues with it, if it feels weird to change by choking up more, i think its feasible to try holding the grip a bit tighter, to reduce the amount of movement and variation

Going up and down the handle can change the stroke mechanics unknowingly a little bit because the feel is different, you get alot more leverage from palm off, it's basically like using an extended racquet

Wondering if it's more your extreme grip though, normally people with extreme grip have trouble doing slow controlled strokes on slow balls and default to high acceleration because they cant get their racquet face open in time - you kind of have to force open the racquet yourself with a slow swing to allow for clean racquet face contact

Do you have a slappy bent arm forehand or do you get some decent extension with your arm?

I did both like you, i used full western and palm off for some time
 

FRV4

Hall of Fame
Always tough picking a sport back up after a long break when you remember how good you used to be. Doesn’t take long for it to all come back though if you keep playing
 

FiReFTW

Legend
The overhang is completely fine if you have no issues with it, if it feels weird to change by choking up more, i think its feasible to try holding the grip a bit tighter, to reduce the amount of movement and variation

Going up and down the handle can change the stroke mechanics unknowingly a little bit because the feel is different, you get alot more leverage from palm off, it's basically like using an extended racquet

Wondering if it's more your extreme grip though, normally people with extreme grip have trouble doing slow controlled strokes on slow balls and default to high acceleration because they cant get their racquet face open in time - you kind of have to force open the racquet yourself with a slow swing to allow for clean racquet face contact

Do you have a slappy bent arm forehand or do you get some decent extension with your arm?

I did both like you, i used full western and palm off for some time
I don't think I have an extreme grip alltho you are right, I will make some pictures later maybe a vid so some things are more clear.
 

FiReFTW

Legend
That way the grip becomes looser (almost like an extra hinge) and helps with racket drop, lag and racket head speed but I’m wondering if that grip is steady enough at contact unless you have great timing and coordination and hit the middle of sweet spot, and with the right racket face angle.
Yes it's extremely loose and whippy and wristy feels like hitting the serve, and for serve that's fine but I feel like it makes it more difficult to get good contact with slow balls or mini tennis or if you are not on your A+ game, I've had that feeling even when playing alot but now when starting after a long time even more so, because my backhand looked solid even after so much time but my forehand was erratic and spinny and it was hard to not have a lot of spin on the ball even if I tried and it felt extremely whippy, wristy and loose, too much even. Tons of balls into the net.

And if I remember correct a certain poster here who was a coach told me that even back then, that it's too wristy and maybe good for fast balls but not so much for slow or dead balls.

So I want to find a good solution to make my forehand less whippy and wristy and more solid all around.
 

ACT

Rookie
I don't think I have an extreme grip alltho you are right, I will make some pictures later maybe a vid so some things are more clear.
Ah ok i thought you meant extreme also because of the grip style, guess you only refer to the palm / pinky off

All good, ive changed to eastern and semi western and still adopt the palm off still
 

FiReFTW

Legend
Ah ok i thought you meant extreme also because of the grip style, guess you only refer to the palm / pinky off

All good, ive changed to eastern and semi western and still adopt the palm off still

Yeah il make pictures after so it's more clear.

I definitely feel it's too loose and whippy or flappy.

Like for example from 1-10 with 1 being almost falling out of your hand and 10 being death grip.

My backhand is like a 4, pretty loose but fairly stable.

My serve is 1-2 and it's fine I like it it's whippy and fast.

And my forehand also feels like my serve 1-2.. so I definitely feel I need to add more stability and make it less like this, that's why I thought moving my hand slightly higher might help idk
 
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TennisCJC

Legend
Put you pinky on the grip. Don't use too much wrist. The grip should be pressure 3 to 4 with 10 being tightest grip. The wrist should be passive as the vast overwhelming majority of best forehands in the world use a passive wrist. OK to let the wrist relax into the follow through but don't consciously muck with your wrist around contact unless you enjoy spraying unforced errors and like to increase your chance of injury. Also, be sure to not use wrist movement when returning a decent serve because top pros simply turn the shoulders and go to contact with little to no wrist movement in a really simple stroke. Next.
 

FiReFTW

Legend
Ok finally can show some photos, so as for my grip being extreme I don't think it is, its basically this one: (I would think around between eastern and semi western if I would guess)

PXL-20240710-150939039.jpg

PXL-20240710-150944722.jpg


This is what I was talking about when I meant I hold the racquet very loose and slightly off : ( Which means alot of racquet speed but very whippy and whip like, too much so I think )

PXL-20240710-150917013.jpg


And this is what I was thinking of trying :

PXL-20240710-151054958.jpg



PS. I was just doing something in the workshop at home while I made pics, so sorry for the dirty hands lol.
 

zoingy

New User
Ok finally can show some photos, so as for my grip being extreme I don't think it is, its basically this one: (I would think around between eastern and semi western if I would guess)

This is what I was talking about when I meant I hold the racquet very loose and slightly off : ( Which means alot of racquet speed but very whippy and whip like, too much so I think )

And this is what I was thinking of trying :

PS. I was just doing something in the workshop at home while I made pics, so sorry for the dirty hands lol.

Btw I think a guy that responded in this thread might have a similar forehand to yours & had recommended something like your pic 4 :p


But in all seriousness I don't think I've seen anybody recommend pinky quite that far off the grip (outside trying it temporarily for experiencing a loose feel), and I haven't seen any pros doing that either.
 

Morch Us

Hall of Fame
even tho my forehand was a weapon it did struggle alot with consistency and especially slow and dead balls etc

im thinking if I put it more on the handle then it may solve my problems which is basically to whippy and spinny and hard to flatten it out and inconsistent against slow balls etc

There is no issue in trying out something different. But I feel like this is a wrong analysis. Usually the choked up grip helps against "stability" issues, but may not against mishit issues. Here since the incoming balls you are talking about are not heavy, it is more likely a mishit issue. Even if you make your forehand less whippy, you have a natural timing (prep+bouce+hit timing) and that is going to remain same leading to same timing issues. Plus I don't think a grip change changes your natural swing path, or racket approach to ball.

To deal with mishit issues, you have to address your timing sequence (prep+bounce+hit), and possibly your racket approach path (in case if there is not enough room for margin with racket face alignment during contact, for example if your racquet face changes quickly during contact window). Even though not true to the words, the hit 3 balls analogy may help. (some coaches make a big deal of this analogy, out of context :
)
 

Dragy

Legend
Ok finally can show some photos, so as for my grip being extreme I don't think it is, its basically this one: (I would think around between eastern and semi western if I would guess)

PXL-20240710-150939039.jpg

PXL-20240710-150944722.jpg


This is what I was talking about when I meant I hold the racquet very loose and slightly off : ( Which means alot of racquet speed but very whippy and whip like, too much so I think )

PXL-20240710-150917013.jpg


And this is what I was thinking of trying :

PXL-20240710-151054958.jpg



PS. I was just doing something in the workshop at home while I made pics, so sorry for the dirty hands lol.
Hey man, welcome back!

In my opinion, you need to be able to apply force through the handle comfortably, not just whip it. Loose wrist and grip is good enough for all the whippiness you might need. Full palm behind & below the handle allows to turn racquet face over and through (via whole-arm rotation) at final phase of the swing. And to adjust when you need it (for example, lift and spin a short ball more than your typical baseline FH drive).
 

ACT

Rookie
Ok finally can show some photos, so as for my grip being extreme I don't think it is, its basically this one: (I would think around between eastern and semi western if I would guess)

PXL-20240710-150939039.jpg

PXL-20240710-150944722.jpg


This is what I was talking about when I meant I hold the racquet very loose and slightly off : ( Which means alot of racquet speed but very whippy and whip like, too much so I think )

PXL-20240710-150917013.jpg


And this is what I was thinking of trying :

PXL-20240710-151054958.jpg



PS. I was just doing something in the workshop at home while I made pics, so sorry for the dirty hands lol.
Ah i see, yeah i think your fingers are quite spread a part which is not ideal, but no not an 'extreme' grip as you said. What you are doing is almost holding it with your fingers only, hence the 1-2 grip strength on it

I feel like your hand might be a little big for that kind of grip size also, If you're not affected by extra weight, you could try a thicker replacement grip, or multiple overgrips - this can also help reduce the amount of wristiness, and i would pair that up with your consideration of the new grip style

If this is too restricting, pinky on the bottom edge with this style is also ok
 
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