Which backhand do you use and why?

LessLobiso

New User
I understand the general pros and cons of one handed vs two handed backhand. I am curious about the deciding factor that made you choose your backhand style.

A little background: I am relatively new to tennis, and I picked up 2HBH first because it was easier to learn. After a few weeks, I started to be drawn towards a one-hander because I really liked dropshots and slices, probably from all the pingpong and growing up watching Federer. Now I can play with either style, but the trade-offs seem pretty much equal to me, and I have no idea which I would pick. One-handed definitely feels more natural to me bio-mechanically, but allows a smaller margin of error. Two-handed feels a little more awkward as range of motion is more limited, but is a whole lot easier to control.
 

saiclone

New User
I've used both. Ultimately decided to stick with the two hander as the greater margin of error makes it more stable under pressure.

Also (this may be just my perception) my arm hurts more with the one hander..

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weelie

Professional
I had a onehander first. I can still hit it, if the ball sits right there.

Two hander I can hit very late (for disguise, or just lateness), very wristy, just bunt at it, low ball, high ball, does not matter.
I used to hit two handed dropshots as well. I even use two hands for volley when I am late.

My twohanded return used to be one of signature shots, my onehanded return was always weak.

My onehanded slice is ok now that I moved back to a smaller frame. You can do that regardless.

Onehander has given me elbow pain, the two hander never did.
 

3loudboys

Legend
2HBH - naturally what I played with as a child. Started playing the game with Slazenger wooden racket that weighed approx 400g so a one hander was out of the question. My 2HBH is consistent off the ground with good spin. For me the real benefits are return of serve and high balls. Both are harder with one handed backhand IMO.

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joah310

Professional
1HBH. I started with the 2 hand, but never got used to it. Got even worse when i learned the back hand slice. stuck with the 1hbh for a while, then decided i wanted the 2h for better consistency. never worked out and now back to the 1hbh. Still difficult to use, but fells more comfortable.
 

Searah

Semi-Pro
i had an injury with my feet when i was younger so i can not apply much weight/ push off my feet fast. so i like 1hander for the reach.

but i am also small and fragile so i don't get much power. i've been trying the 2hander but as a doubles player i feel i let my partner down and just go back to using 1hander when i make to many errors with my 2hander.
 
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Deleted member 766172

Guest
I've only ever used the 2hbh in a match, but I am switching to 1hbh to imitate Federer. I started with the 2hbh because that is what they taught us in high school. 1hbh wasn't even an option.
 

MasterZeb

Hall of Fame
Learned the two hander. Then switched to the one hander when I was 13. Felt it was a more natural stroke and could hit a better ball with it. The two hander felt tight and constricting. Then stopped playing until August last year. Came back and started getting into the groove of things. Was decent. Then started university and it was simply not up to scratch. The ball was coming in a lot heavier and quicker and I was not able to deal with it. Footwork and timing I struggled with. And the return of serve didn’t exist at all. Switched to the two hander again and worked wonders. The cross court two hander pass on the stretch is one of my strongest shots now. My backhand is no longer a weak point to attack. It’s just a lot easier to handle shots at pace with the two hander. One hander there’s quite a large learning curve.
 

basil J

Hall of Fame
When I first started years ago, the pro was teaching me a 2HBH because I played hockey and I shot lefty, tough I was right handed. Felt okay, but he noticed on every return of serve, I returned One handed, so he decided to have me rally with a 1hbh and I could immediately come over the ball quite naturally and I literally never went back to a 2HBH after that coaching session. To this day its my stronger side.
 
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3loudboys

Legend
I have actually considered this. I feel like even if I do decide to stick with OHBH, I was planning on still returning serves two handed when reach isnt an issue for stability. Doesnt feel like that bad of an idea?
Tsonga used both 1 and 2 handed backhands very effectively. If you are comfortable using 2 hands on the return then I think it would add another string to your bow.

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Deleted member 769694

Guest
Ive always used a 1h bh, i mostly slice it unless passing or going for something big.

The only time i use a 2h is when ppl blast a ball on the baseline, i cannot hit it in front with the top/flat and the slice is going to pop up.

Its funny, when im against alot of pace it kind of works, but give me a slow sitter and it looks like a 3.0
 

3loudboys

Legend
Ive always used a 1h bh, i mostly slice it unless passing or going for something big.

The only time i use a 2h is when ppl blast a ball on the baseline, i cannot hit it in front with the top/flat and the slice is going to pop up.

Its funny, when im against alot of pace it kind of works, but give me a slow sitter and it looks like a 3.0
Harder against low pace as you have to put a lot of control on the ball to hit it back with purpose. Even Novak hates no pace, I remember watching the weirdest match against Monfils at the US where Monfils just chipped everything back and Nole found it tough. He still won but made hard work of it


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Deleted member 769694

Guest
Harder against low pace as you have to put a lot of control on the ball to hit it back with purpose. Even Novak hates no pace, I remember watching the weirdest match against Monfils at the US where Monfils just chipped everything back and Nole found it tough. He still won but made hard work of it


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I think Lendl was the king of that when he played conner's, he would laugh at his FH
 

BurnNotice

Rookie
1 hander for like 8 years, finally gave up on it. The footwork required to pull it off was frustrating when I knew exactly why I mishit shots.

Transitioned to a 2 hander last fall. Starting to get a rhythm with it. Literally 100x more consistent than my 1 hander ever was. I have some issues with spin/depth but I'm positive that with time I'll be able to figure it out.

Basically the biggest, best decision I've ever made. Having a confident stable backhand has made me so much more confident under pressure. I can still hit the one hander, it's just nowhere near as consistent as the two hander.

I do miss my slice though... I find it much less natural to use it when committing to a rally with my two hander. It's just so easy to want to pound the ball back with a two handed backhand no matter what comes at you.
 

Shroud

G.O.A.T.
I have actually considered this. I feel like even if I do decide to stick with OHBH, I was planning on still returning serves two handed when reach isnt an issue for stability. Doesnt feel like that bad of an idea?
Bad idea. Its tougher to have 2 ways to hit the same shot. IMHO the" highball and return of serve is tougher with the one handed" myth is easily solved with a bit more of an extreme grip. Justine Henin had one of the best one handers of all time. She was like 4 10' and every ball was a high ball! And well if you do it right, l the return is easier because usually if you hit on the same side of the stringbed you don't need to change grips while returning:

 

SystemicAnomaly

Bionic Poster
I use all of them (and both left & righty)... 2-handed, 1-handed slice, and 1-handed topspin... so that I can teach any of them to students.

Truth be told, I'm actually not very good with a one-handed backhands with my right arm, especially the topspin version. But I can demo them for students who get confused when I show it to them left-handed.
 

2-Step-Q

Rookie
I use the 1 hander. I just started tennis a few months ago and I was learning through youtube videos. The first couple videos didn't really explain the grips for the 2 hander well so I said "Too complicated. I'll just use 1 hand!" and now I love it. Prettiest shot in tennis!

And Shroud is right about the return of serve and high balls, as long as you practice for them it's easy. My Forehand and backhand have Extremely similar grips
 

MasterZeb

Hall of Fame
Bad idea. Its tougher to have 2 ways to hit the same shot. IMHO the" highball and return of serve is tougher with the one handed" myth is easily solved with a bit more of an extreme grip. Justine Henin had one of the best one handers of all time. She was like 4 10' and every ball was a high ball! And well if you do it right, l the return is easier because usually if you hit on the same side of the stringbed you don't need to change grips while returning:

Of course it can be solved. Issue is it’s a lot steeper learning curve. It’s a far tougher shot to nail down and requires more leg strength and agility. For example, you have to consistently get low enough. If you’re committed to it and have a lot of patience, fair enough. But personally, i didn’t, as I was not consistently winning matches for my uni.
 

MasterZeb

Hall of Fame
I have actually considered this. I feel like even if I do decide to stick with OHBH, I was planning on still returning serves two handed when reach isnt an issue for stability. Doesnt feel like that bad of an idea?
Try it and see how it goes. If it works, that’s great. You got the best of both worlds for you. Be aware though that you’ll have learning two different strokes. They require different techniques, footwork, contact point etc. If you can master it, great. I tried it, and then I slowly started using the two hander more and more in rallies to the point where I just completely switched to it. Felt a lot more confident using it than the one hander.
 

Rosstour

Legend
I use them all depending on the situation.

RoS: 2H flat/topspin or 1H slice

Lunging/running defensive shots: 1H slice or 1H flat/topspin

High balls: 1H slice or 2H topspin

Static/approach shots: 2H or 1H slice

The less time I have, the more likely I will use the 1H. It’s a lot easier to hit/time when I’m moving, and the shot has better reach so I can hit it when I’m further away from the ball.
 

3loudboys

Legend
I played a performance junior who went on to play nationals in my club internal tournament. He had a 1 hander and it was very good when set up at a good height and in the hitting zone. He was much better than me but I hit pretty much everything high with top spin to his bh side, including kicking every serve into the one hander. I was a set and a break up as he got very frustrated with very few balls in the hitting zone. He then started to return 2 handed which put him in a position to get into the point on my serve and run around and hit more forehands. He won 10-6 in the champions tie break - stuffed me by changing it up. The difference was return of serve.

This is just one example, and I'm sure there might be other examples where this doesn't work. My point is that having that variation in the bag, and being comfortable with it, can change the rhythm and result of a match.
 

Shroud

G.O.A.T.
Its going to be indi
Of course it can be solved. Issue is it’s a lot steeper learning curve. It’s a far tougher shot to nail down and requires more leg strength and agility. For example, you have to consistently get low enough. If you’re committed to it and have a lot of patience, fair enough. But personally, i didn’t, as I was not consistently winning matches for my uni.
Its going to be individual. I could say the same about the 2 hander. Some are one handers and some are 2 handers.

Fwiw i dont see the need for agility or getting low on the one hander the way you describe it. I can hit both and no difference to me in legs. Back is a different story...
 

MasterZeb

Hall of Fame
Its going to be indi

Its going to be individual. I could say the same about the 2 hander. Some are one handers and some are 2 handers.

Fwiw i dont see the need for agility or getting low on the one hander the way you describe it. I can hit both and no difference to me in legs. Back is a different story...
That was one of the main things I really struggled with when learning the one hander, coming from the two hander, which is why I specified it. Countless times my coach would tell me to get lower and bend me legs etc. The two backhands both require different techniques and mechanics. So I was most my saying that to be aware that it’s not simply just taking one hand off or putting one hand on to the poster that was thinking about alternating.
 

ChaelAZ

G.O.A.T.
1HBH, because it is a natural stroke for me. I have an 'ok' 2HBH that I practice every so often because I had to learn a bit about it when working with my son or helping the high school kids.
 

enishi1357

Rookie
1hbh

short answer is I think i used straight arm forehand similar to federer and 1hbh is the only way to get FH as close to possible to federer's.

That is not to say my 1hbh is terrible. It is decent but certainly not nishikori or murray or djokovic or even nadal. For now I'm playing for the art of the sport. Needless to say I lost way more than I win to basically retirees. The reason was I focused on attaining straight arm that I didn't care about losing until I gain competency. The problem is it was a slow process and I got complacent to losing. One other reason was I lost the big picture which is forgetting the basic that was taught to me when I first started tennis and it's only when I was told my other players that I knew and remembered. Unlike others I don't play alot. At most I play once a week. Even less with corona virus. So winning might not mean alot to me since I don't nearly play as much as others.

Personality wise 2hbh is probably more my style that is nishikori like outlasting opponent using rally. Then I saw the beauty of straight arm and I want to play a type of tennis that is not easily replicated.
 

Dan R

Professional
2HBH. I used to play tennis as well as baseball when i was a kid. Never looked back ;)
I played baseball as a kid too, and although I'm right handed I batted left handed (I didn't know the difference). I learned tennis much later and the 2HB to me was just like a left handed baseball swing. It seemed natural to me.
 

zaph

Professional
I use the 2HBH because I have seen so my players who crippled their game by trying to perfect the 1HBH. They have a good game and this one glaring weakness. The one handed shot looks great till they self destruct, they just haven't got the shot tolerance and steadiness. I have only seen two amateur players who have mastered it. Seen plenty who can hit the two hander effectively, so I picked two hands because it is easier.

The only downside is a lack of reach on the stretch and that isn't a big issue. I can still hit the slice, I hit that one handed and I can hit backhands at shoulder height and higher. Which would be impossible for me to do with a one handed shot.
 

nicklane1

Rookie
1HBH. Because when i started playing, almost everyone had one. I think the timing on my 1HBH is better than my FH. High balls don't bother me much. But i have trouble driving the return against really big servers.
Not going to change now, but if I were just taking up the game, I would learn a 2HBH.
 
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