Tennis: Make response difficult and predictable

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Andrea, Tennis coach

DESCRIPTION

The coach stands on the service line. The player returns from deuce side and the coach serves wide. The player hits forehand slice return deep down the line.

COACHING POINTS

Serve and return are 2 shots which always start the point in tennis so players should spend a lot of time on improving these areas. There are many technical and tactical abilities that help to perform these shots better and these skills should be addressed during daily practice sessions. Players have to understand that return of the serve has more goals than just to put the ball in. It doesn't matter if we respond to first or second serve proper strategy and high quality of our shot can give us a good start to win the point.

In this drill, the player works on forehand slice return from deuce side. Most of the players hit returns using topspin shots and they forget how important it is to vary own responses. By playing different balls, we force the server to constantly adjust to the ball and be under pressure of quick decision making. Additionally by playing the deep slice ball to the opponent's backhand, we can predict their response most of the time because of the strategy in tennis. Knowing that the ball stays low and player has to hit it using both hands, most of the time they will use cross-court direction to have longer pathway for the ball and to hit it over the lowest part of the net. This knowledge gives us an advantage to prepare for the shot and plan our actions in advance.

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