Tennis: Prepare for the consistency

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Nick, Tennis coach


2 players rally together in cross court direction. Player A hits all the balls aggressively. Player B stays deeply behind the baseline and hits high topspin consistent shots.

Drill specifications:

5-10 min per side

With more players on the court coach can use the same approach as in the previous drill. Switching after few shots or after a particular time is a good way to keep players motivated as also to give them a time to improve other skills (e.g physical abilities).


Great tennis players understand that there is no one magical tactic that will work against all the opponents. Some players have difficulties with answering slice balls while others love this kind of shots because of their ability to enormously accelerate the racquet and finish the point. While playing offensively against good defenders players have to prepare for different scenarios that they will have to face in the course of the match. Slice shots are great to break the rhythm of the rally but high topspin shots can be even more difficult to attack consistently. By moving further back behind the baseline good defensive players give themselves a precious time to get to the ball as also the longer path of the ball after the bounce significantly slows it down. There is no better defender than Rafael Nadal. During tournaments on clay courts we can see him many times 4-5 meters behind the baseline while running and hitting another defensive ball over the net.

In this drill player works on hitting aggressively of high topspin shots. The opponent is far away from the baseline so the offensive player has to work much harder to get the easier put-away ball. Firstly, coach should explain to players that they have to try to hit the ball on the rise to not give additional time for the opponent. High point of contact is a priority to achieve good consistency of powerful shots. Secondly, every shorter ball should be punished so players have to focused and quickly react with their feet with every opportunity that comes. Thirdly, players have to understand that it can be hard to win the point by hitting all the balls deep so they should also look for balls placed shorter and closer to the sideline to put the opponent in different difficult defensive positions.



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