Tennis: Surprise after the angle

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Andrea, Tennis coach

DESCRIPTION

2 players rally together in cross court direction. Player A picks the right moment to hit angle shot and opens the court up. After successful angle shot player finishes the next ball with drop shot down the line.

Drill specifications:

1 point and switch

While 2 players are hitting on the court others can work on different skills. Physical activites are always good to incorporate but because of the drop shot included in this pattern, waiting players can cooperate and sharp this skill (player A is throwing the ball and player B is softly hitting drop shots back to the feeder).

COACHING POINTS

Players don’t realize that drop shot is another offensive weapon that they can use to win the point. When they hear word “offense”, first idea that comes to mind is a word “power”. This false and limited perception can lead to creating one dimensional players who will never achieve good results because of the lack of various skills. Roger Federer shows how valuable the drop shot is from the tactical point of view and that is why he is not shy to use it not only on the clay courts but also on much faster surfaces like hard or even grass.

 

In this drill players work on tactical pattern based on angle shot. In this particular situation angle shot prepares the point that should be finished with good drop shot. Coach should teach players about few fundamentals related to the drop shot to help them understand specifications of this stroke and accelerate learning process. While focusing on the last shot players should pay attention to:

1. Disguise (Opponent can’t see the differences in backswing or grip in comparison to the regular groundstroke)

2. Peak of trajectory is on the own side (Player should aim higher over the net with peak of trajectory on own side. This loopy pathway will help the ball to drop really close the net)

3. Second bounce (It doesn’t matter where the ball bounce for the first time. Players have to realize that second bounce of the drop shot is the spot that opponent has to get to so effectiveness of the drop shot has to be measured by looking at the second bounce)

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