Tennis: Time to bend knees

Sportplan has been very helpful in guiding me through my first year...
Bill, Newly qualified coach

DESCRIPTION

The player has resistance bands attached to the ankles and waist. The coach feeds balls to the backhand side. The player executes backhand volleys. Resistance bends force player to keep the knees bent and maintain lower position.

COACHING POINTS

Some players don't realise how important is footwork in the net game. They think that because they are closer to the net, they can use solely racquet to win the point. The truth is completely different. Legs are crucial while hitting volleys because they give us balance, so they can effectively hit low volleys, as well as give a chance to quickly react to opponent's shot. That is why learning how to maintain a low position and bend knees before hitting contact should be priority for all coaches who teach effective net game.

In this drill, the player works to maintain low position while hitting volleys. Resistance bands are great because if the player wants to keep legs straight, she has to work much harder than in situation when the knees are bent. A few minutes of working using this tool have positive technical and physical aspect. Firstly, players see the difference in control while hitting with bent knees so they develop new hitting position. Secondly, players strengthen legs muscles so they can use this ability in all situations on the court.

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