how can i improve? - TennisForum.com
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old Jul 17th, 2015, 09:23 PM Thread Starter
you look so good...fantastic man
 
heavyhorse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 4,606
                     
how can i improve?

i've been playing tennis for 7-8 months now. i play with my flatmate who is REALLY good imo. he's been playing since he was young, on and off, and he beats me everytime. i have only beat him once and that's because he was having a crap day, and it was a looong match.

anyway, i feel like i'm not making any improvements. we don't play everyday cause we're quite busy, maybe once or twice a week on average (so not every week even). i can only win points when he makes an error and it's infuriating i've thought about it and here's where my big problems are:

i cannot change the direction of the ball. the only time i have done this is accidentally. i've tried moving to the side and opening my body up to hit an inside-out forehand but it just goes back to the middle. infact, so many of my shots just go right back to the middle. so it's not only changing the direction of the ball i have a problem with, but creating angles too.

also, i feel like i can only really hit flat. i find it really difficult to use top-spin, or at least the right amount of top-spin for the ball to be hit hard and still remain inside the lines. does anyone know what i can do to change this? i've noticed that i don't use my wrists that much when i'm hitting the ball, so could that be it?

i know none of you (or most of you) aren't pros or coaches but advice would be much appreciated. i played him again today and the score was 6-4 7-6 and the only reason i can make the scoreline like that is through my competitiveness and scrambling around for every point. but i feel like a pusher and it's annoying me.

any other tips on how i could generally improve would also be much appreciated. thanks
heavyhorse is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old Jul 17th, 2015, 11:38 PM
Senior Member
 
Mr.Sparkle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 3,532
                     
Re: how can i improve?

I would strongly recommend getting some coaching lessons. I couldn't properly hit topspin on the ball until I got lessons. Using topspin is the best way to change direction of the ball without hitting it long. But hitting in the middle isn't necessarily a bad thing, as long as the shot is deep. If you can consistently hit deep shots in the middle, you should eventually get short balls you can attack, and again topspin will help with that.

*Robson *Watson *Broady *Konta *Lisicki *Vinci *Erakovic *Pennetta *V Williams

Congratz to Flavia 2015 US Open Champ!! Best of luck in your retirement!
Mr.Sparkle is offline  
post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old Jul 18th, 2015, 01:58 AM
Sunset, Moonrise, Winter
 
Sam L's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Eurasian Steppe
Posts: 34,225
                     
Re: how can i improve?

It depends on what your goals are but like Sparkle said I would recommend getting a coach because someone needs to actually see in person what you're doing wrong.

I didn't fix my service motion until I actually saw on video what I was doing wrong. And then I realised, oh, that's what I'm doing wrong and that's what I need to do.

Also, it's not bad that you're losing and playing against someone who is obviously better than you. That's how you get better. By playing against people who are better than you.

Aside from that I can't give you specific advice without seeing you play and I'm by no means an expert but I can speak from my experience.

You need to hit with a lot of topspin and (usually) take the ball early to create the angles and change direction. It is also about being aware of the racquet head face at the moment of impact. It's one of the favourite things I love to do in tennis, and I can do well but not consistently (yet).

I would say get coaching and give yourself time.

Divas: Seles, Sharapova, Muguruza
Pas de Quatre:
Swan Lake, Giselle, The Nutcracker, Coppélia

Sam L is offline  
post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old Jul 21st, 2015, 10:44 AM Thread Starter
you look so good...fantastic man
 
heavyhorse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 4,606
                     
Re: how can i improve?

thanks for the replies! i asked my friend to tell me how he hits with top spin and he showed me...after a while it started to work quite well although i was still timing it badly at a few shots. i think the problem was i was constantly hitting my forehand with top spin like nadal so i need to have smarter shot selection maybe.
my friend also did practice drills with me where we both would stand behind the service line and both use our top spin to keep the balls inside the service box...which helped as well. anyway i think i just need to keep playing more and hopefully things will start to click.

but like you both said, top spin definitely fixed my problem of changing the direction of the ball and also hitting it hard but still keeping the ball in (which was a bit trickier but i was starting to get the hang of it after a while).
OH and it's also majorly improved my cross-court backhand for some reason.
heavyhorse is offline  
post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old Jul 21st, 2015, 12:12 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 14,970
                     
Re: how can i improve?

Practice is important. Also, you need to get a coach. If you don't want to pay for a coach regularly (though I'd advise that) just hire one for an hour or two to show the basics, and instill the technique by playing with your flatmate regularly.

Find a local Saturday League or something like that to play. This may involve joining a club.

Heather - Angie - Marina - Simona - Alex

Marina's FB Fan-page

My Twitter
The Walking Bye is offline  
post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old Jul 21st, 2015, 05:56 PM
Senior Member
 
Mr.Sparkle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 3,532
                     
Re: how can i improve?

Quote:
Originally Posted by heavyhorse View Post
thanks for the replies! i asked my friend to tell me how he hits with top spin and he showed me...after a while it started to work quite well although i was still timing it badly at a few shots. i think the problem was i was constantly hitting my forehand with top spin like nadal so i need to have smarter shot selection maybe.
my friend also did practice drills with me where we both would stand behind the service line and both use our top spin to keep the balls inside the service box...which helped as well. anyway i think i just need to keep playing more and hopefully things will start to click.

but like you both said, top spin definitely fixed my problem of changing the direction of the ball and also hitting it hard but still keeping the ball in (which was a bit trickier but i was starting to get the hang of it after a while).
OH and it's also majorly improved my cross-court backhand for some reason.
This sounds really good. Yes it will take time to start timing it properly but it's worth the wait.I'm not sure if your friend showed you but it can help if you shape your take back like a "C shape." So as the ball is coming towards you, you slowly carve out a C with your racket in the air and then as your coming to the end of the C you hit the ball, making sure to brush up on the ball and finish with the racket over your shoulder (I hope that makes sense!).

BTW, you will generally want to try and hit even more topspin on down the line shots, as their is less court to aim for and the net is higher. Crosscourt shots can generally be hit more flat, but of course it depends on the situation (but you might know this already from watching tennis!).

*Robson *Watson *Broady *Konta *Lisicki *Vinci *Erakovic *Pennetta *V Williams

Congratz to Flavia 2015 US Open Champ!! Best of luck in your retirement!

Last edited by Mr.Sparkle; Jul 21st, 2015 at 06:07 PM.
Mr.Sparkle is offline  
post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old Jul 22nd, 2015, 02:09 PM Thread Starter
you look so good...fantastic man
 
heavyhorse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 4,606
                     
Re: how can i improve?

good advice, thanks! i figured out when i was playing that to hit down the line requires more topspin than cross court but it's finding the right balance of pace and spin which i struggled with on that shot. often there would be a bit too much top spin and not enough pace which meant he could easily run for it... i suppose that just comes down to timing as well? which i'm sure will improve with practise.
also i won a few points by hitting with top spin up the court which pushed my friend back behind the baseline and then i used a drop shot (which i'm actually quite good at for some reason ). so yeah top spin has saved my life tbh i can't believe it took me so long to start using it but whatever.

i'm gonna try and start coming to the net more to practise my volleys... i've done it a few times and i'm good at hitting volleys when they're below my shoulder level but when they go above my shoulders it's a complete mess and often just goes to the back of the court/no man's land area. i think that's because i sort of panic and don't move back in time to hit it. idk but i'm definitely gonna try and improve that soon as well.

tennis is so fun
heavyhorse is offline  
post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old Jul 22nd, 2015, 06:23 PM
Senior Member
 
Mr.Sparkle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 3,532
                     
Re: how can i improve?

Quote:
Originally Posted by heavyhorse View Post
good advice, thanks! i figured out when i was playing that to hit down the line requires more topspin than cross court but it's finding the right balance of pace and spin which i struggled with on that shot. often there would be a bit too much top spin and not enough pace which meant he could easily run for it... i suppose that just comes down to timing as well? which i'm sure will improve with practise.
also i won a few points by hitting with top spin up the court which pushed my friend back behind the baseline and then i used a drop shot (which i'm actually quite good at for some reason ). so yeah top spin has saved my life tbh i can't believe it took me so long to start using it but whatever.
Yes, I think with more practice you will be able to hit faster pace shots but a high bouncing down the line shot can also be very tricky for your opponent to deal with, especially if they have a one handed backhand.

Quote:
i'm gonna try and start coming to the net more to practise my volleys... i've done it a few times and i'm good at hitting volleys when they're below my shoulder level but when they go above my shoulders it's a complete mess and often just goes to the back of the court/no man's land area. i think that's because i sort of panic and don't move back in time to hit it. idk but i'm definitely gonna try and improve that soon as well.
I think you may need to be hitting overheads for those types of shots. They are VERY tricky to time right though, again you'd be better off getting a coach to show you. But basically you want to hit overheads in a similar way that you hit your serve and make sure the ball is in front of you rather than directly over your head when you hit it.

*Robson *Watson *Broady *Konta *Lisicki *Vinci *Erakovic *Pennetta *V Williams

Congratz to Flavia 2015 US Open Champ!! Best of luck in your retirement!
Mr.Sparkle is offline  
post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old Jul 24th, 2015, 12:07 AM
Senior Member
 
Johnny Groove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: South Florida
Posts: 786
                     
Re: how can i improve?

"The best way to get better at tennis is to play more tennis"- Bill Tilden
Johnny Groove is offline  
post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old Aug 4th, 2015, 03:04 PM
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 1
 
Re: how can i improve?

Thought this might be a nice place to post this video. 5 tennis drills that should hopefully help to improve your speed and agility during your game- http://www.jtxfitness.com/best/portf...speed-agility/
Maria99C is offline  
post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 17th, 2015, 10:19 AM Thread Starter
you look so good...fantastic man
 
heavyhorse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 4,606
                     
Re: how can i improve?

i have improved my serve a lot. i think it's because i've started bending my knees and jumping and hitting into the ball. i'm like 6'1 so i guess that helps.

also has anyone read this? my friend started reading it and he says it's really, really good.


sharapova venus bencic and barthel
heavyhorse is offline  
post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 17th, 2015, 01:31 PM
Sunset, Moonrise, Winter
 
Sam L's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Eurasian Steppe
Posts: 34,225
                     
Re: how can i improve?

6'1? Have some pity for us 5'7 people.

I have never read tennis books. I prefer to watch videos, I'm a visual person and learn better that way. But that one looks interesting.

Divas: Seles, Sharapova, Muguruza
Pas de Quatre:
Swan Lake, Giselle, The Nutcracker, Coppélia

Sam L is offline  
post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 17th, 2015, 01:42 PM Thread Starter
you look so good...fantastic man
 
heavyhorse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 4,606
                     
Re: how can i improve?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam L View Post
6'1? Have some pity for us 5'7 people.

I have never read tennis books. I prefer to watch videos, I'm a visual person and learn better that way. But that one looks interesting.
the guy i play with is about 5'6 or 5'7 but he gets around the court sooooo quickly whereas i'm like some giraffe stomping around the place.

yeah he says it's an interesting read. it just talks about the mentality behind tennis and how it drastically affects your level of play depending on what mind-set you're in. i'll probably give it a read when he's finished.

sharapova venus bencic and barthel
heavyhorse is offline  
post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 18th, 2015, 07:03 AM
Senior Member
 
Johnny Groove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: South Florida
Posts: 786
                     
Re: how can i improve?

Yes, Gallwey is good beginner stuff

Follow me on IG for the latest news, vids, pics, and memes

And check out my Youtube channel for all my latest training videos

Serena, Halep, Ivanovic, Muguruza, Bencic, Keys, Vika, Kerber, Venus, Lisicki, Giorgi, Garcia, Gavrilova, Stephens, Pironkova, Watson, Paszek, Konjuh, Osaka, Georges, Rybarikova, Davis, Date-Krumm, Duval, Krunic, Puig, Gibbs, Chirico, Bellis, Vekic, Conard, Gauff, Nemtsova, Tornado, Hurricane, Gillis, Fodor, Lopez-Clay, de Santa Ana, McGinnis, Liardo
Johnny Groove is offline  
post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old Sep 18th, 2015, 07:53 PM
Senior Member
 
Johnny Groove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: South Florida
Posts: 786
                     
Re: how can i improve?

The best thing you can do is get your body correct for tennis

Pick up the book "Tennis Anatomy" by Mark Kovacs

Follow me on IG for the latest news, vids, pics, and memes

And check out my Youtube channel for all my latest training videos

Serena, Halep, Ivanovic, Muguruza, Bencic, Keys, Vika, Kerber, Venus, Lisicki, Giorgi, Garcia, Gavrilova, Stephens, Pironkova, Watson, Paszek, Konjuh, Osaka, Georges, Rybarikova, Davis, Date-Krumm, Duval, Krunic, Puig, Gibbs, Chirico, Bellis, Vekic, Conard, Gauff, Nemtsova, Tornado, Hurricane, Gillis, Fodor, Lopez-Clay, de Santa Ana, McGinnis, Liardo
Johnny Groove is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the TennisForum.com forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in









Image Verification
Please enter the six letters or digits that appear in the image opposite.

Registration Image

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome