Tennis Rackets

by Carolen - Date: 2008-10-31 - Word Count: 490 Share This!

Footwork, Grip and Strokes

Footwork is weight control. It is correct body position for strokes, and out of it all strokes should grow.

The tennis racket grip is a very essential part of a stroke, because a faulty
grip will ruin the finest serving.

The Western Grip is a natural grip for a top forehand drive. It is inherently weak for the backhand, as the only natural shot is a chop stroke.

The English grip, with the low wrist on all ground strokes, has proved very successful in the past, but the broken line of the arm and hand is weak under stress.

The Eastern American grip, is the English grip without the low wrist and broken line.

To acquire the forehand grip, hold the racket with the edge of the frame towards the ground and the face perpendicular, the handle towards the body,
and "shake hands" with it, just as if you were greeting a friend. The handle settled comfortably and naturally into the hand, the line of the arm, hand, and racket are one.

The swing brings the racket head on a line with the arm, and the whole racket is merely an extension of it.

The backhand grip is a quarter circle turn of hand on the handle, bringing the hand on top of the handle and the knuckles directly up. The shot travels across the wrist.

This is the best basis for a grip. Model your natural grip as closely as possible on these lines without sacrificing your own comfort or individuality.

Having once settled the racket in the hand, the next question is the position of the body and the order of developing strokes.

All tennis strokes, should be made with the body at right angles to the net, with the shoulders lined up parallel to the line of flight of the ball. The weight should always travel forward. It should pass from the back foot to the front foot at the moment of striking the ball.

Never allow the weight to be going away from the stroke. It is weight that determines the "pace" of a stroke, swing that, decides the "speed."

The definitions of "speed" and "pace".

"Speed" is the actual rate with which a ball travels through the air.

"Pace" is the momentum with which it comes off the ground.

Pace is weight. It is the "sting" the ball carries when it comes off the ground, giving the inexperienced or unsuspecting player a shock of force which the stroke in no way showed.

A great many players have both "speed" and "pace." Some shots may
carry both.

The order of learning strokes should be:

The Drive. Forehand and Backhand. This is the foundation of all tennis, for you cannot build up a net attack unless you have the ground stroke to open the way. Nor can you meet a net attack successfully unless you can drive, as that is the only successful passing shot.

The service.

The Volley and Overhead Smash.

The Chop or Half Volley and other incidental and ornamental

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