Updated: Feb 8
In this blog post, I am very excited to share some tennis groundstrokes tips to improve your timing and spacing when you hit the shots.
The main reason for sharing these tips is that I often see players struggling to have best spacing before they contact the ball. They either stay too close to the ball such that they get jammed up; or too far away from the ball such that they had to stretch to hit the ball. The poor spacing and timing lead to poor balance which further lead to bad shots.
Create Good Timing & Spacing With These 2 Tennis Groundstrokes Tips
I am going to share two solutions to help you solve this problem.
The first solution is to help you with the timing for your preparation. Let me explain further.
For every shot that you make there are always two touches of the ball before the ball comes to you. The first touch is when the opponent hits the ball. The second touch is when the ball bounces on your side of the court. Finally, the third touch is when you strike the ball. You can see the demonstrations in the video.
Now that you have understood these three touches. Let me explain to you where the problem lies for some players.
Many times players tend to be late because they start their backswing at the touch no.2. This actually means that the ball lands onto the court and they start preparing their backswing. If you are doing this, you are going to face the late contact and this will jam you up.
Solution 1: Prepare your backswing before the ball bounces onto your court
The solution is you have to prepare the backswing somewhere between touch 1 and 2. That means when the opponent hits the ball, you have to react and start preparing your backswing. You cannot wait for the ball to bounce onto the court and start preparing your backswing.
Solution 2: Measure the shot
Many players tend to be reactive and wait for the ball to come to them. What I want you to do is learn how to measure the shot by going for the ball.
For every good contact, you have to have the posture where your non-dominant hand is in front and your racket is prepared to contact the ball. Once you have this posture as shown in the image below, you are definitely going to have the good contact on the ball.
I have got some drills for you to learn so that you have the best understanding of measuring the shot.
Drill 1: Catch the ball in front with your non-dominant hand
The first exercise is very simple. Just ask your friend to feed you some balls and you catch the ball in front with your non-dominant hand. This will help you to estimate the oncoming ball and eventually you will know how to measure the shot before you contact the ball. Do this exercise by catching the ball with your non-dominant hand in front.
Drill 2 : Catch, Drop and Hit
The second drill is the progression from the first point. After you have caught the ball with your non-dominant hand, simply drop it in front of you and hit the ball over.
Let me revise these drills again with you. The first drill is you catch the ball. The second drill is you catch it, drop and hit.
Here are some useful tips to drill 1 and drill 2.
If you tend to catch the ball too close to your body, it means you are going to potentially jam the body when you hit the ball.
If you catch the ball too far that you actually have to stretch up and catch the ball then it means that you are going to be off balance when you contact the ball. Just take a note of how you catch the ball and where you catch the ball.
The ideal posture will be, you catch the ball in front with your non-dominant hand slightly bent and your racket is pulled back ready to strike. Take a note of these helpful tennis groundstroke tips.
I have covered two solutions today.
Solution No.1: Improve the timing of your preparation and aim to prepare before the ball bounces onto the court.
Solution No.2: Learn how to measure the shot by having your non-dominant hand helping you to measure. Once you have combined these two solutions you will find that you have better timing and better spacing for your groundstrokes.
Go ahead and try out these two solutions and leave your comments below to let me know how it goes.