“Ready position” ....“Racket back”
Most ladies league players I work with nail these first two steps on the groundstroke checklist. Then the next big milestone is contact. We all LOVE hitting the ball. We all get excited at contact.
I’m more interested in what happens with your stroke after contact. Most players have no idea what the end of their stroke looks like. In the anatomy of a groundstroke (yes, I was a science major) the backswing is all about angular momentum and imparting force onto the ball. Contact delivers the force. Then what?
My students often come to me with major complaints about consistency and control. Well, consistency and control live in the real estate between contact and finish. Once you impart force and spin on the ball, it’s pretty important to control it. Sticking your finish will make a big difference.
Before you hit the courts to work on this, do me a favor. Stand up right now and do a couple of practice forehand groundstrokes. If you have a racket handy and a little bit of space — even better. If not (or you’re at work) — no problem, just do a shadow swing with your hand.
Is your finish consistent across all swings? How’s your balance? Take a few minutes and find the forehand finish you’ve worked on and paid a lot of money to develop. That’s the one you want to STICK when you get out on the court.
Here’s a little game I play with my students to help them with this habit. Imagine that a photographer is on the court with you taking your photo after every swing. Then imagine your photo on the cover of the next issue of Tennis Magazine.
Now it’s your turn. The next time you step out on the tennis court, remember to swing, hit and (camera click) stick that powerful finish — every time!