Tennis Tips - The Forehand
Ace has always had a great backhand, but, surprisingly, my forehand was my weakest shot. It
didn't take too long for my opponents to figure that out. Pretty soon, everyone was serving
and hitting to my forehand. They could see that the best shot I had was a "push" that I tried to
guide past them.
I was about to take up that pseudo sport, "golf," when I went to see Vic Braden and he
straightened me out. That's me above at Vic's place in Coto de Caza. As you can see, the staff
was impressed with my newly rebuilt forehand!
So here are some forehand tips that will help your game. More importantly, they'll keep you
from getting a "beer belly" from riding around in a golf cart instead of exercising. Remember -
tennis is a sport, an athletic activity!
Golf is just a game - like billiards.
Symptom: "Gee, Ace, how do you get such great, powerful topspin forehands? Mine either
go into the net or hit the backstop.
Tip 1: Well, if you want to make the ball spin down (topspin) you have to swing "up!"
This is contrary to what common sense would dictate. First, make sure you have the right grip
(Eastern, Western, or Semi-Western Forehand grip).
Now, take your racket back with a little loop, cradling the throat with your off hand. The
bottom of the loop should be directly behind you and waist high or lower. (The racket face at
this point should be parallel to the court.)
Continue the loop forward and up, stepping forward with your front foot in the direction of
where you want to hit. Your racket face should be perpendicular to the court (or slightly
closed) at a point just behind your front foot.
Finally, put your non-racket arm out in front of you as a counterbalance.
Once you get the hang of it, try opening your stance a little and see if you like that better.
You should be blasting that forehand all over the court now!
"I hate to lose more than I like to win."
- Jimmy Connors