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Q: I have trouble with my forehand. It's very inconsistent. What can I do
to improve it? Thanks
A: Hello Nancy,
Thank you for writing. I'm sorry it has taken so long to get back to you. I
was shooting the second DVD in my Tennis Guru series last week. I have good news
for you! There are a lot of things you can do to make your forehand more
consistent right away.
1. Shorten your back swing. This does not take away power, it can actually
increase it. Keep your back swing short and use your body or core muscles to
generate racket head speed instead of swinging only with your arm. It is more
important to rotate your body into the shot then to step in or get your weight
2. Keep your elbow closer to your body when hitting for increased power and
control. Just like anything else you do, when your elbow is bent you have more
strength. If you get a chance watch some pro's hit and see how their elbow is
bent at the point of contact.
In short keep your elbow in and shorten your back swing. This should improve
things right away. I hope this helps, if you have any more questions please feel
free to ask. Thanks again.
My forehand has always been with my arm fully extended (without elbow bent in) at point of contact. What do you mean by bending your elbow at point of contact. Sorry, I'm just excited that I might actually get more power behind my forehand.
Thanks in advance
The two rivals
Keeping your elbow bent at the point of contact works best with open stance and semi-western grip. If you think about things you do on a daily basis such as driving a car or reading a newspaper these are things you do with your arms bent because you have more strength and control this way. Also when you use your trunk and core muscles to rotate into the ball you don't need to swing as much with your arm so keeping your elbow bent provides the control and strength you need to hit that hard. If you look at the photo's below you will also notice that both elbows are bent during contact. The best way to describe this would be when you watch an ice skater spinning do they spin faster with arms out straight or with arms bent? The answer is arms bent. You can rotate much faster if you use your torso and trunk to rotate and keep your arms in close. but this matter twofold in tennis because not only do you rotate faster you have more power and control with arms bent. I hope this answers your question. I'm new to this forum and don't know how to post pics right into the message body so you'll have to follow the links. Let me know if they don't work and I will try and post more. thanks for writing and good luck.
Last edited by tennisguru; 04-19-2007 at 04:46 AM.
Reason: spelling errors
Oh OK I get it now. Thanks for the pictures and the info... I'll try it out tomorrow morning at the courts. It seems weird just talking about it but if I actually try the swing in the air it makes more sense. Nevertheless I'll try in tomorrow and see how I go.
The two rivals
Originally Posted by sliced
How did it go?
Aren't Federer and Nadal the 2 most powerful players from the baseline ???
Cause their elbows are hardly (if not) bent !
My advice is the elbow bending is not a source of power but certainly of control. The closer your elbow is from your body the better the motion control.
Bending is also necessary with extreme grips (such as western -Roddick, Agassi...- and more) to keep a good contact in front of the body and prevents from hitting while moving the racket in a horizontal circular motion.
Several websites to illustrate my advice :
and pics too from http://www.procomparetennis.net/
It seems easier to analyze the problem with someone's tennis stroke if they actually post a link to a YouTube video of them hitting. Once we watch it, then we can truly diagnose what's going on.
The best deals on tennis racquets
are at Tennis Plaza in Miami.
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