15/Love Tennis Lessons Vol. VIII: The Proper Approach on the Tennis Court

November 15, 2011
by Justin

In my search to become an elite mind of the tennis world, I have searched tirelessly for tips, drills and techniques to take your tennis game to the next level. Today’s tennis lesson is all about how to approach your opponent. Some matches will present you with an aggressive foe, who attacks the net with volleys that’ll keep you off balance. Some opponents will sit back and go after your weakest discipline, whether that be your cardio, lateral quickness, forehand or backhand. Your job is to attack your opponent’s weakest skill before you lose in straight sets. In order to be the hammer and not the nail, here are some great tactics to elevate your tennis game.

When it comes to tennis tips, ScoutMe has got you covered. If you aren’t caught up with all of the prior tennis lessons, here’s what you missed: In volume one we touched on lateral quickness, while in volume two, the tennis lesson was all about increasing shoulder strength. The third tennis lesson was brought to you by Estrada Fitness, as trainer Jason Estrada highlighted his cutting-edge, core strength workouts. Volume four was about the backhand so naturally the next tennis lesson was the forehand. Six was all about improving your serve, and last week’s tennis lesson was all about the new tennis rackets for the 2012 season. This week is all about your approach.

Tennis Lesson #1: The Proper Volley Angle

The first tennis lesson addresses a skill every great tennis court bully needs to have. That skill is rushing the net with aggressiveness. One of the main issues most tennis players have when rushing the net, is an improper angle with the racket head. The majority of amateurs have their rackets pointing downwards, and in turn return the volley at an improper angle or hit the net accidentally. Your racket should be pointing at a 100 to a 110-degree angle to ensure that the ball gets over the net. As you work more with the net play, like any tennis discipline, you’ll be able to accurately adjust each shot to your desired angle. Here’s tennis pro, Mark Cordeiro, showing you how to properly execute this skill.

Tennis Lesson #2: How to Beat an Aggressive Player

The second tennis lesson is all about defending your half of the tennis court. If you ever battle against superman, you must have kryptonite developed in order to stop them in their tracks. Aggressive players usually are great at keeping you off balance. They will force you to run all over the tennis court, and will lob the ball over your head if you drive too hard towards the net. The first tactic of this tennis lesson is to keep the ball deep on every return. Doing this will keep them honest and keep your opponent on the back end of the tennis court with less options. The second approach of this tennis lesson is to slice your backhand and forehand. Your focus should be to keep the shot low when you slice the ball just to keep them on their heels so they will not be able to slide up their half of the tennis court. The last method to beating an aggressive player is to be aggressive yourself. Being a predictable tennis player will not get you to the next level. Here is tennis coach, Daniel Spatz, with a great instructional video.

Until the next time, I rest my case. Check back next week for another tennis lesson; this tennis lesson will be a Shoe Science edition so you know I can’t wait to do some research. This is 15/Love and this Yorick Hempstead, signing off from your local tennis court.


Yorick Hempstead is an ex-college athlete who is a sports blogger for ScoutMe. He is always talking sports on twitter @HempsteadHuddle.

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