THE FOREHAND VOLLEY – Why does your volley keep finding the net?
Why does the sweet spot seem non-existent? A ghost.
Short, deep, wide, long, why is directional intent absent?
Can’t seem to find the target?
Well, without a consistent, solid, crisp forehand volley, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to control the net as you’re approaching it or while you’re there. And strategy? It’s highly improbable that you’ll be able to use the tactical patterns necessary to be a dominant player/team at the net.
Poor forehand volley technique is the bane of all tennis players who attempt to play the net. It’s an area of the tennis game rich in opportunity if you volley well.
The first step to improving your forehand volley – You need to know why you missed the volley. Sometimes, it’s because you weren’t in the right spot, the ball came too fast, too slow, bad intentions (premature winner attempts)…
What is missing in your technique that keeps you from being a dominant net player?
Allow me to give you three tips which, when done properly, will give you consistent, crisp, and accurate volleys.
Oh yeah, I’m going to assume you’re a tennis player with a 3.0-5.0 level rating. For those of you who are 2.0-3.0, the tips are modified.
And, for those of you who are above 5.0, well, you’re likely to have a good forehand volley. Tweaking is your focus.
Okay, here is what to do:
- While you’re at the net, or approaching it, get in the athletic ready position. Prepare for the forehand volley by turning your shoulders and placing your racquet in the 2:00 o’clock position. The 12:00 o’clock position would have the butt of the racquet facing down to the court – avoid it! It’s one of the most common mistakes.
- Lay your wrist back as you turn for the forehand volley so that the butt of the racquet is in front of the head of the racquet. Think “high fives” but to the side. You lay your wrist back to do “high fives” so that you’ll end up being palm to palm. Do the same to prepare for the forehand volley. Wrist break; to execute a forehand volley, you’re only allowed to break your wrist once and that is to lay it back. Breaking the wrist forward is the mistake all club/recreational tennis players make. To break your wrist a second time is to break your chances of hitting a consistent, and crisp forehand volley. Don’t!
- Lastly, lead with the butt of the racquet as you go forward to meet the ball.
Do the above and you’ll surely be on your way to controlling the net with consistent, crisp forehand volleys.
Practice tip: The most efficient and easiest way to practice the 3 steps to a crisp forehand volley is to find a backboard, spend 10-15 minutes twice a week volleying against a backboard. If you can’t get to a backboard, you can get a foam ball and volley on your garage door or actually on any wall in your house or apartment. You’ll see marked improvement in your forehand volley. Promise. That’s how I did it.
That’s what you do. Find a way.
What do you do to improve your forehand volley technique?
Do you see gradual but significant improvement?
I hope you find this post helpful.
As always, I welcome comments.