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post #91 of 153 (permalink) Old 03-26-2013, 12:53 PM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

Started playing tennis at about 10-11 years old. Was pretty casual, didn't really focus on technique or anything for a while, it was just something fun to do with my other sport activities. However, I fell out of love with almost all other sports I tried until finally I decided to concentrate on tennis at around 15 years old. From 15-19 I played around 3-4 times a week (practice sessions and practice matches).

I was always more of a bookworm and never thought of competing when I was in high school. However, I played then and have played since evenly with guys who are competing or have competed at the Finnish B-level (Levels start from D, then C, then B, then A). After high school, I went to the army and my game suffered a lot. Later on in the university, I've had periods when I've played a lot and then some periods when I haven't played for months (like now...). Tough to find opponents that are good enough but not too good .

On my game: My forehand is my strength and I'm quick around the court (at least I used to be ). I hit a one-handed backhand that has been complimented by many as being "beautiful", too bad that it doesn't coincide with "consistent" . I can sometimes find the groove on it and hit the cover off the ball but sometimes I can't find the court and have to slice all the time. Volleys are decent. Serve used to be the biggest weapon when I was around 16-17, had easily one of the biggest serves among the guys I played against but since then I've lost it a bit. Toss is all over the place, especially if I haven't played in a while.

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Originally Posted by The Bulldog View Post
Has anyone else managed to get their serve measured at all?

I got mine done a couple of years ago, quickest I got (in) was a 95mph serve. I reckon I'd be able to up that now, I'm three inches taller, a lot stronger. Hopefully I can do it sometime.
When I was around 15-16 I got up to 130km/h, so that's about 80mph I think? That was a slightly sliced serve though, not a flat one... Would be interesting to see how hard I could hit nowadays. I'm a lot stronger but maybe declined some

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lol, who will beat him? Wawrinka? Berdych? Gulbis? Rosol? Federer?

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post #92 of 153 (permalink) Old 03-26-2013, 02:52 PM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

I do, for fun. I'm not very good, I have Dyspraxia, and I'm fat. The Dyspraxia effects my co ordination, so I often screw up when setting up for the shot and end up hitting the ball way too early or too late, but good thing is it's improved with time, so the more I play, the better I get. The being fat, well that's pretty obvious what it effects, I'm slow as hell on court, my stamina isn't actually bad, but I struggle to run down wide balls which I'd be getting if I was slimmer, and therefore fast. Of course just like the co ordination issues can be worked on, so can the weight issues, I plan to use Tennis to lose weight as I much more enjoy Tennis and Football than I do just general running or gym, and I'd much rather lose weight a fun way than a boring way. Despite being a terrible player, I still enjoy playing Tennis, and strive to improve, I already have improved my serve, and my forehand when I can hit consistently is good, just backhand that lets me down. I'm not sure whether to switch to a two hander or stick with my one hander. I've tried switching to a two hander a few times so I can get more power, but I lose all control and senses, so I think one handed backhand is sufficient.

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post #93 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-30-2013, 10:22 PM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

To self-analyze my game:

My serve is good and it has improved a lot the last few years. When I'm hammering it I swear it goes 115mph+ though it's never been measured. My second serve used to be terrible but it's much better now. And aiming has become much better recently. I can hit all four corners at will consistently now. My toss used to be all over the place but now I only screw it up maybe once a set.

My forehand is my best shot by far, kind of like a (much lesser) hybrid of Federer and Nadal's (I am a lefty and use the whip motion often). My running forehand is very good and I can hit great angles. It's a flatter shot but I can get heavy spin when necessary. Stragetically, I stand just right of the centre line and force guys to get to backhand or else I'll take FHs all day. I'm much better defending to my left than to my right so I don't mind leaving the line open. Basically, if you want to consistently get to my BH it will take work.

My topspin backhand is average and I'm working on it a lot now. For nearly a decade from the time I was 10 to about 17 I only sliced the ball and getting the muscle memory changed is a challenge. I can hit a mean flat BH DTL though which is beneficiary as it helps set up a forehand inside the court. My slice is excellent and I can use it as an offensive shot quite well.

My volleys are good I suppose, they have improved a lot. Forehand stronger than backhand but my backhand lunge stab volley is surprisingly decent. I do better on low volleys.

Return of serve .... very, very aggressive. If you have a weak second I'm all over it.

And just from experience, I'd say I'm good mentally. My level can drop to that of my opponents' if he isn't as strong as I am but I raise my game against better players. A few years ago when I was 18 I played a guy in his prime years (27-33 I suppose) and was down 6-4 4-1 but came back to win 4-6, 6-4, 6-1.

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post #94 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-30-2013, 10:33 PM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

Kyle, we are remarkably similar When I started playing I only knew how to hit a backhand slice too. It took a while for me to start hitting 2 handed backhand. It's solid now, I only hit slice when defending thesedays. I also like to use that choped forehand slice, I think I watched Murray too much...but it can be mighty effective shot if you get it right.

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A few years ago when I was 18 I played a guy in his prime years (27-33 I suppose) and was down 6-4 4-1 but came back to win 4-6, 6-4, 6-1.
Maybe he just ran out of gas or choked it away.


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post #95 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-31-2013, 12:14 AM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

Thinking about picking up a racquet and start playing myself, but it's really expensive and I'm not sure if I'm going to be able to afford it. I'd really love to but I have enough trouble paying rent/college fees etc. as it is now.

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post #96 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-31-2013, 07:03 AM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

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Maybe he just ran out of gas or choked it away.
Probably, but the heroic fightback story is better.

I like to lob a lot too off the forehand side. It's so rarely used today with racket technology but a beautiful arching lob is always lovely to see.

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post #97 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-31-2013, 07:06 AM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

I am improving a lot now. I have FINALLY successfully switched to a 2 handed backhand, and can kick my Dad's ass whenever I have him a match now. I'm still looking for others to hit against, but it's a start.

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post #98 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-31-2013, 07:11 AM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

Also, the simplest advice ever: get your first serve in. A few years ago I was in a match against a lesser player than I but in the second set (after winning the first easily) I couldn't get a first serve in to save my life. It went to a breaker and I lost it. Then in the third my serve came back and I won it comfortably. Get your first serves in - it really does make a difference even if the strength of your first is only marginally better than your second. You give a returner too many seconds and they start hitting every ball inside the court and you lose the initial advantage the serve can bring you.

I just love talking about tennis technically like that, haha. I should really become an instructor or coach.

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post #99 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-31-2013, 08:56 AM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

my serve needs help... badly

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post #100 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-31-2013, 07:34 PM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

Start with a consistent toss.

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post #101 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-31-2013, 11:28 PM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

And then work on power?

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post #102 of 153 (permalink) Old 06-01-2013, 12:00 AM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

If I have learned anything is that power comes with rhythm and not trying to overhit the ball. The more you try to overhit the more you will rush. I struggled with my serve for a long time and if I am struggling with it I just remember a few things: keep the non-racket arm extended after you release the ball (will help create a better toss), keep a consistent rhythm (that is different for everyone) and keep your eye on the ball. That one sounds pretty simple but when you try to hit really hard you can drop your head easily to see where the ball is going. Same as in golf when you lift your head too early and do not make contact squarely.

And the thing about the toss is that a good one does create power. If you toss it the right height and in the right spot, and you take the ball at the highest possible point, you will get the best angle to hit into the court and get the most power out of it.

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1) Federer 2) Safin 3) Agassi 4) Sampras 5) Edberg
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post #103 of 153 (permalink) Old 06-03-2013, 10:20 AM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

Would have liked to read more about how often people play, it isn't always obvious.

I play once a week for two hours with a friend, we've been playing for about seven years now. I used to play with a coach before, when I was 15-17, but that was mostly recreational as well.

It's come to a point where I really enjoy playing tennis, we can produce some decent and challenging rallies and I feel reasonably confident about some of my shots. My depth is quite decent, but my shots don't have a lot of power and I like slicing on my BH. Overall, my BH is stronger than my FH and in more recent times I've tried to vary my game a bit, replace some of those slices with top-spin heavy shots when on my FH, go for the occasional drop shot, just avoid abuse. My first serve movement is functional, as in it gets the ball in play and I don't feel like a sitting duck, but my second is very plain.

Some major downsides to my game are poor stamina, general rigidity, sub-par anticipation and positioning, uninspired net play, and oh those terrible overhead smashes. And, of course, there's a lot more room for improvement in terms of consistency. But hey, it's for fun's sake and I'm having that, despite the occasional tantrums thrown on court.
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post #104 of 153 (permalink) Old 06-06-2013, 07:23 PM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

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Originally Posted by Kyle_Johansen View Post
Also, the simplest advice ever: get your first serve in. A few years ago I was in a match against a lesser player than I but in the second set (after winning the first easily) I couldn't get a first serve in to save my life. It went to a breaker and I lost it. Then in the third my serve came back and I won it comfortably. Get your first serves in - it really does make a difference even if the strength of your first is only marginally better than your second. You give a returner too many seconds and they start hitting every ball inside the court and you lose the initial advantage the serve can bring you.

I just love talking about tennis technically like that, haha. I should really become an instructor or coach.
Only if your second serve is garbage. I can't understand how so many good players hit girly second serves. I remember one day when I was 12, I decided to actually try and hit kick serves and within a couple of hours I was finding the court consistently and a couple of months later I was kicking it high enough up over other boys heads on occasion. The second serve is a shot that gives me great confidence, I've no fear of missing the first serve.
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post #105 of 153 (permalink) Old 06-06-2013, 07:52 PM
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Re: The "Who plays tennis?" thread

I played tennis when I was younger. My serve was crappy, my game in the net was fairly good (but isn't something that could take advantage because my weak serve), my BH was adequate for my level and my BH was inconistent. Decent footwork and good momement.

Now I mainly play Padel and some squash.

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