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Old 09-23-2007, 05:55 PM   #1
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Question Help! My forehand is killing me

Hey I'm just wondering if anyone knows how to avoid hand injuries; every time I play tennis my tennis hand gets terrible tendonitis. This is a fairly recent development, it never used to happen but as far as I can tell my game never changed. I am a newbie tennis player (playing for about 1 year) and learned how to play entirely through trial and error.

Here's what I know: The tendons on my tennis hand get pulled every time I hit a forehand (especially my index finger), but don't seem to get stressed when I hit backhands. Interestingly, my forehand is a weak shot with a large amount of topspin, and I can't seem smash forehand hits that should be winners. The only time I can generate good speed on my forehand is when I have to hit a low ball.

However, my backhand has no such problem. I can rip backhand winners with no trouble, while my forehand continues to be a weaker shot and continually pulls my tendons... I use a semi-western grip and am completely out of ideas on how to revamp my forehand. Anyone got any ideas? I'd really appreciate it.
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Old 09-24-2007, 02:29 AM   #2
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

Go get a coach, you'll get a pretty bad injury like that. You shouldn't feel any pulling as you describe. If you do, you're doing something very wrong.
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Old 09-24-2007, 03:50 AM   #3
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

I'll look into the coach. I'll have to see if there are any good ones in my area that might be able to help me.

I guess what I'm wondering is if anyone has any ideas why my tendons are being worked so hard?
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Old 09-24-2007, 08:11 AM   #4
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

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Originally Posted by TrueTheo364 View Post
I'll look into the coach. I'll have to see if there are any good ones in my area that might be able to help me.

I guess what I'm wondering is if anyone has any ideas why my tendons are being worked so hard?
You should probably actually ask a doctor, that would be best. Ouch :/
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Old 09-24-2007, 12:38 PM   #5
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

Sounds like there is something badly wrong with your technique there...or you're holding the racquet a strange way. You haven't got a particular finger (commonly the index finger) pointing up the racquet handle have you?
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Old 09-24-2007, 01:27 PM   #6
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

Quote:
Originally Posted by TrueTheo364 View Post
I'll look into the coach. I'll have to see if there are any good ones in my area that might be able to help me.

I guess what I'm wondering is if anyone has any ideas why my tendons are being worked so hard?
Hard to say without actually watching your stroke, but I think you're generating spin with some strange movement, probably the arm or wrist, and that's not exactly how you do it.
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Old 09-24-2007, 03:48 PM   #7
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

trixtah: I actually went to a doctor and he said the only thing you can do is ice after playing and wait for the tendons to calm down.

Ljubah: No, I don't have a finger pointing up the racket handle (although I did start playing that way).

Glenn: Since I taught myself to play tennis, it's granted I do some things strangely. I think you are probably pretty close with that guess. Sometimes when I hit the ball I intentionally move the racket with my wrist across the ball to generate spin. While that does give me excellent drop shots when I do it, it also is what hurts my hand the most.

I'm going to go look and see if any coach's have posted something on youtube to help me learn more about forehand strokes, and maybe see what I've done wrong exactly. Thanks everyone
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Old 09-25-2007, 03:11 AM   #8
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

Never use your wrist to put spin on the ball.
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Old 09-25-2007, 06:54 AM   #9
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

I checked out youtube and looked at a few videos that tennis coach's have posted and started messing around with my forehand stroke. I eventually found that my problem was mostly because of my keeping my wrist tight during the stroke. When I relax my wrist, I don't feel the pain. I was also constricting my shoulder movement, so freeing that up helps loosen things too.

It also appears that relaxing my wrist during the forehand shot also increases the racket speed by a lot (since when my wrist was tightened it was straining against the forward movement, and now it contributes to it).

Hopefully this knowledge might help someone with the same problem, if anyone else is stupid enough to get themselves hurt like this
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Old 09-25-2007, 09:07 AM   #10
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

Quote:
Originally Posted by TrueTheo364 View Post
I checked out youtube and looked at a few videos that tennis coach's have posted and started messing around with my forehand stroke. I eventually found that my problem was mostly because of my keeping my wrist tight during the stroke. When I relax my wrist, I don't feel the pain. I was also constricting my shoulder movement, so freeing that up helps loosen things too.

It also appears that relaxing my wrist during the forehand shot also increases the racket speed by a lot (since when my wrist was tightened it was straining against the forward movement, and now it contributes to it).

Hopefully this knowledge might help someone with the same problem, if anyone else is stupid enough to get themselves hurt like this
Yeah, I was just about to say--Glenn's advice (and everything he says is) is pretty useless. The wrist is an integral part of your stroke (the last measure of gaining racket head speed). Hopefully you found the solution, using the arm to hit the ball without the rest of your body is poor form. Also, I thought it was your index finger? Oh well, but above all, have fun with tennis
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Old 09-25-2007, 04:53 PM   #11
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

Quote:
Originally Posted by trixtah View Post
Yeah, I was just about to say--Glenn's advice (and everything he says is) is pretty useless. The wrist is an integral part of your stroke (the last measure of gaining racket head speed). Hopefully you found the solution, using the arm to hit the ball without the rest of your body is poor form. Also, I thought it was your index finger? Oh well, but above all, have fun with tennis
Not my index finger itself, but the index finger's tendon is primarily the one that is so inflamed. I think that's just because the index finger part of the hand tightens more than the other part, so it took most of the strain from holding the wrist in place.
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Old 09-25-2007, 05:00 PM   #12
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

Quote:
Originally Posted by TrueTheo364 View Post
I checked out youtube and looked at a few videos that tennis coach's have posted and started messing around with my forehand stroke. I eventually found that my problem was mostly because of my keeping my wrist tight during the stroke. When I relax my wrist, I don't feel the pain. I was also constricting my shoulder movement, so freeing that up helps loosen things too.

It also appears that relaxing my wrist during the forehand shot also increases the racket speed by a lot (since when my wrist was tightened it was straining against the forward movement, and now it contributes to it).

Hopefully this knowledge might help someone with the same problem, if anyone else is stupid enough to get themselves hurt like this
You "open" the wrist and you don't snap it during the stroke, unless you know for sure about what you're doing (you have sufficient timing to know when you can or cannot do that). The spin is generated through the upward-forward movement.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trixtah View Post
Yeah, I was just about to say--Glenn's advice (and everything he says is) is pretty useless. The wrist is an integral part of your stroke (the last measure of gaining racket head speed). Hopefully you found the solution, using the arm to hit the ball without the rest of your body is poor form. Also, I thought it was your index finger? Oh well, but above all, have fun with tennis
Go back to the kitchen, don't meddle with serious things. Let it to grown men.
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Old 09-25-2007, 08:25 PM   #13
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

Quote:
Originally Posted by GlennMirnyi View Post
Never use your wrist to put spin on the ball.
Did u mean "only" your wrist, rigth?
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Old 09-25-2007, 10:55 PM   #14
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

If you do things properly, your wrist should snap with every stroke. The reason why I got hurt was trying to stop that...
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Old 09-25-2007, 10:59 PM   #15
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Default Re: Help! My forehand is killing me

Quote:
Originally Posted by GlennMirnyi View Post
Never use your wrist to put spin on the ball.
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