Technique & Training ideas for May

May 7, 2015 by

This month is a great opportunity to continue developing our short chip, also known as a short slice.  Roger Federer uses this shot ruthlessly to bring his opponents forward and off the court to take control of the point and to finish the point.  The short chip works equally effective in doubles play, specifically the return of serve.

 

There are a couple of things to remember and to avoid to have success with this shot.  This is very similar to a touch volley, it is important to

1. Have soft hands

2. A firm wrist

3. Pull the handle through the stroke

4. Keep the racket on the same side of your body the entire shot

5. To make contact slightly in front of your body

 

There are also a couple of common mistake, please try to avoid these pitfalls

1. Opening the racket face too much, it is best to have the racket face almost parallel with the net

2. Swinging down on the ball, it is best to have almost a flat swing keeping the racket between you shoulder and lowest rib

3. Trying to hit too hard, the slower and lower the ball is the more difficult for your opponent

4. Trying to hit with too much spin, while spin can help keep the ball low aggressive back spin can tend to pop up or sail

5. Letting the ball bounce twice in bounds, to be effective the second bounce needs to be outside of the doubles alley

To practice this shot on your own or with a friend a ball machine is a great benefit.  If you take the time to go through this drill sequence a couple of times this month I’m certain your short chip will start becoming a fun weapon to use during your league and/or tournament matches.

 

Ball Machine and Hitting LocationsDrill 1

Ball Machine: Position 2

Hitting Location: 4

Target: Box 4 blue circle

 

Drill 2

Ball Machine: Position 2

Hitting Location: 5

Target: Box 4 blue circle

 

Drill 3

Ball Machine: Position 3

Hitting Location: 2

Target: Box 1 blue circle

 

Drill 4

Ball Machine: Position 3

Hitting Location: 1

Target: Box 1 blue circle

 

Drill 5

Ball Machine: Position 1

Hitting Location: 1 (return of serve)

Target: Box 1 blue circle

 

Drill 6

Ball Machine: Position 1

Hitting Location: 5 (return of serve)

Target: Box 4 blue circle

 

If your club does not have a ball machine that can replicate the serve we have a ball machine that members and non members can rent outside of prime time hours (Monday – Thursday 6-9pm).

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