5 mental steps to hit right straight

As an apprentice tennis player I am always looking for those mental patterns that allow me to hit the ball well consistently.

Here are the mental steps to follow step by step to bring the shots correctly, shot after shot:

1) Position of feet (left forward to strike straight for right-handers) and arms (left forearm at the point of impact with the ball and right open behind);
2) Inhale, it is best to inhale before hitting the ball and exhale while hitting;
3) Drop. The drop is the moment when you put your weight on your right foot. Right now the racket is behind us and we have to start turning it face down and drop it to the ground as if we were dropping it. This is a key moment in the forehand because that's what makes the difference between making sure you bend your knees and bring your body weight to your right foot (if you are right-handed) and then pushing with your right leg.
4) Hit the ball by pushing forward
5) Close the shot over the left shoulder

During all the action you have to look at the ball in particular you have to look at a point in front of you where we will hit the ball with the racket.

1. Opening. Stance - Location

The starting position to hit straight is the one shown below, with the open legs, the weight on the right foot (for right-handed, left for left-handed), left foot better forward, right arm behind with vertical racket pointing up, and mostly left arm transverse with the left hand pointing right at shoulder height.

The movement and position of the left arm is fundamental, in practice it is the left arm that guides all the movement of the body by pointing with the left hand to the right. It is important to find a comfortable position of the left arm for hitting that does not obstruct the view of the ball.

Apertura nel dritto a tennis, Roger Federer
Opening in the tennis forehand, Roger Federer

One technique to practice, which is part of correctly setting the acceleration before impact, is to drop the racket down before starting the forward thrust.

2. Drop

The drop is the moment in which the racket is turned face down towards the ground and it is lowered simply by accompanying it in its natural descent caused by the force of gravity. If you look at the three images in sequence from preparation to drop you see that the racket descends towards the ground.

You see in Federer's last frame that the gaze is on the point of impact.

Finally, the last thing to note for now is that the head remains in its position until the stroke has been closed with the racket carried over the left shoulder. Only then can you turn your head towards the opponent's field.

3.Hit, weight on the right leg

In the next image we see Djokovic who has a very open position when he hits this forehand, but still has the weight all over his right leg, in fact the left foot is completely off the ground.

In Roger Federer's forehand we see instead that he has already carried the weight on his left leg. This is made possible by the fact that Roger had a perfect position as he was warming up, while in the competition it is more difficult to have an accurate position every time the ball is hit.

Finally, let's remember to close over the left shoulder.

Or we just close behind the left shoulder like Federer does in this training.

The video of Federer's forehand in slow motion HD is on youtube

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