Forehand Lessons for Intermediate Players
As you make the transition from being a beginner to an intermediate tennis player, your skill-set and repertoire of shots should develop and become bigger. A great way to expand the number of shots you can play, is by practicing the following forehand lessons for intermediate players, which will really add something extra to your game.
The Dreaded Topspin Lob
A shot which is often over-looked by players when learning the game, is the lob shot. The forehand topspin lob can be a deadly weapon during a tennis match and can win a significant number of points. It’s also a great way to keep your opponent guessing because if they know you can play a good forehand topspin lob, they will start questioning whether they should be coming into the net or staying back.
To play the forehand topspin lob, you need to generate a lot of topspin. The best way to apply plenty of topspin to the tennis ball, is by getting the racket head to drop significantly lower than the height of the ball, than you would when playing a standard forehand shot. The path of the racket, from the back swing, through to contacting the ball, should be a much steeper swing, than any other type of forehand shot you play. Practice this a few times, without using a ball, to get an idea of how this feels. Once you are happy, stand about a few feet behind the baseline and have a partner hit a nice shot towards you, so it bounces between the service box and the baseline and hit the ball, using this technique.
If you wish, you can set up a camera and review your racket and body position. During the swing, as the racket moves in to contact the ball, the head of the racket should be no higher than your knee. This is a good guideline to use when practicing the forehand topspin lob shot.
Having got a feel of what it is like to play the forehand topspin lob, you will need to work on the way you finish the shot. After contacting the ball, you need your finish to be slightly higher than normal. In fact, the racket should be pointing directly behind you, with your upper arm just under the level of chin and close to touching it.
This is not a simple technique to master but forehand lessons for intermediate players are never going to be easy and picked up in seconds. They take practice and this forehand topspin lob technique, will take practice until it is perfected.
The forehand topspin lob is an attacking shot and this makes a difference when using it during a match. The forehand topspin lob does not generate as much loft on the ball as a defensive lob shot. Therefore, the opponent needs to be at least between the service line and net, for the forehand topspin lob to become an option. If the opponent is any further back than that, there will not be enough room on the court, to make the shot.
Take the same position as you did when practising the shot as described above and ask your playing partner to hit the ball to your forehand side and advance towards the net. Ask them to vary how close they go to the net, as this will help in your judgement of whether to play the forehand topspin lob shot.
This is perhaps one of the tougher forehand lessons for intermediate players but having the forehand topspin lob in your locker, will create a whole new dynamic to the way you play against opponents who like to come to the net.
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