Basic Tennis Shots

If you want to become a professional tennis player, you must learn the basic shots. There are over 30 types of tennis shots to play in different game situations. However, the forehand shot is the most widely used in tennis, with a ball going from your backhand towards your opponent’s front area.

A backhand takes place when a player hits a ball from their right hand with an upward trajectory to their opponent’s back area. The backhand is normally done from their left side, coming from behind the court.

An Intro To Different Tennis Shots

The variety of shots is not a limited concept as they vary vastly across each player. A new shot is invented whenever a player tries a shot holding a different grip. However, the basic shots of tennis remain the same. These basic tennis shots can be divided into Forehand, Serves, Volleys, Backhand, etc. All these shots are briefly detailed here.

  • Serve

Serve means hitting a ball from your dominant hand to the opponent’s court. The serve is regarded as the most important shot in both men’s and women’s games. It is one of the serviceable shots where you can hit it as high or low as you wish.

Another thing is that you can do several things with your serve – to drive it high or low, spin it, slow it down or speed it up, and so on. It gives you the upper hand while starting a set and gives you direction to your game as per your choice. Serve technically means starting a new set. Thus you can understand how important it is to start on a good note.

  • Volley
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It is a shot used when the player hits short groundstrokes – mainly flat bounces up to 30 cm long. The ball goes high (up to 30 cm) into the air when hit with a flat trajectory. Volleys are usually made from the backcourt (opponent’s side) to the frontcourt. A high-speed groundstroke is performed when your opponent is not ready to hit the ball.

It is possible to hit volleys with both forehands and backhands. The angle at which you hit these shots depends upon your position on the court – whether you are at the baseline or behind it, or even near your opponent’s side of the court. By following the proper groundstroke technique, you can easily gain expertise at volleys.

  • Half volleys

You can judge by its name that a Half-Volley is the advanced version of a normal volley shot. You hit this shot when you have time to decide its direction. A half volley is performed when you hit a wide-open shot to the opponent’s backcourt. It is quite similar to a volley, but you need to keep an extra distance between your ball and your opponent’s. The angle of the volley at which you hit this shot depends upon your position on the court. Whether you are at the baseline or behind it or even near your opponent’s side of the court, you can easily execute half-volley.

  • Backhand
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The backhand shot is a defensive shot where you hit a ball that goes down towards your opponent’s body while he or she attempts to shoot the ball to you. The player hitting this shot is called the “backhand side .”The most common uses of the backhand shots are to counter-attack after being attacked or carve out an angle on a winning pass. You can easily penetrate off lob or surprise an opponent by setup for your forehand shots on return. Having a stronghold on backhand shots can do great magic for you.

  • Forehand

The forehand shot is a forward drive when you hit the ball to your opponent’s court with most of your power. Two different types of forehands are used – one is called the “lifting,” and the other is called “hard-to-hit .”For example, you lift a ball high, and it lands on the net. It is also called a “gift .”Another way to hit these balls is to strike them into the opponent’s court at their shoulder or neck area because they will be surprised. You can also hit your forehand with techniques like Serves. It allows you to execute slow or fast serves depending upon how powerful you are hitting them.

  • Slice

The slice is a backhand shot performed by slicing the ball from above your neck down towards your backcourt (opponent’s side). It is often used after hitting a backhand shot called “defender’s response” or “counter-attack” and gives you a free passing opportunity. By using a slice, you can hit a backhand shot that’s usually very low and lets the ball land in your opponent’s backcourt. As a result, your opponent will have to hit the ball again, giving you enough time to get into the court and set up advantage shots.

  • Backhand Slice
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Also known as a “reverse slice,” it is a high, hard one-handed swing that looks like a forehand. The objective of the backhand slice is to hit the ball deep into the opponent’s court. The backhand slice can also be used when you need to counter-attack after being attacked or carve out an angle on a winning pass. Backhand slices are compatible with both one-handed and two-handed backhand grips. It is majorly used as an alternative to the topspin shot played with a one-handed grip.

  • Smash

A smash is generally a shot hit with an overhead swing at the ball. This can be done from a deep or close to the net position. Smash shots are used to clear deep balls, hit flat winners, and change the momentum of a game. You can hit them at any court point, but most players use this shot from the backcourt. These are heavy reply options, used mostly when a player is frustrated by the play and wants to make a strong comeback.

  • Drop shot

The drop shot is one of the most deceptive shots in tennis. You hit it when your opponent least expects it to land inside the court on their side of the net. Therefore, it requires a lot of precision and deftness against opponents aware of it.

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The drop shot is mostly used on clay, but many players use it on hard surfaces. This shot is most effective when your opponent is standing far behind in the backline of their court. The drop shot is usually done with a forehand, deep in the backcourt, that bounces very low, making it difficult for your opponent to reach it.

  1. The lob

When you forcefully drive a ball into an opponent’s court that bounced very high in the air, it is called lobby professionals. These are high-speed groundstrokes performed when your opponent is either ready or not ready to hit the ball. You hit this shot when you have time to decide its direction.

It is quite similar to a volley, but you need to keep an extra distance between your ball and your opponent’s. The angle of the volley at which you hit this shot depends upon your position on the court – whether you are at the baseline or behind it, or even near your opponent’s side of the court.

What Are Fantastic Four Shots In Tennis?                    

Fantastic four is a name given to the four most commonly used and effective tennis shots. These are four types of shots used in the game of tennis by professional players. All these four shots are described here.

  • Topspin – This shot allows the ball to move forward while still rotating shapely, which causes a sharp turn on landing. It makes it uneven for the player to tackle it without being unbalanced. The rotation on the ball produces a force acting in the downward direction, causing a sudden drop in the ball while it still lands inside the court.
  • Backspin – This shot is an excellent strategy against an opponent’s strong serve, and it often produces a shallow bounce inside the baseline. It also produces a slow flight of the ball. This serves two purposes for the player – first, it gives him or her time to adjust to the ball being much slower, and second, it makes it difficult for your opponent to return or make a good placement.
  • Slices – A slice is a backhand that’s swung and hit in an arc shape. When you hit a slice, the ball has a downward trajectory over the net. The spin given to it causes it to land on the opposite side of your opponent’s court with less bounce. Slices are often used to change the direction and depth of your shot while returning serves or even while making passing shots.
  • Serve – A powerful hit at the beginning of each point. You attempt to put the ball in your opponent’s court by using any of these – fast serve, kick serve, slice serve, or topspin serve – but only when you are in front or on your side of the court.
What Is The Hardest Stroke To Learn In Tennis?

These shots are an integral part of tennis. It is an essential yet demanding component in any sports game. This skill requires you to possess a lot of talent, accuracy and especially positioning while hitting back the ball towards your opponent’s court (opponent’s side). It gives you a chance to win either by gaining more time or forcing the opponent out of position.

Tips To Play A Great Tennis Game

You can see tennis is a sport with a lot of competition, but it can also be a very fun sport to play. When you develop and master the basics of playing the game, you will find it more enjoyable than ever before. The following tips can help beginners, and new players start on the court.

  • Form Your Game Plan

Before you head out on the court, sit down and make a game plan that covers your strengths and weaknesses, as well as those of your opponent. In addition, you will need to know how many games you need to win in order to secure victory in the contest. Wear comfortable and loose-fitting clothing, so you can move easily around the court and not be restricted. In addition, you will be more at ease if you wear clothing that enhances your movement and breathing – the last thing you want is an uncomfortable costume when you are playing tennis.

  • Keep Your Eye On The Ball
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Tennis requires concentration, so you must keep your eye on the ball at all times. Track its movement as it crosses the net, keeping yourself prepared to respond to any changes in direction or speed. When playing and practicing your shot, learn to keep your eye on the ball as long as possible before reacting with a swing or stroke of your racquet. Before you swing at the ball, make sure you have accounted for every movement needed to respond to it properly. This will help you stay focused and relaxed as well. Stay in control of your game at all times, so you can move more freely and play with confidence.

  • Be Prepared For Anything

Keep yourself mentally prepared for any situation during a tennis match. Likely, even your best-planned shots will not always pan out as expected. When this happens, be ready to adapt to what is happening on the court, think on your feet, and respond correctly to changing situations. Tennis is a social game, so get a partner to play it. Having a friend to help you learn and improve your game will make the process more fun. You can also help your partner by offering tips and advice as you gain experience playing the sport.

  • Warm-Up
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Most tennis matches are played with intensity, so you must warm-up before every match. This will help your muscles work to their maximum efficiency and prepare you for each point played during the contest. You will start noticing great improvement in your game once you start warming up before every game. When you warn up, your body opens up and muscles start working up with great functionality.

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