My entire life changed once I discovered the true essence of the natural athlete (in all sports,) and the natural-looking tennis player. It wasn’t trying to string together countless tips, but a real study of a few basic principles. And man, was it worth it! Not only for my game but for my students, including hundreds of kids that went on to play college ball and several on the pro tour today.
Through a completely different thought process (nonlinear motion studies) doubt is gone forever and tennis has become truly fun, where I feel always in the moment and completely absorbed in what I’m doing. The thought of competition now excites me rather than creates anxiety. It’s almost as if I’ve become my own spectator. Challenge feels more like opportunity. These concepts are not foreign to the greatest of all time, ie. Federer talks about how he feels like a “spectator” when he plays, just “observing his own game” from above; and Djokovic (just after winning Wimbledon last week) talked about how his success is primarily accredited to always “being in the present moment.”
So ditch the idea that some magic “tip” will fundamentally change your serve or backhand (it won’t) and take a moment to read and learn of what will truly transform your game – and thus your life. Because let’s face it, when you’re a tennis player your entire day is affected negatively or positively by how you’re playing. Life is better when you truly love the way you play. More than just a mere win – “bragging rights” – playing a great game, where you feel you “own” it and you play as natural and confident as a fish swims, a bird flies or a virtuoso plays an instrument is truly what will make you happy.
I encourage you to see what changed my game and my life for the better and forever at www.broudytennis.com and just read the free ebook on the “3 core fundamentals of the nonlinear game.” Most of you will be surprised and encouraged to discover a true understanding of the strokes based on a geometric science – all new information. This will set you on a new path, and set you free. This non-linear understanding and instruction will move the needle!
Linear Tips vs Nonlinear Understanding
“unit turn…low to high…angular momentum…biomechanics…swing your back foot around (bad one)…rotate your shoulders…racket head speed…transfer your weight forward…two-handed backhand is a left-handed forehand…prepare early…move your feet… open stance…point your buttcap at the ball (just wrong)…stay low at contact…stand up at contact…point your elbow at the target at follow through (dumb)…recover…load up (really dumb).”
1. Understand that the 45º angle to the net is the optimal hitting point and balance point of every stroke in the game (except the “kick” serve.) Perfect in nature as it bisects the vertical and horizontal axis.
2. Your hips move in a slow and continuous figure 8 motion, leading every stroke – creating a coil and release. As in the strokes of Federer and Djokovic there are no digital abrupt motions (and no loading up!)
3. Your arms ripples off of the figure 8 hip rotation in a waveform that is beautiful, easy to reproduce, controlled, powerful and relatively effortless.
Linear Tips: “step and punch…lay wrist back…lock arm straight…block…short swing…no swing…” (Other than these pros have basically given up on teaching the volley.)
1. The 45º angle to the net is the optimal contact and balance point for every volley
2. The volley is a body shot – not a punch – initiated in your core (hips)
3. There should be a roundness “convex” in your arm at contact. Curved is stronger than straight, as in architecture.
“toss higher…toss lower…use your legs (push up into ball)… lift your elbow higher in backswing…bend your knees more…face the net on the follow through (bad one)…snap your wrist…serve is all arm (dumb)…all legs…trophy pose (misleading)…back scratcher (oldie but goodie)…loose arm…swing your racket up and out (???)…practice tossing with your arm as a lever (terrible tip)…pinpoint stance…wide stance…”
1. Line up the 45º and stay lined up throughout the contact – balanced on the 45º to the net
2. The tossing and hitting arms are inter-related throughout the stroke. The tossing arm cannot be isolated from the hitting arm or from the body. The toss actually plays off of the hips of a good player.
3. Wind (through hips) and unwind completely, letting the racket trail and build momentum throughout the serve. Fluidity and balance are key ingredients to a big serve.
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