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Four Common Tennis Questions Answered

Feb 25, 2008
The following are some frequently asked questions regarding various facets of the game of tennis.


Question: "Why is an expensive racquet, with frequent re-stringing necessary?"

Answer: Only in an expertly constructed racquet will you find good balance and long wearing qualities. A good racquet may be used for many years because it is strong enough to stand being re-strung. Re-stringing is well worth the price because you will get much better strokes from a tightly strung, well balanced racquet.

Question: "Why are balls considered too old to use after a few sets in a tournament?"

Answer: Although the bounce of a ball may hold up during a whole season of play, the felt cover does not. When the fuzz is worn off the cover the ball may be considered old. It becomes "light," in the sense of providing too little wind resistance and inability to take on ball spin. Thus old balls tend to sail out of the court, and to be unresponsive to the player's attempt to put topspin or sidespin on them.

Getting The Ball In Play

Question: "Why do I miss the ball or hit it on the wood of my racquet?"

Answer: Probably you are not lining up your backswing with the oncoming ball. Not only your backswing, but the actual center of your racquet must be aimed at the ball. Also, you may not be watching the ball closely enough. Test yourself by stopping your racquet as it contacts the ball so you can actually see the ball on your racquet. Thus you can figure out your difficulty and learn to aim your racquet center accurately. Unless you watch the ball closely, you may as well close your eyes - it's the same thing!

Difficulty With Height Of Bounce

Question: "I have trouble handling shoulder-high and knee-high bounces. Usually I drive the high ones into the net, and send the low ones much too high. What's wrong?"

Answer: Be careful to keep your "grooved swing." The follow through of your drive must remain shoulder-high or above in the case of both the high and low bouncing balls. It is a natural tendency to follow-through in a downward direction when hitting a high ball and to finish in a skyward direction when hitting a low ball, but don't do it!

Remember the long ball flight (70-78 feet) of the drive must be arced over the net through use of topspin. It is relatively unimportant whether the ball started at the height of two feet or five feet - the grooved swing will carry it forward in the desired trajectory.


Question: "Why is the Lob classified as an advanced stroke? I do them all the time, and find the drive much harder to learn."

Answer: The lob is a very dangerous stroke - you put yourself out on a limb when you do one. Any good player will use an overhead smash on your lobs and you won't even see the ball go by! The lob is safe to use only when the opponent is at the net, or when the player needs time to recover his court position and has his opponent in such a position that he cannot smash the lofted ball.

Question: "Why is the volley considered an advanced stroke since it is really easier to learn than the drive?"

Answer: The volley is used only in advanced tennis where net play is important. If the Volley is learned first, the player usually fails to develop good foundation strokes because his muscles get set in an elbow-bent mold from which he cannot extricate himself.

There are many more questions to be answered about tennis, but these are some of the favourites!
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