CHECK YOUR GRIPS IN THE “HIT SPOT” (2)

The most irrefutable physical law in tennis is that “the ball will be
directed where you point the racquet at the moment the strings meet the
ball.” This sounds simple enough, but it is a fundamental that is often
overlooked by a beginner who is trying to think of ten things at once.
As a tennis instructor, one can heighten the class’s attention with the
mere suggestion of the proper backhand grip discussion. Almost
immediately, pupils will pick up their racquets and search for this mystic
grip that will cure their frustrating backhand problem. While no grip will
atone for poor position or improper hit spot, an understanding that grip
change reinforces wrist strength is essential.
No matter how one explains this necessity, students have a period in
when the decisions concerning which way and how much the hands turn
are confusing. The same is true of all grips when one progresses to the
point that all strokes have been explained. To cope with this indecision, a
teacher can facilitate grip change understanding by having students check
their grips in the various hit spots.
Thus constant concentration. It is like a golfer putting; he must watch the
ball but intensely concentrate on the cup. Only tennis players move too!
While this seems obvious to parents, juniors may neither understand it,
nor understand how it breaks down under pressure or adversity. Perhaps
beginners would do well to concentrate on only one target. If nine of ten
players are right-handers and the majority of these are weaker on the
backhand side, then concentrating on this target alone makes a junior
strategically sound up to a surprisingly high level.
If tennis is the “ability to hit a changing target while moving and under
stress,” then moving and concentrating are the core of the game.
Parents—you are right, but you need to explain yourselves!Most beginners tend to check their grips in the ready, or waiting, position. By checking grips in the hit spot a beginner can immediately relate grips and their relationship to “the most irrefutable physical law in tennis.” One also can more easily ascertain the value of proper grip to
wrist reinforcement.

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