Tennis is a wonderful social sport that is easy to learn, difficult to master. I will discuss the different types of shots in tennis, how they are used, and when they are used. There are eight basic types of shots in tennis: the forehand, backhand, serve, volley, half-volley, overhead, drop shot and lob.
The forehand is the most commonly used type of shot. The forehand stroke is hit with the wrist facing forward. If you are right-handed, the stroke begins on the right side. As the racket makes contact with the ball, thus hitting the ball, the racket finishes on the left side. If you are left-handed, the reverse applies.
The western grip is considered a more extreme grip that is typically used by more advanced players to hit high shops with a lot of topspin, a technique that allows players to put greater power into their shots while controlling the ball. This grip is not recommended for beginners because it is difficult to hit the ball at the right angle upon impact. The semi-western grip in between the western and eastern grip, and is used by players who want to put some topspin into their shots. The eastern grip is more conventional and is easier to hit the ball upon impact compared to the previous two mentioned grips. The continental grip is beneficial for executing a variety of shots, including the volley, overhead, serve and other ground strokes. However, a disadvantage is that it is difficult to produce power and topspin compared to other grips.
A few players use the two-handed grip for the forehand. However, this is usually reserved for the backhand stroke. A benefit of the two-handed forehand is greater power. However, it is not normally recommended because it is difficult to switch from forehand to backhand shots.
The backhand is the shot you normally use when the ball is on the opposite side of where you hit with your forehand. If you are right-handed, the racket begins from your lower right side. Upon impact with the ball, your racket continues and finishes to the left. The opposite applies if you are left-handed. Backhands are more difficult to master than the forehand.
Backhands can be done one-handed or two-handed. Backhand shots are often performed two-handed since it gives added strength to the shot than a one-handed backhand. A benefit of the one-handed backhand is that you can reach farther than if you had used a two-handed backhand.
A serve is the shot that you use to start off the game. Unlike the forehand and backhand, this shot is
The half-volley shot is similar to the volley, except it is performed right after the ball bounces on the ground. This shot is also generally performed near the net. Although this shot does not provide as much power to the shot compared to a volley, it requires greater reaction time on behalf of both players in the tennis match.
A lob shot is hit from low to high with the intent of making the ball rise high up in the air before falling deep into the opponent’s side of the court. This shot is slower than other shots, but can be effectively used as a defence mechanism to a fast shot from an opponent. It can also be used offensively to place the tennis ball where the opponent is not standing. For example, since volleys are normally performed at the net, you can perform a lob to make it harder for the opponent to have to retrieve the tennis ball.
The overhead smash works similarly to a serve, except that it is used during the match as opposed to beginning the match. This shot is typically used to finish the point by hitting the ball with great impact. The overhead is a strong response to a lob shot since a high tennis ball allows the overhead to be performed at a greater height, providing greater bounce and power to the shot.
The Drop Shot
Finally, a drop shot is a shot where the tennis ball is hit so that it just goes over the net. The ball’s path is low and short. The drop shot is a perfect response to a player that is far away from the net, since the player is forced to run right up near to the net to retrieve the tennis ball. It can also be used as a response to a player hitting volleys since the drop shot does not allow the player to hit the ball with impact.
These different types of shots in tennis shows that tennis is a complex game that has a steep learning curve. However, once you are able to master the basics, tennis is a very rewarding game that you can play for life.