Ten Tennis Singles Tips

Using directional concepts and percentage tennis guidelines.

  1. Serve cross court to set up open court, serve the middle to reduce angles. The cross court serve usually sets up a cross court rally. Develop the slice serve to keep the ball height down. When kicking a ball, make sure it has pace as well. Tossing less behind head will help with this. The slice and flat serves should be hit at 1 o’clock.
  2. Return of wide serves should be hit cross court. Middle serves more down the middle or down the line. If returning serve is tough, consider backing up and punch slicing returns off either wing, keeping the ball height down. Another technique is to take little backswing and follow-through with a mini-drive.
  3. When hitting approach shots, be selective depending upon the passing ability of your opponent. If the court were divided into thirds, from net to baseline, only hit an approach shot in your lane or one lane over. This ensures you can cover the pass. A cross court approach can be done if you are following up a winner, and your opponent has little chance. This strategy also applies to approach volleys, serve approaches, and return of serve approaches.
  4. Lobs should be hit whenever you are being attacked by a tough forcing shot or net rusher, and you are not comfortable hitting a passing shot because you are pinned back typically outside the baseline. Aim high and deep cross court to allow time to recover.
  5. Passing shots, i.e. topspin lobs, low dipping topspins or slices, can be hit when you are inside the baseline and your opponent has secured the net. Your strategy is to make the volleyer hit up to create another passing opportunity or go over the head to take them off the net, at which point you may approach the net.
  6. Drop shot when your opponent is back far and you have a shorter ball inside the court. If their ball isn’t that short, stay back. If it is real short, you may approach on your drop shot using the approach shot guidelines.
  7. During deep baseline rallys, hit cross court because of lower net, more court, natural rotation of hips, and less recovery to middle of court.
  8. If you receive a short ball you may go down the line or approach depending upon your ability, the shot and your opponent’s ability.
  9. Using an inside forehand or backhand is useful for controling the center of the court with natural rotation of the hips.
  10. When evaulating an opponent, find what they are least good at and make them try to beat you with that weakness, while at the same time using shots you know you can execute.

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