In the last blog post we talked about our 80/20 rule and ho it helps you maintain a good position, if you haven’t read it yet you can read it by clicking here. In this blog we are going to give you a few tips on how to move better at the net. This might surprise some people but its a fact: the key to tennis isn’t how well you hit the ball its how well you can move to enable you to hit the ball well. There are two types of movement at the net vertical (forward and backward) and lateral (side to side) today we are going to give you a few tips on how to improve your lateral movement with you partner. Imagine the situation: Situation 1: You have two players at the net (you and your partner) and two players at the back of the court:
  1. Be strong in the middle – to many times players leave a big gap down the middle because they are worried about being passed down the trams. Try to make sure you can reach across and tap each others rackets in one step. The majority of balls coming at you will come down the middle.
  2. Follow the line of the ball – Imagine you have a metal rod attached to both of you. If the ball goes to the player on the left you both move to the left, if it goes to the right you go to the right, you want to make sure that which ever direction you move one player moves to just inside their trams and their partner comes to just inside the centre line, try not to cross these lines.
  3. Use your advantage – If you are both right handed try to make sure if the ball comes down the middle the person with their forehand volley will take the shot.
  Situation 2: You have two players at the net (you and your partner) and one player up and one player at the back of the court:
  1. Follow the same principles as above, the only difference being that there wont be such large lateral movements to be made as the majority of volleys (except for when finishing the point) will be directed back to the baseliner.
  2. The principles are the same if you hit a good angled volley to the baseliner you both follow the ball wider, if you hit more down the middle you follow the ball back to a more central position at the net.
  Follow these three simple tips and I guarantee you that you will become impenetrable at the net, it will make it so much harder for your opponents to find gaps past you. I hope you enjoyed reading this and can take a few of these thoughts in to your next match. Tennis Holidays are a great way to make real progressions in your game, it is an intense week of learning new skills in the morning and putting them in to practise in the afternoons. Being able to play for 20 hours in one week means that you can really make changes in your game fast! Our Tennis Holidays our suitable for all levels whether you are a complete beginner through to county level players – everyone is welcome!

The Second Serve

Hi everyone and welcome to our Blog. If you have been on one of our tennis holidays you will have heard our coaches mention the dreaded ‘tennis crimes’! There are a few simple reminders that can help us all in our quest for a more consistent game. The first one we are going to talk about is the 2nd serve.

“you’re only as good as your second serve”

As the old saying goes “you’re only as good as your second serve”. If it’s weak it’s a huge opportunity for your opponent to feast upon it. Throw in a few double faults and you’re in big trouble. A solid, dependable second serve can get you out of tough situations and can even cause problems for opponents. A truly reliable second serve can allow you to enjoy the freedom of a fully aggressive first serve knowing that the trusty second serve is a rock solid back up. It really is a crucial area and the percentage of points won on the 2nd serve is a massive indicator of the match result. Roger Federer ServingSo let’s look at the crime being committed all too often on our tennis holidays. Firstly the second serve going in the net – it’s a lock up and throw away the key crime! Good flight over the net married with good spin can cause your opponent damage without risking the net. There is simply very little benefit to hitting it low over the net on a second serve – it’s an extremely high-risk strategy with a relatively low percentage reward. As tennis players on the quest for consistency, we are searching out situations where we can achieve low risk-high reward scenarios. The second serve is one such scenario.
Sharapova ServingThe stats don’t lie…. While none of the ‘big 4’ occupy the top 4 places in first serve percentage points won, they dominate the second serve percentage points won with Novak out in front. The Djokovic machine rarely makes unforced errors and many coaches and experts alike believe the key to Novak’s success is his second serve. A good second serve is almost always a spin serve. It just gives you  many more options and keeps your opponent guessing – the same way Sampras kept his opponents guessing. We must practice it guys – we now know how important this part of the game is. There is no need to be weak at the knees, trembling with every bounce of the ball – however do not neglect this area in your practice. Practice hitting targets with a good margin for error. Can you hit a second serve and make the second bounce go outside the court ? Maybe play a practice match or two only giving yourself one serve ! So…. Remember, the second serve is not our enemy it can be a great friend. Be aggressive but be aggressive with flight and spin !! If you’re on one of our holidays and we catch you hitting the net on the second serve you can expect a timely reminder that you are committing one of our most serious tennis crimes !!!! All the tennis coaches on the Active Away tennis holidays have been instructed to have their eyes on your second serves! You’ve been warned….. We are watching you !!!!!