Is the follow through replacing backswing?
In this post, I will discuss a small technical point which I believe can improve almost all shots for players of all abilities in squash, which does sound like a bold statement to make.
When you strike the ball, check whether your hand goes beyond the ball. If your follow through is really long enough, your hand should go beyond where the contact with the ball took place. If the ball had co-ordinates in time and space, your hand would need to go beyond this point.
If you make this subtle yet significant change to your follow through, you should notice significant improvement in your ball control, particularly when playing from the back of the court, although I have also found it very useful while volleying and playing touch shots, such as the drop and drop volley, as well.
There is always time to follow through a shot though and so the follow through is almost consuming the backswing in the modern game.”
One professional player who does this particularly well is Mohamed El Shorbagy. At times, his backswing is nearly non-existent. His follow through though is phenomenal and allows him to get superb power and control.
Greater emphasis on the follow through is something that seems to be happening at the top level of the game and is something that can also be applied at club level. With the game becoming faster and faster, there simply isn’t the same time to prepare the racket and get a perfect backswing.
There is always time to follow through a shot though and so the follow through is almost consuming the backswing in the modern game.
Once you get comfortable with letting your hand go beyond the ball more (and if you get any improvement!), see if you can begin to hit your shots quicker by replacing some of your backswing with this extended follow through. After a bit of practice, it will allow you to execute your shots quicker which is exactly what you need for taking the ball earlier. With this extended follow through, you can move higher up the court and hit the ball higher up the court, thereby applying more pressure to your opponent by reducing the time between your shots and increasing the pace of the game.
Try it out! It’s such a small change but one that can revolutionise your game and ball control.