A small change to your swing to boost your accuracy
It’s just a short post today to discuss a small tip that can help you to get the ball a bit tighter to the side wall from both the front and the back of the court. Sometimes it can be hard in a match to keep straight shots tight to the side wall, especially if the tempo is high. We’ve talked before about following through with your racket beyond the point of contact, but it’s also important to note that when you play a straight shot you should try to swing outwards and away from your body slightly. Doing this, you will be swinging towards the front corner of the court on the side which you’re playing the straight shot. This causes your shot to get that little bit tighter towards the side wall, and is particularly necessary if the ball is in the middle of the court.
What is an outward swing?
The outward swing should be led by your lower arm as you follow through a shot, and should end with your racket almost pointing towards the front corner of the court at the end of the follow through. Just as you are striking the ball, control your forearm so that your hand points towards the corner as you finish striking the ball and following through your shot.
The swing’s outward direction is usually quite subtle, as if you overdo it the ball can end up hitting the side wall too early, or even hit the side wall first. Although, it might need to be less subtle if you are in a central area of the court because your opponent has played a loose shot.
It can take a little bit of practice to judge how much you need to swing your racket towards the corner. Fortunately, given the amount of straight shots we play, it’s very easy to practice swinging outwardly towards the front corner during the warm-up or knock-up, most training exercises and matches. So, make sure you have a go and see if you can use an outward follow-through to make your straight shots tighter to the side wall.