How to play a Straight Drive shot in squash
The Straight Drive is the most common shot in the game and it’s played in order to get the ball to the back of the court and your opponent away from the T-Position.
The Straight Drive is usually played at a mid to low height and hit hard in order to force the opponent and the ball into the back corners and away from the middle of the court. The battle for supremacy of the T-Position is the reason the Drive is played so frequently because when it is played well, the Drive enables the player to put themselves in a better position.
This jostling and fighting for the T-Position is the reason you often see players playing a series of Straight Drives, as both look for any hint of a weak length from their opponent that they can seize upon and attack with a short or aggressive shot.
A good Straight Drive should stay as tight as possible to the side wall and bounce twice just as it hits the back wall, so that it doesn’t come back off the back wall and allow an easier shot for your opponent.
Play a good straight drive in three quick steps:
- Face side wall as you hit the shot – It is easiest to play a Straight Drive when you are facing the nearest side wall, as this helps to keep the ball tight to the side wall. You will see players playing it whilst facing the front wall and this can be beneficial at times but it reduces your control, so make sure you can play a good Drive from a side-on position before you attempt this.
- High to high swing – Bring the racket up as you prepare to hit the ball so that you have a long backswing, giving your swing more power. Make sure that your follow-through is also long as well, with the racket ending high as well as starting high.
- Foot forward – On the Forehand side, it is recommended you have your left foot forward and on the Backhand side your right foot forward. Like facing the side wall, you will see players using different feet or even having their feet together and again this can be beneficial in many situations. However, when first learning the game, using the correct foot when leading does help to keep the body in the right place, which is important when you are looking to develop good basic technique.
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