A tip for getting an open racket face
Sometimes in coaching you hear another coach, or even someone you are teaching, explain something in a way that you’ve never thought of and the way they explain it is better than you could have put it yourself. I had one such experience recently when at a coach workshop regarding playing with an open racket face that I think is worth sharing.
Explaining how to hit the ball with an open racket face
While discussing developing an open racket face (an open racket face in squash means having the side of the racket you will strike the ball with tilted up slightly. For more information check out our page on the grip), one coach described hitting the ball with an open racket face as swinging towards the ball with the edge of your racket. I thought this phrasing offered a really clear and simple way of not only describing hitting the ball with an open racket face, but also giving listeners a clear and easy target to aim for. When hitting with an open racket face, you are swinging edge first towards the ball. Just to be clear, the ‘edge’ mentioned in this phrase is the bottom edge of the racket, which is the side of the frame that is closest to the floor when you hold the racket in your hand.
This way of visualising the swing could help you particularly if you struggle with getting the correct grip, or with hitting drop shots, lobs or getting the ball out of the back corner. These areas all rely on a strong grip and an open racket face to achieve an accurate and quality shot consistently.
If you are someone that struggles with either your grip or the idea of hitting the ball with an open racket face, see if you can use the idea of swinging with the ‘edge of your racket’ to help you achieve your aim.
Check out our other posts on racket faces, which include the importance of manipulating your racket face for different shots, how it can improve your cross-courts and its usefulness in the back corners.