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The Tennis Business Discussion Forum Archive

[tennisbiz] Re: Loop Swing vs. Straight Back Swing for Groundstrokes

From: Paul Fein <>
Date: Thu 2 Aug 2001 09:33:03 EDT

Hi Alan,

     Fellow New Englander Paul Fein here. You whipped me in three sets a
long time ago and sent me into retirement. I couldn't believe how athletic
you were.

     On all levels I have found that a straight-back forehand swing is
extremely rare, whether players are coached or self-taught. A possible
conclusion, therefore, is that it's "unnatural." I also feel that some loop
or elliptical-shaped swing tends to create topspin and prevent chopping
downward, as the player nearly always has enough time to pull it off and hit
at least level or slightly upward on the middle part of the swing and

     As a USPTA teaching pro-coach, I soon learned that was NOT true on the
Very often beginners and intermediates would run out of time and simply chop
down on the ball if they brought the racket back high on the backswing. The
results were disastrous: heavy underspin and weak shots. So I decided to
teach backhands -- then one-handed -- with a straight-back, low backswing.
Then players were infrequently late at the contact point and could easily hit
flat or even moderate topspin. It was very successful. I teach the
two-handed backhand backswing pretty much the same way. It's compact and
simple and easy to learn. I'm pleased that the resulting backhands can
generate and handle pace -- two important criteria -- and usually have
considerable control, unless the kids insist on slugging every shot.

     That has been my experience. I welcome learning about yours.


Paul Fein
Received on Thu Aug 02 2001 - 12:26:50 CDT

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