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The Tennis Business Discussion Forum Archive

[tennisbiz] Swinging volley revisited

From: Scott R. Stacey <>
Date: Wed 24 Apr 2002 18:37:09 -0400

A while back, there was a thread about the swinging volley, pros and cons.

One writer said something that has just recently crept back into my
thoughts, and I feel deserves some discussion. The
remark was that the swinging volley was a "high risk, high reward" shot and
should be used by aggressive players.

Setting aside the questionable value of the shot itself, the key here is
"high risk, high reward".

As coaches, teaching professionals, touring professionals, etc, we need to
be very careful in the way we evaluate the game
we teach, and also careful in the way we teach students to think about
tennis. We need to ESPECIALLY careful about using
buzz-words and psycho-babble.

In the example of the swinging volley, what is the risk versus the reward?
We are talking about one point won, or one point
lost. There is certainly no higher reward in the swinging volley. If it is
hit successfully, the player wins one point.
There are no "style points" nor "degree of difficulty" factors.

However, when we look at risk, the odds of success at winning the one point
do change with the aggressiveness of the shot
used. More aggressive shots, I am pretty sure we would all agree, carry a
lower chance of success than a more conservative
approach. (I am, of course, for simplicity assuming that the shot is a clear
winner/put-away.) In this instance, there is
obviously nothing to gain by a more aggressive shot, except a higher chance
of missing it.

But my basic point is the way we teach students to view the game through the
use of slang, buzz words and the like. Let us
not lower tennis to the levels of other sports for the sake of flash,
showmanship and things that have nothing to do with
tennis. Let's teach the game as it is - one of the last sports that expects
(virtually requires) honesty and a true sense
of sportsmanship in order for it to be played correctly.

Received on Wed Apr 24 2002 - 22:12:03 CDT

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