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    1. Top | #1
      pingpongpaddy is offline
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      Practice:- What are Your Ideas?

      I think this is an underrated topic in our thinking about improving our game.

      Here is some advice from a master in his field. Its worth listening to what he says even if the field is quite different from tt.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IVfEsbGtPlQ
      Last edited by pingpongpaddy; 04-06-2020 at 11:36 AM.
      ppp

      bh
      spinpips chop2
      yinhe ayous wood 1 ply
      fh
      max moristo sp

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    3. Top | #2
      pingpongpaddy is offline
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      larry and red

      I like this one.
      Larry Bird and Red Auerbach show us how they have studied every little detail of things which we take for granted when we watch them play https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nzI5O3OWvdk
      Last edited by pingpongpaddy; 04-08-2020 at 01:10 PM.

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    5. Top | #3
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    6. Top | #4
      UpSideDownCarl is online now
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      Great subject.

      This is one of my favorite videos about the theoretical side of practice. I post it quite often. It seems to fit the context of a lot of posts I see where people are trying to discus ways to practice and drills for practicing. It is not on any sport specifically. But the theory underlying this video can be applied to any and all sports.



      This video gets at the heart of the subject of when a player is asking, "how come I can do this really well in practice but cannot transfer those skills into match play."
      Last edited by UpSideDownCarl; 04-09-2020 at 01:57 AM.
      Spin Everything.

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    8. Top | #5
      pingpongpaddy is offline
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      regular versus random drills- be more flexible

      Quote Originally Posted by UpSideDownCarl View Post
      Great subject.

      This is one of my favorite videos about the theoretical side of practice. I post it quite often. It seems to fit the context of a lot of posts I see where people are trying to discus ways to practice and drills for practicing. It is not on any sport specifically. But the theory underlying this video can be applied to any and all sports.



      This video gets at the heart of the subject of when a player is asking, "how come I can do this really well in practice but cannot transfer those skills into match play."
      this is a key point in how to help players to improve.
      in tt we have regular and random drills. Most coaches give regular drills to beginner students and only give random to the pupils who have "mastered" the regular drill. But i have found introducing random at an earlier phase is very beneficial, especially for those weaker pupils who are struggling to master the simple drill. I think doing the advanced drill is a way of boosting the weaker pupils ability and confidence with the basic drill. whereas if they just slave away polishing the basics before moving onto advanced progress is slower. So the lesson is to teach the basics but introduce challenges frequently and as early as possible. This is more exciting for the pupil and closer to actual match play

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    10. Top | #6
      Kuba Hajto is offline
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      So the best approach would be to make use of both? To include both block and random drills in the same session? We live in a funky time with this corona situation, we might have a limited training possibility and yet we still want to improve. Doing block drills is not that hard, you either drop the ball on the table and hit it when it bounces back or cut it and in comes back with topspin (towards player). But doing random drills would be harder, even if I would change the position with every ball it would not have the "planning" and "expecting" portion mentioned in the video posted by Carl... A good substitute would be a second person, but since we are isolating..

    11. Top | #7
      pingpongpaddy is offline
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      Quote Originally Posted by Kuba Hajto View Post
      So the best approach would be to make use of both? To include both block and random drills in the same session? We live in a funky time with this corona situation, we might have a limited training possibility and yet we still want to improve. Doing block drills is not that hard, you either drop the ball on the table and hit it when it bounces back or cut it and in comes back with topspin (towards player). But doing random drills would be harder, even if I would change the position with every ball it would not have the "planning"
      and "expecting" portion mentioned in the video posted by Carl... A good substitute would be a second person, but since we are isolating..
      i think we can call a regular drill like falkenberg the equivalent of a block drill, or even just 2 fh spaced apart to bh block.
      the moment you change them by introducing say, a 'surprise ball' different placement then you introduce a degree of randomness. its up to us to be as inventive as possible in mixing regular and random in all the drills we do.

      however i am sorry this thread is aimed more at what we can do when we get back to normal
      Last edited by pingpongpaddy; 04-09-2020 at 01:52 PM.

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    13. Top | #8
      yogi_bear is offline
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      Quote Originally Posted by pingpongpaddy View Post
      this is a key point in how to help players to improve.
      in tt we have regular and random drills. Most coaches give regular drills to beginner students and only give random to the pupils who have "mastered" the regular drill. But i have found introducing random at an earlier phase is very beneficial, especially for those weaker pupils who are struggling to master the simple drill. I think doing the advanced drill is a way of boosting the weaker pupils ability and confidence with the basic drill. whereas if they just slave away polishing the basics before moving onto advanced progress is slower. So the lesson is to teach the basics but introduce challenges frequently and as early as possible. This is more exciting for the pupil and closer to actual match play
      I would agree on this. Some coaches would not introduce a random drill until maybe a full month of training but ylu can actually tone down a random fh-bh drill into a random 2 ball drill or a random drill with a longer interval for the player to prepare.

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    15. Top | #9
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      ==========
      A different view!
      +======+===

      Jimmy connors
      How to Get the Most Out of Practice Sessions (pages 174-176)

      I've never been one to go out every day and hit crosscourt forehands for 10 minutes, crosscourt backhands for another 10 and so on through all the strokes... I would much rather go out, hit a few balls to loosen up and then say to my practice partner, "Serve them up. Let's play!"
      ...On the day of a match, I'll go out in the morning and practice for about 40 minutes. That's all. I'll play a practice set or two with another player and then quit...
      During weeks when I'm off, I'll usually play sets for a couple of hours a day. If I can't find another touring pro to practice with, that's when I'll try to hit with a teaching pro. For example, when I lived in North Miami Beach, Fla., I'd occasionally work out with Fred Stolle, the former Australian tennis star.
      ...there is a way to incorporate some practice into your playing time without resorting to structured drills.
      How? By picking out a weak link of your game and orking on it as you play...
      In short, set a specific objective for yourself before you walk on court. There's not much pressure on you to win and the added challenge is likely to make the game even more exciting. I'm certain you'll also raise the level of your play simply by working toward a goal...


      Last edited by pingpongpaddy; 04-09-2020 at 02:02 PM.

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    17. Top | #10
      UpSideDownCarl is online now
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      Quote Originally Posted by pingpongpaddy View Post



      ==========
      A different view!
      +======+===

      Jimmy connors
      How to Get the Most Out of Practice Sessions (pages 174-176)

      I've never been one to go out every day and hit crosscourt forehands for 10 minutes, crosscourt backhands for another 10 and so on through all the strokes... I would much rather go out, hit a few balls to loosen up and then say to my practice partner, "Serve them up. Let's play!"
      ...On the day of a match, I'll go out in the morning and practice for about 40 minutes. That's all. I'll play a practice set or two with another player and then quit...
      During weeks when I'm off, I'll usually play sets for a couple of hours a day. If I can't find another touring pro to practice with, that's when I'll try to hit with a teaching pro. For example, when I lived in North Miami Beach, Fla., I'd occasionally work out with Fred Stolle, the former Australian tennis star.
      ...there is a way to incorporate some practice into your playing time without resorting to structured drills.
      How? By picking out a weak link of your game and orking on it as you play...
      In short, set a specific objective for yourself before you walk on court. There's not much pressure on you to win and the added challenge is likely to make the game even more exciting. I'm certain you'll also raise the level of your play simply by working toward a goal...


      This is really a great quote.

      ==

      Next thought, related subject:

      I have a friend who is the head coach of a college tennis team. He is a guy I love to train with. He is a lefty. As a result of training with him, I got very used to playing vs left handed players. Something that I saw bothered a lot of higher level players was the lefty hook. Because I trained so much with this guy, I was very able to handle the lefty hooks of a few much higher rated left handed players to an extent where one of them said to me, "a lot of players have trouble with my loop. You don't, can you tell me why?" When I explained how I train with a left handed player who has a pretty good hook, it made sense to him. I actually remember a point where I could not really see or judge where the ball was when my friend was looping. And, in training with this guy so much, I remember my brain putting the pieces of the puzzle together and starting to be able to see exactly where the ball would be as he contacted the ball. Seeing the side/top ratio of spin just from his racket's contact. Our brains are interesting and practice really helps.

      Anyway, this guy, the lefty tennis coach, one time he said to me: In tennis, matches are more fun and training is not. In table tennis, training is more fun and matches are full of quick setup and kill scenarios, so not as fun in a certain way.

      I agree with the TT part and I also disagree. But it was an interesting comment. And I think Tennis lends itself to using match play scenarios for training and TT, there are so many skills you should develop that there is no real end to non match drill scenarios.

      However, I still like match simulation drill scenarios. They are one of the things I most like to do for training.

      ==

      Next thought: related to the last paragraph of the previous.

      There are so many ways to wrinkle in a little bit of random into any block training. Block training is valuable and needed in TT. But sometimes it is overdone. Part of why block training is so essential in TT in a way it is not as needed in other sports is how complicated the quickness and closeness of the opponent, which makes it much easier for good form to break down in pressure situations. So, in TT, it can take longer to really groove good form into muscle memory so it does not break down when you have to read how to respond to different, awkward shots that expose a vulnerability.

      ==

      Next thought, again related.

      I used a lot of shadow training, shadow strokes, shadow stroke/footwork drills to help cement decent form into my strokes. This was not as necessary for my BH. My FH was a mess for a long time so I had to do a lot to first fix and then keep good form for my FH. For this I also used a robot and self hitting drills. I will post a self hitting video in a separate post.

      For my BH, the thing I needed to train into my BH was spin contact instead of direct contact. For that I used self hitting drills mostly.

      ==

      Next thought:

      A huge part of effective training is figuring out what you need to work on and improve. Without an idea of that, you can end up looking great in practice without being able to handle what happens when you are playing against someone who is trying NOT to let you return the ball.

      ==

      Last thought for this post:

      I have a friend I used to train with. I learned a lot from him. NextLevel and Der_Echte will enjoy hearing this. It was Smash_Fan. Back, when the only person doing this was ZJK, he had me work on serve and receive training drills where, no matter what he served, I had to attack. Then we would play out the point.

      We also would play matches where, as part of the training he would switch on and off from defensive play to offensive play. When he played defense he would throw me all kinds of junk balls. Totally weird junk. Stuff that happens when you play a lower level player and they accidentally return something without knowing how they got the ball on the table.

      When you are a certain level, those balls drive you crazy because you are not ready for them and don't know what to do with them.

      As a result of how he would change styles, it really improved my ability to read what was coming and respond creatively instead of getting caught off guard. This may have caused me to improve more than almost anything else I can think of.

      The most interesting thing is, Smash_Fan was working on something while we were doing those crazy training matches. And I saw that, when he used that switching from offense to defense randomly in matches against pretty high level players, it actually was effective at messing up their rhythm to enough of an extent that, if the opponent was on a role it shifted the momentum of the match. Just making things weird and less predictable, made it harder for his opponent, and even just a hair harder can give you an edge in match strategy.

      ==

      So, as many different ways of training as you can come up with, particularly if they serve to strengthen a weakness that you need to work on, is really helpful.

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    19. Top | #11
      UpSideDownCarl is online now
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      Self hitting:

      With a bucket of balls and a table, you can accomplish a lot. Not just serve practice.



      I used this drill to help fix the form of my FH. In the video I am making deep contact while spinning the ball. But you can also use this to get used to thinner spin contact by touch the ball more delicately. So, you can work on touch and feel with this also.

      I did use this self hitting method to work on delicate brush contact on my BH.

      Since so many of us, all over the world, are in shelter at home type social distancing scenarios, that would be something you could do without a robot or a training partner.

      A key element is, I let the ball bounce 2x. This lets you set. If it only bounces once, you will have to rush. It also lets you respond as though the ball is coming from the other side. If you notice as I bounce the ball, it bounces towards me, not straight up and down. Another thing is, I try to make the ball bounce low. Like if the bounce is net height or lower, you need to spin the ball to arc it over the net. That is valuable if you are working on increasing spin on your loops.

      For FH this needs to be done from the BH side with your body to the side of the table. The reason is, the ball is bouncing on the table. So your shot is an over the table shot. If you were in the center of the table, the table would be in the way of positioning yourself so you can get your body behind the ball.

      With BH, you can do this anywhere on the table because with BH the backswing is much shorter and it is easy to curl your body over the table and make a shot without dropping the racket below the table.

      If you were self hitting FH flip kills, you can do that from anywhere on the table because the backswing should not go lower than the table.

      ==

      Shadow Drills:







      These kinds of things definitely helped me get upper and lower body independence/coordination in footwork/stroke combinations. And I can remember starting to feel when, in match play footwork just started happening automatically without me thinking about it on certain shots. I also remember feeling my feet squeaking on the ground on certain footwork during matches where, I knew the footwork just fell into place.

      Different ladder footwork drills also are really useful to practice.

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    21. Top | #12
      pingpongpaddy is offline
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      ok this is not strictly practice but i include it because Borg has such an original view of the dynamics of the most effective approach to the game.
      "my life and game' bjorn borg
      HTML Code:
      Chapter 6 Myths (pages 117-124):
      
          I have broken nearly every rule recommended by instruction books over the past fifty years. For example, the normal advice on where to stand when returning service is a foot beyond the base line. And, when receiving a second serve, a foot inside the base line. Anyone who has seen me play knows I don't do this. Not even close.
          I postion myself as much as ten feet past the base line, and when Roscoe Tanner is serving, I retreat even further back. The reason? I want to get the longest look possible at a hard serve. I need ample time to sight the direction of delivery, then wind up and swing at the ball.
          ...My idea is to get every single service return back so as to pressure the net man into missing. Because my goal is not to hit instant winners, there is no burden on me in returning serve...
          The result is that I end up hitting more outright winners on return of serve than anyone else on the pro tour...
          I return every serve. This both annoys and surprises my opponents...
          Sure, there is a "give-up" in standing back--an opponent might exploit the angles of a wide serve, but the benefits of having more time, in my opinion, far outweigh the risks...
          My game is different. It is based on patience. Not attack. But my top-spin drives prevent opponents from attacking, because I have enough control to shoot my ground strokes from side to side. If an opponent decides to come to net behind a less-than-perfect approach, he is playing into my strength, dipping passing shots...
          Another example of my ignoring standard instruction is my postion during a ralley. Most "experts" recommend that forehands and backhands should be tackled from approximately two feet behind the base line. I double and sometimes triple that. Why? Because the exchange of ground strokes is a game of attrition. If the base-line style is played properly, no one hits a winner from the back court.
          If I strike a ball that lands a foot from my opponent's base line, it's an accident, because I'm only aiming for two yards past the service box--for security [that is 12 feet in front of the baseline]. My ground strokes are so wristy that it would be impossible for me to control a ball regularly that's aimed for the base line. I do get depth, however, by using murderous top spin, which carries the ball deep into the back court after the bounce. In this fashion I achieve both depth and margin for error.
          It's all possible because of my "crazy" western forehand grip and wristy two-handed backhand, both of which force me to hit with exaggerated overspin. Violent top spin is my trademark, and I hadn't had the courage to improvise when I was young, and shatter the conventional beliefs about grips and depth, I might still be struggling through the qualifying rounds at Wimbledon rather than shooting for a string of successive titles.
      
      Chapter 7 Getting the Ball Over the Net (pages 128-145):
       My grips are anything but standard. I use the western grip for my forehand, which is rare among the pros. For the backhand I have the more accepted eastern, though my application is different from the norm; I drop my wrists so the racquet head is below the level of my hand. The racquet for my return of service rests in the backhand grip, and for all other strokes, forehand volley, backhand volley, serve and overhead, I use the continental grip.
          It is very important to hit the ball well in front of your hips. You can't see the ball properly if you let it get past your body... Yet, on the volley don't hit as far out in front as the books say. Hold your racquet 'way in front of you and see how flimsy it is. A ball hitting in this position would receive no power. Now put your racquet just slightly in front, with your elbow pushed into your side, and feel the power and leverage.
      
      BACKHAND
          I have to prepare earlier and bend my knees more on the two-handed shot than on my one-handed forehand.
      
          I place my right hand on the racquet as if the stroke were a standard one-handed eastern backhand. The left hand is placed above the right in a position in which I could hit a choked-up left-handed western forehand if I took my right hand away. I bring the racquet back slightly below my knees and close to my side with a small loop on the way back and both wrists cocked downward. I actually drop the racquet face below the level of my wrists to exaggerate the racquet head sweep from low to high, which also exaggerates the amount of top spin put on the return.
          Jimmy Connors, on the other hand, brings his racquet straight back with a firm wrist slightly below his waist. Our different style results in a different type of shot. Connors' is flat, hard and deep, clearing the net by a few inches, but mine relies heavily on overspin, clearing the net by a foot or more and with varying depths.
          As I pull the racquet forward, my wrists explode the racquet face under the ball snapping upward to shoot tremendous top spin into the shot.
          My right shoulder, which points toward the net on the backswing is parallel to the net at the end of the stroke, with the racquet head finishing on the right side of my body, two feet above my head on the follow-through. But the follow-through changes a lot on every stroke, depending on where the ball has bounced, where I want to hit it, and how much time I have.
          My backhand is built for my game, patience in the backcourt and top-spin passing shots, while Connors' backhand is an offensive weapon, hit aggressively to draw a short return so Jimmy can attack at net. If I had to compare his backhand and mine in a few words, I'd say mine is efficient, his is flamboyant.
      
      FOREHAND
          My grip on the forehand is western, with the heel of the racquet inside my palm, enabling my wrist to whip the racquet faster on its way to catch the ball. My stance is often open, which gives me more time to hit and get back into position. I do use my left hand to help take my racquet back. My backswing has a high loop, and I meet the ball well in front of my left hip (right hip in the open stance) striking between 4 and 5 o'clock if you imagine the ball as the face of a clock. I snap my wrists upward in a sweeping motion rolling the racquet face over at the end of contact and carrying the racquet over my left shoulder on the follow-through--often so it is pointing directly behind me.
          Despite the speed of my arm and the racquet as it strikes the ball, my feet stay firmly on the ground and my hips move only slightly and do not roll forward the way a golfer's hips do. Keeping the lower body stable and low reduces power somewhat, but it is the key to my consistency.
          The secret to my forehand is dropping the racquet head below the ball so the upward swing can produce wild top spin. Top spin can also be generated from the eastern grip, but not as much. I do sacrifice depth by my heavy emphasis on spin, but I think consistency is more important--not hitting over the base line nor hitting into the net.
      
      THE SERVE
          ...The old theory that "you are only as good as your second serve" is one of the few lessons from the past that are still true--even for the superstars. After I broke Tanner's serve in the first game of the fifth set in the '79 Wimbledon Finals, I hit nothing but good second serves as my first the rest of the day. In other words, I played it safe, because I didn't want Tanner to see a first serve miss and gain confidence knowing a second serve was coming. That way he's be attacking the net on my service games.
          Roscoe is obviously from another school. He banged in over two dozen unplayable serves against me in five sets. But I won the match.
          Perhaps the best example for 98 percent of the world's players to follow is the playing of Chris Evert Lloyd and Tracy Austin in the 1979 U.S. Open final, on a fast, asphalt surface, where neither hit an ace in the match. Still they played each other beautifully and wisely...
      
      BEGINNERS AND TOP SPIN
          Obviously a beginner has trouble enough making contact with the ball so my top-spin trademark is not appropriate until you have a proper sense of timing and reasonably strong wrists...
          There are two basic schools of thought on how to develop terrific top spin. One is to start swinging the racquet slowly with slight overspin and, once your confidence and timing are developed, to pick up the velocity of the stroke gradually until the wrist snap and swing are going full bore. The other technique is to start right away at full blast, which surely means hitting a lot of balls into the net and over the fence, but the theory is that once you've mastered the speed, there is no further adjustment required. I feel that that is right. The graduated method is not efficient, because as you learn each level it must be unlearned when you pick up the pace...
      
      Chapter 8 Getting Your Mind Over the Net (pages 148-149):
      
      SPIN
          The more spin you put on the ball the more power you lose. Jimmy Connors hits the ball harder than I do, but his passing shots sometimes are not as effective as mine because they have little deception and no margin for error. When Jimmy is on, he is devastating, because even if you know where he is going to hit the ball, he hits it so hard that anticipation doesn't help. But day in and day out, my results may be better because my passes are more consistent; and it is difficult to volley my ball dipping at your feet. Connors' drives rise as they go over the net and a good volleyer prefers this to hitting below the net.
          ...On a passing shot I don't care whether the ball lands close to the base line or the service line. If the ball passes the man at net, it doesn't count more if it lands on the base line. But I do need a ball that is straight and not is affected by the wind. Top spin, no matter how wristy, can go straight as a string down the line or cross-court and will not be blown off line by a gust of wind as easily as will a flat or sliced ball.
          The second reason why top spin is safe is that it clears the net by a larger margin than a flat or sliced shot...
          The one drawback of top spin for beginners and intermediated players is that you must have remarkable timing to avoid hitting the ball off the frame. If you're having difficulty making proper contact with the ball, go back to hitting flat, keeping the stroke as simple as possible. Remember, the style you decide on should be dictated by your own ability--not by a desire to copy Connors or me.
      
          ...Hall of Famer Jack Kramer says on the return of serve to hold your racquet with the forehand grip and lean to the right or forehand side. It happens that I do exactly the opposite, holding the backhand grip with the racquet tilting all the way to the backhand...
      
          Hitting [the ball] on the rise is like half-volleying, and I half-volley only because I have to--not because I want to--where my opponent has trapped me out of position and I'm forced to flick at the ball without normal preparation. The advantages of hitting a ball at the top of its bounce, however, on the other hand, are obvious. The ball's direction will be from a high point to a low point over the net and down into the ocurt rather than the necessary arc from low to high over the net. In addition, you have more time to prepare...
          That is not to say that some players, like Connors, Fleming and McEnroe are not sometimes successful in hitting on the rise--particularly on the return of serve when they are going for a one-shot winner. However, the art of hitting on the rise is an imprecise science, not recommended for pros or amateurs
      
          ...On clay there is no reason not to give yourself plenty of time to run down shot after shot. Standing far behind the base line gives you an opportunity to retrieve, with little fear that your opponent can attack your defensive scurrying.
          However, on a fast grass court, the ball tends to skid and stay low, meaning you have to move closer to the base line to scoop up the ball before it bounces twice. On cement or asphalt, ground strokes move with greater velocity than on clay and that requires a position nearer the base line--or else the ball will get out of range too quickly...
      
          ...the first thing I did in tennis was wrong according to all the teaching pros. I used the western forehand grip with a closed racquet face which everyone said was too "wristy" and unreliable. I was told that no modern champion uses the western grip, and there was a lot of advice in the beginning to change to a more accepted approach. Well, it's become my best shot. I'm glad I didn't listen.
          The point is that tennis is a highly personalized game. You should do what seems to work for you, rather than be regimented into a lock-step stroke that may be safe and easy to teach, but does not allow your possibly unique talent to emerge.
      Last edited by pingpongpaddy; 04-09-2020 at 04:04 PM.

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    23. Top | #13
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      OK The tennis quotes below come from
      http://sports.quickfound.net/tennis_articles.html
      well worth a read as most of them give it to you straight from champions such as
      suzanne lenglen
      mo connolly
      evonne goolagong
      pancho gonzales

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      @UpSideDownCarl I am doing mostly self hitting exercices as one demonstrated by the video you posted. There is problem with them though. (I do single bounce though) significant other is a doctor and she explained me today how human body processes stimuli such like incoming balls. If one does very repetitive drills it can bypass some of important stimulus handling stuff and act unconsciously. If one is handling a random ball for example, the impulse would go through "twór siatkowaty" (the dictionary suggests Reticular formation as proper translation) which acts as `cache` in programming sense. If you excercise pure mechanical and unconscious actions like you would do with block training you will not expand this cache. That's why according to her random training is very appreciated because it engages more, you don't. return ball mechanically but you have to think about it, visualize it etc. Actually well done shadow swinging is helpful too, there were studies which proven that visualizing the stroke and movement sends impulses throughout the body as you would actually play. Currently I have a problem when I seem to not carry over improvements from previous days. My body seems to forget what I learned yesterday mostly, which is hella annoying. Right now I am dropping myself balls with topspin (throw the ball against the bat) which are a little bit harder to both feed myself and return them, I will see how it will affect longer term gains.
      Last edited by Kuba Hajto; 04-09-2020 at 06:40 PM.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Kuba Hajto View Post
      @UpSideDownCarl I am doing mostly self hitting exercices as one demonstrated by the video you posted. There is problem with them though. (I do single bounce though) significant other is a doctor and she explained me today how human body processes stimuli such like incoming balls. If one does very repetitive drills it can bypass some of important stimulus handling stuff and act unconsciously. If one is handling a random ball for example, the impulse would go through "twór siatkowaty" (the dictionary suggests Reticular formation as proper translation) which acts as `cache` in programming sense. If you excercise pure mechanical and unconscious actions like you would do with block training you will not expand this cache. That's why according to her random training is very appreciated because it engages more, you don't. return ball mechanically but you have to think about it, visualize it etc. Actually well done shadow swinging is helpful too, there were studies which proven that visualizing the stroke and movement sends impulses throughout the body as you would actually play. Currently I have a problem when I seem to not carry over improvements from previous days. My body seems to forget what I learned yesterday mostly, which is hella annoying. Right now I am dropping myself balls with topspin (throw the ball against the bat) which are a little bit harder to both feed myself and return them, I will see how it will affect longer term gains.
      Any of those things I mentioned, in isolation would not do much. You need to go back and forth from form to real, random scenario to form and back over and over.

      The curve of progression is usually not a straight line: up, down, up down, two steps forward, 3 steps back, 1 step forward, 1 step back, 5 steps forward, 2 steps back, plateau_______, jump forward, drop back......and so on.

      This is normal so don't be too fussed about not carrying over performance from recent gains. Keep working. At a certain point they will stick.

      When you can keep form of strokes in training, and then form goes out the window in matches, that is normal. Over time, as you keep mixing form and random, you start bringing more and more of the form into match play scenarios. But it does not happen where you learn it. You do it well in practice and then it is there in match play. And sometimes you learn and get the form in practice, you go to match play and go back to the old bad habits and and then they are back in your practice, and you have to fix them over and over.

      But, the way the neuromuscular system and muscle memory work, at a certain point, when something is of a real mechanical advantage in terms of biomechanics, at a certain point, your body, your bones, your muscle memory, your neurons, just click with the form that has the mechanical advantage and then the old, bad form, at some point, disappears. Once it clicks with the nervous system, the old form drops away.

      There have been studies done:

      1) Group 1: just shooting jump shots on the court.
      2) Group 2: shooting jump shots, hitting a particularly sweet shot, then practicing imaging that shot, then shooting more, another sweet shot and back to imaging, over and over.
      3) Group 3: just images the perfect jump shot over and over.

      In those studies, it shows that, group 1 improved. Group 2 improved a marked amount more. Group 3 showed no improvement because they were not practicing the muscle action part at all.

      So, imagining good form, imagining responses in different scenarios, these are powerful tools to help you improve, as long as they are practiced side by side with the physical components so imagery actually triggers the correct motor neurons.

      For sure imagery works. This is also why it is useful to watch match play. Especially if you are watching players a little higher level than you, in person. Without thinking, while you do that imagery for how to handle certain game situation choices will come up if you do. Or, at least for me that happens.

      Our whole nervous system is involved in learning a motor skill, including our brains. Any motor skill. Any sport activity.

      Keep mixing up how you work on things.

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      Here, on the side of imaging mechanics so your brain understands them, so your body can understand them faster:

      I made this first video for someone on the forum a few years ago. It might help some understand better how all the different elements of FH mechanics fit together. I cannot remember the original context that caused me to make this one. But it has value. I have some other funny videos I will post below.



      This one was for someone who was trying to figure out what his left arm should do since his left arm was doing some funny things and he was working on a robot and cementing the bad mechanics into his stroke by using the robot without any correction of mechanics:



      This next one was for someone who was doing a push forward instead of a stroke, to get him to understand the difference between a stroke and a pushing the racket forward motion.



      This next one was for someone who was doing the pushing forward action on his BH.



      Those are common things people do when their form is not solid. And seeing and imaging them, can help you understand and learn how to improve form.

      But, as said above, getting that form into your strokes during match play will take a lot of work.

      By the way, I want to be clear: I am not a TT coach. Nor would I want to be. But I am a movement analyst. And so, to me, it has made a lot of sense to break down aspects of the form of TT strokes to help understand how to fix bad mechanics.

      When the racket moves faster with less effort, mechanics are always better. And it is always based on the shape of our bones and joints which movements will most efficiently make the racket move the fastest.

      Hope this gives some good images. Especially the ones with me wearing a button up shirt and slacks while showing mechanics. hahahahaha
      Last edited by UpSideDownCarl; 04-10-2020 at 06:45 AM.

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      It is interesting how, exercises like the ones in the videos below can really help you develop touch and feel for the ball which is, at a certain point in development, one of the most important aspects of TT developmental skills. In a sense, these relate to what Red Auerbach was talking about about feeling the ball, but for TT instead of for BasketBall.



      Last edited by UpSideDownCarl; 04-10-2020 at 12:03 AM.

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      wang zheng yi forearm snap

      Here is a good one for fh technique. Though the coach is an sp player the way he focuses his power and snaps his elbow offers food for thought for anyone trying to play at a faster tempo.
      he also explains very clearlywhy those who transfer body weight only without elbow snap are using wrong technique

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G-6v...2Upkg&index=55
      Last edited by pingpongpaddy; 04-12-2020 at 08:30 PM.

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      Quote Originally Posted by UpSideDownCarl View Post
      Here, on the side of imaging mechanics so your brain understands them, so your body can understand them faster:

      I made this first video for someone on the forum a few years ago. It might help some understand better how all the different elements of FH mechanics fit together. I cannot remember the original context that caused me to make this one. But it has value. I have some other funny videos I will post below.



      This one was for someone who was trying to figure out what his left arm should do since his left arm was doing some funny things and he was working on a robot and cementing the bad mechanics into his stroke by using the robot without any correction of mechanics:



      This next one was for someone who was doing a push forward instead of a stroke, to get him to understand the difference between a stroke and a pushing the racket forward motion.



      This next one was for someone who was doing the pushing forward action on his BH.



      Those are common things people do when their form is not solid. And seeing and imaging them, can help you understand and learn how to improve form.

      But, as said above, getting that form into your strokes during match play will take a lot of work.

      By the way, I want to be clear: I am not a TT coach. Nor would I want to be. But I am a movement analyst. And so, to me, it has made a lot of sense to break down aspects of the form of TT strokes to help understand how to fix bad mechanics.

      When the racket moves faster with less effort, mechanics are always better. And it is always based on the shape of our bones and joints which movements will most efficiently make the racket move the fastest.

      Hope this gives some good images. Especially the ones with me wearing a button up shirt and slacks while showing mechanics. hahahahaha
      hey carl
      I spent a while looking at your videos, and for a non coach they are pretty good especially the fh.
      I wonder if you have considered doing a combined fh bh demo.? The reason is that in real play the transition through readiness to the next stroke is in a sense part of what we consider for each individual stroke.
      Once you strat playing fh and bh the fh salute tendency becomes reduced as the elbow folds pulling the racket into
      the ready position. If you were to play say 3 consecutive fhs then inserted between each will be a readiness pause between each stroke rather than a simple swinging back and forth
      apologies if this is off the subject

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      Quote Originally Posted by pingpongpaddy View Post
      hey carl
      I spent a while looking at your videos, and for a non coach they are pretty good especially the fh.
      I wonder if you have considered doing a combined fh bh demo.? The reason is that in real play the transition through readiness to the next stroke is in a sense part of what we consider for each individual stroke.
      Once you strat playing fh and bh the fh salute tendency becomes reduced as the elbow folds pulling the racket into
      the ready position. If you were to play say 3 consecutive fhs then inserted between each will be a readiness pause between each stroke rather than a simple swinging back and forth
      apologies if this is off the subject
      No. It is a good point and with the full and real thing, the backswing would make a bit of a circle so it would come to center and ready before committing to a side. It is a good point.

      So, in all of those videos, I am not focusing at all on the mechanics of the backswing. That is true.
      Last edited by UpSideDownCarl; 04-13-2020 at 01:25 AM.

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