Forehand topspin arm movement -.Frustration !

says Spin and more spin.
says Spin and more spin.
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Super Moderator
Dec 2010
Read 11 reviews
Hi all
Having extreme frustration getting the correct arm action / movement on forehand topspin.
Anyone else having same difficulty with their technique ?

Those shadow drills can help. So can filming yourself to watch the technique.
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Active Member
Feb 2013
It's not all just about technique and movement, important is to find a right grip, have a good angle and also timing is very important. It was a big frustration for everyone who is learning, especially when you have played before without thinking about technique and you got bad habbits.
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Oct 2014
Read 16 reviews

I worked very hard on this myself.

The biggest advice I received was summarized in this post, though there are other nuances I talk people through when I coach them.

I have coached people on web threads on this very issue. Here is one:

And another:

Most of this was with the help of Brett Clarke from Ttedge as well as my personal coach, though I credit Brett Clarke with the heavy lifting on this one.

Ever since fixing my forehand topspin, I have fixed people's arm mechanics in as short as 5 minutes if they know how to hit the ball. Of course, not everyone is so lucky, but my students since I learned how to loop from Brett don't take more than one or two lessons to loop because I can deal with the things that hold them back since I got good as an adult, which is very different from getting lucky a a child. I have bad knees so my loop is largely a short body turn with a fast arm motion that often shocks people who can't figure out where all the spin is coming from (well, it is coming from correct arm mechanics since I have no knees).

So where is your video again? Don't assume that because no one responded to your TTEdge thread that TTEdge is not the real deal - I just didn't want to bore you with stories.
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Mar 2015
@AndyCouchman I hate to say it but I have to +1 on Brett Clark tutorial who basically in many words teaches you to use your ABS to play the stroke. I use to stay stationary and use my forearm muscles to try and generate power/spin with loose wrist, yet couple of times I got caught by better player looping back to me with tremendous spin and I just couldn't keep up.
Few sessions on the practise robot fixed this problem. I realized I need to introduce to my brain a 3rd body mechanics point that will let me generate the spin more consistent and not get tired like I've been doing 1000 pushups.
I eased my forearm muscle and completely relaxed it, tightened the wrist and immediately got better accuracy, and now I just use my ABS to swing my arm like cheese and make these super fine shots. It's awesome! Wish I thought about this early if there were good enough player to feed me the balls faster without mistakes so I can see whats happening.
Now I concentrate on 2 things instead, my timing when to hit the ball so I go forward and not be stationary, and last of course making my arm always come down as soon as I have fired a shot so it's in ready position for a come back. Keeping your arm low at the bottom makes sure there is no lag during rally when you have to respond.

And then of course there is that recent read on this forum about half arm and full arm swing (chinese vs euro?) which you realize you have to use both depending on how you want to hit the ball and when (compact forehand = good surprising comeback, or full swing = unleashing Ma Long power :D )
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Sep 2014
Read 4 reviews
It's difficult to give a good advice if we can't see you doing the movement, as MDanielCro says there is a lot of diferent factors involved in the forehand topspin movement.

I want to notice some non-usual aspects but important to improve from my point of view.

The timing. We normaly focus on tecnich but I think the timing is, at least, as important as the biomechanics of the movement. You should try to hit the ball always in front of the body, that way you can use the speed of the incomming ball. Usually when we try to top near to our top-speed the moment of contact isn't always the same. Try to slow down your movement a bit (5 or 10% less speed) and focus on hitting always in the same moment and in front of the body, if you do it well you should obtain the same speed (or more) with more control and better rythm.

When ball comes at high speed try to do a shorter movement, try to begin at the side of your body, not behind,. This will help you to hit the ball in front and to make a better contact as your racket it's closer to the ball when you start to accelerate.

As you can see I don't speak about the tecnich but if you focus on this aspects I think you can improve the quality of the topspin.
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