The Backhand

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Yesterday I went back to my old coach's academy for some loop-a-loop time.
Then I came to BH to BH and he told me of the latest development in BH. He said:
1. The plane of BH rubber is now parallel to the table.
2. Brush and brush. You need to let the rubber grip the ball and then flick your wrist outwards.
3. I would say even regular BH is like a chiquita now. Everything is chiquita. Chiquita! Chiquita! Chiquita!
Yes, because if your full BH loop structure is too far off from your chiquita, you'll be quickly destroyed with smart half long serves because you will almost never know when to use the chiquita and when to use a full fledged BH loop.
 
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Yes, because if your full BH loop structure is too far off from your chiquita, you'll be quickly destroyed with smart half long serves because you will almost never know when to use the chiquita and when to use a full fledged BH loop.
I guess this coincide with the professionals' mass adoption of tacky / semi-tacky rubber on BH use, e.g., Dignics 09C
 
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I guess this coincide with the professionals' mass adoption of tacky / semi-tacky rubber on BH use, e.g., Dignics 09C
05 is actually better for chiquita and BH loop compared to 09c imo. What 09c is dramatically better than 05 is the short push (05 is a nightmare for short pushing lol).

But technique wise I think it doesn't matter all that much - the trend of the modern BH is to have an integrated attacking system where they can attack all balls on the BH side with similar movements, whether it's short or long or half long, whether it's underspin or no spin or topspin, whether it's pendulum or reverse pendulum or straight serves.
 
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Great stuff everybody!

@blahness Regarding 09c vs 05 ---> I was between the two for the BH but my believe is that 09c is more forgiving and gives more control. Much easier on serve receive too. In match situations and pressure moments 09c helps tremendously - much easier to keep the ball on the table with it, which for a fh orienter player makes sense as it is easier for me to set up fh pivot for example. I disagree that 09c is for mid distance however - you would need a lot of power then and you lose on the good short game.

Do you use pronation on the fh btw? Pressure on index finger? I seem to hit fh fully relaxed and no pressure on rubber on either side.


Interesting. Using fingers first then wrist and arm later? Thought it would be forearm-->wrist-->fingers. Just saw Ti Long at 3:23 and he doesn't have the thumb on the rubber on the backswing and indeed puts it there before going forward. Eye opening that!

@KM1976 About Liam's masterclass.. I was thinking of getting it. But he uses a lot of wrist, doesn't he? Not easy for us amateurs to find the consistency i would think. Although.. i remember someone (I think @NDH )saying that his kind of backhand is well suited for his height and long arms (and i am a bit taller) so maybe worth giving that a shot.. He doesn't seem to use much the fingers.

The backhand stroke is in this sequence -
1. If you are choosing to flip over the table - it is mostly wrist snap. You do not have enough time to engage your forearm in this situation.
2. If you are taking the long incoming ball on top of the bounce, it is engaging only forearm and wrist snap on ball contact with your legs and core initiating the stroke with your elbow as a hinge.
3. Mid-distance, more of your forearm and wrist snap engaging only when you contact the ball (again forearm, wrist, elbow).
4. Further from mid-distance - just don't do it. It is not worth, since you are far away from the table, you have enough time to execute your forehand or just keep the ball with a roll. There is no need to be Kreanga or Hugo or like anyone on the international circuit.

The more your understand the concept of wrist and when it comes into focus, the better your will be in executing the shot. In essence, backhand stroke window is very small compared to forehand stroke and is mostly in front of your body. This makes timing on backhand stroke and small foot movements very important, much more than amateur players like me realize.

Lastly, you should understand that any stroke, be it backhand or forehand, offense or defense is part of a larger framework. It incorporates your stance, your body rotation, your grip on your paddle, your swing and contact point. The larger the stroke (think of topspin vs. a push) the more important these aspects become. Not only from the success perspective but also from injury prevention perspective and keeping you fit and healthy.

This is one issue which I have with YouTube videos, though I wholeheartedly respect the knowledge of the online coaches, but these lessons only give us a snapshot rather than showing us the whole picture. This makes integration of these techniques very difficult in real match play.
 
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On correct angles, contact points and brushing technique against different spins:

The biggest problem with most ppl's BH usually is vs a deep,fast long spinny af underspin ball and is the primary problem - on the contrary BH countering against topspin is easy for most ppl. This comes from a stereotype where a lot of tutorials and ppl online have the idea that you can't contact the bottom of the ball when you do topspin against backspin. Therefore they end up trying to brute force brush the ball which results in them trying to grit their teeth and looping upwards like crazy, compromising their entire form and positioning, all just to make the ball go over the net! Whereas contacting the ball slightly on the bottom will result in much thicker contact and makes it easy to overcome backspin, regardless of how heavy the underspin is.
I'm not sure if I understand motion described here. When you hit the ball slightly on the underside, do you mean to then it in a forward motion, so something halfway between a flat hit and a push? (A push-drive).
 
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I'm not sure if I understand motion described here. When you hit the ball slightly on the underside, do you mean to then it in a forward motion, so something halfway between a flat hit and a push? (A push-drive).
No it is a loop. You're still meant to roll over the ball with your stroke ie supinate over it.

If you watch Ti Long's video for easy loop against underspin he shows the basic concept quite well.
 
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