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Coaching Tip of the Week: Practice Service Spin … on a Rug!

(By Larry Hodges) It’s often difficult to judge how much spin you are putting on the ball when you practice serves. Without this feedback, it’s not easy to improve your serves. So try this – find a large, carpeted room, and practice serving there. Spin the ball as if you were serving and try to […]

Coaching Tip of the Week: What Do You Do That Threatens Your Opponent?

(By Larry Hodges) If you don’t have something that threatens your opponent, then you can’t threaten the opponent.  So, how do you develop something that threatens an opponent? You can’t do it by just training everything equally each session. You need to spend a huge amount of time developing the things you can do that […]

Coaching Tip of the Week: Playing the Non-Adjuster

(By Larry Hodges) If your opponent is one who analyzes an opponent’s game and adjusts to it, and is able to identify patterns and take advantage of it, you need to be unpredictable and vary your tactics. But many players, probably most, do not do this. If your opponent is not one who adjusts, then […]

Coaching Tip of the Week: Changing the Pace

(By Larry Hodges) A major weakness of many players is an inability to change the pace, and thereby throw their opponent’s timing off. Not doing so is a quick way of helping your opponent’s timing. Many players try to change the pace, but do so unsuccessfully – either because they don’t know how to do […]

Coaching Tip of the Week: Forehand Attackers Should Serve & Backhand Attack

(By Larry Hodges) If you are primarily a forehand attacker, many of your opponents will get used to your relentless forehand attacks, often from the backhand corner, especially after your serve. Why not throw them off with a backhand loop? This is especially effective against an opponent who routinely pushes your serve to your backhand […]

Coaching Tip of the Week: What to Do in the “Big Points”

(By Larry Hodges) Some players have reputation as being “winners” because they seem to be able to pull out close matches. There are two aspects to this. One is mental – nervous players don’t do well in close matches. The other aspect is tactical – you need to learn what to do tactically in a […]

Coaching Tip of the Week: How to Play the Attacker/Blocker with Dead Rubber

(By Larry Hodges)  One of the more difficult styles to figure out is what to do against a player who attacks and blocks with a “dead” surface – either a slow inverted surface or short pips. The inverted may be slow because it’s designed that way (often for beginners) or because it’s old and used. […]

Coaching Tip of the Week: Inside-out Backhands

(By Larry Hodges) Want to tie your opponent in knots – not to mention win a lot of points? Aim your backhand crosscourt. At the last instant, just before contact, let the racket fall behind (bringing it back with wrist and forearm), then continue your normal backhand forward stroke. Your racket will now be aimed […]

Coaching Tip of the Week: Patient Decisiveness

(By Larry Hodges) Some players are too patient – they mostly just keep the ball in play, rallying while missing opportunities to score. Others are too decisive – they jump on every ball with little patience or judgment. Develop a sense of “patient decisiveness” – in other words, pick your shots carefully, but once you’ve […]

Coaching Tip of the Week: How to Play a Player Who Attacks With Long Pips

(By Larry Hodges) One of the most difficult shots to handle is a ball attacked by a player with long pips. You have little time to react to an attacked ball, and so have to rely on your reflexes – except your reflexes usually aren’t tuned to reacting to a ball attacked by long pips. […]

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