Provided by: Fernando Velasco, General Manager and Director of Tennis, Grey Rock Tennis Club.
By USPTA/PTR Master Professional
Owner, Manager and Director of Tennis
Grey Rock Tennis Club, Austin, TX
How to execute the Two-Handed Backhand Volley
In previous newsletters, I offered tips on how to hit a forehand groundstroke, a two-handed backhand, one-handed backhand and a forehand volley. In this issue, I will give you instructions on how to execute a two-handed backhand volley for a right hander. This stroke is used whenever the player is forced to hit a ball in the air. In these pictures player Robyn Fuller from the Grey Rock Tennis Club demonstrates the proper form and technique.
Step 1: Ready Position: The body is facing the net. The right hand is holding the end of the racket in a forehand grip position and the left hand is next to the right hand. The left hand is holding the racket slightly tighter than the right hand. Feet are a shoulder width apart and the body is in equal balance. For beginners it is okay to use the forehand and backhand grips for the forehand and backhand volleys. As the player gets stronger and the balls come at a faster speed, it will be best to use the continental grip for both volleys.
Step 2: Back Swing: Since the volley is usually executed when a player is close to the net and there is very little time to react to the incoming ball, the back swing is very short. The left hand will make a slight change of the grip and the right hand will be relaxed and lose. The left shoulder should take a short turn and the head of the racket should align to the flight of the ball. The left wrist should be “cocked” back slightly and the head of the racket should be above the wrist. Eyes are still focused on the incoming ball.
Step 3: Point of Contact: The right foot is now taking a step forward and the racket is making contact with the ball. It is important to keep the left shoulder closed and not rotate the right hip too early. Flexing the right knee will allow more flexibility to find the proper point of contact and give power to the ball.
Step 4: Follow Through: Once the racket has made contact with the ball, the follow through is very short to allow the player to immediately get back to the ready position. The right arm should be close to the body.
Look for in the next Newsletter: The Serve