The key to tennis is stroke technique

By Thomas Hiley III

There is a lot more to playing tennis than just trying to hit the ball hard.

In order to win, a player has to figure out ways to utilize different kinds of techniques. Ryun Ferrell, the women’s tennis head coach, said tennis is fairly similar to golf. If a player doesn’t have good technique in your swing, he or she can’t plan to hit the ball correctly and be effective.

“Watch the professionals on TV,” Ferrell said. “If you want to see some of the best techniques and most effective ones watch the pros.”

Some common moves in tennis are the serve, groundstroke, backhand and the volley. Each one of these moves can take a game over if used correctly in a match, but one that is the most important to players is the serve. Beginning with a poor serve can affect someone’s play for the entire match.

Fredric Cadieux, who is 21-3 this season for the men’s tennis team, knows how important it is to have good technique. Before a match begins, he figures out the best way to beat his opponent.

“I start off by warming up with my opponent to figure out his weakness,” Cadieux said. “If he plays with a weak backhand I’m going to focus a lot on the backhand but still vary my shots, but 80 percent of the time I’m going to that backhand.”

In tennis, it is important to change up shot techniques during a match to keep an opponent confused. If a player figures out his or her opponent’s weakness during the match and just tries to go to that spot, expect him or her to change the game and try to counter.

Learning new techniques is a part of tennis, but having a base technique a player can fall back on is also important.

“I’m very good in all my shots except my volley,” Cadieux said. “I tend to lean back more when I should lean more forward, and [I] also need to improve my second serve as well.”

Tennis can be a simple game if played the right way, but can be difficult if a person doesn’t know what he or she is doing. Even Div. I college athletes have to work on their techniques in order to be successful.