The Backhand: Your Not-So-Secret Weakest Link

The vast majority of all tennis players feel their forehand is a more dependable and aggressive shot compared to their backhand.

This is no secret from your opponents and if they play smart they will hit to your backhand early and often.

More: Active's Guide to Better Backhands

The facts are pretty loud and clear; now let's find a solution to offset that weaker side!

First, have a teaching pro evaluate your backhand and find a way to improve it without performing a major operation!

More: Find a Tennis Clinic Near You

Aside from getting a professional evaluation, here are six tips I give all of my students for strengthening their backhand -- or in the worst case scenario, relying on their forehand instead:

  1. Pick up the oncoming ball before it bounces, and get into position quickly with a balanced foundation. This will give you a better chance to control your entire swing motion and contact point.
  2. Review your swing pattern and make sure it is compact with no extra motion.
  3. Make sure you believe you can hit your backhand and be more deliberate and confident.
  4. Improve your physical fitness and cardio program, which will enable you to hit more forehands when you have a choice of shots.
  5. Push yourself and test your movement and anticipation to a point where you can hit forehands that are placed deep onto your backhand side.
  6. Make sure your backhand side is a much smaller target by hitting more forehands

I assure you that if your opponent has any court sense and understands tennis strategy, they will most certainly hit their forehands deep and wide to your forehand side.

More: 4 Tips for Playing Against Heavy Topspin

You cannot become impatient and go for winners all the time, but instead hit deep, offensive returns to your opponent (including deep shots down the center or even to their backhand side).

By doing this, defensive shots will come about more frequently giving you a chance to hit more run around forehands (inside-out and inside-in).

Now get out there and start maximizing your strengths!

Active logo Find a tennis tournament near you.

About the Author

Nick Bollettieri

Nick Bollettieri has coached 10 players who have reached No. 1 in the world, including Andre Agassi, Boris Becker and Martina Hingis. To learn more, visit IMGAcademies.com.

Nick Bollettieri has coached 10 players who have reached No. 1 in the world, including Andre Agassi, Boris Becker and Martina Hingis. To learn more, visit IMGAcademies.com.

Discuss This Article