One Shot Every Doubles Player Should Know

Tennis players

If you're facing an aggressive net player or want to change the momentum of the game, it's time to turn to one fail-safe shot: the volley-lob. 

It's an effective volley because it allows you to throw your opponent off-stride. When used correctly, it can be the shot that shifts the advantage to you. In spite of its value, this can be a foolish shot, if used at the wrong time.  

The volley-lob is rarely used in singles. It's typically reserved for doubles' play. The volley-lob in doubles is the equivalent of the drop shot in singles.

When to Use the Volley-Lob

If you're thinking of adding the volley-lob to your array of shots, remember to use it early in a doubles match. Us the shot when the opportunity first presents itself. This will help you control the match early on.

There are a couple of positions your opponents can be in that will make this an effective shot for you.

The most advantageous position is when you're playing aggressive net players who camp out close to the net. These are players who keep moving forward after each shot, in an effort to be right on top of the net for their next volley. When they're moving forward and are close to the net, it will be tough for them to react to the volley-lob since their weight is moving forward.

The volley-lob is even more effective when your opponents are moving forward in tandem. The volley-lob can freeze an opponent, so their only hope is for the partner to chase your shot down. In which case, you have just moved your opponents to the one up and one back formation, which is ideal for you.

Another great time to hit the volley-lob is when your last volley has wrong-footed an opponent and while he is getting back into position to move to the net. Here, it makes little difference whether he is moving sideways or forward (better for you) toward the net, since he has been wrong-footed and is now on the move; it takes above-average agility for him to untangle himself, move forward, and then backpedal within a very short span.

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About the Author

Scott Baker

Scott Baker is a singles and doubles expert based in central Ohio. To learn more from Scott, visit
Scott Baker is a singles and doubles expert based in central Ohio. To learn more from Scott, visit

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