Issues together with your footwork? Begin together with your eyes

A participant I coach usually complains about her poor footwork.

“I’m so dangerous at shifting to my forehand.”

“Why can’t I get to balls to my extensive backhand?”

“My ft simply aren’t quick sufficient.”

The humorous factor is that this participant really strikes very properly. She is quick. She has good steadiness. She will be able to cowl quite a lot of the desk together with her forehand. Her footwork is so much higher than mine!

So why does she assume her footwork is so dangerous?

The reply is much less to do together with her ft and extra to do together with her eyes. She has fairly a nasty behavior of watching her personal pictures and subsequently is gradual to react to any balls which come again.

It should go one thing like this…

She serves. I push to her forehand. She performs a really robust forehand topspin, however then stops. She watches his personal shot to see if she has received the purpose. If I can return the ball, she reacts fairly late and has little or no time to maneuver her ft. She reaches out for the ball, performs a poor shot after which blames her lack of footwork.

However the issue on this situation shouldn’t be her ft. It’s her eyes. By watching her personal shot and stopping, she shouldn’t be observing my shot and preparing for the ball to return again. Subsequently she solely begins monitoring the ball because it crosses the online, which supplies her virtually no time to organize to play one other robust shot. All she will do is react – stick out her arm and hope to make contact. Her ft keep rooted to the ground. 

What ought to she do as a substitute?

Let’s return to the situation. She serves. I push to her forehand. She performs a really robust forehand topspin. As quickly as she has performed her shot, she ought to deliver her eyes again to my bat. It will enable her to see as early as attainable what shot I’m going to play and the place the ball goes. She then has double the period of time to organize for her subsequent shot, transfer into place after which execute.

In the event you use your eyes properly, it will probably make an enormous distinction to your footwork. You might have a lot extra time to truly transfer your ft. 

Everyone knows gamers who appear to have such good anticipation. They appear to know the place you’re going to hit the ball earlier than you do. They’re at all times in the proper place. In all instances, a significant factor can be that they’re superb at observing their opponent.

They hit.

They observe.

They transfer.

They hit.

They observe.

They transfer.

Hit. Observe. Transfer. Hit. Observe. Transfer. It’s such an essential talent to develop and one which isn’t usually talked about. 

As an apart – one of many advantages of teaching different gamers is that I spend hours and hours each week doing this routine – hit, observe, transfer. My job is actually to watch the participant I’m teaching to assist him / her enhance. I can solely do that by actually watching the pictures they play. This talent – observing my opponent – has positively made my recreation stronger. 

Again to the participant I coach. In our classes, I usually must remind her to cease watching her personal shot and as a substitute watch my bat. When she does this, her degree immediately jumps up. She sees the ball early. She begins shifting her ft. She places mixtures of assaults collectively. Desk tennis turns into straightforward!

However ball watching could be a powerful behavior to beat. We’re nonetheless on the stage the place I’ve to maintain reminding her to observe my bat. Over time, this talent will enhance and it’ll grow to be extra pure. Hit, observe, transfer. Hit, observe, transfer. However like another talent in desk tennis it must be skilled. She might want to concentrate on this so much over the approaching months till she is ready to do it with out considering. If she masters this talent, she’s going to be capable of exploit her already good footwork, steadiness and velocity. And she or he’ll grow to be a a lot stronger participant.

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