How to Hit a Reliable Approach Shot | Tennis Instruction

How to Hit a Reliable Approach Shot | Tennis Instruction

There is nothing worse than setting up a point perfectly only to hand it back to your opponent on a silver platter thanks to a blown approach shot. If you earn a short ball, there are a few simple ways to make sure you reap the rewards with a well-executed approach. Check out this video for quick tips on how to make short-ball anxiety a thing of the past.

Blair DiSesa Henley is a USPTA Certified (P1) tennis professional with over 10 years of teaching experience. She is also a former Division I tennis player, and a writer for Tennis Now.

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  1. Great advice trying to hit high balls! Although if you're trying to approach and when you have time, wouldn't it be a bit easier to just walk straight into the shot, take it on the rise and start the attack early?

  2. Thanks! However, my problem is that many of my opponents return my shots very flatly and with little speed. For instance, I hit a hard serve, and my opponent drops it back an inch over the net and it does not bounce very high at all. So even if I meet it on the top of the bounce, it is way below net height, and my options are either a counter-drop shot, a slice to the corner or a hard top spin shot. The latter is high risk because there is often not enough room below the ball to create upward racket speed. What is the best shot in that situation?

  3. Hola Blair felicitaciones por sus excelentes videos , nos enseńan los pequeńos detalles de los golpes ; asi entendemos mas las tecnicas en el tenis , sigue adelante con esos videos mil gracias Att Pedro Nel Ospina R . Medellin Colombia

  4. All my approach shots go into the net.:–(

     I need to try this video tip. Make contact at the peak of the bounce  and swing on a line. I think this will guarantee not hitting into the net… Now I have to worry about hitting the fence. lol.

  5. Lately I have been practicing hitting the high shots similar to what is in this video, thanks for confirming my actions. Using this as an alternative to slice, normal top spin gives opponent heaps of time, only varying the degree of spin has some advantages.

  6. I also want to add that she mentioned approaching down the line. If you approach down the line then rushing the net, ALWAYS cover the line. By covering the line, you are forcing your opponent to hit cross court which will be harder to pass you with. They would have to hit a CRAZY short angle cross court passing shot to get the ball by you. And if they do, it is just too good. Nothing you can do about it. But how many times can your opponent consistently hit that short angle passing shot?

  7. Hi, Blair: Very helpful instructions. I am wondering how to use approach shot on a low bouncing ball such as to take advantage of opponent's weak serve. When opponent gave a weak serve, the ball did not bounce above hip level and was near the service line, the receiver ran toward the net from the baseline to hit the ball, how to do an "approach shot" to best secure the opportunity?

  8. Thank you!
    I went on the court and applied what you said, it worked! The same advices applies to the high bounced balls, hit Nadal like – do you have any tips on how to handle the spin in these cases?
    Thank you!

  9. The ball bounces almost in the middle of the court, which makes a down the line shot preferable. How about a ball bouncing closer to the net? Wouldn't a cross court shot or even simple lift close to the net be more effective and less prone to mishits?

  10. As usual, you covered great tips. I have one hand backhand like Fed and you. How to hit approach those high sitters using single hand backhand? Most of the time I do karaoke steps and slice cross court. Please make a video to demonstrate your awesome backhand approach.

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