How to Hit an Overhead: Simple Tips for Solid Contact

How to Hit an Overhead: Simple Tips for Solid Contact



If you’ve ever hit a shank overhead, you know it’s not an enjoyable experience. Check out these easy tips to help you get a solid, reliable, and powerful overhead when you need it most.

See Kim Clijsters hit picture perfect overheads here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fd3INXK2qN8&list=PLS06QKKUXlp75NZ2zR1eZSHvb9enwoWp5&index=69

See Federer hit overheads here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NZxgD1z3lrA&list=PLS06QKKUXlp75NZ2zR1eZSHvb9enwoWp5&index=4

Blair DiSesa Henley is a USPTA Certified (P1) tennis professional with over ten years of teaching experience. She is also a writer for Tennis Now.

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32 Comments

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  4. Working with my daughter and her friend (14) freshman HS. They made varsity doubles as freshman. Have a lot of potential. Been looking at different instructional to help teach them on you tube , and came across yours. I think yours will be best to work with them on all the strokes. You do great work. Thank you.

  5. Love your videos. I'm teaching girls tennis this summer. It will be my first time teaching it. Do you have any advice or tips on how I can become a great tennis coach? What is best to hit a forehand? Flat or with top spin? Thanks in advance.

  6. I agree with other commenters. Good video. All good points and visual examples well done by Ms. Henley and her colleague. Still working on this shot, but not yet consistent, in part because not turning sideways adequately and not putting racquet adequately in position to mimic service motion. This helps.

  7. Let me tell you what the "perfect" overhead is:
    1. Pretend to hit the regular overhead.
    2. Instead, hit the ball at the top rim of your racket- it creates tremendous backspin.
    3. The opponent thinks the ball will get hit hard, so they back up.
    4. It lands several inches from the net.
    5. The backspin makes it bounce into the net.
    XD

    BTW, your videos are awesome! 😉

  8. I really enjoyed your lessons, especially the one handed backhand and the slice. You've really helped me to improve these two areas. Is there any chance that you will do some videos on pronation, kick serve and slice serve? Please? I think you would make a lot of people happy if you did. Thanks a bunch for these videos!!!

  9. Hi Max – The main reason is because the continental grip also allows you to hit kick serves and slice serves more effectively…it just gives you more options. The eastern grip may be easier, but it's worth learning the continental!

  10. Thank you! that was very encouraging. I always thought i couldn't hit those smash good from back there because i was too short, but now i know that I can do it if I get into position fast enough. I wish I was taller too, but i'll keep working on my footwork to make up for it.

  11. Hi! First, make sure you have a specific target. If it's going in the net, chances are you need to keep your eyes up to the contact point. If it's going out, there's a chance that you're letting the ball drop too low. I'm 5'4" myself, and though I'd love to be taller, I can make up for my lack of height with good footwork and positioning. Good luck!

  12. Hi! I prefer hitting a flat overhead (straight into the back of the ball) because I find there is less room for error. If you position yourself well, you should be able to pronate into the back of the ball and pinpoint your target.

  13. Great video, i have been needing tips for a smash, the problem i have is when the ball goes behind or near service line i have a hard time getting those smash to clear the net; when i do try it flies long. Maybe it have something to do with my height (5'6), should i jump when i smash back there?

  14. Hi Jeff,

    Racquet setup is how you adjust and manipulate your racquet to be most prepared for the ball that is coming to you. For an overhead, the setup needs to happen as soon as the ball goes up…not as it's coming down. Hope that answers your question! Thanks for watching:)

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