Contact and Follow Through
The first step of the one-handed backhand progressions is to establish your contact point and then follow through. Start by getting yourself into an acceptable one-handed backhand grip. I’m going to use the eastern backhand grip but you can be more extreme if you want to be. Put the racket at your contact point, which is about waist high and a little bit out in front of your body with the strings square to the net. Your hitting arm should be basically straight. From here, you’re simply going to follow through by pushing your arm out and up.
Let’s take a look at me shadowing this motion. You can see that I start at my contact point and I keep my follow through very simple. The relationship between my racket and hitting arm stays the same at contact and into my follow through. If we watch it one more time you can see that I finish with my racket pointed straight up at the sky.
Once you’ve mastered this simple shadowing it’s time to hit some tennis balls, and that’s what I’m doing here behind me at 0:55 in the clip above. Starting at contact, I am going to hit and then follow through. This is a very simple, compact motion and I am not trying to hit the ball hard. Again, when I make contact and follow through the relationship between my hitting arm and the tennis racket stays pretty much exactly the same. I’m just rotating from the shoulder to push the tennis racket out into the follow through.
From the back perspective you can see that I am hitting down the line rather than crosscourt because of the way we’ve set the camera up. When you do this you will probably want to hit crosscourt. You can see that I am simply pushing the tennis ball over the net, focusing on working the technique rather than trying to hit hard. I’m just trying to make sure that I am following through properly by rotating my shoulder to get the racket pointed straight up at the completion of my finish.