Follow Through

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Step 4The fourth thing professional players do when they hit a forehand is follow through. From contact, pros extend out in the direction they are hitting the ball and bring the racket across their body in a smooth, relaxed motion.

The follow through starts right after the tennis ball leaves your strings. Extend out in the direction that you’re hitting the ball. Once you do that, turn your forearm and wrist over as one piece as if you’re checking the time on a wrist watch. At the same time, bring the racket across your body to the other side in a smooth and relaxed motion. Continue to rotate your upper body after you’ve made contact. Doing these several things will allow you to decelerate the tennis racket and your body smoothly.

At 0:55 in the video above we watch Frank follow through on his forehand. From contact, he extends out in the direction that he is hitting the tennis ball. Then he begins to turn his forearm and wrist over like he has a watch on and is trying to check the time. Finally, he brings the racket across his body in a smooth and relaxed motion. We go back to contact at 1:03 in the video and watch how Frank also continues to rotate his upper body during his forehand follow through. The combination of these various things lets him slow down the tennis racket and his body after he hits.

At 1:33 we watch Andy Roddick follow through after he hits a forehand to see how he decelerates the tennis racket and his body smoothly. In the first picture, Roddick has just made contact with the tennis ball. He’s extending out in the direction that he’s hitting his forehand. In the second picture, Roddick has turned his forearm and wrist over so that, if he was wearing a watch, he could see what time it is. He’s also begun to bring his arm and the tennis racket across his body in a smooth and relaxed motion. Finally, his body has continued to rotate.

In the next picture, Roddick has completed his follow through. The tennis racket is up over his shoulder. This type of follow through is one way Andy can slow down the racket and his body. In the following picture, however, we show another type of follow through that Andy uses. There are a number of ways pros can follow through when they hit a forehand and we’re not going to get into why that is in this video. The keys that you want to take away from this video is that regardless of how you follow through on your forehand you will always extend out in the direction you are hitting the ball, your forearm and wrist will turn over, and you’ll always rotate your body a little bit more after the tennis ball leaves your strings.

  • Donica

    Hi Will, this video really helped me out. I was wondering if you have any tips on how to hit a forehand/backhand while running to the net. Thank you :)

  • kait35

    Actually no Matt, it doesn’t need to be avoided since it is not an incorrect or “bad” shot. Just different. The modern game now is fast and mostly a baseline game. A reverse forehand is actually a fairly easy shot to do and you will see most tour players using it now. The newer modern raquets allow for it. If your friend was hitting a reverse forehand and had his left leg complete across his body in a “closed” stance then he hopefully was attempting to hit a ball that he had trouble getting too. You can still utilize a great reverse forehand if you get to the ball just slightly late and you can hit open, facing the court but just take one small step right after ball contact to stop your body. Just watch Nadal and you will see exactly what I am talking about.

  • Maricarmen

    Love ur site!!! Helps a lot

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