The drop shot is a double edged sword. It can be very effective and win you points at times and can also lose you points. Let’s go over when it should be tried and the technique.
First a quick story about my son Ian, who is currently the Tennis Director/Head Pro at the Scarsdale Country Club in New York. When he was playing USTA junior tournaments the drop shot came back to bite him more than a few times. Ian had a natural ability for feel and touch shots. My worst fear as parent and coach was that if Ian tried and made a drop shot early in the match he would attempt it over and over, losing most of those points. The drop shot is a surprise tactic not a continual practice.
When should you hit the drop shot? I’ll tell you when not to first. Never attempt the shot if you are behind the baseline, the shot has to cover too much distance which makes it more difficult to convert and allows the opponent that much time to run up and cover it. When the opponent is behind the baseline and you are a couple of feet inside the baseline then the opportunity is there. Obviously, the closer to the net you are the easier the shot will be. The fitness of the opponent will be a factor if the shot is used more often.
The drop shot is hit with the Continental grip and the form is like the slice forehand or backhand. If those two shots are in your arsenal then your drop shot will be that much more effective. The drop shot can be disguised since the set up for the slice and drop shot are the same. The differences are, one- a shorter backswing, two- at contact try to almost catch the ball by opening the face of the racquet, taking the pace off the ball, and three- very little follow through.
Remember the drop shot requires a lot of practice to develop the feel.
Good Luck-Have Fun!!
Filed under: Tennis Tips
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