I got this newsletter from the Martin Fitness Method about how to improve your court balance. This is something I have struggled with myself.
Being in balance and using your kinetic chain properly is very important if you want to become a better tennis player. I have moved from a more traditional stance and swing to a more modern game and my court balance has required an adjustment. I thought these tips from the Martin Fitness Method were really good and wanted to share them here.
The point they are making in the newsletter is to focus on strength and flexibility/mobility as that may lead to greater stability and court balance. It is very easy to hit a shot and then “fall off” the shot, which means you are not engaging your kinetic chain properly. I do this from time to time, especially on my forehand and now I am committed to improving it.
Don’t forget about Court Balance
In the picture above you can see I am too far away from the ball due to lazy footwork (“you need to dance with the ball”) and this is because I have been thinking too much about my swing path and not enough about my footwork. What court balance means in this way is that you feel stable and balanced while hitting and that you are transferring your weight through the shot. If you feel like you are falling off your shot, it might be that you are not the proper position, bending your knees properly or you are either too close or too far away from the ball. This is from the newsletter:
“A lot of people, for example, seem to be focusing on what the arm sling is doing and how the arm is positioned, a lot of the time players are not holding good posture and their balance is not right. If this is not addressed and corrected a player will not get the most out themselves. Once the body positioning is right and you have enough strength to maintain it, then focus more on the arm sling.”
Tips for Better Balance
I have been working on the forehand from time to time these last six months and I have been so focused on my racquet and wrist position (the lag etc) that I have not paid enough attention to the proper positioning of the feet, the balance and the proper weight transfer. The power of the modern forehand does not come from the arm, but the rotation of the body. Here are a few tips from the Martin Fitness Method newsletter.
PS. I can really recommend the Martin Fitness Method courses. I have tried two myself. DS.
Start from the ground up;
- Base position (wide and low)
- Torso position (back straight & brace)
- Rotation (coil and release)
- Arm sling.
That should be the sequence, not the other way around (Arm sling and then move)
Please note – I am not saying to disregard the arm sling and hitting technique. I am saying to prioritize the other factors in order to produce long term gains and help keep players injury-free.