One simple secret to begin the process of mastering high balls
Are all the tennis techniques and stroke mechanics you are being taught on how to hit high balls giving you little success? Why are you not achieving your goal? Because these stroke techniques simply do not work!
Top-notch tennis players hit hundreds and even thousands of tennis balls to eventually master high balls instinctively. Their control of the high ball is not because of a technique, but because of the natural process of developing a feel for better balance, timing, and judgment of the ball. Your attempts to hit high balls without following this process to achieve a natural instinctive feel will ultimately lead you into disillusionment and confusion.
Learning Without Precise Technique
Every player has his own individual physical and mental capacities. Therefore, I am not going to offer you any exact technique that will miraculously teach you to hit a high ball effortlessly. One technique fits all simply does not exist! I will, however, show you one of my students hitting a high ball and briefly explain how she learned to hit this high ball WITHOUT exact mechanics or a magic formula. If you will mentally stay out of your own way, stop over-thinking and keep swinging you will slowly develop an instinctive feel for the ability to handle high balls.
Lisa, in the video below, is hitting three backhands in slow motion. The first backhand is about hip high, the second backhand is waist high and the last backhand is shoulder high. Lisa has developed her own style and her own feel exactly like a pro.
Important: I have not given Lisa any intricate techniques or mechanics that enabled her to hit this shoulder-high backhand. Following the Tennis Warrior Philosophy she has learned to hit a shoulder-high backhand on her own! Note how she lifts up on the last shot to reach the high ball.
What Lisa is doing by lifting up is not a technique. I repeat, lifting up is not a technique. If you head for the courts and lift your body up to reach a high ball, like Lisa, this does not mean you will hit the high ball. She is not conscious of lifting up. Lisa has hit hundreds and hundreds of regular backhands to develop this instinctive feel for better balance, timing and judgment of the ball. Whenever she was confronted with a high ball I encouraged her to do instinctively whatever it takes to hit the high ball, including jumping up. At first, balls were flying everywhere! In time, she developed the balance and feel to begin hitting high balls. All players need that freedom to eventually find their own individual balance, timing and judgment to conquer the high ball.
One of the most important elements of learning to handle high balls is to not be afraid to lift up or jump off the ground if needed. I have seen many, many players attempting to bend their knees when faced with a high ball because that technique has been drilled into them so much. This of course does not make sense for high balls.
The next time you are playing or practicing allow yourself that freedom to lift up for high balls. Do not force a technique for learning to hit high backhands. As I told Lisa, do whatever it takes to get up to the high ball, and in time your body will create that feel for how to handle one of the toughest shots in tennis. Trust your body and subconscious to develop the spontaneous instinct to ultimately conquer that dreaded high ball!