The modern game of tennis is a sport that requires players of all levels to have good footwork, be agile, flexible, strong and have an explosive first step. Nowadays, many more players are spending more time at the baseline hitting powerful groundstrokes than rushing to the net. There are very few professional players who serve and volley on a regular basis. Players like Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray have an excellent return of serve that makes it tougher for players to get to the net on a regular basis.
Many recreational players who play doubles have an easier time getting to the net on a regular basis. Typically what I have seen is that these recreational players have more time to get to the net, which gives them an opportunity to hit volleys from an offensive position.
In this post I am going to share some essential tips for hitting low volleys down around the feet area. One of the biggest mistakes that recreational players make is they bend at the back for their low volleys instead of bending at the knees and hips. As a result of bending improperly the body is placed in an awkward and uncomfortable, which can lead to muscle imbalances, aches and pains and injuries.
Players need to make an effort to bend at the knees and hips for low volleys, which will enable them to be balanced and in proper alignment, which will reduce overuse injuries. By bending at the hips and knees, players will also be able to recover faster for the next shot.
Outlined below are sample exercises that one can do to improve their flexibility to hit low volleys from a balanced and offensive position.
Glute Stretch – Lie down on your back and cross the left leg over the right knee. When ready pull the right shin towards the chest and hold this position for 20-30 seconds on each side. Perform 2-3 sets.
Hip Flexor Stretch – Lie on your back and pull the left leg towards the chest. Keep the right leg down on the ground and hold the position for 20-30 seconds on each side. Perform 2-3 sets.
Knees Toward Chest – Lie down on your back and pull both knees toward the chest and hold this position for 20-30 seconds. Perform 2-3 sets.
Piriformis Stretch – Lie on your back and cross the right leg over the left knee and place a tennis ball underneath the right side. Perform 2-3 sets for 20-30 seconds on tight spots.
Always remember when performing these exercises to use correct technique and proper postural alignment. If you are experiencing any soreness, stiffness, and/or pain take a few days off to allow for a full recovery. If your problem persists for more than a few days I recommend seeking medical attention.
I hope you found this article useful and learned a few things to help you improve your low volleys.
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