How To Hit A Forehand In Tennis

Forehand is the first stroke that beginners usually learn because it comes out naturally to most people.

However, the right techniques must be executed for the stroke to be effectively used. This ultimate guide will go through the simplified steps on how to hit a forehand in tennis.

1. Prepare For The Shot

Forehand is a type of groundstroke where the racquet’s strike goes across the player’s body. If you are a right-handed tennis player, the strike path starts at the right side. In case you are left-handed, the strike path starts at the left side. You can execute an Eastern grip or Semi Western grip when striking a forehand. 

Hold your racquet firmly with your dominant hand while the other hand holds the racquet’s throat to prepare for the shot. When the ball passes through the net and approaches your wing, open your shoulders and take the racquet back. Remember to keep your feet apart and slightly bent your legs to create a ready position. 

2. Level Your Backswing

When your non-dominant hand leaves the throat of your racquet, keep the racquet at the same level as your head. The shoulder joint manipulates your body to create powerful groundstrokes [1], so make sure to fully turn your shoulder to avoid any injuries.

Please do not bring the racquet back too high or too low, and lock your wrist to ensure a smooth circular movement when you take it back. Taking a longer backswing does not produce extra power; instead, be consistent with your backswing so you can get better at tennis.

3.Generate Your Forward Swing

Bend your elbow and pronate your forearm after establishing your correct stance and calculating the ball’s position.

Lock your eyes in the direction of the ball until the racquet makes a contact point with the ball.

Your racquet must sway from low to high, and with this, it will create more power, just like a spring.

As the tennis balls make contact with the racquet, build up the speed but hit it with control.

Generate Your Forward Swing

4. Swing Through The Ball

Playing tennis involves timing and precision. When you are in contact with the ball, strike it at a comfortable distance from the front of your body and hips. Striking it too close to your body may not allow you to strike the ball effectively. 

Never over exaggerate the path of your forehand swing because it may land short. Instead of getting the point, you might give your opponent a chance to attack. 

5. Execute A Follow Through

As the racquet hits the ball, twist your wrist and pronate your forearm. Bring the racquet towards the non-dominant hand like you’re a wiper in contact with the windshield from the side of your dominating hand. Some tips say that the racquet must finish on the other side of your body, with the butt cap pointing in a forward position.   

When executing a follow-through, stay locked and balanced, just like when doing a topspin. Your racquet must be stable when continuously moving up and forward to push back the ball. Avoid looking up early to observe where the ball will land may affect your game.

6. Don't Change Your Swing

When doing a forehand on a tennis court, it is important to keep your swing path continuous and smooth from backswing until follow-through. Do not hesitate when you hit the ball because it may affect your outbound shots. 

Remember not to decelerate the racquet in your follow-through because it may not pass through the net in the middle of the court. Keep a firm Eastern forehand grip or Semi Western forehand grip to have a very smooth swing. Your swing will indicate power on your shots; you may ruin your game if you change it.

Don't Change Your Swing

7. Control Your Head Movement

If you want a consistent swing path, you must control your head motion. Looking up or standing up too soon may affect your swing. Remember to keep your eyes towards the ball but do not follow it with your head. 

The moment the ball leaves the racquet, keep your head down until follow-through. After this, you can now observe the ball’s direction and prepare your mind and body for the next shot.

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Additional Tips From Our Experts

Additional Tips From Our Experts
  • When holding the racquet firmly, leave some flexibility in your wrist.
  • Tennis forehand can be mastered through repetition, so play as much as you can. 
  • Master the basics and try to create a technique that feels more natural for you.
  • Coordinate your arm with your feet so you will not drop the ball. 
  • When preparing to hit the ball, sync your body and hips instead of moving your arm slightly. 
  • Close the racquet face when doing a backswing if you want to hit with power. 
  • To hit with speed and spin, you can try using the western grip, semi-western grip, or eastern forehand grip.
  • Try to visualize your stroke inside the court to maximize the accuracy and strength of your forehand shot. 
  • By mastering forehands, a topspin forehand would be slightly easier. 

FAQS

Yes, it is important to have a solid grip when hitting a forehand in tennis. The eastern grip or semi-western grip will translate the feeling when you interact with the ball. If you know what’s going on, you can manipulate it. In addition to this, your index finger may help with the grip.

Your dominant foot must step when hitting a forehand. When the ball comes over the net, step your right foot to gain more power when striking the ball if you are right-handed. In addition to this, step sideways with your feet apart, or you may lose your balance.

Yes, it would be best if you had the correct footwork and stance to hit a forehand. When you play tennis, right footwork plays an important role when executing the forehand. In addition to this, according to some tips, a correct open stance will give you a powerful shot when striking forehands.

So, How Do You Hit a Forehand in Tennis?

According to the tips that we have thoroughly gathered, hitting a forehand in tennis is easy with the simplified steps mentioned above. Beginners and professional tennis players like Roger Federer can easily improve their forehand shots and develop their technique with consistent practice. 

By following the steps on how to hit a forehand in tennis, you can develop your abilities and turn them into a big advantage during a tennis game. The groundstroke is very versatile and easy to execute compared to other types of shots.

Reference:

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5125509/

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