How to Volley in Tennis

It is very frustrating if you fumble when trying to execute volley shots while your opponent lands it with such ease.

Learning this specific shot and the best time to use it is beneficial, especially when playing doubles. Read more as our team will guide you on how to volley in tennis.

3 Steps to Volley in Tennis

1. Get The Right Grip

The first step to hit the volleys effectively is to practice the right grip. By mastering the right grip on your racquet, you can become an effective net player. For both forehand and backhand volley, the best grip that our team suggests you use is the continental grip. 

Continental grip is like shaking hands with the tips of your racquet or holding a hammer. It is commonly used not just by most players but also the professionals. It allows you to do the forehand and backhand volleys without switching hand positions. Every second you are at the net counts, and repositioning your hands may determine if you hit or sink the ball. 

2.Obtain The Right Stance

Executing the right stance and quality footwork will give you real progress in the volley. The player’s legs must move fast but with precision because volleys are a timing-oriented shot. In dealing with a volley, you should start with a split step and a step ahead across the body.

When your opponent is hitting the ball, jump lightly and spread your feet to have a split step. The split step is the right position to perform for either a forehand or backhand volley. It will also help you regain your balance when doing a lot of movement.

Right stance

After the split step, step ahead your right foot if you are doing a left forehand volley drill and vice-versa. Stepping ahead will give more power and punch to your volleys and punch to the ball. Remember to prepare for the ball that will come towards your backhand, so synchronize your footwork with your shots.

3. Develop The Right Motion

A good grasp and stance are useless without the right movement when executing a volley. Volley is a type of shot where the tennis player needs to return the ball before it hits the floor. It was typically performed by players close to the net or at the service line, so developing the proper swinging motion is necessary. 

The swing is aggressive because its sole purpose is to catch off guard your opponent’s push and win the shot. The volleys need a slightly open racquet face contact and a low cut which results in a backswing. The backswing movement will make the ball bounce low on the other side of the court. 

For the drill of forehand volley, make contact with the front of the body with your wrist laid back. For the drill of backhand volley, make contact with the side, shoulder, and elbow with your wrist and racquet aligned. Swinging with control is very important to make sure the ball will pass through the net. 

But what’s the height of a tennis net in the middle?

4 Keys to Good Tennis Volley Technique

4 Keys to Good Tennis Volley Technique

1. Volley Footwork

One technique you should focus on to develop a good volley is footwork. Inside the court, your legs are very important because you are required to move fast and accurately. Remember that it is not just your arm that gives power and speed to your swing but your body. 

The right footwork will help you strike the ball and surprise your opponent with your volleys. The split step and stepping ahead will help you gain balance and prepare for the momentum. 

2. Racquet Positioning

One of the most common mistakes in volleys is placing the racquet head too high, especially when doing backhand volley. The best way to describe the volleys is to think of them as receiving shots. Visualize that you are to catch the ball, so place the racquet head behind the path of the incoming ball like it is a net. 

A high racquet may give you wrong angles when you hit the ball, so our team suggests it should be around your chest level. In some instances, the racquet can be positioned slightly above the contact point, especially for volley beginners.

3. Keeping A Momentum Forward

You may think that by leaping too far, you can gain more punch when receiving the shot. But the thing is, you have to ensure that your body momentum is in the forward direction. Just like the forward position when preparing for the swing, keeping the momentum forward will improve the shot’s power, punch, and overall execution above the net. 

Forward momentum will give you more strength to receive the ball without any drop shot and secure a winning point over the net. In addition to this, you will have a more balanced position when you play or execute the beginner tennis drills.

Momentum forward

4. Learn the Right Moves

Forehand Volley Technique

Most tennis players prefer to play with the forehand volleys because it is more comfortable. The procedure here is to keep your hand extended in the opposite direction then slightly tilt your wrist. When you are about to receive the ball, both your arms should move towards each other to maintain control and balance. 

Also Read: How Do You Beat a Pusher in Tennis?

Backhand Volley Technique

Few players use this technique for their drills because it was considered the weakest type of volley. The player needs to close their feet and hips while analyzing your opponent’s stroke. 

Before you strike the backhand, place the racquet behind your head. When you hit the volley, open your hips and move the racquet forward towards the net.

Additional Tips From Our Experts

Additional Tips From Our Experts

It is important to commit yourself when you want to hit a volley. When approaching the net, you are the most vulnerable, so sync your footwork with your arm movements, so you don’t get caught up in two minds. The closer to the net or service line, the better connection you have and a bigger chance to win the point. 

Wrist injuries for tennis players usually happen because of overuse, improper technique, and excessive wrist motion [1]. So always keep your wrist as firm as you can and develop the right technique.


The half volley is known as “on the rise shot,” where the players strike the incoming ball off the ground after it bounces on the ground. The timing for half volleys is more difficult than the regular volley or even the drop volley because you are hitting the tennis ball after the bounce and not before.

To hit a strong volley, you must keep practicing and perfect your technique. Push yourself to the limits of the technique and do drills with players better than to help you strike a volley.

Yes, you can practice tennis volleys alone. By doing the volley drill with the wall, you can practice alone. The wall drill forces you to practice short and compact swings because there is no time hitting a backswing or any follow-through.

So, How Do You Volley in Tennis?

To volley in tennis, the first thing you should do is commit yourself. The right grip, position, and motion are the three important steps you should develop to have a successful volley. You must be in control of the game, so doing many drills may develop your speed and accuracy. 

The steps for volleys may seem to be easy to read and watch, but it requires a lot of practice to master. After all, the professional’s secret to effective volley is practicing and perfecting your technique.



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