How would you like to know a lob is coming from your opponents a full second BEFORE they hit it?
In this four part email series I’m going to tell you exactly what to look for to make it a reality.
There are signs and signals given every time a player lobs. Unfortunately they usually go completely unnoticed which is why so many people absolutely hate getting lobbed.
If you knew it was coming ahead of time you’d probably love it! I do 🙂
Combine this tactical knowledge with the new plays Will Hamilton is releasing (Video 1 here) and your doubles game will reach the next level in no time.
Let’s dive right into the first P of Lob Reading:
First “P”: Preparation
As your shot is traveling towards your opponent they’ll typically start to prepare for their next swing some time around the bounce (earlier if they’re a stronger player).
From the instant they start taking the racquet back they’re practically TELLING you what is coming next.
All you have to know is what to look for.
I took two frames from one of our Federer practice videos to illustrate that point.
*You may need to click “view images” at the top of this email to see them*
This preparation was made before making a topspin drive swing from the middle of the court:
I shot this video from directly across the net from Roger so the net is straight in front of him.
Check out how far his body is turned – WELL past 90 degrees to the baseline.
Also check out how turned his hips are.
That big coil is designed for racquet head speed and offense, not defense!
Finally, take note of his racquet…..specifically, the angle of his strings. They’re pretty square and facing to the side of the court.
Ok, now check out this backhand preparation from the same player, shot from the same angle, in almost exactly the same part of the court:
Now his shoulders are just barely past 90 degrees to the baseline, his hips are just about 90 degrees, and his racquet has been taken back in a completely different position.
His strings are now angled upwards and slightly towards his head.
(Scroll up and down a few times if you don’t see all the differences right away)
This setup was made before hitting a slice!
Did he lob on this shot?
HOWEVER, these same principles apply to most of the lobs being hit at your local courts.
If you’re at the net (especially along with your partner) and you see your opponent prepare without a lot of body coil and an open racquet face the odds of them lobbing are extremely high.
Great news: you can start seeing that way before they actually hit the ball!
Will they lob every time?
Nope, but when you start to combine this knowledge with the other 3 P’s in this series your ability to read lobs before they happen will be uncanny.
All it takes is some practice out in the wild knowing what to look for and you’ll be shocked how much your opponent’s are actually telling you without saying a word.
That’s all for today but if you’re after more doubles success you absolutely must check out Will Hamilton’s new doubles series.
The first video came out yesterday and it features an awesome play from Martina Navratilova.
Check it out here:
I’ll be back with the other 3 P’s of Lob Reading soon.
In the meantime, shoot me a quick reply and let me know what you think they are.
If you guess them all correctly I’ll send you one of Will’s new Doubles Playbook’s at no cost.
Good luck 🙂