Putting aside those who hit a two-handed backhand, many people think of tennis as a “one-armed” sport; but the role your “other arm” plays in all strokes is critical.
A tennis pro friend, Steve Diamond, observed that, while I did raise my left arm up in the “trophy position,” I pulled it down way to early … and therefore lost all power from the proper body rotation. He said, you should keep that arm up as long as you can and THEN pull it down.
Chuck Kinyon, 30-year Dartmouth tennis coach, also pointed out: when the pros then pull down that arm, they tuck it into their bellies to improve their rotation forward. See the picture of former touring pro Hank Irvine and his arm tuck.
The Forehand and Backhand
The “Other Arm” also plays a role in hitting the forehand… watch how the pros hold it out to the side, creating good body balance as they go into their back swing.
And did you ever watch slow motion of Roger Federer as he hits his great one-handed backhand? In addition to his incredible head-on-the-ball position, check out how he throws his left arm backwards as his right arm goes forward.
What do you think? Other comments and pointers on the role of the “Other Arm”?
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