The pro´s you see on tv make the overhead look so easy. If for example Roger Federer gets an overhead, it´s for 99.9% a point. However, most recreational players struggle big time with putting away an overhead.
To be able to execute the overhead well, you need very fast footwork, timing and hand-eye coordination. If it´s a weakness of yours, start to work on it more often during your practice sessions! Use these tips to take your overhead to the next level! Enjoy 🙂
Turning your feet and the rest of your body sideways is essential for hitting a good overhead. If you turn your body sideways and make sure your body weight is leaning into the ball when hitting an overhead, you feel more in control over the ball and it will make sure you won´t hit the ball up!
Use your non hitting hand
This is a very important part of the overhead. It has mostly 2 funtions:
1: you should try to point your non hitting hand towards the ball, this will help you with timing and better hand-eye coordination.
2: By putting your non hitting up, you will feel more balanced. Meaning you won´t feel like you are falling back when hitting the overhead. Absolutely nessacary when you´re looking to build more in your overhead.
Reach as high as you can
Don´t wait for the ball to come down at shoulder height, stretch your arm and racquet up and go for it! By reaching towards the ball, you will get a better angle which will result in you hitting more overheads inside the court!
Footwork is key
Every shot in tennis starts with your feet. If you are not set for the shot, you won´t hit a quality one. Take small, quick steps as the ball is in the air coming towards you. You want to be sure that you are behind the ball, and are able to extend as you reach up for the shot. If you let the ball get behind you, the quality of the shot will be very poor. Quick steps are key when getting ready for an overhead!
Don´t hit the ball with full power
Full power on the overhead is not nessacary! Only try to use it when it´s a really easy one. To hit a winner with your overhead you still need decent power though, just not full most of the times. 70-80% of your power should be enough for your opponent not being able to get the ball back into the court again.
Move into the ball
By moving into the ball you will generate more ´easy´ power, sounds great no? Once you have gotten in position behind the overhead, you want to make sure your body weight is moving forward into the shot. This will allow you to generate power as well as allowing you to have much better control in hitting the ball in any direction.
Stay away from the lines
Wanna hit your overheads with more control and consistancy? Start hitting them further away from the lines! Even when you hit your overhead like a meter or more away from the lines, you are still able to hit a winning shot. Try to see where your opponent stands and see which angle will give you the best chance of your opponent not catching the shot.
After reading this article, you are ready to go out on court and practice your overheads. After some training you will crush your opponent´s with those great overheads! You´re welcome 🙂
Having a friend that struggles with hitting a good overhead? Don´t hesitate to share this article with him/her. Sharing is caring, let´s grow the tennis community together!