There are many keys to
becoming a successful platform tennis player. One of the fundamentals
that will enable you to becoming a better player is learning when
to be offensive.
Times during a match
when it is crucial to be offensive:
of Serve: When returning serve it is a MUST to drive. The one
exception to this rule is when you are playing a match in inclement
weather. The return of serve is essentially your only "free"
shot in paddle against your opponents. IT IS CRITICAL NOT TO HIT
THE BALL IN THE NET OFF THE RETURN OF SERVE. It is important to
make the opposing team have to hit the first volley. I feel
the first volley is the most difficult shot in platform tennis.
It takes many years of practice to feel comfortable with making
the first volley. That is why it is crucial never to return the
serve into the net off the return.
The importance of hitting
the return of serve over the net is two-fold:
1. The opposing team
has to hit and make the first volley in order to continue the point.
2. At all levels from beginners to the finals of the Nationals,
there are an inordinate amount of out balls that are played by the
opposing team at the
next time when you are not playing your league match or you are
able to watch the top players playing in a match, watch and you'll
be amazed at how many out balls are being played at all levels of
It is important to develop
an effective drive on balls that are volleyed short into your court.
On balls that are volleyed short by the opposing team, it is important
to maintain a short compact swing and not over hit the drive.
An analogy that is very
helpful is the following:
Balls volleyed short in the green
portion of the court think GO. Balls volleyed in
the green that you will be hitting while in the red
portion of the court, think STOP. In this scenario
it is necessary to hit a lob and regroup and wait for your next
opportunity to drive.
It is also important
to be offensive when the opposing team is over hitting their overheads.
In today's game, the screens and ball are livelier than they have
ever been so there will be many opportunities to be offensive off
the screens. The same thought process applies to these types of
shots as well.
If the ball bounces off
the screens into the green portion of the court
DRIVE THE BALL.
If the ball bounces off the screens and stays in the red behind
LOB THE BALL.
If you are driving the
ball behind the baseline while in the red, you most likely will
be off balance and are susceptible to being dropshotted on by your