Path, Angle & Speed (PAS)

You will hear tennis coaches talking about various things at any particular time and here’s a favourite of many; Path Angle and Speed. 
Any time you move your racquet in an attempt to hit a tennis ball you practice PAS whether you know it or not, so doesn’t it make sense to fully understand the implications of them?  Starting from your ready position, which by the way is TRULY something that you must try to perfect (next time we’ll discuss that) the Path is simply how you move your racquet away from the oncoming ball, commonly known as the backswing, and then towards it, known as the frontswing  (by those who are in the know!)  What do you call it?  The Angle of the racquet face and where it is pointing must fit hand in glove with the chosen path as must the third party, the Speed of the racquet head during the whole path and critically as the ball is struck.  The choice that you have made is of course completely decided by the tactical situation that you perceive at that moment and you go ahead and commit 100% to it and prepare actively for the next phase of the rally.  The shot you attempt either goes roughly as you planned it or it doesn’t; Roger Federer is quoted as stating that only about 40% of the time do his shots feel exactly and go exactly as he planned.  They may or may not go in or out but he is planning the shot, ie his PAS, everytime.  Next time we’ll talk about the movement and how you start it every shot that will allow you to attempt and achieve agressive PAS whenever possible.  In the meantime, keep on making those mistakes!
Written by Rupert Green – Nick Ring Leisure’s Head Tennis Professional
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