Ball recognition is the player’s ability to judge the incoming ball in flight so that s/he is able to make appropriate decisions regarding the stroke, such as strike zone, racquet path, and follow through. The minimum recognition from a club player would be to call out the particular kind of ball they are receiving before the ball passes the net to their side of the court. (e.g. call out rally ball, moon ball, approach shot) Unfortunately, most club players actually make recognition decisions just before the ball bounces on their side of the court. Increasing your ball recognition skills will allow you to be faster to the ball as well as have much better technique on a particular shot
A player has two strike-zones, upper level and lower level. The lower level is for more of rally type balls and the upper is meant for the more extreme grip rally balls and offensive shots. Letting the ball in your strike-zone for a particular shot is essential to accomplishing the desired technique for that shot.
Most club players do not have a very good Tennis IQ. When asked specifics regarding technique or strategy for a particular shot, most club players say something rather generic or say that they were just happy to return the ball. Having very good ball recognition skills will certainly increase your Tennis IQ and allow you to make better decisions regarding incoming shots.
The five main properties on the ball are speed, spin, height, depth, and width/direction. Identifying the details of these ball characteristics allows you to get more balls in your strike-zone for a particular shot.
Important To Have More Than One Club In Your Bag
Most club players have only one particular shot on both their forehand and backhand, which is the standard low to high stroke. Pro players can have as many as 25 or more shots just from their forehand side. The club player trying to play all of their shots with the same stroke would be like playing every shot in golf with just the Driver. How many forehands do you have?
Ball Recognition And Arm Injury
Having very good ball recognition skills can help prevent arm injuries as opposed to playing balls awkwardly out of the preferred strike-zone which places unnecessary stress on the arm.
The Forehand Follow-Throughs – Elevated, Horizontal, Inverted, Vertical
In Summary – Having very sound ball recognition skills will make you a much smarter and technically sound player
while increasing your speed to the ball.