How to hit a backhand like Andy Murray!
Originally published on: 26/02/10 16:33
Andy Murrays two-hander is world class consistent, powerful and with variety. tennishead coaching editor Dave Sammel delves a little deeper, breaking down the stroke into digestible chunks you can try out for yourself on the practice court.
Andy sets up with slightly more weight on his back (left) leg than his front (right). His racket is already back early so he has time to choose the speed of his forward swing. Andy continues to adjust his feet until he is in the perfect position.
Recognise Andys shoulder rotation, which is past the midpoint (further round than his hips). This will help him maximise power and momentum as he rotates through the shot.
Andys wrist dropping below the ball into the contact point helps the racket to counter gravity and dip under the ball to impart the necessary topspin. Andys feet are planted giving him a solid base.
On contact his eyes are focused on the ball, his weight is transferring forward and up through his right leg. His trunk is side on but rotating fast so it will open up as he follows through. A main source of Andys power is from his glutes that power the rotation of his hips.
Andys weight is now almost entirely on his front leg with the hips and shoulders fully rotated, the elbows up, his racket at head level (not lifted) and his left leg pulling forward. Murrays strong core gives him great posture, balance and body control.
Andys weight has now shifted onto the right leg as he follows through. His shoulders are rotated, level and relaxed so he is now perfectly balanced. Recognise Andys fully rotated hips that keep his upper body upright and prevent him from collapsing on the shot.
Your coach: Dave Sammel
Dave is Director of Tennis at the MCTA Group (a touring academy for international pros aged 16-plus) and has been a coach on the professional circuit for the last 18 years. He has vast experience in coaching international players, many of whom have represented Great Britain and South Africa in the Davis Cup and at the Olympics. Visit www.mctagroup.com for more details.