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Good length

A lob from mid court is a good way to get the ball to length and have time to recover to the T.

A lob from mid court is a good way to get the ball to length and have time to recover to the T.

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Good length should land in the back corner

Published: 06 Aug 2004 - 18:37 by rippa rit

Updated: 18 Mar 2008 - 20:04

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Good tight length is the basis of all game plans. To explain tight (close to the side wall), and length means to get the ball to land in the back corners. A shot that can be difficult to retrieve successfully without some technical skills.

How does the pressure build up with tight length?

  • Firstly, tight length puts pressure on an opponent, then it is possible to play their weaknesses.
  • Secondly, once pressure is applied (and it may take several shots to achieve this), it is easier to put the ball where you want to.
  • That means going for the weakness when the shot is "on".

Link to Gold video clip showing tight backhand length.

squash game squash extras How to add images to Members' Forum posts and replies here... PSA Squash TV - North American Open 2012

Replies...

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From rippa rit - 14 Jan 2008 - 11:52

adam - I would like to see more of the length being tight, and not so much over hitting to get the back wall nick on the bounce, but to hit the side wall nick about half a metre from the corner. 

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From adam_pberes - 13 Jan 2008 - 21:52

yeah. I Think that they have to overdrive the ball, because if they want that second bounce to be in the back wall nick, the first bounce has to be ALOT shorter. They COULD play a soft frive to get that nice length, but with the speed of the pro's,  it is no good cause they will get there before it gets ANYWHERE near the backwall. .


 


Or if they played a low hard drive, the first bounce would be too short and cut off.


 


And I agree with you there rita! An average player cannot try to emulate the pro's game. Because you need both players trying to emulate it. and this is super rare at the average level. (i think anyway)

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From rippa rit - 11 Dec 2007 - 07:03   -   Updated: 11 Dec 2007 - 07:05

stockcubes - I often wonder myself why the continmuous "overhitting" and lack of variety - here are my thoughts:

  • the rallies are so long, the ball gets so hot and bouncy
  • the only winner with the speed and bounce is a "dead  nick"
  • speed of the game rushes the shots and allows less time for accuracy
  • faster ball gets past the opponent quicker
  • new racket technology changes the power
  • long rallies eventually tire out the opponent
  • lack of time to play the shots interferes with shot making abilities
  • hitting the ball too fine might/will cause more errors
  • a slow game has to be very tight or the shots get punished
  • emphasis on winning with speed and power as opposed to tactics
I think there is an opposite view to what I have said mind you, but who am I to criticise the pro players!!
Having said that I find the straight out power and speed game boring too, just waiting for the opponent to make an error.  When the average player tries to copy the pros it seems a dismal failure to me.



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From stockcubes - 10 Dec 2007 - 23:45

Can anyone clarify why all the pros and top players constantly overhit their drives to come off the back wall?


Usually a textbook would advise for the ball to bounce so that it dies near the glass. The only thoughts that I had was the players overhit (a)to ensure that they don't hit short, (b) give them more time at hard pace to get on the T and 'watch' the ball.


many thanks in advance, Stockcubes


ps this is my first post but have read some really wise and impressive advise from other threads. What a fansastic website! It's a really good forum for knowledge transfer.

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From aprice1985 - 30 Dec 2005 - 07:40

this sounds good and i will try some of it and yes it was what i was trying to describe not the angle

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From rippa rit - 28 Dec 2005 - 10:07

aprice - you are getting plenty on this one!!
If what Ray describes in his first para is correct, the critical thing is the "front wall target".
Try this exercise all by yourself:
  • Stand at the T area
  • Throw the ball to land on the corner of the service box (at short line)
  • Halve the distance between the ball and the side wall
  • That should be how far from the side wall you aim on the front wall (in this case about 1m from the side wall).
  • Try hitting a dozen balls until you can get it within close proximity to the nick you are aiming for.
  • Just keep experimenting with that theory and you will get it pretty close.
Once you have got it.  Try varying the position of the ball, but using the same theory to establish the target, and BINGO.

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From raystrach - 28 Dec 2005 - 08:45

hi aprice

had a chat to rita about your post. she misunderstood what i think you were trying to say. please correct me if i am wrong, but
  • you are trying to hit straight and to  length
  • you are at least mid court or deeper when striking
  • it often happens when you are under pressure
i found two main causes for this problem
  1. You are late on the ball
    • your preparation is too late(most common cause)
    • the racket head is not coming thru at the correct angle (many reasons for this)  
  2. the racket face is not open enough on impact
the most successful solution is to
  1. ensure the racket face is more open
  2. ensure racket is prepared BEFORE the ball arrives (not at the last second) and most importantly,
  3. swing through to the target point with the follow through(this ensures  the swing is straighter - not too circular)
let me know if i am getting close

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From rippa rit - 28 Dec 2005 - 07:31

aprice - I think you are talking about hitting a short shot?  If so I have just put in a Rippa Rit Coaching Tip "About short angles" so if you go there and put in your specific info I will put the answer through that article. 

If I have mistaken the question, and it is length you are referring to, please describe the exact position, etc of the ball.  Sounds like it is about angles too.

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From aprice1985 - 28 Dec 2005 - 06:32

One of my biggest problems has been hitting the ball in the nick bertween side wall and front wall so it rockets out into the centre of the park, how can i fix this?

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From rippa rit - 26 Dec 2005 - 20:47

Yep Slavi enjoy the break - best wishes for 2006. 
So we have two things besides having the ball tight to the wall too, if we really want to get picky!
  • Tight and touching the side wall as it skews into the corner of the court.
  • Tight and try to get the ball to bounce about a racket length before the back wall so it is almost second bounce when it hits the back wall nick.
These skills of course are hard to hit consistently, and as you have observed, it is the players who can judge the speed, length and depth of the hit under varying conditions that are the top class.

How did you get on?  Put a few targets on the floor and front wall to assist training goals would be a good idea.  Out of ten, how many reached the designated area in the back corner?  If they did not reach the area, do you know what went wrong? 

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From drop-shot - 26 Dec 2005 - 18:07

Welcome in the Xmass time!
I am using the adventage of a break in between the feast (meals) to put some thoughts on the topic of good length... Just last night I was watching Matthew-Shabana match from Saudi International 2005 (the last big PSA tournament of 2005), and just one thing really hit me. The most of the winning actions from both of the players has started from very good and tight length shots, or actually, sequence of that shots. And I found out that this is the difference from good and very good players. To be able to be consistent and refuse the temptation to hit one false shot... With this positive accent I pack my shoes and racket and leave to the squash club.

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From drop-shot - 26 Jan 2005 - 22:07

Rita, thanks for help. I will try it for sure. Thanks for being my coach all the time. What I've learned already about tight drives is TO NEVER ANSWER WITH THE STRAIGHT DRIVE, but with soft lob. Simply, I broke my racket on the wall, when I hit the ball squeezed on the side wall. It was a good racket :-) head inteligence 130 ... From that time I never answer tight drives with the same strong drive.
Anyway, thank you very much for this lesson. You'll be updated on my progrress. BTW – middle Feb. is going to be my first appearance on the Tournament for Amateur players. I am really excited. I do not wanna win, I want to play good and smart games.

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From rippa rit - 26 Jan 2005 - 16:29

Slavi, just a bit more on the good length/solo drills - I don't want you to get information overload! If you mix good length and tight length, it should be easier to keep the ball in play while practising these drills. Here is an example:

1. Start by standing at the back of the corner of the service box, hit the drive deep to the back wall 2 or 3 times, even making the ball rebound off the back wall.
2. For the tight shots (hard to drive), reply with a lob, tight to good length.
3. Any shots not so tight to the wall drive the ball to length of course.
4. If the drive "mucksup" drop the ball into the front corner, then hit the ball tight to length, then drive, etc.

Kind of play around with the 4 shots, ie drop, lob, drive and back wall drive; then, boast and repeat on the other side.

This "playing around" with the ball will improve your "feeling" of the ball and racket control.

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From drop-shot - 26 Jan 2005 - 03:48

Good length ... Good evening/morning/afternoon (wherever you read it) ...
Seems to be easy, but actually that's the hardest part of game. To keep good and tight length all the time. Probably the best way to practice that is to have solo practice. Shame to say, I did start some solo drills, but I feel really awkard going to the court alone, when everybody's asking "your partner's late?" ... Then I am trying to hit 50 overdrive straights, but I finish after 20 because I am so proud... Well, thank you again for some important lessons. Good one.

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