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Back Wall Boasts

Published: 03 May 2006 - 05:46 by ddraver

Updated: 25 Sep 2008 - 20:38

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Hey Guys

I'm havin trouble playin g back wall boasts well enough to use on the few occasions they re usefull, most of the time they fall short

Any Tips, i ve seen people hitting the back wall with the racket whilst playing them but i'm too scared of breaking it!!



Dave K

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From rippa rit - 18 May 2006 - 07:12

Biz - squashgame has a  world wide audience and needs to be as generic as possible for the benefit of all its members.
There are other shots too, eg lob, toss, float, kill, and terms like open and closed stance, etc that can be confused, and it ia desirable that we all know what we are talking about.exactly and precisely.

By all means do your homework on it, by then Ray Strach should be back from his overseas tour and no doubt put in his five cents worth.

Ta - thanks, okiedocie, roger, over and out

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From BizarreCo - 18 May 2006 - 03:11

Ah, but Chris is an Aussie!! So I can't vouch for his dictionary (and I don't have his number!). I can ask some of the players I know who are ex-age group coaches (U19, U17, U15, U13 and U11).


Also, for your reading pleasure, the shot is referred to as a "backwall boast" in match reports and descriptions by:

It's probably a cultural difference - Dungy / John / Head / Toliet / Shi**er etc are all used in different cultures but mean the same thing!


p.s. I'll try to get Chris's answer through some friends!

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From rippa rit - 17 May 2006 - 15:03

Biz - before you speak on behalf of Wales, ring your National Coach and ask him what the shot is called and let us know.

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From BizarreCo - 17 May 2006 - 03:50


Ouch, that was a bit of a low blow!! Personally I avoid that shot unless I really have to play it - by which point I'm usually at full stretch backwards towards the back wall (hence my description of how to practise the shot below!).


Something I keep telling the people I coach - "If you can't play it, you can't see it!" Learn every shot that you can. Even if you don't use them, always have the options in the back of your head. A classic example is the attacking volley-boast. One of the juniors thought it was a crap shot another was aprehensive. In a bit of fun 3/4 routine, I had one of them gone for the back corner before he realised the ball had been boasted!! Now that they've learned to play the shot it's easier for them to see it coming (and harder to catch them out!).


I think we'll definately keep calling it a backwall-boast here in Wales/Birmingham but each to their own!!


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From rippa rit - 16 May 2006 - 20:04   -   Updated: 16 May 2006 - 20:25

Biz - so long as you leave the word boast out of it I am happy.  We do have a Squash Speak section for the benefit of new and unexperienced players.   I would not teach that shot, unless I was really strapped for a lesson topic....sorry...and I would hope if they were paying for it I could find some other aspect to focus on.

The shot, if it is to have the name of other strokes, has to have some prefix added, eg back-the front, reverse, biz's speciality.

Call it what you like in Wales - but it does sound like a good one for Ray when he returns to put in the POLL.

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From BizarreCo - 16 May 2006 - 19:49

Hhhmmmm I'm still not convinced. What possible difference is there between Backwall Lob and Backwall Boast for a description?? I could say that a lob is a shot that is hit off the front wall to come high over the centre court and into the back. It all comes down to definition!


Here's a nice one for you - What do you call it if you play the ball off the BACK wall for it to hit the side wall BEFORE the front wall? By Rippa's definiton isn't this a boast?


Either way I guess it doesn't matter what you call it, as long as we all know what we're talking about when describing it to others. Rippa, you said you'd never heard it "named" before, but the only name I've ever known it as is a backwall boast (as so called by some of the Welsh National coaches). Shall we add a new term to our dictionary (see other post) of:

  • The Reversed Lobby-Boasty-Thing-A-Magig

Yeah, that's the one!!


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From vitty - 16 May 2006 - 04:02

OK then. "Backwall lob".

Rita, I have to thank you for your advice about how to play backwall lob, although it was not intended for me but for ddraver. I thought that I knew how to play this shot, but I´ve been mistaken ! I could play it on forehand and even on backhand (but on backhand it was more difficult) side. But I didn´t have the racket face open enough ! Today I play it with racket face more "horizontal" to the floor (as you recommended) and guess what - it was so easy ! Now I play this shot as a "pro" :) . It is really funny how the execution of the shot has changed dramatically. Now I needn´t  virtually any power to play it. Thus now I can play it even when the ball is really near the glass wall.

I agree that it isn´t an important shot but for me it has had one important consequence. Now I feel much more relaxed on the court - I don´t find the back corners evil anymore. Also now I can play more shots and keep the rally going.

So thank you, one is always learning

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From rippa rit - 14 May 2006 - 12:11   -   Updated: 14 May 2006 - 12:13

Vitty - a boast is a side wall shot, or a side wall shot is a boast, whichever way you look at it.  No matter where you hit it from, if it hits the side wall before the front wall it is a boast, eg reverse boast, tickle boast, attacking boast, volley boast.

The backwall/front wall shot - I have never really heard a name for it, and I guess it is not something that has been encouraged before, except the kids like it, and I liked it when I got too old and slow to cover the front and back corners, and hit the ball on the first bounce.  And, I did learn to hit it quite well, but there is a nack to it, especially to do a decent shot.  It is not my preference as it is very defensive, but better than saying to your opponent "good shot" (since you could not return the ball at all!!!!!)

I suppose it is a backwall lob when you think of it.  The description BizandCo gave to the return really fitted nicely the returning of a cross court lob from the front wall, so I just came up with the idea of "reversed lob".  Thinking about it out aloud, it is not a drive, it is not a drop shot, it is not a boast, it is not a volley, so what is it? 

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From vitty - 14 May 2006 - 05:01

It is a funny problem.... I propose this:

I assume that most of the boasts are generally played from the back corners, especially when you can´t play a length. So let´s call it simply a boast without any specification. When you play it from somewhere else (off the back wall, from the middle,from the front), then use appropriate term. So this "reversed lob" will be the "back wall boast" - means off the back wall, not "near-the-back wall". When you are speaking about "boast", you mean common boast from the back corners.

All agree ?

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From ddraver - 14 May 2006 - 03:33

so whats a shot off the back wall to the front then????

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From rippa rit - 13 May 2006 - 08:04

Biz - a boast is a side wall shot - end of story.

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From BizarreCo - 12 May 2006 - 19:53

Guess it depends on how you define a boast:

"A shot which hits the side wall on the way to the front wall"


"A shot that hits another wall on the way to the front wall"

The first one doesn't include the backwall the second one does. I guess it's down to Potatoe / Potatoe (I think this example loses something in typing )



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From rippa rit - 12 May 2006 - 18:08

Hey, this shot you are talking about is not a boast of any description - as it does not touch a side wall - yeah?
This could be confusing for new players trying to get a handle on the jargon.

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From BizarreCo - 10 May 2006 - 19:40

My old coach gave a rather interesting demonstration once, where all he did was lob and hit back wall boasts for an entire match (and serve of course!).

The guy he was playing was quite arrogant, but certainly came down a peg or two after being beaten by someone off the back wall!!

The best advice I can offer is to learn to get the shot tight when it arrives at the front. Cross-court back wall boasts (BWBs - not to be mistaken for BBWs!) are best to use as the ball will naturally navigate towards the side wall if hit at the right angle. Remember, this is not a shot that you should be playing when you have time to get around and play the ball forward. This is a retrieval shot, and should be practised as such!


Start on the T and drive a low, hard drive to the back of the court into either corner. Start as the ball comes passed the half court line and you should find ball behind you (with you slightly stretched and facing the back wall). This is the position that you would be most likely to play a BWB from in a mtach, so this is the position that you must practise from. Get the power, angle (sideways) and height right. Aim to get the ball to land onto the front wall about 1 foot from the side wall and for the rebound to go into the wall. You want the ball to be as tight as possible between the first and second bounces to make it difficult for your opponent!

Well that's the last of my pearls of wisdom, they work for some people, and fail badly for others!!!


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From rippa rit - 10 May 2006 - 19:33

dd - I will call this shot  a "back the front lob".
So with that in mind I will now call it a cross court back the front lob which is a bit like Vitty and Pugs described.
For this shot to be any good it needs to land a bit like a drop shot and fall into the side wall nick.
The juniors think they are "cool" shots....but trust me, spend your time trying to retrieve these shots with a boast.
  • Open the racket face till it is horizontal with,the floor.
  • Swing under the ball as  hard as you can.
  • Aim as far down the wall as you can.
  • Aim as high up on the side wall as you can.
Because you have to change the backswing, e.g  from a backhand swing, to then play a forehand back the front lob only experienced players can get this right.  It has to be a last resort to do this, not just because a person is too lazy to chase the ball in the usual manner, using the tips above.

Keep a record on how many of these shots played by your club members who actually manage to do a decent shot?

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From ddraver - 10 May 2006 - 10:08

I see what you mean rit, but yes i mean returning the ball eithger straight to the front wall after hitting it off the back wall, for example running back to hit a ball that has been hit fast to the back after i ve mucked up a drop shot (pro s probably rarely play it , although peter nicol did a really cool, diving one in the commenwealth final)

people who i see at my squash "club" play them quite alot (enough to notice anyway!) and i pulled off an awesome one today through luck and then proceeded to win the point so yes..........any tips on these shots, whatever they re called


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From rippa rit - 10 May 2006 - 09:01

dd - the jargon. I thought we had:
  •  a side wall boast, i.e boasting the ball as it deflects off the side wall.
  • back wall boast, i.e boasting the ball as it dies coming off the back wall
  • then, a front wall boast, i.e boasting at the front as the ball sneaks along the wall, i.e more like a tickle boast idea.
I did not get that a ball that is difficult to recover heading to the back wall and then returned with a backwall shot to resemble a lob as described by pugs could belong to the "boast family". I do not think of a boast situation unless the return is to hit the side wall.
After all, lt is just a way of describing the ball positioning within the court.

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From ddraver - 10 May 2006 - 00:32

No No i mean the shot that pug is talking about...hit off the back wall to the front wall, (what do you mean by a back wall boast rit??)


sorry...wrong jargon

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From rippa rit - 07 May 2006 - 12:46

Pugs - i thought the subject was about hitting a back wall boast.  Am I wrong?
What you are talking about is hitting a ball onto the backwall to get it to rebound onto the front wall?
You lost me.

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From pug505man - 07 May 2006 - 01:02

treat it the same as a lob from the front court as this is a shot with essentially the same action.
There are people who seem to be able to hit backwall boasts effortlessly n others who struggle.
Aim it crosscourt as there far less risk of hitting it out of court than if you try to hit it along the side wall (though I do sometimes have a go at that for variation).
Hit onto the back wall upwards rather softly with an open face, or only slightly upwards hard which results in a flatter trajectory n faster travel to the front. MAte it is like everything else - practice it, play about with how you hit it until you get it right or right enough. A good drill might involve driving the ball into the side walls (side to side) as it trains you to hit a ball going past you into the 'wrong' wall. Something to think about atleast.
PS when practicing DONT worry about whether you hit a 'high' ball out of court - rather concentrate on the ball reaching the front wall then when you get that right adjust your aim as needed. Good luck!

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From rippa rit - 03 May 2006 - 08:26   -   Updated: 03 May 2006 - 08:30

Here is the link to the boast which will give you some tips.
We have had extensive discussions on the back court boasts in this forum so from the archives here is "Back Corner - Pain Relief"

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From vitty - 03 May 2006 - 06:09

Hi Dave,
the answer is: THE ANGLE. The angle and distance from the back wall. Face the back wall, say 1-2 meters from it and hit the ball HIGH (about 1,5m) on the wall. The higher you aim, the less power need to be generated and vice versa. If you are too close to the wall, be careful to not to break racket. In this case you must generate power by lash of your wrist - there isn´t enough space to do full swing. Btw.Rita will have some special hints, I am sure. Anyway hope this helps !

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