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There are some standard tennis shots every tennis player must have as part of their game to be able to participate in the sport.

There are additional trick shots and embellishments that make an average player a good player but these can be added once the basics have been learned.


A tennis player has no alternative but to master the serve as it is the shot that commences any game. Without being able to serve then the game cannot begin.

To serve, first throw the ball high in the air in front of your body. Ensure your body is following the ball in a slant upward motion.

Make high contacted with racket and ball, make sure you snap the wrist at the top and follow through with your left or right leg.

If done correctly the ball will speed downwards at a speed and angle that makes it very hard to return.

The Forehand

Probably the most used shot in a rally and a core part of a player’s attack and return play.

The hips and the shoulders rotate back with the racket with the legs bending and flexing. The flexing of the body creates a dynamic loading of the muscles and body. The ball is normally hit on the rise after bouncing with the racket face open to hit the ball with power and accuracy.

Most forehand’s are now hit with an open stance enabling the player to recover quickly from playing the shot and to move freely around the court.

The Backhand

A little more difficult than a forehand shot and can be played either one or two handed.

The backhand should be played on the left hand side, hitting the ball with the center of the racket, make sure your body is set up at the correct distance from the ball and swing the racket in a fluid motion sweeping from left to right.

The Volley

Probably the easiest of shots because it’s simplicity, but played correctly can force your opponent to the back of the court or deliver a disguised winner.

The player takes a relaxed stance facing the net with feet and shoulders width apart and knees slightly flexed. The volley is executed by having the racket in a way to block the ball. There is no or little backswing or power in the shot. But it is important to keep the elbow out in front, with the racket head facing the opponent.

The Half Volley

A more difficult shot than the volley, requiring perfect timing, ball to eye coordination and racket work.

The half volley is basically a pick up-shot. The ball meets the ground and the racket face almost at the same time, the ball bouncing off the ground onto the strings. This is a stiff wrist shot played with a short swing and like a volley virtually no follow through.

The racket face travels along the ground with a slight tilt over the ball and towards the net. The racket face should always be slightly outside the ball.

The half volley is essentially a defensive shot and only really used when there is no other option.

Once a player has mastered these five shots then they can start to practise more advanced variations and trick shots.

If you are keen on improving your game, why not think about organising private tennis lessons with our professional coaches. We specialise in tennis lessons for kids and also private tennis coaching for adults.

For more information and to book your court, contact our friendly team today!