Scott Nichols – On The Other Hand Newsletter – Vol 12

How are your 2013 goals coming along?  Have you written them down?  Have you
added fitness and schedule commitment to your regimen?  Any short term results
to report?  Have spoken to some of you and I appreciate your support with interest,
referrals and of course, telling your friends and team mates about my book, “On
the Other Hand.”

French Open around the corner, so let’s discuss information about clay courts:

One of the most important variables that can significantly affect your game is the court surface, which can range from fast to slow. If you typically play on hard courts and find yourself on clay, or vice versa, you’ll need to make some adjustments. Let’s take a look at the most common court surfaces and how you can gain the competitive edge.

Clay courts

Clay courts are made of crushed shale, stone or brick, and are either red or green. The green Har-tru courts are most commonly seen in Clay courts are considered slow, because the balls bounce relatively high and more slowly, making it more difficult to hit an outright winner.

The softer surface absorbs power as well as shock to the body, making it the surface of choice for many older players or players with knee or back issues. But that doesn’t mean it’s a powder puff game.

Points are generally longer, requiring a high degree of overall fitness and stamina. Sometimes the underdog will have the advantage, if he or she is fit and patient.

Statistics show that more upsets occur on clay than on hard surfaces. This could be good news if you are the weaker player. But if you have the stronger game, be wary of the opponent who seeks to simply wear you down. On clay, it is particularly important to take your time on the point and wait for the opportunity to put the ball away.

If you are a player who relies on big serves to win, you may find clay a less effective surface for that game, because the surface absorbs the power and slows the ball down. Your best bet to win is to develop a consistent baseline game and to play defensively. Because of the irregular surface, bounces can be tricky, requiring greater focus and more patience than might be necessary on a faster court. Topspin and slice are very effective on clay as these shots bite into the surface. For the same reason, drop shots can be downright deadly.

Movement on clay courts is different from other surface in that the feet don’t have a solid grip. Playing on clay often involves the ability to slide into the ball during the stroke, as opposed to running and stopping like on a hard or grass court. Your shoes can make a big difference in your ability to move effectively on clay. If you are not accustomed to playing on clay, make it a point to practice on the surface prior to a match or tournament.

One of the finest non grand slam tournaments is being held in Palm Desert, Calif.

3/8/17, all the top women and men will be their.  Only a 1 1/2 hr drive from where

I reside.  Will provide a tournament summary in April.  Talk to you all soon.

 

Scott

 

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