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The Hesitation Point

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  • johnyandell
    started a topic The Hesitation Point

    The Hesitation Point

    Let's discuss Brian Gordon's new article "The Hesitation Point"

  • stroke
    replied
    Todd Martin also, who briefly coached Novak and unsuccessfully tried to tweak Novak's serve.



    Leave a comment:


  • nickw
    replied
    So you did. Dutra Silva and the retired Zabaleta two other examples of abbreviated motions in Men's game.

    Leave a comment:


  • gzhpcu
    replied
    nickw, I mentioned him here:
    Talentrd Fabio Fognini beat newcomer Nicolas Jarry in a highly entertaining match in the final. Jarry, who is 6’6’, has a huge, high bouncing kick serve. He starts from the trophy position:

    Leave a comment:


  • nickw
    replied
    Yes! Great article, I've been converted on the hesitation point for a good few years now, but it is controversial because so many coaches advocate the smooth continuous motion. I understand fully why it's difficult to move away from that idea, but you see the hesitation point more and more at the top level of the game. If you look for it, you will see it even with the naked eye. The sync with the start of the leg drive is a crucial point for me, but that can only be seen with video. I love the explanation of how the racket should move into the drop to tap into the full potential of the internal/external shoulder rotations, that was very hepful to me.

    I think it is important to put the serve back together again after working on the hesitation point, but here's another example of a successful abbreviated motion.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fxwUwZGaZNg

    Leave a comment:


  • doctorhl
    replied
    Any connection between tennis serve beginning at hesitation point and the volleyball overhead serve? https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=TkRM5G8kIKM

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  • gzhpcu
    replied
    Sttotty, years back I had a couple of friends that served, starting from the hesitation point and had very good serves. i will try it out this week.

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  • stotty
    replied
    Originally posted by BrianGordon View Post
    Thanks Stotty. I understand the rhythm point but sometimes the quest for that feeling is detrimental to developing mechanics (i.e. the hybrid ATP forehand discussion) - guess as coaches we need to tailor solutions to individual players - no right or wrong answers here really.

    It can definitely be rectified. I've just found starting from the hesitation point is the quickest way. For one thing it provides the opportunity to stand there and use your racquet to block the forward part of the entry without getting killed. Sometimes it can take awhile. The average time to start "up top" at the hesitation to fix a problem seems to be about one month.

    I'm reminded of one year I sent three players to the Easter Bowl (important US junior tournament) starting up top. People said I was crazy but the fact is after adjustment most will serve much better from that position than they would otherwise. Each of those players freaked out when I told them it was time to reestablish the windup - didn't want to do it.

    In perfect world the continuous transition (not withstanding the rhythm feeling) could add about 5-7 mph to racquet speed by impact - assuming the backswing and upward swing mechanics are sound. It has been my experience though that the world is seldom perfect and the potential adverse effects on the backswing and subsequent upward swing could end up costing 20-30 mph (an estimate) in the near term and poor mechanics in the long term.
    Thanks, Brian. I will certainly give the hesitation remedy a go and block the racket where it shouldn't go. Your comments on the subject are thought provoking, and different to anything I have heard before.

    Originally posted by gzhpcu View Post
    Stotty, when Agassi, due to a wrist injury, started his serve from the hesitaion point, it worked fn for him. He played Wimbledon 1993 using it, and if you read the article I mentioned above they said: quote: WIMBLEDON, England (AP) - Andre Agassi brandished his new tomahawk chop serve Monday at Wimbledon, racket cocked high and crooked with as little backswing as most beginners.

    It looked odd but worked just fine for an opening-round, straight-sets victory featuring 10 aces, his highest total ever in a match here and one more than he had in winning the championship a year ago in two more sets. Unquote
    Phil, I remember that short period where Agassi used the hesitation point. I lot of students of mine around that time tried the very same thing found the method very simple and explosive. Over the course of a match, however, many found it stopped going in and the percentages plummeted. They found it hard to maintain.

    It's interesting when kids experiment serving from the hesitation point that some get more power than when using a wind up....which I guess suggests, with those children, there must be a issue with their wind up.

    I am keen on the hesitation method in the development stage of junior player, but far less keen on making it a permanent thing. Why did Agassi change back, do you know?

    Leave a comment:


  • gzhpcu
    replied
    Stotty, when Agassi, due to a wrist injury, started his serve from the hesitaion point, it worked fn for him. He played Wimbledon 1993 using it, and if you read the article I mentioned above they said: quote: WIMBLEDON, England (AP) - Andre Agassi brandished his new tomahawk chop serve Monday at Wimbledon, racket cocked high and crooked with as little backswing as most beginners.

    It looked odd but worked just fine for an opening-round, straight-sets victory featuring 10 aces, his highest total ever in a match here and one more than he had in winning the championship a year ago in two more sets. Unquote

    Leave a comment:


  • BrianGordon
    replied
    Thanks Stotty. I understand the rhythm point but sometimes the quest for that feeling is detrimental to developing mechanics (i.e. the hybrid ATP forehand discussion) - guess as coaches we need to tailor solutions to individual players - no right or wrong answers here really.

    It can definitely be rectified. I've just found starting from the hesitation point is the quickest way. For one thing it provides the opportunity to stand there and use your racquet to block the forward part of the entry without getting killed. Sometimes it can take awhile. The average time to start "up top" at the hesitation to fix a problem seems to be about one month.

    I'm reminded of one year I sent three players to the Easter Bowl (important US junior tournament) starting up top. People said I was crazy but the fact is after adjustment most will serve much better from that position than they would otherwise. Each of those players freaked out when I told them it was time to reestablish the windup - didn't want to do it.

    In perfect world the continuous transition (not withstanding the rhythm feeling) could add about 5-7 mph to racquet speed by impact - assuming the backswing and upward swing mechanics are sound. It has been my experience though that the world is seldom perfect and the potential adverse effects on the backswing and subsequent upward swing could end up costing 20-30 mph (an estimate) in the near term and poor mechanics in the long term.
    Last edited by BrianGordon; 11-05-2018, 02:37 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • stotty
    replied
    I get the whole hesitation thing and can see the value of it in developmental stage. I have never been a lover of the racket stopping, purely because it seems/feels like a rhythm break when I try it myself. It's bound to feel like that for me because I just steam straight through, see here: https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x4joc07

    I thought the video was great. I coach a couple of kids who have the forward entry problem which Brian describes. I may post one later in the week if I can shoot a worthwhile clip.

    My questions to Brian are: Can the forward entry problem be rectified once it's established? If so, is it best rectified by repeating the hesitation start over and over again?

    Leave a comment:


  • gzhpcu
    replied
    Another example of the hesitation point was Steffi Graf, who had a very high ball toss.

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  • BrianGordon
    replied
    Phil - glad the video cleared up some issues - cool video of Agassi! Thanks.

    Hi Sean - second question first.

    The hesitation point is a developmental step. Most of my players start in this position for some time until I'm convinced the backswing plane is right but more importantly that the leg drive is synched with the backswing (as I define it). At that point we add a windup at the end of which I ask for a 1 second hesitation. The length of hesitation is then decreased (usually naturally) as they progress.

    At some point the hesitation may morph to a slowing rather than a stop - fine. The main differentiation between continuous and hesitation to me is not the length of time but rather if the transition to the backswing is accelerated (continuous) or decelerated (hesitation). I've found that the common teaching cue to build speed through the end of the windup causes much bigger problems than it solves when building serves.

    If one views hesitation as a deceleration (slowing or stopping) the list of ATP players is large. Many significantly slow the arm/racquet at the transition. Thiem is example of a pretty clean stop. Roddick was the classic example although his hesitation point (shoulder internally rotated nearly 90 degrees) is more than most can handle. My hesitation point includes a 10-20 degree internal rotation. Surprised I did not talk about joint configurations at the hesitation point but I was winging it - maybe I mention it in a later video.
    Last edited by BrianGordon; 11-03-2018, 03:28 AM.

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  • stroke
    replied
    Stan is probably a good example. Feliciano also.

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  • seano
    replied
    Brian -

    Who's your best example of the hesitation on the Men's tour? How much/long of a hesitation are you talking about.

    Sean

    Leave a comment:

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