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Interactive Forum December 2019: Ash Barty Forehand

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  • Interactive Forum December 2019: Ash Barty Forehand

    Ash Barty Forehand

    Last month we saw Ash Barty's wonderful slice backhand, and her ATP style two-hander. (Click Here.) This month's forehand footage is equally amazing. One of the characteristics of many ATP forehands is making contact with a straight arm—something you just do not see on the women's side.

    Except for Barty. Interesting she pairs the straight hitting arm structure with a high backswing. But her hand and racket stay much more on her hitting side than most if not all the women. Her finishes are torso wraps at various heights with a large number of over the head reverse finishes. She hits from all the stances. I love her balance and the effortlessness and smoothness of her swings.

    What do you guys think?

    Last edited by johnyandell; 12-06-2019, 09:07 PM.

  • #2
    Hello John,
    She has a very good forehand. Do you think she could still improve her forehand by keeping her racket arm a bit more on the hitting side of her body?

    Norman Ashbrooke

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    • #3
      Possibly so! But it's the same question--how possible is that for women? The top players tend to have way bigger backswings--I mean going behind.

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      • #4
        What a beautiful and unique forehand, I love how she’s taken lots of ATP forehand characteristics and blended them with some WTA forehand characteristics to create such a unique style.

        Her high take back and changing angle of her right elbow to her torso looks like a WTA take back, but then she brings the racquet down to the outside a la ATP type 3. Her elbow also comes down from almost 90 degrees to an angle more like the ATP forehand as she comes forward. I wonder if the high backswing is because the muscle memory has been so ingrained in her or if it serves a purpose since the WTA hits a more linear ball than the ATP.

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        • #5
          Or was just taught that high backswing?

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          • #6
            It looks to me like this is not quite a straight arm (e.g. Verdasco or Nadal). There is some bend. She has more spacing so there is less.
            At the same time it is a fluid stroke.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by rthodges View Post
              What a beautiful and unique forehand, I love how she’s taken lots of ATP forehand characteristics and blended them with some WTA forehand characteristics to create such a unique style.

              Her high take back and changing angle of her right elbow to her torso looks like a WTA take back, but then she brings the racquet down to the outside a la ATP type 3. Her elbow also comes down from almost 90 degrees to an angle more like the ATP forehand as she comes forward. I wonder if the high backswing is because the muscle memory has been so ingrained in her or if it serves a purpose since the WTA hits a more linear ball than the ATP.
              I also wonder if she needs a little more loop because she is a woman and 5'5". She is not tall or strong so she needs to create speed somehow. The high take back allows a bit more of a circular motion so that she can generate speed. Keeping it on her side like an ATP forehand gets her all kinds of advantages.

              If you go to about 2:49 on the video, you will see her hitting a high forehand.

              Once again, I am reminded of the discussion about Radwanska's forehand which was extremely compact. It also reminds me of Mischa Zverev who has an extremely compact stroke.

              Barty probably can make her stroke more compact on low short balls but since she is often hitting from way back in the court she needs the extra loop.

              I saw her live and it seems like the forehand is not spectacular. Like she is massaging it right where she wants it. Her game is very fluid and it is hard to spot explosive shots.

              But she is solid all around and so smooth that it often feels like she is not doing much.

              Very deceptive!

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