What Is A Drop Shot In Tennis?
A drop shot is a specific tennis shot where the player slices at the ball, hitting it barely past the net so their opponent cannot reach the ball before a second bounce. It is a shot more commonly found in singles tennis, though it does exist in doubles as well. Read on to learn more about how and when to hit a drop shot.
How to Hit a Drop Shot
A drop shot is created by barely hitting the ball, brushing it, with the racket in a swift downward motion. This is often referred to as a “slice” if you put significant backspin on your drop shot. The slice shot can be hit with varying degrees of power. For a drop shot, the ideal is to hit the ball as light as possible while still getting it over the net and onto the opponent’s side of the court.
One wants to hit almost underneath the ball in order to create the backspin to have the shot bounce very close to the net and be hard to reach. Almost no backswing is needed, just a simple short motion. However, a fake backswing can be employed, selling to the player that a hard shot will be hit. This will stop the player from reading the drop shot and running towards the net to return it.
When to Use a Drop Shot
A drop shot is best employed when the opponent is on the baseline. Traditionally, one wants to hit a drop shot close to the net or on a volley. It is possible to hit a long drop shot, though it is more difficult. The best players will usually “set up” their drop shot by hitting some deep, hard, shots to force their opponent back and expecting another hard shot. Roger Federer, one of the best male tennis players of all time, employed the drop shot incredibly effectively.
Why do players use drop shots in tennis?
Tennis players use drop shots to confuse their opponents and make it difficult for them to make a return. Drop shots can be disguised as other, harder shots, which can trick your opponent into staying on the baseline. Doing so will open up the whole frontcourt, where a well-placed drop shot will easily win the point.