It seems that every young kid wants to hit a two-handed backhand with topspin like Raphael Nadal or Andy Roddick. That’s not so unusual, I suppose, since many kids tried to serve and volley like Pete Sampras when he was the world’s leading player. But let’s face it, most youngsters don’t possess the extraordinary skills of a Nadal or Roddick. Nadal’s uncanny shot is the result of enormous strength in his wrists and arms coupled with precise timing. If that timing if off even minutely, his game can go to pieces. So I don’t suggest that you try to hit the Nadal way. However, you can still learn to put topspin on the ball using a two-handed backhand simply by looping your backswing and hitting the ball with the racquet moving from low to high at contact. The more the racquet is moving upward, the more topspin you’ll put on the ball. Don’t try to roll the racquet head over the ball at impact – that will do nothing for your spin and all you’ll probably do is hit the ball straight into the net or the ground. Keep the head vertical as the player in this drawing is doing.
This lesson is an excerpt from Bring Your Racquet: Tennis Basics for Kids
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