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COACHES CORNER – Doubles Volley Targets

University of Oklahoma Women’s Tennis Coach, David Mullins, offers a few great tips on what to do with the volley in doubles when you are at net and your partner is staying back. 

“Even at the highest level of college tennis, I continue to see doubles players make the same mistake over and over again with their volley when they are the server’s partner up at the net. The automatic response (regardless of whether it is a tough volley or easy volley) is to take the volley right at the diagonal opposing net player (returner’s partner).  We tell our players they can hit the volley at the net person only if they are on the offense and 100% sure it will end the point.”

He cautions hitting the same volley if on the defense.  “If you try and take a low or defensive volley at the net person you are most likely going to pop it up,” says Coach Mullins. “They will then have more time and space to react to it and be able to hit a winner or an offensive volley off this shot.”

“Rather, low or defensive volleys from this position should go directly back to the returner on the baseline. I suggest a target about 2 feet inside the baseline and 2 feet inside the inside alley line. This deep volley puts the pressure back on the baseline player, allowing you to hold your position and close even tighter on the net and limiting the baseline player’s angles.

“If you hit your volley into the alley, you risk opening up more angles for the baseline player and reduces your positioning power.   Rather, place the volley deep back at the baseline player and wait for a better opportunity to finish on the opposing net player.

To summarize, a DEFENSIVE VOLLEY should be hit back deep inside the inner alley line to the baseline player/returner.  An OFFENSIVE VOLLEY should be taken at the right hip of the diagonally opposing net player/returners partner (or back behind the baseline player with a shorter angle, as they will generally run to cover the middle).

For more great tips and instruction from Coach Mullins, check out the Nike Tennis Camps at University of Oklahoma.  The camp provides first-rate instruction, match play, diversified social activities, exposure to life in a university setting – and the chance to build lasting friendships. 

For more information, visit www.USSportsCamps.com or call 1-800-645-3226.

About US Sports Camps
US Sports Camps (USSC), headquartered in San Rafael, California, is America’s largest sports camp network and the licensed operator of NIKE Sports Camps. Founded in 1975, Nike Tennis Camps is a division of US Sports Camps. What began 37 years ago as one tennis camp is now a national network with more than 500 camps across the country in a wide variety of sports. Players, coaches, parents and others interested in Nike Tennis Camps and US Sports Camps can visit the company’s website at http://www.USSportsCamps.com.

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