How To Hit Forehand Shots in Tennis

Are you on your way to becoming a professional tennis player? First of all, hold on there, as it will probably take you longer than you think it will. But if you stick to some realistic goals, then tennis can become a fun sport that is not overly difficult to learn.

There are a few foundational strokes that new players can start practicing right away, which includes

  • forehand
  • backhand
  • overhead shot

There are also some variations to these that are used by the pro players, although it’s best to take it one step at the time to begin with.

In this guide, we’ll cover how you can hit a tennis ball with a strong and accurate forearm shot that will fly past your opponent and score you points every time.

Before we get started, this video is very good for getting the most out of your forehand shots:

When should you use a forehand?

Each type of stroke in tennis has its own specific application, strengths and weaknesses, so knowing when to use a forehand stroke is a critical part of the game.

  • The forehand is known as the most basic of strokes and is executed on the side that you use to swing your racquet.
  • Forehand shots can be used to put topspin on the ball.

How to hit a forehand shot

Get your body into position

In order to properly execute a forehand stroke, you need to make sure your body is properly aligned with the oncoming ball.

  • You should perform a split-step as your opponent takes their shot.
  • A slip-step is where you jump roughly an inch off the ground and land on your toes while the opposing player gets ready to hit the ball.

Get ready to swing your racquet

It is important to keep your head straight and shoulders facing towards the net.

  • As the ball flies towards you, shift your shoulders into a 90-degree angle to the net and raise your opposing arm across your body.
  • Pull your racquet arm backwards as the ball approaches closer.
  • Shift your weight to your opposing leg, and point your foot towards the sideline.

Have a strong grip

Did you know that there are at least three different ways to grip your racquet when performing a forehand hit alone? The easiest grip to start with is called the Eastern Forehand Grip.

  • To begin, place your index knuckle and heel of your hand at the third bevel of the racquet’s handle (it should look like a 3 o’clock position) and the heel of your hand at the bottom lug.
  • A good way to get started with this grip type is to imagine that you’re shaking hands with the racquet.

Hit the ball

Now you finally hit the ball. Remember to keep the racquet straight and face open towards the net as you make contact with it.

  • Swing straight through as you hit the ball.
  • A bit of downward force as you make contact with the ball will produce a powerful flat shot.
  • You should be using your entire body to power the shot. This is done by pushing your foot off the ground just before you strike the ball. What happens next is a chain of kinetic energy that you’re feeding into the shot. You can make the shot even stronger by rotating your upper body into the ball as you hit it.

Complete the follow-through

The last step in the process is vital to remember as it affects the speed and spin of the ball. There are different kinds of follow-through techniques that have different qualities, which have been detailed below.

  • The out-front finish is one of the easiest to remember for newbies. With this move, the racquet’s head goes straight out and does not twist at the end.
  • The downward finish is another powerful move. As you could probably gather, this move involves putting your body in a downward motion, with your arms across your opposite hip.

How to hit a tennis ball harder

There are so many different areas of the game in tennis that make a big difference to your performance and results. Footwork and racquet handling are both very important, as is speed and endurance but strength is another area that really helps to win matches. Being stronger means that you can hit the ball harder, therefore you give your opponent less chance of returning the ball.


There is a lot more to hitting a ball hard than strength alone, or else people could simply head to the gym to do weights and bulk up. Hitting a ball hard requires a good technique that transfers weight at the right time to generate more power into the shot. For this, you will need to have mastered the right footwork so that you have your feet in the right place to allow the correct foot to be planted in position ready for the shot.

Your backswing also plays a crucial part in delivering a powerful shot, so your backswing must be timed right so that you can get a big backswing. Of course, the technique will vary depending on what type of shot you are playing but the overhead shot (smash) is more powerful due to the angle the ball is struck. You will often see pros running to the front of court when their opponent has played the ball high and then smashing the ball down with such power that it is literally impossible to return.

The Power Serve

power serve is one of the most important shots in tennis as it gains instant points without the energy-sapping effort of winning a rally. Being able to land a first time serve hard into the service area is going to give you a much better chance of getting an Ace. So out of all of the shots you practice, it is probably more worthwhile to get this one to the highest standard possible. The pros can hit a serve at over 100 mph, which is quite unbelievable but with the right technique it is evidently achievable.

The most important part of getting the technique right is being able to establish a smooth transition that allows you to get optimum power through the ball. When you are first trying to do this, do not try to hit the ball hard. Instead, concentrate on your throw of the ball and the transfer of your body weight as you strike the ball. Then you can gradually start to try and hit the ball harder once you have mastered the serve technique.

When you are throwing the ball up, you will be throwing the ball forwards in order to strike it with as much power as possible. If you throw it directly upwards then you will not get as much power coming down on the ball. This movement also sets up your body movement i.e. your body will naturally move in the same direction as the ball, which will add extra power to the serve.

Your leg muscles also play a big part in generating power for a serve and you should be driving your legs upwards and toward the ball to enable you to gauge more power into the shot. One common mistake that people make is to put a lot of spin on the ball but this counteracts what you are trying to do so only put a small amount of spin on the ball if any at all.

You should watch videos of slow motion power serves to enable you to master this. You will see that the great servers will start behind the service line and strike the ball whilst they are in mid-air before landing quite far inside the court. This is a skillful way of using the rules to your advantage in terms of keeping your body in the right place according to the rules when you are serving the ball.

Look at the physique of tennis players – they have really toned shoulders and large biceps, quads and calf muscles. So if you want to become more powerful, doing some weights and muscle building exercises will definitely help you to hit the ball harder in tennis.

How to Read Tennis Scores

Tennis is a game that has a logical set of rules and guidelines developed to guarantee a winner at the end of a tennis game, set, or match.

Unlike some other sports, a tennis match can never result in a tie. The game must be played out until one player wins and the other player loses.

Although tennis is a fascinating game to watch, spectators may have trouble keeping up with how to read the tennis scores it can be confusing at first. Why do they keep talking about Juice!?

The good news is that the tennis scoring system is straightforward to understand and remember once you get the hang of it.

So in this article, you’ll come away with everything you need to understand about how to read tennis scores quickly and easily.

How to Read Tennis Scores: The Beginning

This is an overview of the components of scoring in tennis:

  1. Points – these are won when you hit a winning shot or your opponent fails to return the ball to you within the specified area.
  2. Games – each game is won by the player who wins the point when on a score of 40 or with the advantage if it is Deuce.
  3. Sets – these are won by the player who reaches 6 games first or in the event of a tie break, the person who wins that. There can therefore be a maximum of 6 games in a set and 1 tie break if it gets to 6-6 in games.
  4. Match – this is won when a player reaches a certain number of sets. This number varies depending on the tournament and if it is men or women playing.

The game starts with one player initiating the serve. A player who serves first will continue to serve throughout the entire game.

To win a game, one player must earn at least four points (more if the game gets to Deuce).

The server’s score is announced first before they hit the ball to the opposing player.

The terminology of how the tennis score is kept track of can be seen below:

  • Points Earned 0 = 0 Games Points or ‘Love’
  • Points Earned 1 = 15 Game Points
  • Points Earned 2 = 30 Game Points
  • Points Earned 3 = 40 Game Points
  • Points Earned 4 = Game Over (2 Point Advantage Required)

In order to win a tennis game, one player must have more than two points than the opposing player. In other words, if the score is 40-0 and the server wins the next point, the server wins the game.

On the other hand, if the server loses the next point and the score is 40-15, the server must continue to serve and see the game until the end.

Tennis Scoring: A Set

A set in tennis is named when a player who has won a minimum of 6 games with at least a two game advantage over their opponent.

A set could be a number of score outcomes, such as 6-4, 6-3, 6,2, 6-1, or 6-0.

Some sets can last as long as an hour or even more if there are special rules in play.

These rules can include tie-breaker scoring or no-ad scoring that can dramatically alter the strategy the players use for the match.

A common set of rules seen in tournament play is ‘Pro set’, which makes the games end faster. When playing a ‘Pro set’ game of tennis, the winner of the match needs to win at least 8 games leading with a minimum advantage of two or more games.

During a tennis game, the players will rotate continuously during a match when the total number of games in a set is an odd number.

For example, a total game score in a set could be 5-4, which is 9 games in total. The competitors would then switch sides before starting the next game.

Tennis Scoring: Match

The nature of a tennis nature is purposefully designed with an odd number of sets to ensure that a winner emerges at the end of the match.

Most competitors in tennis play for the best 2 out of 3 sets to decide on the winner of a match.

In some tournaments, such as the Australian, French, or US open, players will compete for the best out of five sets.

Therefore, the final score could be 3-0, 3-1, or 3-2 for the winner in these competitions.

The Short Answer

The quick answer of how to read tennis scores is that the competitor who wins the most of their sets within a match is crowned the winner of the game.

Tennis is often a very exciting and interesting sport to watch, but without knowing how to keep up with the pace of the game can make it overwhelming.

So by now you should know everything you need in order to understand what’s unfolding on the courts, as we have left nothing out in this quick guide.

For some readers, simply reading an article may not be enough for them to fully absorb the complexity of the game. If this applies to you, then you can easily find tutorials on YouTube and other sources that may be able to explain how to read tennis scores with videos and pictures instead of writing alone.

Now you know how to read the scores, grab yourself a racquet and get on the court!

Tips for Playing Doubles Tennis

efore learning how to play tennis doubles, the rules of the game of singles tennis should be mastered first. But even once you have the fundamentals down, playing tennis doubles can be challenging and confusing for new and experienced players alike.

A game of tennis doubles is played between two pairs of opposing players with a few different rules to the singles games.

A player that is new to tennis doubles will need to get accustomed to the different sidelines, the sequence of serving, and the fact they will only be returning from one side of the court.

As you are playing with a partner as part of a team you will also need to synchronize your gameplay.

In this guide, we’ll cover all of the important aspects there are to mastering tennis doubles, which should significantly cut your learning curve.

Quick Tips For Playing Tennis Doubles

  • Find a duo partner that has a relative skill level to your own
  • Communication with your doubles partner is of utmost importance, including before and after your tennis match
  • Make the choice between the forehand or backhand side, which will usually be determined by your dominant hand (left or right handed)
  • Decide if you or your partner will serve first

How the Net Will Influence Your Game

Once you have the fundamentals of doubles tennis down, what comes next is to fine tune some important techniques to increase your chances on the court.

Controlling the net is regarded as far more important in doubles than in singles. This is due to the fact that it is much easier to score points at the net as you can make use of a greater variety of angles for your volleys. Additionally, the presence of an extra player on your team works to maximize the possible spaces on the court.

Typically, the server or returner in doubles will be at the baseline of the court while the other player will be at the net. As the game progresses back and forth, the baseline player should support his or her partner at the net also.

Take Advantage of the Weakest Player in Tennis Doubles

In order to gain a strategic advantage, many players in doubles matches will pressure the weakest player on the other side of the court. This pressure is applied by directing the flow of the game towards the weaker player, forcing them to react in a way that sets the pace of the match.

This psychological component of the game is key when it comes to securing victory in doubles matches, although it could be seen as slightly unfair!

The Lob & Overhead

In doubles, you can perform a lob and overhead move by hitting the ball at an angle so that when the ball is returned your partner can smash it back to the opposing team. Another option is to return the ball straight down the middle between the two players, which can take your opponents off guard.

The serve and return are known as the two most important shots in tennis. A key difference between a single and double match is that hitting the ball at an angle may not be the best tactic due to the presence of another player. Most seasoned tennis pros prefer to hit the ball straight, as it is rarely expected.

Teamwork and communication

Although there are some differences in terms of tactics and raw game mechanics when playing tennis doubles, teamwork and communication are by far the most important variables to success.

To put it simply, if you do not synergize well with your teammate, then you have a very low likelihood of succeeding in a doubles match. For this reason, it is imperative that you find someone that you have an understanding with.

In addition to finding someone who you gel with, you should also discuss the various tactics and strategies that you’d like to employ before the match begins. By being open with your tennis partner, you’ll both be on the same page, as well as working in unison to execute on your game plan.


Despite the obvious similarities between singles and doubles tennis matches, there are definitely some nuanced differences between the two game types. Learning how to play doubles tennis can take years to master, with some people spending their entire tennis careers just learning how to synchronize their game with another player.

If you want to buy a good racket to play doubles with have a look at our guide here.

Like most things, learning how to play doubles tennis takes practice, patience, and more than a fair amount of tenacity — yet it can be mastered with the right coaching and attitude.