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Tennis ball machines maximize your practice time

By Alexandre Desmarais

 

It’s no secret that practice makes perfect! How many times have you tried to find a tennis partner that could hit perfect shots to set you up for the strokes you want to practise? Finding a player who’s capable of helping you practise properly is very difficult. Obviously, if the player is weaker your rallies won’t be long enough to give you the repetition required to integrate the same movement. The opposite is true too: a stronger player won’t want to practise with a weaker player because he or she won’t be challenged or get much practice. A ball machine is therefore an excellent tool for all players wanting to improve and make the most of their hours of practice on the court!

 Practice and repetition of the many shots to be improved are key to a tennis player’s technical evolution, whatever your level. When you’re working on the technical aspects of your shot, it’s important to begin in a controlled environment, always repeating the same shot knowing exactly how the ball is arriving at you so you can focus on applying the technical aspects of the shot in question. If you’re constantly having to adapt to different shots coming at you, it’s hard to integrate the technical points you want to practise.

 A semi-controlled environment can come next. At this stage, you keep practising the shot in question but with other aspects introduced, either by having to move around or by adding other types of shots to the sequence, while knowing how the ball is going to arrive. Going directly from a controlled environment to a game situation can slow down the evolution of the shot in question considerably because it’s difficult to perfectly integrate a technical change when you’re in a situation requiring adaptation or involving stress. Once the first two steps are completed, you can practise in an uncontrolled environment, receiving all types of shots as you apply the various technical points but still in a non-stress environment to keep your focus on what needs to be practised.

What’s great about a ball machine is that you can easily practise in all these types of environments! You can program the machine to be semi-random to practise in a semi-controlled environment. When it comes time to practise in an uncontrolled environment, a ball machine with an internal oscillation mechanism is essential. It makes the machine’s choice of ball trajectory unpredictable. Therefore, you can’t anticipate the shot coming at you. This creates a game-like situation while being certain there’s a shot coming at you after each of your own shots!

 If you’re a tennis player who wants to improve as fast as possible, remember that it’s essential to work on each technical aspect of your game properly. Improving your shot while in a game situation or while having to adapt to each shot coming at you is possible but a lot slower. With a ball machine, you make the most of all your hours of practice on the tennis court. This makes a huge difference in your level of play – and your enjoyment of the game!