6 Steps To A Better Slice
- Use Continental/Chopper Grip
Sorry, it’s that grip again! The one that everyone hates and rarely use. It’s a important on this shot as it is on the serve, smash and volley so start using it now!
If you’re using the forehand grip, your racket face will be too open, making you come under the ball too much, forcing the ball high into the air. The Continental grip makes it easier to align the strings to the ball so that you can make a good connection and like the volley you can use it for both forehand and backhand shots.
- Keep The Racket Head Up
The sliced groundshot is very similar to the volley in many respects. I like to think of it as an elongated version. The racket head must be up on contact or you’ll put side on the ball which can be very useful on occasions but I recommend you master the basic slice first, which involves just backspin.
Cock your wrist and form a ‘V’ shape between your arm and racket – ‘V’ for volley! Slice is used on numerous shots including lobs, chips, drop shots and approaches so it’s well worth getting right.
Keeping the racket head up also allows you to hit down on the ball should you wish to attack or play an approach shot. Starting higher and increasing your racket speed downwards will send the ball lower over the net & keep it low after the bounce.
- Stay Sideways
Generally speaking, you need to stay sideways on throughout this shot. If you’re slicing under extreme pressure, you might need to hit with an open stance but I’d recommend learning the shot with a side on position and let it evolve from there.
Slice is more frequently used on the backhand side and this is where the side-on position is most common. As in the one-handed topspin backhand, the linear nature of the sliced backhand helps develop power without sacrificing control.