The Complete Guide to Racquetball Strategy: Improve Your Games Now
Here's the deal:
Knowing how to play racquetball is one thing, but in order to be the best player possible, you have to develop a full strategy.
The more you play, the more you will be able to figure out what works best for you and what to do against certain opponents.
You can learn some pro strategies that will elevate your game. Once you get more playing experience, you can work out your strategies while still using these.
Let’s get started
Stay in the Center
One of the most important strategies you can employ is to always stay in the center of the racquetball court. When you position yourself in the middle of the court, the ball will always come near you as soon as your opponent hits a bad shot. You’ll be close to every possible shot and won’t have to run around the court as much. This will help you conserve energy and keep your composure throughout the game.
In this position, you’ll also be fairly close to your opponent at all times. This means that the ball will probably be slightly faster on the returns, so you both have to be more aware of each other’s shots. You’ll also have to make sure that you don’t have any contact with your opponent as that’ll cause a hinder. As long as you’re paying attention, this shouldn’t be a problem.
Pay Attention to Your Opponent
You should always be aware of your opponent and how they play. Watch them during their warm up and see how they hit their shots. You’ll be able to find their weaknesses by doing this. Maybe they’ll practice specific shots as they warm up or perhaps you’ll notice that they have a slow reaction time or a poor backhand. All of this information can be used against them during your match.
Similarly, you should always watch where your opponent is on the court during your match. When you know where your opponent is you can make a conscious effort to hit the ball to a spot that will be hard for them to get to. For example, if your opponent is back in the court, you can hit the ball so that it ends up hitting closer to the front of the court, so they have to scramble to make the shot or lose the rally.
Know Your Weaknesses
Just as it’s important to know your opponent’s weaknesses, it’s just as important to know your weaknesses. When you know what you need help with you can try to mask things, so your opponent doesn’t figure you out. For example, during your warm up, don’t set up the shots you need work on. Do that when your opponent isn’t watching. Similarly, don’t ask an experienced player for help before your match. They’ll use that information against you in the match.
By studying your own game and knowing your weaknesses, you can also work on them when you practice. You can also try to make sure that you don’t have an opportunity to show your weaknesses in the match. For example, if you know that you have a problem returning frontcourt hits, you can try to make sure that you always hit with enough power that there aren’t many frontcourt returns by your opponent.
Hit the Ball Properly
If you’re still learning how to play racquetball, there’s a possibility that you’re just out there slapping the ball around and hoping for the best. There are proper ways to hit the ball, however. You have to make sure that your racquet is always pointing forward when it impacts the ball. This is the only way to make sure that the ball will go where you want it to go. When you do this, the ball will naturally follow the angle of the racquet. If you don’t do this, the ball will never go where you want it to, and you’ll make a lot of mistakes.
Similarly, you should always hit the ball, so your racquet remains parallel to the floor. Sometimes players tend to use a windmill motion when they hit the ball, but this isn’t correct. When you do this you’ll change the trajectory of the ball and end up with poorly placed shots and a lot of lost rallies. By keeping your racquet parallel to the ground, you’ll be able to control your shots and ensure that they’ll hit where you want them to.
Use the Back Wall Properly
In racquetball, the back wall can be an important tool in your arsenal. You can use it to set up harder returns that will mess up your opponent and earn you points. However, you have to use the back wall in the right way. A lot of players will hit the wall too hard thinking that this kind of power shot will be best but the problem with this is that it slows the ball down. When the ball slows down your opponent has a better chance to make a good return shot. This gives them control and puts you on defense instead of offense. Instead of hitting the ball forcefully into the back wall try hitting it lower on the back wall with slightly less power. It’ll set up a harder return for your opponent. You can still use the back wall for power shots from time to time, but it isn’t something that you should do all of the time.
Improve Your Grip and Swing
Your racquet is essentially an extension of your arm. By maintain the proper grip, you’ll be able to use your racquet properly and make great shots every time you hit the ball. You have to practice both a forehand and a backhand grip and learn how to switch between the two easily during a fast-paced match. Similarly, you shouldn’t hold your racquet tight as this will affect your speed. Learn the right balance for yourself, so you aren’t gripping tightly or holding the racquet loose enough where you drop it. All of this is best done through practice and experience. The more you play and practice your grip, the more comfortable you’ll be on the court.
You also have to work on your swing constantly. It’s important that you have a complete swing where you’re swinging through the ball instead of stopping your swing on impact. Your follow through on your swing is what will give you power and accuracy on the court. When you stop your swing too soon you risk hitting the ball too high or too low, but if you follow through and continue your swing passed the initial impact you can ensure its spot better.
Other Tips to Follow
As you continue to develop your strategy for your racquetball game, there are some other small tips that you can incorporate into it. These things are more suggestions than cut-and-dry requirements of a good game, however.
First, use your warm-up with your opponent to practice common shots instead of trick shots or things you know you need work on (remember, know your weaknesses). This will not only allow you to try to hide your weaknesses from your opponent but will also keep your strategy hidden since practicing the most common shots won’t show them anything they don’t already know.
Next, try not to run directly toward the ball on returns. Instead, you should always try to make sure the ball is on your stronger side so you can make a good return. Also, make sure that you maintain the right distance from the ball, so you have enough room to swing your racquet properly. Remember, you want to maintain the right angle, the proper grip, and swing with a full follow through for the best shot.
Finally, take opportunities to watch professionals play the game. You can watch videos online or watch professional matches in your area. Watch how they play and how they’re able to hide their weaknesses during the match. If you can, talk to more experienced players and ask for tips or suggestions. Remember, if you’re playing against them, do this after the match. Their advice can prove to be invaluable over time.
All of the ideas here can be used together to put a complete racquetball strategy together. You can figure out exactly how you want to play and use the right techniques and tricks to execute the perfect match every time. Remember that practice does make perfect so get on the court as much as you can and play whenever possible. As you gain more experience, you can then further develop your strategy and add different tricks to your gameplay.