Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Comparing Federer's Between the Legs Shot

Thats right Roger Federer did it again. A shot between the legs at the US Open for a winner. In 2009 he played this shot against Djokovic in the semi-final. This time it was a lower ranked player he beat with the shot, but the shot itself was still one of pure genius.

In 2009, after watching his shot against Djokovic, we discussed how Federer actually practices a between the legs shot, so that when he pulls it off in a match it cannot be described as lucky. He knows how to play this shot and is probably even trying to hit a winner, so that he is not caught out of position.

On this website we love to compare athletes and performances. Having two examples of Federer's between the leg shot allows us to do a quick comparison.
  • Both shots are played as Roger runs backward to retrieve a ball that was lobbed over his head.
  • Versus Djokovic, Federer plays his shot behind the baseline. Djokovic is  standing up at the net, so Roger needed to beat him with power and place it just wide enough.
  • Versus Brian Dabul in 2010, he plays the shot further behind the baseline than the shot in 2009. This time his opponent stays at the baseline and placement is more important. He needed to go deep into the corner with the shot to wrong foot Dabul and keep the ball out of his reach on the baseline.
  • Both shots though need to be played with power and in both cases we can see how Federer sets up with his feet and plays the shot with a lot of wrist action to create speed on the ball.
Take a look at the video below. A comparison is made by John Mcenroe near the end.

Federer gives us a great opportunity to analyze perfection. He practices perfect mechanics all the time and shots come naturally to him in the match because of all his practice and analysis.

Keep using your video camera to analyze and compare your performances.

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