Tag: court position

Quick Racquetball Tips: Running Home!

racquetball-positioning

photo: drukelly

“He that fights and runs away, May turn and fight another day; But he that is in battle slain, Will never rise to fight again.”

Who knew that Tacitus, ancient Roman senator and historian, was also a supreme racquetball tactician?  On some rallies – many, actually – the best thing that can happen is that you live “to fight another day.” There are many times when you simply cannot put the ball away. You may be pushed into a defensive posture, or simply not have the situation you are looking for that matches your kill skills.

If so, the best “survival” option is ANY shot which moves your opponent out of center court, and gives you an opportunity to take over this prime scoring “home” court position.

Think passing shots, and especially ceiling shots.

Run home after every shot

As soon as you hit your “repositioning” shot, flow towards and just behind the broken receive line, center court. Consider this your “home” spot, and do everything you can to get back here after each shot. This is a great court position from which to mount your next attack!

You can see the woman in the photo is just behind this home position returning the shot; her opponent is horribly out of position near the left wall, leaving the court almost completely clear for any shot she wants to take. He clearly made no effort to get back home after his shot. From this position, she can dominate the game.

Remember Tacitus’ great advice next time you play. Run home! Maybe those Romans knew something about racquetball after all.

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Doubles Racquetball – Racquetball Doubles Strategy

I have never quite decided whether doubles racquetball was the ultimate in high-speed sporting “chess” … or just sheer madness. Either way, you are going to need to know some basic racquetball strategies to control the doubles mahem of 4 bodies and racquets careening around in such a small enclosed area.

Racquetball Doubles Strategy – Serving

 

This video focuses on your starting service position for doubles, and the immediate next moves you need to make as a doubles team to control the court. He points out a key error that many  novice racquetball players make when serving in doubles.

Racquetball Doubles Strategy – Court Positioning

 

One of the critical skills in doubles is court positioning. A make-or-break skill is what the non-hitting partner does as soon as they see they are NOT getting the ball. Novice players often spectate; experienced players immediately flow towards the “control spot” in mid-court. Look carefully at the scenarios set up in this video to see how to use your non-hitting time to best effect.

The team that controls the center court space usually wins.

Doubles Racquetball – Advanced Court Positioning

There are a variety of ways to cover the court when you play doubles. Smart teams start with a system, and then tweak it to fit their individual strengths as players. Note in this video who is responsible for balls down the middle:

Advanced court positioning strategies discussed in this video:

  • Side-by-side
  • 2X “L-shaped” strategy
  • Flow strategy

Which one seems to make more sense to you for your playing style?

Doubles Racquetball Strategy – Advanced I-Formation

If you have a player who is very fast and quick with the racquet, and another who is good with the deep ceiling, pass, and kill shots, you might want to scrap the side-by-side doubles strategies for the aggressive “I-Formation.”

 

This is a very aggressive strategy, and takes the right combination of skills. But if played well, it can be very hard to beat.

Creating Your Own Doubles Strategy

If you are just starting out playing racquetball doubles, here are some good rules to follow:

  1. Pick a strategy — ANY strategy! Follow it, and …
  2. … Learn. Communicate assertively and pay attention to who gets which balls best, and where the problem areas are.
  3. Tweak. Adjust the basic strategy to fit the strengths and weaknesses of both partners, considering both stroke mechanics, and decision-making.
  4. Enjoy the challenge! Doubles is organized madness, and players who cannot survive a little chaos and thrive in creative situations need to stick to singles.racquetball-doubles-racquetball-strategy

Doubles racquetball is not for the faint of heart. Just make sure you have a REAL doubles racquetball strategy!

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