The Myth about Wrapping Your Forehand

Newsflash: If you play tennis, you’re probably committing a common error on the courts with your forehand – intentionally wrapping your arm around your neck or body to finish your swing.

Intentionally wrapping your forehand is a really common misconception. People, including coaches, think that’s what they see the pros doing on tv. What’s really happening though is that the pro is accelerating through the swing and extending out through contact. The momentum of the swing naturally carries the racquet forward and the player wraps their arm around to disperse the energy in the swing. Wrapping is simply the consequence of a swing that has the appropriate acceleration and length, not the actual goal of your swing. However, the wrap is a great way to disperse the forward momentum of the swing with minimal effort so that you can focus your energy on getting ready for whatever your opponent fires back at you. Don’t discard your wrap, just don’t think of it as the primary goal.

If you’re a science person, think of the wrap as correlation, not causation. If you aren’t into science, think about running as fast as you can and then, without stopping, doing a complete 180-degree jump and changing directions. Pretty tough, right? Now think about the same run, but right before you change directions, turn a little, slow down, and then burst into a forward run. You use way less energy in the second scenario and are really ready to accelerate. The second scenario is the wrap.

Watch Ean explain the wrap in more detail below and demonstrate some drills you can use to improve your forehand through a full length of contact.  Please share your thoughts in the comments below!

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