A: The lob is an effective shot in tennis. What is it? It’s a ball where you’re trying to hit the
ball substantially high in the air perhaps over a net player’s head or perhaps just to
make someone in the back court have a difficult time with a high bouncing ball. Generally there are two types of lobs, defensive
lobs and offensive lobs. A defensive lob you would hit when you’re
chased off the court and your opponent perhaps has come forward and you’re in trouble. The logic is send it high, buy some time to
get back in the court, and try to reset yourself. The offensive lob is a whole different animal. Someone’s come to the net against you. He thinks you’re going to hit a driving passing
shot, and you cross him up by brushing up a lob hitting it over his head. If that ball gets over his head he’s done. He’s done because an offensive lob is hit
with top spin where you create a tremendous amount of rotation on the ball. You hit it very high over your opponent’s
head. And when it bounces it’s ungettable, because
when it bounces it takes off. A defensive lob doesn’t have top spin. It’s simply a desperation shot that you try
to get over your opponent’s head, so that it doesn’t have any spin but you have a lot
of control over it. You hit it very high, but when it bounces
it takes a very lazy bounce. It bounces almost straight up. So, often a net man can run back and get a
defensive lob after it bounces. But the key is to try to make them run back
and hit a ball when they’re running backwards rather than having them hit an overhead. So, a lob you want to get over your opponent’s
head. Think twice about hitting lobs from the middle
of the court. If you happen to hit a poor lob you might
want to check how paid up your life insurance is. So, usually you’ll use the lob when you’re
behind the baseline and you have a little time to handle a well hit overhead. B: I tell my students, I rarely use superlatives,
but I tell them never lob a short ball unless your opponent is basically draped over the
net. Because it’s very hard to control a lob from
a short position. You basically want to be behind the baseline
when you execute a lob. That’s what a lob is all about.

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Dennis Veasley

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