Hi guys Nick here from intuitive tennis. In
today’s video we’re going to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of both the
one-handed backhand return and the two-handed backhand return. Which one is
better? Check out today’s video and find out Let’s start off with the advantages of
the one-handed backhand return and the first advantage one-handed return
players have is that they have a better ability to slice and chip the return
back in play and great examples are Stan Wawrinka and Roger Federer who very
often will chip the return back in play keep the ball low and prevent the other
person to be aggressive or maybe even a draw an error this way. So one-handed
players are more experienced in slicing the backhand because number one they
play with one hand all the time and so their slice techniques a
little bit more adaptable to their game two-handed players often struggle at the
junior level at the recreational level or even at the WTA level with slice
backhands simply because they’re not used to playing with one arm and maybe they
don’t practice this shot too much so when they play a match and they’re likely not
going to choose the option of a chiping the return back and so one-handed
return players are a little bit more have a little bit more variety and when
it comes to return to serve one-handed the backhand players are often
more comfortable when it comes to one-handed shots on the backhand side
because they always play with one hand there’s an advantage when the ball comes
to the body where a two-hander might have to move out of the way to hit the
backhand if that player is uncomfortable hitting a one-handed shot a one-handed
player can simply have his racket in the middle of his body and he can cover a
body serve a little bit easier if they’re used to playing with one hand and the biggest advantage of having a
one-handed backhand return is on the block and the block is going to occur
further in front and then it would on a two-handed player and because with two hands
we can’t reach as far in front and you can look from this view we can’t reach
as far in front if we just simply attempted to block the return back and
where a one-handed player can get that racket a little bit more in front of the
body and Roger Federer is the master of blocking returns back in play even for
winners sometimes and you can see here that the arm is extended and the racket
is further in front and the advantage on the one-handed backhand return one disadvantage of returning with one
hand is that the grip changes are slightly larger so most players will
wait for the for the one-handed return of serve in a grip that’s between a
continental grip and an Eastern grip some people call this the Australian
grip is on that edge between a continental and eastern and that’s where most
2-handed players and 1-handed players wait on the return so if I get a backhand on the
return now I have a slightly larger grip change than a two-handed player would so there
is a slight disadvantage when it comes to the one-handed backhand return another disadvantage of returning one
hand is the the serve bounces very high let’s say on a high kick serve it’s very
difficult to return high with one hand there’s a big advantage with two hands
here so the one handed player is forced to improvise when the ball gets a little
higher or they have to start tinkering with the timing where they maybe take
the ball a little bit earlier or to back up and let the ball drop but on
stationary returns on a high kick serve there’s definitely a disadvantage when
it comes to high balls the biggest disadvantage of having a
one-handed backhand return is the inability to take a full swing and you
can even see this at the highest level and when Roger Federer hits backhand
return winners and they’re usually block return winners and some of the greatest
block returners of all time were Roger Federer
Michael Stich and Boris Becker and it could simply absorb at the pace from the from
the server and with the very minimal swing is just here to here and they will
be able to block the return for a winner and just basically take all the pace
from the serve and this is however very difficult to do and it it requires
excellent timing and the reason why one-handed the returners have a hard
time taking full swings is that the one-handed backhand generally requires more
of a shoulder turn and so if you hit a backhand it’s very difficult to get the
racket all the way back if we don’t turn our shoulders if you even turn them a
little bit we can take a little further back but if you get a full shoulder turn
and naturally this racket goes all the way back so when a fast serve comes
there’s not gonna be a full shoulder turn and therefore and the player will
simply go like this and he won’t be able to turn all the way he will just block
the ball back where a two-handed player and has a big advantage in this regard
where 2-handed players almost always are able to take a full swing players like
Djokovic Agassi and Nalbandian because with two hands we can take the
racket back without a shoulder turn with the help of the left hand so you can see
here that even without me turning all the way I can still get that racket tip
pointing towards the back fence and I can take a fuller swing and therefore I
can generate my own power the two-handed backhand return has many
advantages over the one-handed backhand return and one slight advantage could be
that most players wait in an Australian grip as we already discussed and so from
the Australian grip to a continental is a minimal a grip change see this is just
a small little change here and this can happen very quick so that’s one advantage
for the 2-hander versus at the 1-hander another advantage the two-hander has is
high serves. Obviously we have the high ball here with two hands we can use that left
hand and to help to the ball back over the net and we do not have this option
on the one handed return so high balls high kicking serves are definitely
easier for the two-handed return player stability is another reason why two
hander has an advantage over the one hander and when the ball comes at a
great speed on the serve you simply have contact with two hands there’s greater
stability then if the same is done with one hand and junior players even
recreational players will find a great instability on hard serves with one hand
and therefore they will go for the chip most of the time there’s a lot of
pressure being absorbed on a hard serve with one hand and also the the fingers
are in front of the racket on the one hand and so if the lot of force comes
this way and this racket might get pushed back a little bit where with the two
hander this is not a problem at all with two hands we have the other hand
behind the racket and on very hard serves we have the stability at contact
and that we need and to be able to hit a clean shot and the biggest advantage the two-hander
has over the one hander is the ability to take full swings you will
notice that the greatest returners of all time and Novak Djokovic and Andre
Agassi would rarely block the return back in play like the one handers do if
you look at their racket the racket will always on the two-handed return and go back to the back fence so the tip of the racket will go to the back fence and they
will take a fuller swing usually to about right here and sometimes it will
finish it even a little bit more and this happens even on fast serves and the
reason for this is that the 2-handed backhand requires less over shoulder turn so
we can make a a small turn here and we still have the ability to get the racket
all the way back and then take a moderate swing at the ball and not only
are we using the pace but we also are giving the ball a little bit of extra
and this can create phenomenal returns and this is definitely an advantage for
the two handers the clear winner between the one-handed
backhand return of the two-handed backhand return is the two-handed
backhand return with very few disadvantages the only disadvantage I
can think of would be maybe at the recreational level or even at the junior
level or the WTA level where players maybe are not comfortable slicing the
backhand and chipping it back it kind of leaves the variety out of the game and
for those players on the return of serve or maybe they can get jammed on the body
serves sometimes and they’re uncomfortable using one hand and that is
about it I don’t really see this is a problem on the ATP because most
two-handed players in the ATP also possess a great slice backhand such as a
Novak Djokovic or Alexander Zverev and so the clear winner on the return is the
two-handed backhand thank you guys for watching this video I hope you enjoyed
it please leave a comment in the section below I will be happy to respond hit
that like button and subscribe if you haven’t already I’ll see you next time

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Dennis Veasley

19 thoughts on “One-Handed Backhand Return vs Two-Handed Backhand Return”

  1. Great video! Thanks for the info. The return of serve is such an important part of the game, and one of the least talked about aspects.

    Do you know what grips are these guys with one handed backhands are holding?

    Does it change between first serves and second serves or between slice and top spin?

  2. I have a one handed backhand and I think having a heavy racquet (which most one handers have) really helps too. Using Fed's RF97 almost feels like cheating – – you barely have to hold it and it sends back lasers. I often find myself amazed at the flight of the ball off my racquet… It's unlike any other racquet I've ever used.

  3. Believe me, two handed back hand is way better when returning serves aggressively. You can return more consistently, and with more accuracy in terms of placement. You can return it with less pace and more pace. It gives more variety.

  4. Good analyze.Even if I prefer one handed backhand.I have troubles with the other…Djokovic does not.. he has 1-0 against the king..Thank you and I wait more videos about return,if you have this topic in plan.

  5. My one handed backhand is much stronger than two handed backhand because use of wrist.I don't even rotate shoulder on one handed backhand but in the contact my racquet speed is huge because of wrist.On two handed backhand I am little more consistent but my balls is short and slower. How can i using wrists on two handed backhand and more importantly synchronize wrists on two handed backhand.
    Hvala Nikola za poučan video.

  6. If I continue to use a one-handed backhand for my regular groundstrokes, would you recommend that I learn the two-handed backhand just for the return of serve?

  7. The most comprehensive and the only (which I managed to find in the YouTube) comparison of BH returns. Highly advisable 👍

  8. In my opinion, you missed a reason why the Two-hander should be used. Using that left hand is taking a percentage of the load of the entire match off of the muscles of just ONE arm constantly being used and the left arm being the driving force behind the 2 hander where the right arm is really there just for stability and can rest a bit. It makes a huge difference. I went from 1 h bh to 2 h bh and was amazed at that difference alone but mainly I switched to handle the high kicks. I still bh slice a lot though so there's no problem with slicing chipping if you have a 2 h bh. I think with Djokovic and Agassi being the best return of servers EVER says a lot about why the 2 h bh is really the best. Although I will say, that a ripped 1 h bh still is the coolest shot in tennis and I think it's easier to do so (with me any way). Stan Wawrinka comes to mind.

  9. Hi, Nik. Just watched it again. Re. 1H BH: if you'd release an additional revised version of this tutorial would you consider adding Almagro return? His full western right hand grip allows minimum grip adjustments for the BH return. Great for doubles = easy topspin lobs (with the extra space of the alleys) + dropshots.
    This option partially offsets one of the singlehanded BH returns liabilities – complex timing.

  10. Two-handed backhand works great with Novak because he is tall and very elastic (flexible). His arm can reach quite a distance and legs go with it — much better than Federer.

  11. With a one hander at lower levels one is more likely to get tennis elbow or shoulder injuries, whereas with the two hander the left hand takes some of the load away from a righty’s right forearm muscles. On the flip side I believe that over use of the hip rotation on a two hander could lead to hip problems. It’s interesting that many one handers have a heavy racquet, I believe to give them more power on the backhand. The most difficult thing for a one hander is the rapid grip change required. It has to be reliable under extreme time pressure. On the other hand, sometime one needs to use one hand when returning a wide serve.

  12. Why can t you just use both just have in mind to use the two handed backhand when the oponent is serving also in defence now if the ball is more down to the ground (you know what I mean) use the one handed backhand it is more comfortable gives you more sapce and you don t have fully turn your body also in angles the one handed backhand is better cause it is much easier you are more comfortable and can turn your raquet in the direction you want much easier with one hand in comparison to two hands

  13. merci pour ce comparatif .mais peut on jouer le retour de service à deux mains et le reste à une?

  14. thank you for this parallel test.But is it possible to return with two hands and play with only one after the serve?

  15. Nick, it's not the main point of your video, but I've got a question for you regarding what you said about ready position grip. As you know, I have a one-hander. I used to hold my racket with a continental/Australian grip in ready position, thinking it was in-between my FH's semi-western grip and my BH's eastern grip so it was a short travel to either grip. However, I've recently changed to a ready position with my normal semi-western FH grip. My reasoning is that my non-dominant hand naturally must pull back my racket for BH returns, and thus is naturally there to stabilize the racket as I change grips from FH to BH grip. But on FH returns, it's nice to have my grip already set in place, because for my FH takeback I often let go of the racket with my non-dominant hand sooner than on a BH takeback, and thus it's nice to not have to artificially hold on the racket longer just to facilitate the grip change. This is much better especially for hard serves to the FH side, where your return must be so quick that you have little time for unit turns where your left hand lets you change grips easily. I found myself hitting too many sliced FH returns when I was waiting with a continental grip because I didn't feel I had enough time to change the grip to a semi-western. What do you think of this line of thinking? It's worked well for me so far, so I'm inclined to keep it but really value your opinion!

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