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Topspin

Forehand Power Shot

When you are in a dink rally at the kitchen and the ball bounces high enough, you have an opportunity to use a forehand power shot with topspin.

The idea is that you sweep the paddle forward but also with an upward motion, while it is tilted forward. This scrubs against the ball and gives it topspin.

The topspin seems to lift the ball up over the net, and then it will drop quickly. Many top players expect this, and can return it handily, but with intermediate players, and in many cases even among top players, it will win the point. If sent long, as a passing shot, the top spin will keep it from passing the baseline. If sent to the players’ feet, it will drop so quickly that they can’t respond. It can even be used to hit an opposing player, although that’s certainly not a good tactic for sociable pickleball.

One of the nifty things about topspin is that if it hits the tape at the top of the net, it is more likely to roll over and fall into the opponent’s court than to bounce back to your side.

The one caveat when learning to use forehand topspin is that it is difficult to determine when a ball has bounced high enough. At first, you may have a lot of embarrassing blasts into the net.

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