The Powerstep PDF Print E-mail

This page will go through the entire Powerstep process from beginning to end.
It shows:

  • The initial troubleshooting
  • The technical teaching of the step
  • The movement drill to train the step
  • The strength implication
  • The improvement
  • The finish product

 

Incorrect Powerstep


In this example you will see that Deborah doesn’t actually use a Powerstep at all. She makes the very common mistake of just stepping across to a wide shot in a very un-dynamic fashion. The problem with practising this ill disciplined movement pattern is that in a match realistic situation the ball will have gone past the running player or the player would have arrived late and hit the ball way behind them.

As a result of this the players balance into and out of the stroke would be totally compromised. This also stops the player from moving and hitting aggressively both of which are required for top class tennis players.

 


 

Explaining Powerstep


In the next video you see me explaining this movement technique. You will notice that I am teaching Naomi to take an explosive running step across her body at the same time as she stimulates her forehand stroke. The subsequent sitting position or exaggerated flow step allows a balanced Powerstep to be performed.

 

 

 

Powerstep Drill


To allow players to feel the explosiveness and foot placement pattern of the Powerstep this drill is excellent. It requires both correct footwork in combination with correctly sequenced rotation. By using a medicine ball and a wall you can perform a series of very dynamic Powerstep plus rotation drills in order to condition the body and co-ordinate the mind to reproduce this movement pattern.

The key to this drill is the timing between the step and the throw in order that the player releases the ball in the air before it is re-caught . You also notice that the players perform this into both directions as the Powerstep occurs on both the forehand and the backhand sides.

 


 

Strength process I


This is a simple well performed strength exercise which has direct relevance to strength in the Powerstep. It is the first stage of strengthening the body in order to strengthen a specific move. I call this a straddle lunge where the bar is held between the legs, which keeps the bar as close as possible to the player’s centre of gravity as the lunge is performed.

This would progress into a single leg lunge which stimulates the landing foot of the Powerstep even more precisely. Notice Deborah’s front knee does not go past her front toe and that her upper body posture is perfect.

 


 

Strength process II


In this drill the player puts herself in an extremely wide, closed Forehand stance. As you will notice this position is hard to hold as it demands high levels of core strength.

Once the player is in this position they then have to throw a medicine ball 10 times into the wall. This trains the body to hold the correct shape for a Powerstep and then rotate stimulating the stroke.

 


 

The Improvement


After all of the above process it is possible to ask the player to re-perform the Powerstep where you’ll be able to see if your drills have been successful and that the player understands the Powerstep and can perform it at the right time, in the right place on the court and with the correct, disciplined balance. You will see that there is still work to be done even after the obvious improvement but this is stage 1 complete.

 


 

Comparing to Pros


Here are examples of a professional player performing the Powerstep movement.

 

 

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