How Can I Improve My Doubles Play for Badge?

This week’s question comes from a mid level club member.  “With 2024 Badge about to start, what are some simple strategies I can use to improve my doubles play?”

Overall, the key to successful doubles play is to communicate with your partner, play to your strengths, and be aggressive when the opportunity arises.

Drilling down, here are a few strategies to consider to help you improve your tennis doubles play:

  1. Communicate with your partner: Good communication is essential in doubles. Make sure to talk to your partner before, during, and after the match. Discuss tactics, shots, and weaknesses that you can exploit.

  2. Play to your strengths: In doubles, it is essential to play to your strengths. If you are good at the net, try to play aggressively and move up to the net as much as possible. If you have a strong backhand, use it to keep the ball deep, and either setup your partner and force errors.

  3. Use the lob: The lob is a great shot in doubles, especially if your opponents are playing close to the net. It can be used to push them back and create space for you to hit a winner.

  4. Stay in position: Make sure you and your partner are covering the court properly: particularly the middle of the court which covers 80% of doubles play. Stay in your assigned positions and be ready to move quickly to cover any open spaces. It’s a trap to try to “guard your side line” — which takes you out of the main game!

  5. Watch your opponent’s body language: Pay attention to your opponent’s body language. If they are shifting their weight or preparing to hit a certain shot, you may be able to anticipate their next move and adjust your position accordingly.

  6. Serve and volley: Serving and volleying can be an effective strategy in doubles. It puts pressure on your opponents and can help you win points quickly. And it’s a good surprize tactic if you normally stay on the base line when serving.

  7. Take risks: Don’t be afraid to take risks and go for winners when appropriate. In doubles, the court is smaller, and there is less time to react, so aggressive play can be rewarded.  Even so, your primary objective must always be to get into the point!

Good luck in Badge,
Rob  Tennis Whisperer