There are a lot of advantages to hitting
your ground strokes deep. You can draw an error from
your opponent, force a short return and overall be in more
control of the points. It is considerably harder for
your opponent to adjust his/her footwork and swing to hit
balls that are hit deeper in the court. Your opponent
will also have a tougher time hitting with pace if you keep
your shots deep. It will not be nearly as easy for your
opponent to lean into their shot and put power into it if
you hit the ball deep. However, the better your opponent
the better they will be able to quickly adjust and handle
the deeper shots you hit.
Watch the pros and see how deep they continually
hit the ball deep in the court. A good rule of thumb
is to aim inside the baseline about 5-6 feet to give you some
margin for error. When you hit deep you are increasing
the chances that you will get a short ball in return that
you may be able to attack. The shorter the ball, the
easier it will be to attack, plain and simple. Hitting
any ground stroke inside your opponent's service line (unless
you are going for a short angled winner) is bad news. Your
opponent can now step up, lean into the ball and hit an approach
shot or pound the ball in and wait to pound yet another groundstroke
keeping you 100% on the defense and constantly on the move.
When I play my matches I keep a rule of thumb
for myself as someone who likes to be at the net. Any
ball that my opponent hits that lands before the service line
I hit an approach shot and come to the net. When my
opponent hits deep it keeps me back on the baseline hitting
ground strokes when I would much rather be at the net. Hitting
short will only allow your opponent to start to attack. Practice
keeping your ground strokes deep. I find that a lot
of players will substitute a hard hit shot that lands in the
middle of the court for a ball hit deep in the court. Hitting
a short ball with that power will only allow your opponent
to step into the ball and return it with more power.
Work on your depth first and then start to add power.
Luck on the Court!