Learn how to improve your singles game. Basic singles strategies with Joey Gmuer. Watch today TIP in our Instructional series. Stay tuned for more!
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I started this channel quite by accident, I was recording my games to do film study and get better. I did not have time or money for lessons from pro pickleball coach, so I started watching all my screwups. People that I was playing with started to ask if they could watch too and I said sure. That helped all of us a lot to improve our game, strategy, mental toughness, and techniques. Now we have new pickleball videos published several times a week. We occasionally have pro pickleball players on the channel. Mostly its non pro pickleball players on their quest to 5.0 pickleball. We have all levels come through the channel: 4.0 pickleball, 4.5 pickleball and up to 5.5 pickleball with the pros.
So you want to become a better singles player? Well, I recommend strategy, and you know I gotcha don’t worry! I’m gonna go through some highlights of big matches, make some points, and I summarize at the end. Just enjoy, get a soda. Simone is returning very deep. She gets the advantage, and even this point she would shouldn’t have went for that crazy angle. I’m gonna bring up Ben Johns next. She should have just dinked that right over the net. There’s another one: Kylie Smith actually has a great shot, takes advantage of the point. Let me go to Ben Johns. Ben Johns is the god of singles. Look at him, he doesn’t even hit the ball hard. He just dinks the ball over the net. He covers the line. If you hit an angle, you have to cover the line first as a general rule. Look at Ben Johns, he hardly runs he’s making his opponent run. This is Gabriel Joseph. Gabriel Joseph is top 10 in the world, very good players sponsored by Electrum. So this is not some you know bum on the street.
Here’s another one. Now here really Ben Johns floats that return deep. If you look at most rules. I say hit it hard in the corners. You can but mix it up, that’s all I’m saying hit hard in the corners. Even hit a couple really short returns to mix it up, so your opponent does not get a rhythm. These are just incredible points: Gabriel Joseph is trying to outhit Ben Johns. That’s what a lot of singles players fall into the trap of doing. You don’t want to outhit your opponents, you want to outthink your opponents. That sounded pretty good again. Ben Johns hits a nice drop, covers the line, can cover across court so well. The point I’m trying to make is you don’t have to kill your returns but you do want to get them deep. This is men’s Senior Pro. This is Rich Lively on the far court, and this is Iggy in the near court. Iggy is a top 10 in the world in Senior Pro. Why am I showing this game? This game Rich Lively is so good at hitting exactly where the sideline meets the kitchen line! Look, he just did it, and if you go back you’ll see that he hits in that spot. That spot is so important to hit in pickleball singles. It opens up angles. You hit it deep, and then you hit that spot. This is me I’m in the far court, and I’m playing against Edward Perez. Edward Perez is playing in the Pro in Orlando. And trust me, if you’re betting, put the house on him to have some big upsets. That backhand down the line in singles is so important. If you don’t have that shot playing in the 4.5 plus or 5.0 you’re going to be in trouble. However that is a cheat code. The cheat code is to serve farther out towards the sideline when you’re on the odd court. That way you’ll have a lot more forehands. Now here’s me and the the Pro and Tampa playing Jack Foster, who’s seventh in the world in singles. Extremely good player! I’m doing this iteration. I’m heading down the line backhand, then cross court backhand. It’s a very very good combo to have.
Down the line, [then] cross court. Now here’s Riley Newman. Riley Newman brings up a really good point. We have this game on our channel, but he’s teaching in a lot of it. And he pretty much says “shadow the ball”. When you hit a return and you approach the net you have to shadow the ball.
And that’s a very good concept. I actually never heard anyone say that.
So let me summarize: you do not have to kill the ball. Ben Jjohns just floats it deep, that’s all he does.
Use more dinks at the net, tire your opponent out, and play the long game.
If your return isn’t super deep, still come to the net. When you approaching the net shadow the ball.
If you hit the ball near the sideline, you have to cover the line. Play to your opponent’s backhand.
Usually that’s the weaker stroke. As a general rule, if you don’t have the best backhand, serve near the sideline in the near court. This will let you hit a lot more forehands. Down the line then cross court is a great combo to set up a passing shot. Play some pickleball singles, and have a good day!