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Racquetball Strategies To Beat Your Opponent

Like tennis, your ability to beat your opponent in racquetball is largely a matter of strategy. While your position on the court, your serves and your returns will impact how effective you are as a player, your ability to execute specific serve and rallying strategies can make the difference between a win and a loss. First, we'll look at basic racquetball serve strategies. Then, we'll discuss a few rallying strategies.

Serve Strategies

Many racquetball players start with a "drive serve," hoping catch the other players off-guard. With a drive serve, the server tries to hit the ball so that it moves quickly toward either of the back wall corners. Typically, the server will hit a drive serve low with the intention of making the ball bounce twice before the other player can return. Skilled players can use a "jam serve" which uses the side wall to throw the other player off balance. Jam serves are especially effective when a spin is put on the serve making its direction after the initial bounce unpredictable. If a server has good control, he can use a "pinch serve" in which the ball hits one of the side walls close to the ground. Again, with enough spin, a pinch serve can be very hard to return.

Deep-End Pin Strategies

The "pass/pinch" and "pass/pass" strategies focus on keeping your opponent in the deep end of the court near the back wall. Once you have pinned them in the deep end, you can end the rally in the front court. Your opponent will often be unable to reach the ball in order to make a legal return. The only difference between the two strategies is the "pass/pass" technique keeps your opponent running from side to side in the deep end of the court. If he is a slow player, both are very effective.

Momentum Strategy

This strategy is widely-used in both tennis and racquetball. The concept behind it is to use your opponent's momentum to keep him moving in the direction opposite of where he needs to be. When you are on the offensive and the other player is simply trying to keep up with your rallies, try to hit the ball to the place your opponent is leaving. His momentum from that spot will make it difficult to reverse direction to make a legal return. In effect, you're using your opponent's momentum against him.

Jamming Strategy

Some players don't like others using this strategy. Often, the feeling is from frustration. The point here is to continually return the ball with force so that it bounces off the front wall and travels fast direction toward your opponent. Even skilled players can be caught off-guard with this strategy. Less-skilled players find it difficult to return the ball with much control or force.

Racquetball is a game of skill, control and strategy. If you can perfect any of these elements, you can become an effective player. But, control all three and most other players will find it difficult to beat you. Each of the serve and rallying strategies above require practice to learn and master. Become adept at each of them and you'll be ready to compete in a racquetball tournament.