Tennis player swinging at the ball

How Do I Stop Hitting The Ball Late In Tennis?

It is frustrating when you are trying to enjoy tennis, but you can’t seem to hit the ball on time. You also feel that you are struggling and trying hard to catch the ball and hit it with all the force that you can muster, but again – you always hit the ball late. 

This is a challenge one must face when they are beginners in the said sport. It takes practice and focus so you can finally hit the ball right on time. 

Here are some reasons you often hit the ball late in tennis.

Poor Calculation

When you are a beginner in this sport, it is just natural that you will have poor judgment, and you don’t know where the ball will land or what direction it will hit. You can be too far on the left, then the ball will come in from the right side. It can even come smack you in the face.

It requires calculation before you can hit the ball, and you need space to move while hitting the ball, otherwise you will be swinging your racket too late, and there goes the cycle. 

A player should know when to move back or stay where they are, for them to hit the ball. You cannot keep on hitting and swinging the racket without calculating the time and the point to do it. 

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Bad Timing

Footwork is part of your timing, and when you don’t have the right footwork, you will also have bad-timing every time you hit the ball. It can either be too late, or you are hitting the ball too early.

You must practice your footwork so you can improve on your timing as well. Your movement will depend on your footwork, so if your feet won’t move when the ball is approaching, and it is glued in one spot, you surely cannot hit the ball at all. 

Your feet should move the soonest time your opponent strikes the ball cause that is your cue to move your feet, and it should go where your brain tells it to go. 

One other factor you must focus on is your hand-to-eye coordination cause without this, you will always hit the ball too early or too late. 

Footwork can be practiced, though, it can be a daily routine where you practice foot movement while picking up speed, this is also essential when you are running after the ball. 

Improper Technique

Beginners have a lot to learn when they are starting in this sport. This includes proper racket handling. This is one of the most significant techniques that they must gain cause with improper handling of the racket, it will slip from their grasp, and missing the ball will be a normal experience.

Practicing proper grip is one cause you will be able to swing your racket back and forth and side to side. You can also calculate the distance of the ball from the racket, by correcting your grip. 

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There is no simple way to learning the techniques, but with frequent practice and training from those who are experienced, you will progress and improve. 

Tips On How To Stop Hitting The Ball Late In Tennis

With every sport, every player practices to be good at it if not to be perfect in the game. It is the same with tennis. There are some tips that you can read below on how you can stop hitting the ball – late. 

Swing Early

Practice with another player and do the stroke first before throwing the ball at the hitter. Make a swinging stroke before the ball is tossed to you.

The hitter needs to experience swinging early and then hitting the ball over. The other player will time the tossing of the ball, and should perfectly be timed to the swinging of the racket. 

With frequent practice, the early swinging will be remembered and will be used every time. The player will also adjust to what is early and late swinging and will find the correct timing from practice.

Hitting The Ball On The Rise

This is another practice that you can do to stop yourself from hitting the ball late. As you see the ball bouncing up, you can just hit it on time, and this also requires calculation and timing before you can hit the ball accurately. 

It is just like seeing the ball in front of you, and you are just timing your racket swing so you can hit the ball while it bounces up. 

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Practicing Your Visual Skills

Tennis balls that are coming in fast may give you a hard time seeing them cause it will be a blur and will require you to have a wonderful vision, as well. 

You need to work on your eye coordination while swinging your racket. You cannot afford to swing and hit at something you can’t see. Good vision clarity is an advantage in this sport. 

Relax And Don’t Panic

When you see the ball coming at you, it may get you panicking, especially when you are just a beginner in this sport, and when you panic, you cannot focus. When you panic, your eye-hand coordination will not work perfectly as well. 

Practice your moves, grip the racket correctly, perfect your timing and then you need to combine that with not panicking, and you will surely hit the ball after a few tries. 


The reason some players of this sport hit the ball late is that they don’t know how to focus. They grip their racket well; they have had some practice with their swing and foot movement, but when in the court they cannot deliver. This may be a lack of focus, and this is very important to this sport.

Professional players know how to zone in when it’s time. That is how they get to perfect their technique. They can also blur out their surroundings and focus on one thing, making sure that they hit the tennis ball on time and with full power

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