SquashMatch Blog

Coaching tips

By Retha Jacobs on 2012-08-09

Written by Retha Jacobs – Retha is a Level 2 squash coach and a personal trainer

One of the most important aspects of your squash game is having the correct grip. The way you hold the racket impacts the angle at which you make contact with the ball and also the direction of your shots. Making sure you are comfortable and consistent with your grip can change your game dramatically and provide you with a good basis to improve your game.

The standard grip: Make sure the racket head is open, hold the racket with your thumb and index finger and cup your hand around the racket grip. Ensure the index finger is a bit higher and forms a ‘v’ shape with the middle finger as this will give you added control of the racket head. Keep the same grip for both your forehand and backhand but rotate the forearm when hitting backhand shots. You should also keep your hand soft, for instance by not holding your racket like you would a baseball bat.

Key points :

* ‘V’ shape between Thumb and Index finger aligned with edge of racket head, for an open racket face.

* ‘V’ shape between index and middle finger, for control of racket head.

* ‘Soft hands’ keep a space between your palm and the racket, by holding the racket mainly with your fingers.

* Keep grip relaxed and only tighten immediately prior to the point of impact.

It is extremely important to master this grip early on otherwise you will be stroking the ball incorrectly and finding it very difficult to play the touch shots that pros play with ease. Furthermore your game will suffer for several months as you try and fix your grip after developing bad habits.

Footnote: The grip explained here is the standard grip and has been developed over the years. Some players still play with a cocked wrist which hinders ball control and some players change grips for backhand shots, which requires much earlier racket preparation. And then some players like Amr Shabana, one of the world’s most talented players, changes grip for almost every other shot!

Final Tip: Get someone knowledgeable to show you the correct grip and find a partner to practise different strokes with. This will help you find your perfect grip and could lead to great success in your squash future.

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