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Footwork Details

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mjamja View Drop Down
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    Posted: 02/06/2019 at 10:28am
I believe good footwork is a lot more complicated than most players realize.  Fortunately we can often subconsiously pick up on those details from watching really good players or when during high repetition drills of a movement.  However, for players with bad habits already, limited chance to watch things being done correctly, and limited time it can be helpful to explicitly explain some of those details.  Here are some of the ones I "discovered".

1.  When doing a one-step move to the wide Fh let the traling foot roll over on its side so it will slide on the floor if needed for extra reach.  Especially important for players who tend to stand flat footed.

2.  When doing a one-step move to the wide Fh rotate the leading foot outward so it lands with the toe pointing almost sideways.  This points your knee bend lunge movement to the side and allows for much more reach sideways without leaning.  It also sets up an easier leg push to drive you back to your original position.

3.  When doing a two step movement to the Bh side in order to hit a Fh, lean forward as you move.  There is a natural tendency to stand up straight when making this move and thinking "lean forward" actually keeps you in your good starting posture.  People who stand up straight in their starting posture often fall backwards when doing this move if they do not think lean forward.

4. When moving to hit a Fh ( in either direction) do not backswing by rotating the upper body until you have at least the trailing foot back on the ground.  If you rotate before the leading foot leaves the ground the foot is locked in place by the force needed to generate the rotation.  If you rotate while both feet are in the air, both upper and lower body turn and you lose the coiled spring effect that gives you power as you rotate forward to hit the ball.  Note:  Often you want to have the whole body to rotate to a new alignment because you moved so far left or right.  In those cases just make sure you wait to rotate into the backswing until after the whole body rotation and until one foot is back on the ground.  This is probably part of what is meant by the term "feet before hand".  However I always associated that more with reaching where the hand and arm move, you lean, and the feet stay planted until after hitting the ball and then move to recover balance from the lean.

These are my own thoughts and my have serious flaws so feel free to disagree.

Anyone else have some detail that suddenly made a big difference in how the executed footwork.

Mark - Now playing a coach on the internet full time.






Edited by mjamja - 02/06/2019 at 10:31am
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GMan4911 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GMan4911 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/06/2019 at 1:39pm
Work on the flat footed issue.  When you're on the balls of your feet, it makes side to side movement much easier.  

One thing I noticed about pro players is that their legs are bent, almost as if they were sitting, when they lean forward.  We tend to keep our legs more straight or slightly bent as we lean forward at the waist so our balance is not as good.  So that's another thing you could work on.  

If your knees are in decent shape, an exercise that might help would be to sit on an armless chair and spread your legs so that your feet are to either side of the chair.  If you're a righty, place your left foot slightly forward, right foot slightly back, lean slightly forward, and raise your butt off the chair.  You should now be in the correct position.  Do that about 5 or 10 minutes a day to develop leg strength.  For a tougher workout, do your shadow strokes while in that position.  If you get tired, it's easy enough to just sit down.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote heavyspin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/06/2019 at 3:01pm
Note that China (after watching your videos) is training kids to master shadow strokes. This short video may resolve some of your footwork inquiries.



Edited by heavyspin - 02/06/2019 at 3:11pm
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mjamja View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mjamja Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/06/2019 at 3:44pm
This thread was not meant to be about my footwork.  It was intended to be about coaching footwork.  Specifically, about helping players who can not do footwork  correctly by giving them some small detail that when employed suddenly has them doing the footwork correctly.

Although not exactly the kind of thing I was looking for, the sitting in chair to establish good initial stance was a neat coaching idea.

Mark
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Ieyasu View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ieyasu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/06/2019 at 8:16pm
When moving from BH to FH Gao Jun says you have to move your feet and turn your body together. You cannot arrive and then turn your body.

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mickd View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mickd Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/06/2019 at 10:20pm
My coach also said the same thing, but I wasn't going to comment on it because when he said it, we were doing larger steps. But I also feel like you should move your feet and turn your body together.

I think for shadow practice, a lot of people teach it separately to beginners. But in reality, it's always done together because you don't have the time to do it separately.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mjamja Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/06/2019 at 10:35pm
Originally posted by mickd mickd wrote:

My coach also said the same thing, but I wasn't going to comment on it because when he said it, we were doing larger steps. But I also feel like you should move your feet and turn your body together.

I think for shadow practice, a lot of people teach it separately to beginners. But in reality, it's always done together because you don't have the time to do it separately.

So when do you rotate into the backswing:
1. While the trailing foot (first one to move normally) is in air but leading foot has not yet left ground.
2. When both feet are in the air
3. When trailing foot has landed (first one down normally) but leading foot is still in air
4.  Either 1 or 2 but not 3
5. Any of the three as long as you rotate before movement is complete.)

Mark

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote shaks Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/06/2019 at 10:52pm
Originally posted by mjamja mjamja wrote:

Originally posted by mickd mickd wrote:

My coach also said the same thing, but I wasn't going to comment on it because when he said it, we were doing larger steps. But I also feel like you should move your feet and turn your body together.

I think for shadow practice, a lot of people teach it separately to beginners. But in reality, it's always done together because you don't have the time to do it separately.

So when do you rotate into the backswing:
1. While the trailing foot (first one to move normally) is in air but leading foot has not yet left ground.
2. When both feet are in the air
3. When trailing foot has landed (first one down normally) but leading foot is still in air
4.  Either 1 or 2 but not 3
5. Any of the three as long as you rotate before movement is complete.)

Mark

This sort of questioning is a problem due to your western mind. Your body and mind are all one..do not try to chop them up. You will be more confused.
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mjamja View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mjamja Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/06/2019 at 11:08pm
Originally posted by Ieyasu Ieyasu wrote:

When moving from BH to FH Gao Jun says you have to move your feet and turn your body together. You cannot arrive and then turn your body.


Did you notice she was using 3 step footwork.  Her leading foot moved first as part of her recovery.  Then she followed with the traditional 2 step movement where the trailing foot moved first and then the leading foot moved a 2nd time.   I think Larry Hodges wrote about this as an older technique not taught as much now, but that could be very useful even today for older and less atheletic players having trouble covering the needed distances with just the 2 step approach.

Mark
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ieyasu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/06/2019 at 11:08pm
Originally posted by mjamja mjamja wrote:

Originally posted by mickd mickd wrote:

My coach also said the same thing, but I wasn't going to comment on it because when he said it, we were doing larger steps. But I also feel like you should move your feet and turn your body together.

I think for shadow practice, a lot of people teach it separately to beginners. But in reality, it's always done together because you don't have the time to do it separately.

So when do you rotate into the backswing:
1. While the trailing foot (first one to move normally) is in air but leading foot has not yet left ground.
2. When both feet are in the air
3. When trailing foot has landed (first one down normally) but leading foot is still in air
4.  Either 1 or 2 but not 3
5. Any of the three as long as you rotate before movement is complete.)

Mark


(It also depends on your distance from the table and how much time you have.)

Edited to add:

mjama... looks like we posted at the same time, so I was not able to acknowledge your response. Yes I did notice. But I think one still needs to turn while moving. In the video above (in this post) it appears to me that both players are rotating as they push-off with their feet. True, that does not make it definitive.  But most of the videos I've seen,  when the big boys and girls rotate they usually do it while pushing off with their foot, unless they have a bunch of time before crushing the ball.


Edited by Ieyasu - 02/06/2019 at 11:17pm
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mjamja View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mjamja Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/07/2019 at 12:43am
I did not mean to imply that the 2 vs 3 step changed the turning strategy.  I did not notice the extra initial step until I slowed the video down.  Just thought it was interesting in that it is yet another "detail" in footwork that might go unnoticed by a novice like me unless it was mentioned and/or I got to see it in slow motion.

Thats for the good video links.

Mark


Edited by mjamja - 02/07/2019 at 12:43am
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