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Supination and pronation

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    Posted: 04/02/2019 at 9:04am
A few weeks ago I did a post about supination and pronation which everyone tends to mistake for a "wrist movement" when in fact it is the rotation of the arm about the axis of the arm. 

I thought it was just the "spice", but in fact it is the most essential component to a thick, heavy spin contact, it is in fact the final frontier where all the power is concentrated on. It's also the key to having good feeling for the ball. The wrist movement at the radial/ulnar deviation plane helps but pales in comparison to the effect of pronation/supination. It is also why people feel that they have better feeling for the ball when hitting it on the side, it's because you activate pronation/supination when you do that. But, in fact it is even better if you used pronation/supination on a full thick contact at the top/back of the ball. 

It works exactly the same way for both BH and FH. For BH you concentrate all the power into supinating through the ball, for FH you concentrate all the power into pronating through the ball! 

The wonders don't stop here, it works exactly the same way for serves and pushes, the mental focus on concentrating power on pronation/supination will help you produce a very heavy spin contact. 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote V-Griper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04/02/2019 at 11:51am
Good observation

I would add that the complete motion is actually pronate-supinate-pronate, for the FH. This is the essential throwing motion of the arm and is present in just about every single arm throwing or swinging motion. So it's more like your throwing the paddle into the ball. I figured it out from watching WLQ's FH stroke but now the most obvious example is FZD, but also Timo, etc.... There is actually a good example of a Korean amateur player with a pretty good copy of FZD's FH mechanics.

My observation on the BH is that, while it is pronate/supinate action, the whole arm is in a helical/spiral shape so it's kind of like twisting up a rubber band and then letting it go. Seems to be more effective if a BH biased grip is used.

BTW have you experimented with the left arm mechanic that ML, FB and now WMY use? Some very interesting stuff there. 



Edited by V-Griper - 04/02/2019 at 11:53am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote aerial Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04/02/2019 at 1:07pm
I feel like if I implemented this as well as the dangers of waist rotation into my game, I'd enjoy it a lot more without worrying about injury

v-griper, not sure if you remember me but we met at this point almost five years ago in a club in syracuse ny--my question to you is when you were talking about 'hip drive' being a core component to the power in a forehand loop, do you think thoracic rotation should be included as an intermediary component to the last step of whipping the arm through the ball?

edit:typo


Edited by aerial - 04/02/2019 at 4:37pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote blahness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04/02/2019 at 4:49pm
Originally posted by V-Griper V-Griper wrote:

Good observation

I would add that the complete motion is actually pronate-supinate-pronate, for the FH. This is the essential throwing motion of the arm and is present in just about every single arm throwing or swinging motion. So it's more like your throwing the paddle into the ball. I figured it out from watching WLQ's FH stroke but now the most obvious example is FZD, but also Timo, etc.... There is actually a good example of a Korean amateur player with a pretty good copy of FZD's FH mechanics.

My observation on the BH is that, while it is pronate/supinate action, the whole arm is in a helical/spiral shape so it's kind of like twisting up a rubber band and then letting it go. Seems to be more effective if a BH biased grip is used.

BTW have you experimented with the left arm mechanic that ML, FB and now WMY use? Some very interesting stuff there. 


Hi V-Griper, yes FZD and Timo Boll is the most obvious here, that their main focus on the "wrist movement" when they hit the ball on the FH is the pronation movement. With the BH you also have the "punching" action and on the FH you obviously need to contract the forearm (ie reduce the angle between upper arm and forearm). 

The left arm is actually quite a crucial cue. imo it has to rotate together with the right arm, right now I use it to make sure the thoracic rotation works, during the backswing if I touched the back of my left thumb on my right love handle towards the back I know I have done the thoracic rotation correctly! 
i keep the left elbow close to the body like a ballet dancer to minimise the drag on the rotation movement. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote blahness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04/02/2019 at 4:57pm
It is heavily used in all badminton and tennis strokes too, makes sense that TT would be similar. 

In fact, even the FH flick is in fact a mainly pronation movement!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote V-Griper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04/02/2019 at 9:26pm
Originally posted by aerial aerial wrote:

I feel like if I implemented this as well as the dangers of waist rotation into my game, I'd enjoy it a lot more without worrying about injury

v-griper, not sure if you remember me but we met at this point almost five years ago in a club in syracuse ny--my question to you is when you were talking about 'hip drive' being a core component to the power in a forehand loop, do you think thoracic rotation should be included as an intermediary component to the last step of whipping the arm through the ball?

edit:typo

Yes! I remember you. LOL hanging out in the parking lot of the Syracuse TT club nerding over stroke mechanics. 

I am not quite clear yet on the theory and model as explained by blah as I only skimmed through the post.

Based on HT's FH I don't see anything out of the ordinary. He is doing what I described to you with regard to hip extension and the torso rotation is a normal part of that, at least it is to me. So if blahs description makes sense to you and you are able to model your stroke to look more or less like HT's with regard to the coordination between the torso rotation and the hip extension then I think that would be a good thing.










Edited by V-Griper - 04/02/2019 at 9:34pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote blahness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04/02/2019 at 9:53pm
Originally posted by V-Griper V-Griper wrote:

Originally posted by aerial aerial wrote:

I feel like if I implemented this as well as the dangers of waist rotation into my game, I'd enjoy it a lot more without worrying about injury

v-griper, not sure if you remember me but we met at this point almost five years ago in a club in syracuse ny--my question to you is when you were talking about 'hip drive' being a core component to the power in a forehand loop, do you think thoracic rotation should be included as an intermediary component to the last step of whipping the arm through the ball?

edit:typo

Yes! I remember you. LOL hanging out in the parking lot of the Syracuse TT club nerding over stroke mechanics. 

I am not quite clear yet on the theory and model as explained by blah as I only skimmed through the post.

Based on HT's FH I don't see anything out of the ordinary. He is doing what I described to you with regard to hip extension and the torso rotation is a normal part of that, at least it is to me. So if blahs description makes sense to you and you are able to model your stroke to look more or less like HT's with regard to the coordination between the torso rotation and the hip extension then I think that would be a good thing.


Not sure if you've read the thread, but to give you a summary:

Torso rotation can be divided into two types: lumbar rotation and thoracic rotation. Lumbar rotation (basically waist rotation) has been proven to be medically unsafe for the lower back by many medical studies (also linked in that thread), while thoracic rotation (rotation  at the chest) is safe due to the differences in structure between the lumbar and thoracic spine, this is well documented in medical literature. In fact, dropping the right shoulder when looping also induces lumbar bending which is also medically unsafe. This is one of the fundamental reasons why so many TT players have lumbar issues....

So far Harimoto is the only one on the circuit employing thoracic rather than waist rotation
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote blahness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04/07/2019 at 7:42pm
Back on topic, I've recently been looking at Ma Long's FH flick and found this.

Key takeaways:

1) The pronation action is super important for the FH flick movement, Ma Long makes full use of it all the time...
2) He makes use of the calves by lifting off his back foot heel (left leg in this case!) during the FH flick.
3) He always steps back after the flick to get ready for the next shot. Us amateurs always neglect going back to ready position...






Edited by blahness - 04/07/2019 at 7:49pm
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