Welcome to Babbleon
So, my first blog post in English was about my evolution from being a tennis to a padel player and I’d like to elaborate on some points. Please note, this is not at all supposed to be some sort of manual on how to convert. Even if I thought I knew what I was talking about, I would never claim this to be used for instructional purposes. It is more journal of my thoughts during the transition. Remember, I am, after all, only a mere 3 year-old padel baby who has just learned how to “walk" on the court.
SLICE IT UP
Correct me if I’m wrong, but I learned that the basic groundstroke used in the back of the court is a flat shot. Don’t use topspin. Topspin only produces high and easy bounces for your opponents. And use slice when you’re on the offense. In short — flat is safe, topspin is stupid, and slice is aggressive especially when volleying. This is totally against all laws of tennis. #ugh #reprogrambrain
WELCOME TO BABYLON #Babbleon
On the tennis court, it’s very hush hush. In the padel cage, you’re allowed to talk to your partner A.L.L. T.H.E. T.I.M.E. So, just babble on! Tell her/him to go for it, run run run, take the net, or stay back. Let her/him know if the ball is going out, what your opponents are doing, where they are standing or, why not, what you ate last night for dessert #imacookiemonster. My partner, Billie has seemed to pick up this aspect of padel very quickly. I, on the other hand, still struggle as I’ve never been a women of many words (not verbally anyways :)) and I can also blame it on the fact that sometimes my Swedish and English try to dominate each other. Once I, wanted to say “Let it go” but in Swedish that’s “Släpp” and what came out of my mouth was “Slet it!” Luckily, Billie managed to make her next shot regardless of my strange outburst. We once considered using names of snacks as codes. Donut, for instance would mean that the players up at the net are far from each other — making a hole in the middle. Very clever no?
speaking of LET IT GO
One thing that took me at least a year to get used to was letting a deep shot pass by me. What? Let the ball go? I was taught to always chase down the ball and get to it asap… So, let the ball go and you sometimes have to turn your butt towards your fence in preparation, and even more bizarre, jump in the air in order to avoid your feet from getting hit. #jumparound #houseofpain #illserveyour*sslikejohnmcenroe
Then once you’ve actually reached that proud moment of letting the ball go, do the butt thing or the jump thing, you have to figure out how to get to the ball. After dodging the ball, you have to make sure you’re behind the ball, but still move forward with it since it’s coming with force from the wall. Are you there yet— not too far behind nor too far in front of the ball?
Alright, all you need to do now is hit the ball and get it in. Don’t use that big backswing because that little yellow thing can bounce off the side wall or the fence and change direction, speed and/or spin. Follow the ball with a short backswing and don’t go for a power shot (ok, yes, you can go for power if you’re positioned perfectly). In most cases, you just push it in and voilá! Easy, right? #notreally
These are some of the many aspects I’ve tackled or am still tackling but that is what’s so great about padel. There’s never a dull moment…