THE BACK CORNERS--

 

Squash players would generally prefer not to play this shot. Beginners probably hate it, and even the best player would not like to find themselves playing this shot too often. Nonetheless, dedication and patience in learning this shot, return huge rewards. It must be clear that a player will practice this position well in order to respond with a straight drive or cross-court. Being content with executing the sidewall boast would hardly resolve anything.

 

Improving your shots from the back corners will make all the difference to your game. Instead of being forced to use the side-wall, or playing a loose drive, you will be able to turn the tables and put the other guy into the back corners, and consequently gaining access to the T. Once you are able to do that, a world of possibilities will be there for you. So, all your hours of concentration on boring little details will eventually prove worthwhile.

 

Fortunately, the same technique used for hitting a squash ball at incredible speeds, is ideal for getting the ball out of the back corners. The bent elbow, use of the wrist, and open racket face, all contribute to a satisfying “thwack” against the front wall. The same elements allow the player to occupy limited space, hence, situate himself relatively deep into the back corners. The open racket face also permits the player to wait and let the ball rebound out of the corner, inserting the racket under it just before the second bounce.

 

Now, if you have already passed the section on technique with flying colours, this part will be easy. If not, this section will help you immensely. There is all the technical information and step-by-step exercises to guide beginners and coaches through this particular area of the court. First, a detailed account of what happens in the back corners.

 

 

 

On the forehand side

 

As mentioned above, the technique used for accelerating the racket and generally used to play all the long shots is ideal for hitting the ball out of the back corners. play video  

 

Seen from this angle, it is clear how the low shoulder is necessary, to tuck in the elbow and hence, occupy little space. Remember, the player is learning the best possible technique to get the most difficult low shots out of the corner.

 

 

Once the racket has cleared the back wall, the wrist action together with the elbow, accelerate the racket through to hit the ball to a length.

 

 

 

In this clip, the action is slowed down and viewed from a different angle for further illustration.  play video  Even though the player can position himself close to the back wall, he must maintain the greatest possible distance from the sidewall in order to extend the arm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The elbow is tucked in under the body and remains bent. The wrist too, is completely bent backwards to allow the racket through.

 

 

Only at this point, is the elbow extended and the wrist action comes in. Note how the forearm is facing the ceiling during the swing.

 

 

Keeping the right shoulder high is a common error, which must be avoided. A high "racket side"  shoulder would entail occupying more room and banging the racket against the back wall.  Play video   The same problem may be encountered by less expert players, but for a different reason. This time the arm is extended too early.    play video

 

 

 

 

Maintaining the shoulder high during the swing would cause contact with the back wall rather than with the ball.

 

 

 

Extending the arm too early, is an error often associated with that of losing control of the elbow and turning the forearm towards the floor rather than upwards. Occupying too much room would only mean banging the racket against the back wall, or staying too far away from the back wall and being forced to boast.

 

 

On the backhand side

 the backhand side is less

The backhand side is less complicated and more natural. It is easier to lead with the elbow, but wrist power is more limited on this side.  play video   Note how the wrist action unravels after the racket has cleared the back wall.   play video

 

 

 

Distribute the body's weight evenly onto both legs and go down low. The right shoulder and elbow are low while the hand is high, near the left shoulder.

 

 

Wait until the ball bounce well off the back wall. Bring in the elbow forward without extending the arm or using the wrist. Maintain your balance and the head still.

 

 

 

Now, when the racket head has cleared the back wall, extend the elbow behind the ball and begin the wrist movement.

 

 

The wrist movement ends here, but,….

 

 

 

…. the hand moves on.                                            Follow through well and remain low.

 

 

 

 

 

Sound technique consents positioning the body close to the back wall.

 

 

The elbow moves forward but is still bent at this stage, and so is the wrist.

 

 

 

The elbow can now be extended and the wrist starts to work.

 

 

Follow through to add speed to the shot and return easily to the T.

 

 

Again, raising the shoulder during the swing or extending the arm too early would result in hitting the back wall and not the ball.

 

 

 

      Extending the arm too early would lead to contact between racket and back  wall.

 

Beginners are advised not to look for speed when learning this shot, but rather concentrate on good technique and timing. The ball will reach the backcourt if sent high above the service line, even if hit softly. Desperate efforts to produce a hard shot would only ruin posture and timing. You may have noticed that expert players often play this shot, starting off with a high shoulder and elbow position. However, looking carefully, it is clear how they go through the fundamental phases of the swing before striking the ball. A beginner who attempts to copy such advanced technique, would find him/herself bypassing the essentials and executing the shot very poorly.