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Tennis Stances: Feet and Body Positioning when hitting the ball

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Hello Tennis Players! Today we are going to talk about the main tennis stances and how to execute them. A tennis stance is the way you stand and position your feet before you hit the ball. We all know that tennis is a very Individual sport and each individual can have a unique way of hitting each shot. As a general guideline though, there are 4 stances that are often used in tennis and they are:

Tennis Stances

1. Open Stance
2. Semi-Open Stance
3. Neutral Stance
4. Closed Stance

Each stance is very popular and no stance is the correct nor incorrect one to use. In a Tennis match you can use many different stances to hit various types of shots. The one thing to remember is to never ever stand on your heels, always on your toes.

Let us now dive in and learn how to perform the main stances.

Tennis Stances, open

Open Stance

The Open Stance is very popular among tennis touring pro’s right now. To perform this correctly, you must coil and turn your upper body while keeping your lower body facing the net. This coil that you’ve just created, between your upper and lower body, is creating torque that you’ll be using as an additional form of energy and power when you make contact with the ball. If done correctly, your body will act like a spring that has been wound because once you are ready to hit the ball your upper body will spring open. All of that energy and power will be passed on to the racquet when making contact with the ball.


Semi-open Stance

The Semi-open Stance is somewhere between the Open and Neutral stance. Your feet should be positioned about 45 degrees to the baseline or angled towards either net post. This is a great stance for short balls or approach shots as well, as it’s a very flexible stance.


Neutral stance

Let us review the Neutral stance or the Square stance as it is now called. If you are performing this stance, your feet should be creating almost a 90 degree angle with the baseline. If you are standing at the center of the court, you will have to move your left foot slightly forward to assist you in hitting the ball. Then after contact, bring your right foot forward to return to ready position and be ready to hit the next shot. This is not a very big step stance, but it is very effective for Baseline players.


Closed stance

The Closed stance is a very interesting stance. This can be used for either the Forehand or the Backhand shots. In this stance, both of your feet are facing either the right or the left side of the court. This positioning completely closes you from the court which forces you to take extra steps to get into a good position for the next shot. This stance is recommended for the backhand primarily because you need to get into a sideways position in order to execute the backhand shot perfectly.

If you are the type of player that likes to watch how touring Pros hit, watch their feet and their footwork. You will learn a lot more from them by watching their footwork and how flawlessly they move than anything else. We hope this article helps you move better and understand the different stances in tennis. Look out for more tips and tricks from us in the next couple of weeks. Have a great day and stay on your toes everyone!!