I got an email today about the modern game of racquetball today and shot selection. The author is a nice guy, but he is dead wrong about the modern game. First, he goes into great detail on crossover steps and why they are important. I believe that thinking is way outdated and creates poor footwork, not good footwork. (and I have bio-mechanical evidence to back me up on that)
Second, he states that the game today is low% racquetball and there is no strategy. Again, untrue, the game is faster, lower, and therefore the strategy is in the details. Oh, and for the record, almost every close match I coached in the states, nationals, and even Worlds were won or lost with strategies and counter-strategies from opponent’s in-match adjustments. Here is an example–opponents are deep in center-court–you pinch-when an opponent is up, you pass.
In matches where I have worked with an athlete extensively I can be specific about skills. “Keep the back shoulder up, bend your knees more, etc. are all tips that an athlete can simply employ.”
When technique is better all of the shots become higher percentage. The game has moved from strategy to strategic technique so the execution is higher %. I will admit many players have poor strategy and technique, but that was true in the old days also.
Third thing he says is that he is not a fan of shooting down the line. Again, we go back to execution. Down the line is the best shot in racquetball, but it takes technique. Good technique produces un-coverable down the line shots. Old school thinking was defend the cross court because most players cannot hit down the line. That is not supposed to apply to our players at Winterton Racquetball Academy because we work hard on down the line!