So a question I get a ton from students and other players is trying to understand what balls to let bounce and which ones to take out of the air especially when playing at the kitchen line so first I want to talk through why you want to take certain balls out of the air and then I'm going to show you guys a drill to help you learn and kind.

Of decide okay these are the balls I take out of the air versus these are the ones that I let bounce so one of the biggest mistakes I see for a lot of lower level players are people just starting out is they'll often back themselves off the kitchen line and let the ball bounce and I think a lot of that is because they're wanting to give.

Themselves more time to react the problem with this is that this kitchen line is the absolute best place to play on the whole pickleball court like I always say this is the best real estate on the court you want to get here because points are won and lost primarily at the kitchen line so when you're constantly backing up off that.

Line to give yourself more time what you're doing is you're giving away the best real estate in the house so it's really important to hug this line and not let your opponents back you up off of it because again this is where you want to play so the first thing I want to talk through is contact point now your.

Contact point is really just when the paddle hits the ball now one of the biggest mistakes I see from lower level players or people beginning to play is they'll let the contact point be at their side of their body or behind their body now the danger with that is oftentimes if you're hitting a ball at the side of your body or behind your.

Body the only direction that your paddle has to go is up now again if you hit the ball straight up guess what you're hitting a pop-up now a great way to avoid this and also a great way to understand which balls to take out of the air is making sure first that your contact point is always in front of your body so the best way to really do this.

Is to make sure that you are getting back to your ready position in between shots so that means having your paddle out in front making sure that your arms are away from your body that they're loose and again this is going to help you ensure that your account attacking that ball in front of your body and able to go upwards and forwards rather than.

Just up again that's going to help you keep from hitting a pop-up so the second thing I want you guys to understand is I see a lot of beginners hitting balls from their shoelaces if you're contacting that ball from your shoelace the oldie direction that your paddle has to go again is up because if I go forward I'm going in the net so this is.

Another mistake I see a lot of beginners do again biggest thing is making sure your paddles out in front that you're not hitting from your shoelaces and that every time you hit a dink or a shot that your follow through is right back out in front and not down at your side so a great way to practice this is the drill that I like to call protect the.

Castle basically you can use a cone or I've seen people use water bottles or even other pickleballs and basically what they'll do is they'll set up them and then their partner right across from each other at the kitchen line you're going to set up your cone right above where your paddle is you each are really going back and forth trying to aim for.

Each other's Castle and the whole goal is to protect your castle and hit the other person so I'm going to show you guys how this goes all right so I have me I have my castle and my partner and my partner has her castle so biggest thing is I'm trying to aim for her Dot and she's trying to aim for mine my biggest concern is I do not want.

Her ball to hit my castle so we're gonna go ahead and start so again I'm really trying to hit her oh so it's crazy because when you do this drill you start to realize how many balls you can actually hit out of the air.

And again biggest thing is you want to end that follow through so your paddles right above that cone or that dot oh that was it was close and this will get you really used to how many balls you can actually take out of the air thank you so if you feel like you've mastered that.

And you start to know okay these ones I let bounce these ones I don't now you do the same drill with protect the castle but you add in some speed UPS what's great about taking balls out of the air is it actually allows you to be more aggressive since you're not moving as much right the more you move the more you're off balance the more you're off.

Balance that's when you have to hit a defensive dink but when you are balanced and you're not moving and your feet are set that's when you can be offensive so now we're going to do the same drill but now add in some speed UPS biggest thing when you add in speed UPS is when you're bent over like this reaching that's probably not the time to speed up.

Because again your chest is down and you can't really have control but when you have your chest up and you're balanced here and you have your paddle face out in front that's when you want to speed up the ball again I'm looking for the right ball to speed up that was pretty good my partner has good defense same thing.

I'm looking for a ball oh that was a good idea I'm looking for a ball where I'm balanced again oh there it is there it is good boom that's what I want we're gonna do one more round.

Again I still want to protect my castle I'm looking for that high ball there it is oh I missed it because I didn't get under it one more I'm looking for my high ball there's a 101 that's what I want good yeah so biggest things that you really need to look at when you're deciding what balls to take out of the air and.

What balls not to is when your contact point is in front of your body not to the side not behind you two that you're not taking balls off your shoelaces instead of taking off your shoelace cut it off so that at that chest level in front of you three make sure that you are bending from the legs not your back chest forward facing towards your Target.

And a great way to practice that is the protect the castle drill I hope you guys enjoyed this video make sure that you follow me at all things pickleball on Instagram and Tick Tock and I will see you guys in the next one
Welcome to my pickleball tutorial video where we’re diving deep into the strategic choices of dinking in pickleball. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll teach you when to take a dink out of the air and when to let it bounce. Not only this, but we’ll also give you one of our favorite dinking drills to practice! By understanding these crucial decisions, you’ll be able to improve your game and outmaneuver your opponents on the court. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced pickleball player looking to refine your skills, this video is packed with valuable insights to enhance your dinking game.
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