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Tennis is a great sport that is played by 2 or 4 people. Sometimes, it happens that you don’t find a partner. In that situation, to stick to your tennis routine, you find yourself forced to play alone. So, how can play tennis well by yourself?
There are many ways a tennis player can play alone in the club or in the backyard. From the wall to the ball machine, we have ranked them based on their cost going from the cheapest to the most expensive.
1) Hitting the wall ($0)
One of the most common solo practices in tennis is playing the wall. Not only amateurs do that but also top professionals. The best thing about playing the wall is that it costs nothing.
- Improves forehand, backhand, and volley
- Improves accuracy by hitting above the line (in the same net height)
- Helps to build momentum
- Improves footwork
- Can get boring quickly
- It doesn’t improve shot consistency since you don’t know if the ball will land inside the court with the same power and angle
2) Serving ($0)
Another good way is to work on the serve. It is preferable to bring 50+ tennis balls to the court. Fewer balls will do the job but this requires switching sides more often. Then start working on your serve motion and hit first and second serves.
- Improves serve motion
- Improves serve consistency
- Can get boring after a while
- Can provoke elbow injuries especially if you don’t heat up well enough
3) Self-Feeding Strokes ($0)
You can feed yourself with balls by tossing them 2 or 3 feet in front of you, either on the forehand side or the backhand side. Then approach the shot and hit the ball with good timing. You can do that repeatedly with lots of balls, the more the better, to avoid switching sides more often.
- Improves groundtrokes power
- Improves groundstrokes preparation and timing
- Boring after some time
- Lack of fun unlike playing against someone
4) Footwork Drills ($0)
This is another form of solo tennis practice that is often dismissed by many amateur players. Footwork is an essential pillar of tennis. If you do not move and use your legs efficiently, your shots will lack timing, power, and accuracy. Most people neglect the fact that good footwork contributes to fast progression in the game.
- Improves your physique and strenghten your legs
- Helps you memorize the court dimensions to optimize your effort
- No tennis shots involved
- Gets boring after a moment
5) Self-Practicing Trainer Rebounder ($25)
It is a good way to practice groundstrokes solo indoor or outdoor. With a relatively cheap product, you can simulate a hitting partner thanks to the bouncing ball. The product consists of a strong base that you fill with water or sand to make it heavy and stable on the ground. The ball is attached to a flexible rope that makes it bounce back to you.
If you want to hit higher balls stand close to the base, and to hit lower balls stand far behind the base.
- Practice continuous hitting
- Feeds high and low balls
- Improves footwork
- Portable and can be used anywhere
- Feels similar to hitting with a partner
- The cord doesn’t last long with heavy training
- Most tennis trainers rebounders on the market come with cheap balls that don’t last long
Tip: We have done some research and found the best self-practicing rebounder available online. The AXTON Solo Tennis Trainer comes with 3 replaceable tennis balls, a strong cord, and a black iron stable base. It is better than most trainers at the same price
6) Top Spin Training Aid ($125)
Topspin on the ball is a great technique to master. There are many beginners who struggle to keep to the ball on the court because they don’t know how to generate decent topspin. A training coach might be effective especially for young or beginner players.
Alternatively, if you are alone in the court, the Top Spin Training Aid is an effective tool to improve your topspin.
It is a little bit expensive but proven to help kids and beginners effectively on their own.
- Improves top spin motion and power
- Perfect for coaches to train beginners
- The machine also serves as a warm-up
- Over 100 000+ people satisfied with the trainer
- Doesn’t improve other shots like flat strokes or slice
- Gets boring after some time
To look at the product details: click here
7) Ball Tosser ($299)
It is a good automated way to replace the self-feeding stokes. In fact, this machine gives you consistently tossed balls at an adjustable level. This allows you to work on a specific technique while receiving the exact same ball each time.
This machine is similar to a classic tennis machine ball, with the difference that it should be on the same side of the net as you.
- Feeds similar and adjustable balls
- Massively improves the consistency and power of the shots
- You can play all the shots: forehand, backhand, slice, drop shot, volley, and smash (just place it very close to the net and adjust the machine to high balls to play the last two shots)
- Feels like a real coach throwing balls at you
- Relatively Expensive
- You receive slow balls
8) Ball Machine ($299)
This is the first thing that comes to mind when we say ‘solo tennis’. A tennis ball machine is by far the best way to practice tennis alone. It feels very similar to playing against a coach since the balls arrive with power and consistency. The only holdback is often the very expensive price of ball machines. Nevertheless, a good product deserves to pay top dollar.
- Feeds consistent and rapid balls from the other side of the net
- Improves your shots consistency, accuracy, and power
- Massively improves footwork
- You can adjust the spin, speed, direction, trajectory, and feed rate of the balls
- You can control the machine by mobile apps in some brands
- Feels like a real opponent
- Very Expensive
Tip: If you are interested in a tennis machine ball, it can get overwhelming when you search online. We have an article that compares between top tennis machine balls of 2022.
However, based on thorough research and reviews from hundreds of tennis players and coaches, our best value ball machine is the SpinShot Player.
Practicing tennis alone is challenging and can get boring quickly. But finding the right ways to play this beautiful sport will allow you to enjoy your time and keep your training routine.
We advise you to choose the free methods we mentioned and then, to have more fun, you can jump on one of the paid trainers.
Read Also: Is it Good or Bad to Play Tennis Every Day?