Doubles tennis drills are underappreciated these days. Tennis doubles is when you play two against two. It’s an entirely different set up from singles tennis. That’s why you also need different drills and tactics.
Many people don’t realize this. Practicing tennis one to one is not going to help you improve your doubles game. That’s why this article is going specifically into them.
In doubles, the person standing at the net has to be totally on top of things. He or she should use a tactic called poaching: to get every ball to finish the point off. This puts great pressure on your opponents, and that’s where they start making errors. The first volley is particularly important, because if you don’t make the first volley, you’ll have no chance of winning the point.
To start, you need four people: two at the net and two at the baseline. Then, instead of serving, feed the ball in cross-court. On the other side of the net, the player at the baseline will come forward, split step and play the volley cross court back.
Next, your partner at the net is the crucial factor. Immediately after the opponent plays the first volley, he moves forward to close the gap and then explodes crosscourt to intercept that first volley. The opponent who hits the first volley has to predict if your partner is crossing or not. If he thinks he is crossing, he can volley down the line. But be careful, your partner may have bluffed his poach!
Four persons are need for this drill, which puts an entirely new spin on your double tennis game.
At the same time, you and your partner feed in the ball diagonally, and hit cross court towards your adversaries. At this moment, two balls should be in play simultaneously. If your opponent misses, you should point!
Only one ball is in play at that moment, and the point is now open. Employ your best tactics to win that crucial point, for example because one of you moves to the net.
You and your partner get one point if you win the "open" point. But neither team wins anything if you loose the "open" point. This can go on for quite some time. You may start to feel really pressured to win or save the "open" points. It’s a great way to practice.
In this drill, two persons stand at the baseline and the other two at the net. The person standing at the baseline feeds the point as he or she thinks is right, if only the feed isn’t too easy. Play best out of three points. Go to the net if you win. Score only the "best out of three’s" that you win at the net.
As the two persons standing at the net are not allowed to move before the ball is fed into play, they are required to start behind the service line.
The last of doubles tennis drills is often called the Bryan brother drill. It can be done with two people and concentrates on your volley control. You and your partner should both be on your forehand service lines, meaning you are diagonally opposite to one another.
Next, you volley diagonally. Take a step left after each volley you hit, until you are hitting backhand to backhand volleys. Then, return by taking steps to the right. Watch how long you can continue this without missing any balls.