As a tennis professional and coach, I can feel the frustration when you repeatedly get corrected or advised on what tennis grips types are the best to use.
Although it might seem repetitive, here is the deal, these grips are there for a reason. The purpose is to allow the player to execute the shot selected with ease and precision. And most professionals on tour today use slight variations of the five main grips to suit their individual style of play.
Also known as the hammer grip. The continental grip is the utility grip for all players. It is used for volleys, two-handed backhands, slice on both forehand and backhand, overhead smash, serve, and up until the ’70s the forehand.
The continental grip forehand lost popularity when the US Open and Australian Open adopted the new hard-court surface over grass, leaving Wimbledon with the lowest bounce, which at the time suited the continental grip over others.
Occasionally seen used for a two-handed backhand. However, in today’s game, it is primarily used for a strong one-handed backhand.
Roger Federer, Stan Wawrinka, Stefano Tsitsipas, Dominic Thiem, and Denis Shapavalov continue to keep the one-hand backhand in the game today.
Roger Federer uses an extreme eastern grip, almost all the way to the conventional and most used semi-western grip. Blending these tennis grip types allows Federer to create more power while still maintaining a reasonable amount of spin.
Other tour players that use this grip are Juan Martin Del Potro, Grigor Dmitrov, Radek Stepanek,
This grip is used by more players on tour. And is a much more comfortable grip for beginners to master in a shorter period.
It allows players to create extreme amounts of topspin. And at the same time, not lose the ability to extend the arm and racquet to generate more power.
Rafael Nadal uses an extreme semi-western, bordering on a full western, allowing him to create an extraordinary 4000 rpm on his forehand.
This level of Rpm has been matched only by the big-hitting Jack Sock. Noted for his unorthodox yet extremely powerful and fast full western grip forehand.
This grip is used by a lot of pros. But it is not really suitable for recreational players.
This grip requires precision and impeccable timing for it to be successful. It does, however, create more spin than that of the other grips.
It is an excellent grip if you want to spend hours and hours a day on the court just hitting forehands, not many people want that or have that kind of free time.
Nick Kyrgios, Karen Kachanov, and Jack Sock are among the top players using this extreme grip.
Tennis grip types you can use
There are more grips out there; however, players only adopt two or three grips depending if they use continental for their backhand.
A one-handed player generally has three main grips that they utilize. Eastern for the backhand, Semi Western or Eastern for the forehand, and Continental for everything else.
The combination of grips is ultimately up to the player and what best suits your style of play. But listen to your coach and trust their guidance.