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Be ready to hit quickly

A good tennis player gets ready to hit the ball much sooner than a poor player.

Preparation is the key to consistent stroke-making. The sooner you can move into position for a shot and take your racket back, the better off you will be.

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An experienced player begins this process as soon as the ball leaves his opponent's racket. By reacting quickly, he can execute a correct, comfortable stroke without having to rush.

One way to get ready sooner is to focus on the ball earlier. In receiving serve, for instance, start watching the ball even before your opponent has begun his tossing action. Continue to concentrate on the ball until it's time for you to hit it.

Another way to prepare better is to think about bringing your racket back into the ready position as soon as possible.

''Be prepared!'' is a great motto for tennis players.

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