RacquetWarrior.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. As an affiliate, this website earns from qualifying purchases.
Playing against opponents can help increase your squash skills by allowing you to consider your opponent’s strengths and weaknesses and providing you with a live action practice.
But playing against other players is not the only way to practice and improve upon your skills.
Players should also practice on their own, participating in regularly scheduled drills in order to increase their endurance, improve their technique, and increase the speed of their movements.
Squash drills offer a number of other benefits as well, all designed to help you increase your playability and work to produce the proper skills needed to beat your upcoming opponents.
But different player types will need more precise drills that better fit to their needs.
Choosing drills based on your playability and skill level will allow you to focus on what areas you are weaker in and to help you identify just what skills you should have for your level.
Beginning players will need to complete drills that focus on the basic movements and shots required for the game of squash.
This includes basic shots, movements, proper form, placement on the floor, and serves.
They will also need to learn to understand the function of their racquet, placement of shots, how to produce power, their grip on the racquet, and more.
More advanced players will be more focused on increasing their speed, extremely precise accuracy, and a continuous practice for more advanced shots and recovery.
But intermediate players need a different kind of training.
These are the players that have advanced from beginners and understand the basic moves but will need to focus just as heavily on their drills in order to further advance their skills to grow in their skills and ability.
These players will begin to understand more advanced shots and understand their own strengths and weaknesses to become a bigger threat for future opponents.
The distinct elements that make a player an intermediate level player are their understanding of the game, growth in strategy, seeking to improve their skills, and more advanced moves.
Intermediate players should have a strong forehand and volley already.
They should also have a strong understanding of how to move around the court as a second nature, including moving backwards.
These players are beginning to hit with more power behind their shots and are better at placing the ball within the sweet spot of their squash racquet in order to access the racquet’s control.
Executing shots like forehand and backhand, crosscourt shots, and some understanding of lobs should also be reached by this level of squash.
You should also be beginning to practice anticipating your opponent’s shots in order to better adjust your next shot to them.
This allows them to dash more quickly to the squash ball, though their recovery of these balls may not yet be strong enough to manage any decent shots off of a difficult retrieve of balls.
Intermediate players will begin to make their volley shots less deep in the court, are working to strengthen their lobs, and beginning to attempt boast shots.
Importance of drills
While drills are important to all players, no matter their skill level, intermediate players in particular will need to participate in regular drills in order to improve.
Intermediate players are at a crucial stage. They understand the basics, but they must continue to improve in order to advance and drills are a great way to do this.
Intermediate drills should focus on creating greater understanding and production of control to maneuver the placement of the ball.
You should also learn more about control and creating your own power to better control the distance and speed of your shots.
Intermediate drills should allow players to explore their abilities and skills, helping them to establish their own style of playing.
Learning how to be more severe in both their shots and their serve, making returns from their opponent more challenging. This includes how to apply top and backspin to your shots.
The drills should also work to establish a better muscle memory for the player to rely on during fast pace, intense play.
Before you begin a drill, remember the importance of putting in your full effort.
Even though most drills will be repetitive, and you may begin to expect where the ball is coming from, you should still treat it as if it is a real game.
Pay attention to where you are on the court and practice as if it is a game, so you are more prepared to play in a real game and more easily access your muscle memory.
Shortening your backswing
Shortening your swings allows you to surprise your opponent as it adds an element of disillusion to what kind of swing you are about to complete.
Shortening your backswing will require you to strengthen your forearm. A full-length backswing will be exaggerated in order to be powerful enough to cross the court.
Shortening it will require you to produce your own strength.
To complete this drill, which will build up your muscles and form, stand at the side of the court that is the same as your dominant playing hand.
Standing on the short line, players completing this drill should hit the ball just below the serving line.
The process of hitting the ball between the short line and the front wall of the squash court should be repeated to help you establish greater control and allow your arm to begin to form muscle memory.
Increasing the speed of this drill will also increase the swing speed of your squash racquet. This will improve your reaction time as well.
Adding stepping movements to the drill by hitting on the service box, in place of the short line, with a wider then open stance causing you to move more frequently and practicing how you will move during an actual match.
Doing the drill with movement works to create greater stability to your body and concentration.
Basic volley drill
Intermediate players will already have a strong understanding of their volley, but improving the power and speed of their volleys and building up an endurance for longer volley will help them wear down their opponent quicker without the player dropping the volley first.
Repetitively completing a volley drill will allow players to more naturally complete volleys without having to process the thought of how to complete the volley.
This improves your reaction times and helps with making decisions during the pressures of a game.
A volley drill will require players to start on the short line of the court and begin with a back handed volley.
The ball should hit the front wall with increased force.
Players should not let the ball hit the ground, keeping it at a constant height.
This height will be higher than a usual volley as you are only volleying with yourself, but do not have it go too high that you must raise your racquet beyond the height of a net based volley.
Once this drill is mastered, you can increase the intensity by adding movement.
Switching to different distances as the starting point of the court and alternating your feet will help you create a more consistent movement.
You can again advance the drill again by adding swiffer movements as you hit volleys from straight on and as cross court from both full and half court distances.
This drill will require the use of a ball machine in order to simulate a player hitting a shot at you.
The drill works to improve your ability of hitting the squash ball off the front wall into the opposite corner.
You will be placed at the middle of the court and then the corner of your dominant hand. Make sure to switch corners periodically.
Hit the squash ball of the front wall into the back corner as mentioned to practice the movements and then to understand the strength needed to complete the shots.
The drill requires lunging movements in order to reach the shot and hit it properly moving from corner to the T-line on the court.
Squash drills for intermediate players
There are many more drills for intermediate players to use in order to improve their skills, strength, endurance, reaction time, and other aspects of their own squash playability.
Different drills may require the use of a machine or of other players in order to be performed properly.
Doing drills is important to each player’s skill level in order to help them maintain their skills and improve on their weaker skill sets.
This is especially true for intermediate players who are just now beginning to gain strong squash skills.
Performing these skills regularly will help them perform better.
It will also allow for muscle memory to take effect.
This will help the intermediate player react much quicker to the movements of their opponent, not requiring them to think too long on how or what shot to perform.
Drills will also work to ensure players understand how to move about on the floor, so they do not need to constantly focus on where they are positioned.
Rather they will automatically know where they are at and where they need to be.
Drills should focus on various volleys, crosscourt shots, and those shots that require movement in order to save the player a point.
Featured image credit: DepositPhotos.com