Best way to improve your padel level
This is something that so few players do and it can probably have the most impact on your game! If you haven’t seen yourself play a padel match…you MUST!
When it comes to giving individual lessons, I regularly use video feedback to show them what they are actually doing. Because no matter how much verbal feedback I give about a certain aspect of the technique, it is much more powerful to SHOW the player what they are doing! The same applies for your padel matches, if you record them and watch them back, you get a much better picture of the overall game.
Recording padel technique
This is more powerful for a few reasons; firstly, if you can show a video of the padel shot and illustrate exactly on the video then the player can see exactly the part of the technique you are talking about in slow motion (or stills). This is very different from them “feeling” it with the shot or trying to watch their own wrist for example on contact. Secondly, the player can visualize the padel shot and associate it with the feeling. For example, if you are correcting a late take back, the player can see the late take back causes a rushed shot and late contact. So they know that if they want to have more time with the shot they really have to take the racket back earlier.
The amount of times I have said “your arm is too bent on the bandeja take back” and the player has said “it is as straight as I can make it”…then we look at the video and almost instantly the player is able to change it.
Recording padel matches
Watching your own padel games is also a very valuable way to see how you are playing tactically. You can see how and where you are moving on the court, notice how you are working with your partner and see how your opponents are winning points. Players are quite often not aware of this when they are playing. If you are wondering how to analyse the padel matches, we have a whole playlist of analysis of recreational matches that could hopefully give you some ideas.
If you are watching your matches and not sure what the tactics should be, it is definitely worth enrolling in the Tactics Course – you will have access forever and it will be a valuable resource to compare all your matches to.
How to record your padel matches
These days with the technology available it is easier than ever to record your own padel games. Here we give some suggestions on where and how to place the camera.
iPhone – the camera on the last few version on the iphone (or Samsung) is easily good enough to record the games. Set the phone up at the back of the court and make sure you have enough battery – and maybe put the phone in flight mode so the recording is not interrupted by a call or something like that. This is also good for technique, because it is easy to play back/slow down etc. You probably need to place it 4/5 meters behind the court in video mode and about 1.5m off the ground.
GoPro – this wide angle is often a good option because you can put it closer to the glass and capture more of the court. You can place this usually about 2-2.5 meters behind the court (again about 1.5m off the ground).
DSLR – these are obviously more expensive and better quality. I would say if you have one then use it, but you don’t need one specially for this purpose.
Accessories that help are things like:
Adjustable tripod – ideally reaching to about 1.5m – to give you different options for the camera you place on top.
Gorilla pod – as many courts do not have enough space at the back, but usually have some kind of structure you could attach the phone/camera to.
Once you’ve recorded the game, take the time to watch it properly, take notes and even cut sections that you find important. When we do a match analysis for clients making the complete video takes several hours, because we watch it through once, then again cutting points and putting into sections, then put them in an order of similarity that flows, then go through making the voiceovers and explanations. You do not need to do all of that, but if it is your own game then you will get the most out of it by spending time on it!!
When it comes to placement of the camera, you basically want to get the whole court in the frame and if possible to be at a height that you can also see your opponents. It is better to be too wide and then you can crop it than to be too small and you end up missing half the points that go into the corners.
If you are placing the camera for technique, then the full court is not necessary, you can shoot from the net post position. This should be done on the “open” side of the technique – for example on the forehand/forehand volley/bandeja this is from the net post that can see your chest (not your back).
If you watch it yourself, but would like our match analysis, we have a service on the website where we will breakdown your matches – they do not need to be published online and are for you to keep.