The Simple Padel Positioning Tactic That Every Player Should Know
One simple padel positioning tactic can help you improve your padel, and be a step ahead of your opponents.
Do you want to be in perfect sync with your partner, and have the perfect positioning for every single type of ball?
Well this is possible with this padel positioning tactic.
Enter the “train track method” or the “shift method”, what ever we call it, this will help your positioning at the net, and stop any ball from getting past you. For today, I am just going to call it “the padel positioning tactic”.
The Padel Positioning tactic Explained
What is the best padel positioning tactic? The padel positioning tactic is shifting with your partner at the net position, following the ball in order to not leave any open gaps for your opponent to go for. It is the best way of stopping winning shots from getting past you.
When we are at the net position, we must shift from left to right, depending on where the ball has been played to.
ALWAYS protecting the biggest and easiest gaps that the opponent could try and play into.
Remember, the opponents are at the back and we are at the net, so we must always try and make a volley.
Let’s have a look at an example.
Example Of The Padel Positioning Tactic
Here is an example from a world padel tour match. With Lebron and Galan (at the net in dark blue) against Sanyo and Stupa (at the back with light blue).
Look at the two images below to see how the players shift in different situations.
The image on above shows the ball in the top right corner of the screen, notice how both players nearest at the net position have shifted over.
The player at the net on the right (Lebron) is now covering the line.
The player at the net in the centre (Galan) is now covering the middle.
The position to Galan’s left does not need to be worried about as much, it is a LOT harder for the opponents (Sanyo and Stupa) to play the ball to that area of the court, from the position that they are in now.
Now, the ball has been played to the other side of the court, Lebron and Galan have both shifted to the left in order to cover this,
The player at the net on the left (Galan) has moved to cover the left line area.
The player at the net on the right (Lebron) has moved to cover the middle of the court.
Yet again, the position to Lebron’s right, is not as important to cover as the middle. As Sanyo is going to struggle to get the ball over there.
This Doesn't Mean You Should Forget About It...
Do NOT think that this means you can forget about the area and ignore it, and I am not saying that it is impossible for players to play the ball into that area, because they definitely can.
Playing the ball down the middle and down the line is MUCH easier than playing the ball across the court and passing the players.
Your accuracy has to be nearly perfect! The more advanced you get the more accurate you must be as well.
So you have to prioritise where the ball is:
- Most likely to go
- Easiest place for the opponent to play it
Even if the opponent DOES make the shot, it is very likely to be played slowly, giving you time to get across and retrieve it.
This is tough to see but the ball is in the bottom right corner, and look how close the opponents are to the line and the middle!
They know how tough it is the get ball across court from that position.
The Padel Positioning Tactic (Extra Tips)
The further the ball moves in the corner, the further you should be either protecting the line, or closing down the middle.
Because the further the ball is in that corner, the harder it becomes for the opponent to play anywhere but the middle, or down the line.
Move Closer As Well...
Imagine, you and your partner, are both at the net. You play an aggressive volley, or bandeja right in the corner. The opponent is right at the back of the court trying to dig the ball out.
What should you do?
Well first, you should either move to the middle or the line depending on what side you are on.
But then, you can also move closer.
Closing down the net because you know it is going to be really hard for the opponent to play a lob from where they are. Then you can finish the point by either smashing it out or playing a smash.
- Remember, the net is your best friend, you must keep it at all costs.
- Watch the preparation of the opponents racket to judge where they are going.
- Always stay on your toes so that you can change direction quickly.
- Don’t switch off when the ball is not coming to you.
These tips will allow you to be a lot more ready at the net.
Making sure the padel positioning tactic is used as effectively as possible!
More examples Of the Padel positioning tactic
I grabbed a few screenshots to show you some more examples of the movements involved with this tactic.
Again, the players closest at the net have closed down the middle! There is a huge gap to the player at the net on the right.
The player in green is right over near the middle! While the player at the net in blue is covering that line!
Let’s recap, so, the shift method, train track method or just “padel positioning tactic” is:
Shifting from left to right slightly at the net position in order to make sure you are covering the easiest and clearest gaps for the opponents, e.g. the middle and the line.
We do this to take advantage and protect the areas that opponents are most likely going to go into.
Some of you reading this may do this instinctively, without thinking! It is still important that you are aware of it.
Overall, this padel positioning tactic is one of the most crucial pieces of advice that I can give out to people. If you are above beginner level and are not doing this, then you NEED to implement this into your game now!
For beginners, I would suggest to start learning the basics of this, it will help you long term!
Hope this helped!
“The Simple Padel Positioning Tactic That Every Player Should Know” – Ewan Ramsden
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