Factors affecting force loading on the hand in the tennis forehand

J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 1991 Dec;31(4):527-31.


The effect of preimpact hand forces and impact location on the postimpact force loading on the hand in the tennis forehand drive was examined. Force sensing resistors and strain gauges were mounted on a midsized tennis racket. Three-dimensional cinematography was used to reconstruct the motion of the ball, racket, and upper extremity of two varsity tennis players. One subject performed fifteen strokes using his normal grip while another performed sixteen, eight with a normal grip and eight with a significantly firmer grip. Postimpact peak forces on the hand were significantly (p less than 0.01) related to force at the base of the index finger in preparation for impact and the distance the ball impacted from the longitudinal axis of the racket. Impact location and preimpact force on the hand were found to account for 66% of the variability of postimpact peak force loading in the tennis forehand drive, and are important factors related to force loading in the tennis forehand. Smaller grip forces and rackets minimizing the effect of off-center impacts should be considered as intervention to reduce the risk of tennis elbow.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biophysical Phenomena
  • Biophysics
  • Equipment and Supplies
  • Fingers / physiology
  • Hand / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Methods
  • Regression Analysis
  • Tennis Elbow / prevention & control
  • Tennis*