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Average Customer Review:
( 46 customer reviews )
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 17 found the following review helpful:
it works.Nov 20, 2008
My experience with this product has been as follows: I use it for its intended purpose. This product will do what it is supposed to (i.e. bring the ball back to you) but you have to hit hard. Yes, swing wild and hit hard. You may want to aim somewhat further away from the surface than usual, something like a semi-lob type of a stroke. With the 'kinetic cord' as this product is originally equipped with, you should expect the ball to bounce _once_ off the ground -- and that would be quite far away from you, at the beginning of its return trajectory. So, watch out. But then, its not a baseball so no worries really. While you play/practice, the swivel thing takes care of the cord untangling like it should.
Problems, and solutions: (1) knots on the rubber cord have a tendency to loosen and can come undone. Check online for tutorials on how to tie a parallel knot. Once you tie the knots as parallel knots, they stay tied.
(2) Ball eventually wears thin and needs to be replaced. With two balls included in this product, at some point you may need to come up with a suitable replacement. Since replacement balls do not seem to be offered by the product maker at this time, here's how to make one: Start with a pressure-less ball (Tretorn Micro-X or similar); get a piece of nylon cord 5-6 inch long (camping/ tent/ accessory nylon cord; a piece of a shoe-lace will do) and form a small loop out of it (not necessarily a parallel knot here); punch a hole in the ball (use knife, or similar sharp object; be careful there), and force the knot on the nylon cord loop through the hole. What you have accomplished at this point should look like a tennis ball with a short loop sticking out of the ball surface. Now attach such prepared ball to the rubber cord. So easy. If you use a pressure-less ball in this project, it will remain quite bouncy in spite of the hole punched in its wall. Enjoy.
(3) A suggestion: you may consider replacing the original rubber cord with a different one, more forgiving so to speak. A flat ribbon rubber cord such as used in similar products available on the market, will let you practice at a more relaxed pace with the ball bouncing _twice_ off the ground between the strokes.
Bottom line: good product for its purpose as a training aid.
12 of 14 found the following review helpful:
Great workout and a nice design!Jul 12, 2012
This is my third tennis trainer, first one I had when I was a teenager so that's 30 plus years ago, the second one was about 15 years ago and now this one. The first one I had had a nice springy ball that had a great bounce to it. The second one, which looked identical to the first one I had, the ball was a dud and you had to really whack it to get it to go and was very hard keeping it going. This one comes with a nice weighted base that can hold two balls and has two balls with it. I was pleased that they have the good bounce that the trainer I had as a kid had. The elastic cord seems to be of good quality, better than the two other trainers I had and hopefully will last pretty good.
Now, as I said, I'm 30 plus years older than I was when I first use to gleefully play with a tennis trainer so I don't have the legs or the arm strength that I used to (or the stamina). I'm also now using it on a dirt driveway with rocks sticking out here and there so it's a bit harder for me to get the ball going and get a good rally going. As I've only had it for two days now I do think that will improve - did better today than I did yesterday with getting some good rallies going. Makes it a little harder to do that when the ball hits the random rock sticking up instead of the dirt driveway and bounces off in some weird direction but that's not the fault of the tennis trainer, just the condition of the surface it's being used on.
The base is black and is flatter than the original two trainers I had so the ball hasn't been hitting that as much as I had it hit the old trainers which stuck up a bit higher. The extra ball I ended up sticking in my pocket because it kept falling out of the holder when it was occasionally hit so next time I'll leave it in the box instead.
I know some have said they've had a hard time getting the ball high enough and staying high and that they keep coming back too low. My suggestion would be try different spots to try and start off in. You may be standing too close to the trainer and what works for me is to stand two to three feet behind it and do an over head serve to give it a good start. When I've tried bouncing it off the ground to hit it to start or and underhand shot to get it started I don't have as good results as I do with the over head serve. And keep trying and don't give up too soon, they do work, just need to figure out how hard to hit and the sweet area to stand in.
I read all these reviews and the reviews from the couple of other tennis trainers offered on Amazon and read someone saying these are just a gimmick item that they re-release every so often because they don't work. Well, I'm someone who has used them over the years and they do work and can be a lot of fun and a great workout. I've never tried them with another person so that's something I'm interested in seeing if it works out well but I do know they work and aren't a gimmick.
This one also cost more than the other two listed. One was one that you had to put sand or water in to help weigh it down but it didn't say how much weight that would add to it and the second one was more of a square block with a slot to put the ball in and the elastic seemed to attach at the end and also weighed less than this one. As I know having a weighted base works best, and liked the elastic being attached to the top of the ones I had prior and the fact that this came with two balls I figured I'd pay the extra money for it and get this one and am glad I did. Didn't have much issues at all with it sliding around, like knowing I have an extra ball and like that it is lower to the ground than the other two appeared to be.
Would definitely recommend it! Wish Amazon offered replacement balls for this unit (the other one listed has replacement balls but I know these ones are pressurized and have a good bounce and don't know if the other ones balls are the same).
9 of 10 found the following review helpful:
The best dog toy there is!Sep 11, 2007
This is a fun, fun way for both you and your high strung dog to get exercise at the same time. I hit it, he chases it, spins around, and barks like a maniac. Occasionally, I let him "win" by hitting one at him soft and low.
In terms of a tennis TRAINER, I would say that's where this product fails. Unless you're really concentrating, its really easy to break proper form for the sake of getting to the ball. As someone who can hit a ton, it's hard to gauge how far and how hard you are hitting the ball when it keeps coming back to you.
In terms of quality, the base has a nice heft that won't move no matter how hard you hit the ball, the rubber string is strong and well-made, and and the fact that this comes with an extra ball is a plus.
One thing: Why doesn't Amazon offer replacement balls? If you play with this a lot, you go through balls pretty quickly. Two doesn't cut it!
6 of 6 found the following review helpful:
Good for certain types of strokes; has some issuesAug 30, 2012
By B. Harper
I have a difficult time finding tennis partners on a regular basis, so I purchased this in order to do some individual practice. I'm a casual to low-level competitive player, to give you an idea of my skill set.
- I noticed a marked improvement in my forehand and two-hand backhand ground strokes after using this trainer.
- Good weight - I have a fairly hard swing for a female, and the base rarely shifts once I place it.
- Tough tennis balls - they stood up fairly well to a substantial amount of abuse.
- The balls will eventually flatten or lose their felt, and replacing them can be a royal pain. Replacement balls are somewhat difficult to find, and it is a challenge to attach a new ball securely enough that the string will not come loose as you play.
- The string did not hold up well. I was able to break several of the elastic strings while practicing ground strokes.
This trainer can improve your ground strokes, but it definitely lends itself to a certain type of hit. It works best for a player who uses a fair amount of topspin and tends to hit deep shots from the baseline. I haven't found it to be particularly useful for serving - you're probably better off getting a hopper and sixty or so practice balls if that's your goal. I saw a major improvement in my stamina and my arm & grip strength after using the trainer. Once you get the rhythm and are able to keep the ball going, it provides a fairly intense workout.
I would recommend this product, but it would be nice to see some improvements in the ball tether & ball replacement system.
3 of 3 found the following review helpful:
Very cool practice toolApr 07, 2012
By J. Minatel
This has been a great tool for our 9 year old son to use to practice tennis. We don't have a court nearby but he can now play in our driveway any time he wants. The adjustable length cord makes it great for kids of all ages (both our 6 year or and 9 year old use it) and as they get older and can hit harder, they'll be able to let out more cord for longer hits and returns. This will let a kid practice much longer with many more reps than they'll get any other way. Great. Highly recommended.
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