The game of squash is one of varying levels. From one player to another, to play better squash is a continuous process and should be your goal. As I’ve watched squash matches and been a part of them myself, I’ve come to realize that there are two broad categories of successful players:
- Those who are athletic
- Those who are skillful
Athletic players can grind out victories by sheer will and getting to every ball. The strategy could be narrowed down to “chase and hit.” I’ve seen this among very good players, and when I fall into this style of play against more skillful opponents.
A pro that comes to mind with this style is Paul Coll (see Paul Coll superman dive). A common complaint comes from a lack of stamina. But these players can still get far with a basic strategy of:
- Hitting good rails and cross courts
- Don’t hit the tin
But those who have more skill have adjusted their game to move in different ways, but also set their shots up better.
4 Tips to Play Better Squash
1) Still use your rails and cross courts. These shots allow you to create a dominant position in the court and opens the court up for you to attack the corners while in a controlled position.
2) Learn how and when to hit drop shots. Focus on your alignment, shorten your stroke a bit, and find the spot within your stroke that allows you to swing through the ball and keep your racquet head up. Use tip #1 to set these shots up.
3) Learn to split step. Instead of pushing off with your legs learn to split step when your opponent strikes the ball so that you are in balance as you initiate your movement. Here is a great video (see at 00:27) of split step in a pro match.
4) Make your opponent do the work. Develop the mindset of making your opponent have to run to get every ball back. Notice how much energy you are expending compared to your opponent.
The key is to use your rails and cross courts to create dominant position for your attacks and to ensure your shots don’t give your opponent a quick attacking opportunity.