After learning to defend the bandejas and viboras, here are some advices to understand how defend smashes. And you will see that it is not so simple.

The smash at padel are used more by intermediate-advanced players than by beginners. They can be hit very hard but also be varied with effects that complicate defense. In the end, the smash is used both to finish the point and to work on the defense of opponents.

And to avoid finding yourself in uncomfortable defensive positions, we have some tips: adapt and develop your position so that you can defend calmly.

Right-left-handed how does it work?

It is indeed a big concern for the defenders, to modify our defensive positions according to the adversaries that we have in front of us. To defend a smash, we will start based on logic, that is, a right-hander will be placed on the left and a left-hander will be placed on the right. From this situation, you can read the next chapter. If this logic is not respected, left-handed on the left or right-handed on the right, we invite you to read the article on the placement to defend the bandeja, because this positioning just in front of the line will be the most suitable.

How to place?

Before you place you will have to detect if the opponent on your diagonal is going to smash or not. Take a good look at its preparation because it is different from that of a bandeja-vibora. Once this is detected, you will cross the line and mark the resumption of support at the moment of impact, facing the player, low support, about one meter from the side wall, at the height of the separation between the glass and the grid. . Here you will be ready to defend.

Charlotte Soubrié smash Worlds Dubai 2022

Which options?

Opponents have several possible smash options and this position allows you to save most of them:

- the grid smash. With this placement you can either avoid the gate rebound because you will be very close to it, or you can move away from it to play after rebound or even leave the ball to your partner.

- the smash to the side window. Several options too. You are on the trajectory of the ball, so you can block it with a volley or half-volley or let it pass for a counter-window after rebounding on the side or accompany by turning on yourself to play a window exit from bottom.

- the smash to the bottom window which then comes to the side. In this case, if you do not move, the ball will come towards you, on you, and you will not be able to play it correctly. So you're going to separate from the side wall, spin around to play a backhand for a left-handed right-hander, a backhand for a right-handed left-hander, or a forehand for a right-handed right-hander who gets smashed by a lefty. You will notice that after making your shot, you will end up well placed in the center of the lane.

- the par 3. In this case you will be closer to the exit because you will have already gained a few meters.

- the smash hit hard in the center. A bit like for the par 3, with this placement you will have already saved time. The advice would be during your race, to keep your back to the grid to finish parallel to the net which will prevent you from jumping and touching the net and making the mistake.

- the dying smash in the center. It's the pretense. We make you believe that we are going to hit and then the ball dies before or just after the rebound on the back glass. Two options are available to you: either you will defend with a counter-glass, or you leave it to your partner to defend this ball.

One position to defend everything

We told you, the padel is a positional game. The better you are placed, the better you will manage situations, the less you will run, and the better you will play. Adopting this position during a smash will certainly take you a little time, but will bring you a large number of solutions, and even possibilities of counter-attack, the class! Let's go!

Julien Bondia

Julien Bondia is a teacher of padel in Tenerife (Spain). Columnist and advisor, he helps you play better through his tutorials and tactical/technical articles padel.