Contrary to tennis, where smashes are always executed with the intention of winning the point, in padel, there are different types of smashes, each with its own characteristics and strategic applications. Some common variations include the flat smash, topspin smash, bandeja, vibora, and the slice smash. While we are not going to talk in detail about the differences of all those shots today, we are going to give you some advice to make all your smashes more efficient!
Practice, practice, practice
Padel is a very demanding sport where technique is most of the time more useful than strength. Or better said, power without technique won't serve you much in padel. Unless you have been a good tennis player, you will need some time to find the right grip and the right technique to make your smashes efficient. Spending time training with the cart and observing the most efficient smashers will definitely help you improve all your shots, including the smash.
Furthermore, you should improve tactics. Even a technically perfect smash is not always efficient. So you can start by watching the pros play or reflecting on the game to make sure you choose the right type of shot all the time and don't give counterattacks to your rivals!
Master the footwork
When you think about a victorious smash, you first think about the power coming from your arm to accelerate the ball. But good technique and strong upper body muscles are not sufficient to make a smash successful. Before the impact, you have to move fast with your feet so you can have the perfect position to strike the ball. Then, remember that the force comes from the legs and is transferred to your arm through your abs. So if you want to get physically stronger to gain efficiency on your smashes, start by training your legs and your abs. Of course, you should also strengthen your shoulders and triceps to be able to put even more power in your shots. Don't forget to train both sides to avoid muscle imbalances!
Equip yourself wisely
Now you know what you need to do to improve your technique, physique, and tactics, make sure you get the right equipment to perform on the court. As you may know, padel shoes are especially made for that sport, and they will allow you to remain balanced and stable when you go for a smash.
The racket is also very important when you want to improve your smash. If you are a powerful player seeking the most brutal power, then aim for a head-heavy model, with some carbon faces and a hard foam, like Adidas Metalbone HRD 3.2. But if you feel that you lack strength and need a racket that will help you with your smashes, then look for a lighter and softer version that will allow you to benefit from the spring effect, like Babolat Air Veron.