New Players And Beginners
This type of thing happens sometimes with beginners, although you generally don’t have enough time to do it. It most likely occurs during a service return when you swing to hit the ball, miss and then turn around to try again. It’s very important to understand that this situation can be very dangerous and you should read the article: What Is Turning In Squash to learn more about it.
If, as a new player or beginner, you do find yourself completely missing the ball, I highly recommend read the article: Why Do I Have To Watch The Ball Hit My Strings. It’s very important to watch the ball all the way onto your strings. If you miss the ball a lot, the chances are you are not doing this and looking up just before the moment of contact.
So in conclusion for new players, yes, you are allowed to do it, but it’s not a good thing to do.
Professional and Very Advanced Players
So, in the previous paragraph I said taking more than one swing was not a good thing to do and that’s true until you get to professional level. At that point, you have such control over the racket that multi-swings can be used to deceive and confuse your opponent. A word of warning though: I have seen a player try it and accidentally hit the ball at their opponent in an effort to trick them – so please perfect this skill alone on court before trying it for real!
James Wilstrop, former World Number One, is well-known for doing this. It’s often labelled as “The Windmill”. Here are two examples.
Don't try this at home
In the first example, James swings as if he were going to hit the ball deep, but then hits a delicate drop shot, which is incredibly difficult to do. In the second example, he actually swings twice before hitting the ball, making it almost impossible to anticipate where he is going to hit the ball.
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One final example, that blows my mind is from a junior. This shows how over time new players improve upon and develop new skills over the previous generations. This would be impossible with heavy rackets, so that has something to do with it, but it’s still 95% skill and practice.
WOW - that's impressive
If The Pros Do It, Why Can’t I?
Because it is a LOT harder than it looks. By all means, practice it alone on court and if you think you can do it for real, try. Unless you can play a really good shot from it, the deception isn’t that useful. Better to develop a good “hold” to make life difficult for your opponent.
It’s beautiful to watch but for club players it’s not really a long-term solution. Perhaps once a match, but no more. I honestly feel the time you spend developing it would be better spent on improving your drop or lob. But, I do want you to have fun when you play squash and try new things, so try it alone first. Please be careful though.
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