Today it seems like maybe I can just guide rather than hit the ball. It may not be that I have to add so much pace to the ball. Maybe I can just slow down, pay attention, be patient with the ball, like a teacher: “hey, there seems to be some kind of confusion… you belong on that side of the net.” Now and then, if there is ample time, maybe I can hit harder, but most of my attention can go to being in the right position, to hitting the same shot over and over again.
It may be that to have an improvisational approach to an already entropic situation (balls coming back at all angles/paces/locations) is a low percentage play, and standardization is a better goal. It’s 90% improv anyway.
But, in general, the most important thing is what I like to call the Y-axis, which is a sort of short code for the Fluid Motion Factor, as illuminated by Steve Yellin.