When I was competing as a player and working on my game I did a LOT of solo hitting. I didn't take a lot of lessons and have very much guidance. I would spend multiple hours each week trying to improve my swing and consistency of each one. There are certain shots that are more challenging to practice without someone feeding for you. We can't practice the return of serve without a partner and getting into the flow of consistent feeding to groove certain swings is difficult to accomplish by yourself.
From time to time I would gain access to a ball machine and I found them extremely useful. As a coach I now use one all the time. It's a fantastic learning tool and allows me to watch a swing and even film it in slow motion while someone is hitting multiple swings. I coach at St. Michaels University School in Victoria, BC and we are fortunate to have the Squash Cannon at our disposal. The Squash Cannon allows you to change the velocity and height of a shot as well as the interval time between shots. There is a built in heater which you can adjust which keep the balls warm. You can also use to alternate between 2 shots and we ordered ours with a remote. I often use the machine as 1 feeder and I use a ball and feed for another shot which makes it great to work on movement patterns too.
Today I am excited to announce that Serious Squash is now an official endorser of the Canadian made Squash Cannon and I will be helping to promote their great product. Please email SeriousSquash@SquashCannon.com if would like more information on the Squash Cannon. Below are a few clips I recently posted to the Serious Squash Youtube channel where I'm using the Squash Cannon to work on some backhand volley drops. Stay tuned for more videos and tips on how to best operate the Squash Cannon if you are fortunate enough to have access to one!