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How to AVOID the “Fridge”? And Why it’s a GOOD Padel Tactic!!

February 9, 2020

Hi guys in this video we’re going to
talk about probably the most common tactic when it comes to padel and the
Spanish have a great expression for it that they put someone “in the fridge” and
that means that that person gets cold, so for example if I’m playing with my
partner and they want to put me in the fridge
it means they hit all of the balls to my partner and what that does is firstly it
means I get cold, but also it means that they’re focusing on one of the players
so in this video we’re going to talk about the reasons for doing it and why
it is a good tactic, but also how we get out of that situation if they’re not
hitting the ball to you. Here’s an illustration of the player being put in
the fridge this is only for this point it’s not for the whole match but if you
were doing this properly you would use it as a tactic for the match not just a
single point. There are a few reasons why it is good to do this, now I went with the British team to the Junior Championships and all of our players
were from tennis and tennis players are not used to doing this so they end up
changing the direction and what that means is that we can’t focus on the
weaker player because normally in a pair one of the players will either be weaker
at the back or weaker at the front or just weaker in general and if you can
concentrate the majority of your balls on the weaker player it makes sense that
you will win more points like that rather than hitting half of the balls to
the stronger player so that will be the first reason, secondly it helps our
position if we are playing into the same corner so for example if the weaker
player is in the forehand side and we hit that ball into the forehand side I
don’t have to move unless I change direction I can stay in this position
play the volleys back into that corner my partner does the same and we can both
stay in our positions and the third is it’s very good at giving you a target
for during the point and so by that I mean if you’re all over the place you’re
hitting the ball there, short deep, whatever then you haven’t really got a
focus for your game and it ends up being that you don’t really know what’s
happening, whereas if you’ve got a focus you say right at the back of the court
we’re gonna put this guy in the fridge so we’re gonna hit the other one and
we’re going to hit all our balls to that person then as a team you’ve got an
objective. To do this tactic effectively you’ve got to consider two things, first
of all if you’re hitting the balls to that corner it’s more than likely his
partner’s gonna get frustrated and he’s gonna start trying to cover the middle
of the court which is fine because he’s out of position but if he’s causing you
problems and you hit a lob and he’s coming across and still being aggressive
and putting you under pressure you want a way of keeping him in that corner, so
the best way to do that is early in the point maybe first, second, third ball hit
an aggressive volley into that corner forcing him to cover his corner and then
play the rest of the balls to his partner because you need something to
keep him in there so that you can focus the attention on him. The other thing to
consider is if you are focusing the attention on him it’s more than likely
you’re playing him in he’s getting practice he’s hitting a lot of balls and
he’s gonna start playing a little bit better so once that happens and he
starts playing a bit better then you need to think about changing that tactic
up and you can always revisit it later in the game like if you change the
tactic and then in the third set again you go back to him you can then use that
tactic of putting the other guy in the fridge and it will work quite well.
Another thing you can do is move that player around the while focusing on them,
here you can see that player has moved from the middle, he’s played down short angle
he has to move back and eventually he gets run around he gets frustrated and
his partner gets frustrated as well because it’s difficult for him to help.
So we’ve discussed how effective that can be but now we’re going to look at
how you can get out of that situation, so many times we have recreational players
that come up to us and say I played this match but I couldn’t get involved in the
game they hit everything to my partner and it was really frustrating so in the rest of
this video we’re going to talk about tips to get you out of that situation.
So the first tip is for what your partner can do so if I’m getting all of
the balls and I want to get my partner involved in the game one of the best
things I can do is to lob down the line, it’s very difficult off a good lob to
hit a bandeja down this line rather than cross court even if they hit that
bandeja down the center of the court after the good bounce off the glass it’s
going to go to my partner’s court so they’ll be involved in the game so one
of the first things is to lob down the line, if they’re still hitting this to
you and you’re still getting in trouble you can then follow it up with a high
lob and then get close to the net because then you can block that next
ball because if they know that you’re already waiting for that ball down the
line and all they have to do is hit a bandeja down that line like a soft one if you hit the
lob and you run in behind it and you get close enough to block first it means
your partner can cover the court behind you which means then he’s almost got
these three quarters of the court that he can cover and also it means that
they’ve got an even smaller target to aim for if they have to hit a good shot
down the line when they see you coming to the net, now this is probably your
last resort to get your partner involved so to hit the high lob and get close to
the net so that they are forced to hit the ball to your partner here you can
see that when the lobs hit down the line is often that the player changes
direction like this even if it’s off the back glass is often easier to change
that direction and it’s a way of forcing those players back again the lob down
the line and the bajada is down the center but you can see that the player
cross-court can get involved, again the player puts under pressure he hits
another lob down the line and the player changes direction because it’s just much
easier to do that with the bandeja. Another thing you could try is switching
sides on the serve so often players play in Australian
formation, where I’m serving my partner is on the same side of the court because
then I’m gonna run in to my side of the court to cover that side, but you can try
switching just so that your opponents don’t get used to hitting all the balls
to one person, another thing you can do is when you do serve is to aim for the
body if you come into the body it’s very difficult for them to get a return
accurately to your partner or to anywhere on the court if it comes into
their body often players are serving into the spaces either off the glass or
down the middle and at the stretch it’s a lot easier for them to direct that
ball like that but if you were to serve for example in towards my body or my
right leg it’s difficult for me to angle that ball away off a serve like that, one
of the difficulties with being in this position and one of the reasons that
it’s so effective as a tactic is the psychological side, you’re under pressure,
you’re feeling pressure because all of the balls are coming to you and your partner
is getting frustrated because they’re not touching the ball and it’s not long
before as a pair you’re really annoyed and you start making risky shots or
going for too much, now one of the best ways to deal with this is to put it back
on your opponent’s so if possible you need to keep calm, stay relaxed and
decide how you’re going to counteract this and it might be with these lobs
down the line or hitting down the line because it forces your partner to get
into the game but also it might be you might say to your partner right there
doing that to us let’s try and do that to them so you start playing every ball
to one person and anytime your partner gets a ball he again place to the same
person and therefore you can almost bounce it back on them that’s probably
one of the best ways to deal with it!


  • Reply P Lรฉo February 3, 2020 at 10:15 am

    Thank you for the advice to get out of the "fridge" ๐Ÿ™‚
    I'll be put to good use ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply AL CauG February 3, 2020 at 10:33 am

    This is a great tactic but I believe it should be used only in tournaments, not casual matches. There's nothing worse than arranging a match to have fun and relax and end up not touching a single ball, all because your opponents would rather ruin your match than lose.

  • Reply therealpowder February 3, 2020 at 9:26 pm

    Is this Fermin? He coached me in Estonia, great player ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Amir Ibrahim February 3, 2020 at 10:50 pm

    Like this video!

  • Reply Tom Charles February 4, 2020 at 7:23 am

    great video again!!! wife is always telling me I need to avoid the fridge too ๐Ÿ˜‰ !!! keep up the good work, thanks

  • Reply Roope Palo February 5, 2020 at 6:03 pm

    Can you make videos about coaching? Maybe some drills?

  • Reply PierreM BK February 5, 2020 at 11:34 pm

    Hi Sandy, nice video! I had a question, is it possible to change the Australian formation during the set, even in a single game or we have to wait the end of the set? Or maybe just when we are serving we can decide if we do Australian formation or not? I don't know the rule about this. Thanks

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