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Rex 01-14-2005 04:13 PM

The serve
i need some help..........

im looking to tweek my serve up a bit- i have changed a few things- more knee bend- tossing the ball higher. I work out often so i can muscle the ball pretty well- but is there any way of making it better- i can do all 3 serves.

I am more interested in getting more power because i have started to come to the net more often.


loner1984 01-14-2005 04:28 PM

Re: The serve
Power from the serve (and most other strokes) comes from racquet acceleration. Work on loosening up your wrist along with using your trunk/misection to generate a whip-like effect in order to get more pop on your serve. Make sure you pronate your wrist the proper way at the point of contact. One tip I can offer is when you grip your racquet before serving, hold the grip with only 4 fingers, leaving your pinky off the grip. This will create a looser pronation that will generate mor racquet head speed. It is also helpful for tense situations.

HOpe this helps


Ultraman 01-14-2005 04:42 PM

Re: The serve
I concur with the points above. Racquet speed/acceleration is key. Loose grip, flick of the wrist, shoulder rotation, bending the knees and propelling up to the ball are also keys to generating power.

There was a clip around that illustrates Roddick's serve that might be worth taking a peek at. (I'll try to remember where I saw it)

Also.........the USPTA has a video clip on the flat serve, using Sampras, you might find of interest:

Rex 01-14-2005 04:58 PM

Re: The serve
thnx guys

Leena 01-14-2005 05:45 PM

Re: The serve
Copying Pete's serve is always a good idea. :) Except his little foot raise before his motion can lead to some annoyances. :sad:

The key to really having a good serve is body rotation and flexibility. You can only unleash your full power when you swing your hips and body in perfect order. Full hip rotation is the key. In addition to the points the others here made... swing your shoulders with your body, loosen your grip, and pronate at impact.

Knee bend is fine... but it's not something you should be focused on. If you overdo it, it can affect your balance and timing. Unless you're a total stiff, most people naturally bend their knees for their serve, and that's fine. Don't copy Becker's knee bend. Never copy anything about his serve.

Also, I DON'T suggest doing the "A Faster Serve with Rick whatever" drill, especially if you're a beginner. He makes a good point on rolling your shoulders, but that can further grow some bad habits.

The one thing I always see with the people I work with:

They don't fully reach up for the ball.

In the Sampras tape, "Your contact point should be out in front of your body, and you should be able to draw a straight line from the top of your racquet, down your arm and to your front foot."

It takes tons of practice and good coordination to learn how to do this properly. Lots of people can't. Even some pros like Schalken can't.

Rex 01-14-2005 07:11 PM

Re: The serve
im not really a beginner- im 15-BUT im serving at about 110 mph- which people say isnt bad- but i would like to get better- thnx leena. and loner1984 i'll practice with these tips.

Domino 01-14-2005 07:18 PM

Re: The serve
A big tip that I know a lot of people suffer from for not knowing, is comming through on your serve. Do not turn your shoulders all the way to where you want to hit, instead always picture having your shoulders parallel to the net when your finished.

A lot of instructors also say this: think like your throwing a basebal, in order to get the idea of fluidity, but it is a true statement. One thing you can try for more power is to slow your racquet speed down a bit while your in mid pick-up, and then accelerate quickly through the rest of the serve while still maintaining the proper motion. This is a way to cork yourself up into a position where you are ready to explode into the serve, and thus your get more power, and I find it easier to maintain and control over a long match than a continually accelerating motion where you have to expend a lot of energy and still time it correctly in order for it to work. Most good servers (Phillippoussis, Federer, Sampras, Safin) have a favorite time in their serve (Usually right before the racquet gets above the shoulder) where the slow the racquet down slightly before exploding into it.

Black Adam 01-14-2005 07:38 PM

Re: The serve
maybe you could try 20 push ups daily? :shrug:

No just kidding maybe twist your wrist faster when hitting the ball ;)

Rex 01-14-2005 07:54 PM

Re: The serve
funny you should say that TGS because i do 50 daily

Black Adam 01-14-2005 08:50 PM

Re: The serve
Well read this maybe it might help ya a little it helped me a lot with my serve..... hit one at 106 mph ;) very proud of it :lol:,00.html

Leena 01-15-2005 12:12 AM

Re: The serve

A lot of instructors also say this: think like your throwing a basebal, in order to get the idea of fluidity, but it is a true statement.
I use that drill myself. :)

Human Washington 01-15-2005 01:58 PM

Re: The serve
If you want to follow your serve in, you may also need to place the ball more accurately on your serve. Power is great, but look at Henman, he has a great serve to come in on, and it relies a lot on his excellent placement.

madmanfool 01-15-2005 03:52 PM

Re: The serve
perhaps you can take a look at this serve ;)

Domino 01-15-2005 03:57 PM

Re: The serve
If anything, do not copy that serve. There is not balance in where he distributes the stress from his motion. Arm, back, and ankles take up too much, and this is overall an injury-magnet.

tennischick 01-15-2005 03:59 PM

Re: The serve
check www.tennisone.con and look at some of their video clips.

also if you're only 15 you're still growing and acquiring muscle mass so once you have the mechanics down, biology will take care of the rest.

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