Need help with serving. - TennisForum.com

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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 05:42 AM Thread Starter
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Need help with serving.

I have a problem with my serve. Most other parts of my game are O.K., but it's both my serve and my smashes that I have a serious problem with.

If anyone can help, that'll be greatly appreciated

My first problem is my ball toss (when serving). It never, ever goes to where I want it to. Since I'm right-handed, my teacher says that the ball is supposed to be thrown straight up, leaning a bit to the right side at a 2 'o clock angle. Unfortunately, my ball toss goes to the left, is too far forward, or is too far backward - all this makes me have to move my body before my racquet makes contact with the ball.

My coach suggested that to solve the ball toss problem, I place my racquet down in front of me and toss the ball up so that it'll land on the racquet string. Are there any other activities that are useful to solve this ball-toss problem?

Also, my timing of the swing is very bad. In both my smashes and serve, I never get the timing correct. Most of the times, I swing too late, making me have to bend my arms down instead of having it stretched right up so that my racquet makes contact with the ball. Also, I am extremely bad at judging the position of where the ball is going. With both my serve and smashes, I really can't judge where the ball is going towards, so most of the times I either mishit my smashes (e.g. the side of my racquet, rather than the strings, hit the ball) or I miss the shot completely.

What can you guys suggest I can do to help correct the timing of my swing and learn how to properly judge the position of the ball?

Thanks in advance
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 05:58 AM
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I've always had trouble with my serve, but recently someone gave some great pointers.

1.Keeping my chin up until after I strike the ball
2.Trying to get up and over the ball
3.Tossing the ball out and in front of me
4.Moving forward with my serve motion
5.Tossing th ball as high as my racquet can reach with my arm straight
6.Sliding my back right foot in for balance

7.STAYING CALM!!!!!!!!!!

Really, don't even look at me...
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 05:58 AM
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Just look at Elena Dementieva's technique... that should help your serving woes !!!
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 06:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Musashino
I have a problem with my serve. Most other parts of my game are O.K., but it's both my serve and my smashes that I have a serious problem with.

If anyone can help, that'll be greatly appreciated

My first problem is my ball toss (when serving). It never, ever goes to where I want it to. Since I'm right-handed, my teacher says that the ball is supposed to be thrown straight up, leaning a bit to the right side at a 2 'o clock angle. Unfortunately, my ball toss goes to the left, is too far forward, or is too far backward - all this makes me have to move my body before my racquet makes contact with the ball.

My coach suggested that to solve the ball toss problem, I place my racquet down in front of me and toss the ball up so that it'll land on the racquet string. Are there any other activities that are useful to solve this ball-toss problem?

Also, my timing of the swing is very bad. In both my smashes and serve, I never get the timing correct. Most of the times, I swing too late, making me have to bend my arms down instead of having it stretched right up so that my racquet makes contact with the ball. Also, I am extremely bad at judging the position of where the ball is going. With both my serve and smashes, I really can't judge where the ball is going towards, so most of the times I either mishit my smashes (e.g. the side of my racquet, rather than the strings, hit the ball) or I miss the shot completely.

What can you guys suggest I can do to help correct the timing of my swing and learn how to properly judge the position of the ball?

Thanks in advance
Have you tried the butterfly method?? That works for me when my timing goes off.

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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 06:02 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VeeReeDavJCap81
Have you tried the butterfly method?? That works for me when my timing goes off.
First of all, thanks for your pointers, I'm taking 'em into consideration

And secondly, what's the "butterfly method"?
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 06:07 AM
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ask dementieva to help you
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 06:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Musashino
First of all, thanks for your pointers, I'm taking 'em into consideration

And secondly, what's the "butterfly method"?
When you bring your tossing arm, and serving arm down and up together instead of two seperate motions. A lot of pro players do it too. Watch Kim Clijsters when she serves, she does an abbv. version of it.

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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 08:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VeeReeDavJCap81
I've always had trouble with my serve, but recently someone gave some great pointers.

1.Keeping my chin up until after I strike the ball
2.Trying to get up and over the ball
3.Tossing the ball out and in front of me
4.Moving forward with my serve motion
5.Tossing th ball as high as my racquet can reach with my arm straight
6.Sliding my back right foot in for balance

7.STAYING CALM!!!!!!!!!!
Wish someone had told me these tips when I was playing! Might actually have won a match game...

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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 11:15 AM
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firstly - i am no coach and i have no experience in teaching tennis.
i do however want to try out some thoughts that my help you and i think improve the game all-together.

start jugling. three balls is all it takes, and gradually your'e co-operation will improve by it, just ask a friend that knows the basic technique to teach you and try it out - it will help you ball toss, since you'll have to place your throws or else it will be hell on earth
try varying the hight of your jugling as well.
as for the timing problem - it depends on the angles and hight you want to hit the ball, but just ask a friend to come along with you, and just hit serves for 20 minutes or so. try imagining to perfect shot evrytime before you hit, the ball toss with your arm stretched, your right hand bringing up the racket to it's maximum hight (throw high and hit the highest you can!) hitting the ball with accuracy and power, and the ball movement above the net to the spot you want it to hit.
also, try serving big on your first serve - it's just a match and it's your chance to try out things that you just think you can do, so really marat safin the ball, hit the hell out of it so you get the feeling of a full hit in your game. it's also great to hit out the nerves.
hold the raquet as low as you can.
use your body in your serve.
it's not a matter of arm strength - pass you wight on from the back leg in a wave forwards, almost falling - when you feel like your'e gunna have to put a leg forward in order to stabalize yourself, that's when you should have hit the ball.

lastly - remember that your'e supposed to have fun and there is no use in being frustrated from your serve. sometimes it's better, some times it isn't - and if you improve the rest of your'e game you should be able to get along well.

i hope i helped you out - good luck with it, and don't forget to tell us how are you advancing.

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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 12:13 PM
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For your timing, wait for your toss to reach a peak and then hit it. That really helps me get a lot more power...

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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 12:21 PM
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toss ! dont throw!

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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 12:33 PM
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Musashino, there are a couple ways to fix your serve.

Something that has helped me has been placing my racket down on the ground and making sure the ball hits the strings, like your coach says. Don't forget- really look at Maria Sharapova's serve- it's flawless. You want to make your arm straight as soon as you hit it!! It has helped me!

Let them eat cake.
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 12:34 PM
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Breathe in when you serve and breathe out when you hit it!!!

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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 01:58 PM
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ask Dementieva for some tips...

oops... I'm bad... sorry people!

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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 2005, 02:53 PM
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me i throw the ball high and little in front of me when i do my motion i go behind the ball and that give a lot of power :P
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