How to improve your AWFUL serve ? - TennisForum.com
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post #1 of 58 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 2014, 10:57 PM Thread Starter
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How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

For all you amazing 130MPH servers, how do you do it? I am 1.85M yet my serve is so weak and sometimes can barely go in Do you model on someone's serve? What kind of serving is easiest for you? The only aces I ever hit are when I "accidentally" () hit the ball with the frame and it goes flying Please someone as this is such a liability and to be perfectly honest, I don't really differ my opponent's serve from my own The many times I have come back from 0-5 because I know my serve doesn't do an impact and it's mainly my net play and "wallness".

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post #2 of 58 (permalink) Old Mar 18th, 2014, 06:38 AM
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

Use more legs!!!


But it doesn't garentee anything but speed, not consistency

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post #3 of 58 (permalink) Old Mar 18th, 2014, 12:10 PM
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

Take a look at a slow mo of Serena's.Not saying this cuzshe's my fave but because you're gonna learn a thing or two.Use your legs and bend the knees.Jump into the shot and you deffo need to practise your ball toss if you want a good serve.And also make sure that when you get to the contact point your arm need to be straight so you get more power and angle if that's your intention.Oh yea and just practise it as much as you can!

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post #4 of 58 (permalink) Old Mar 18th, 2014, 12:34 PM
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

Well what are you doing wrong? For me, the toss was a huge problem. It can still be. You have to figure out what you're doing wrong first.

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post #5 of 58 (permalink) Old Mar 20th, 2014, 10:32 AM
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

The serve is the toughest shot to master especially if you didn't play tennis at an early age. You need a lot of parts to come together perfectly to have a great serve.
If your serve is awful as you say, I would say to ignore everything else, like legs, knee bend and just focus on developing a good throwing motion.
That's what the serve is. It is throwing your racquet at the ball.
American football throws is a good place to start.



Look at this football player. Replace the football with a racquet and have the left hand up and he is in the trophy position for a serve.

A good throwing motion will get you a decent serve. Then you start work on the rest.

Last edited by semprelibera; Mar 20th, 2014 at 10:39 AM.
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post #6 of 58 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 2014, 07:52 AM
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

I second Semprelibera's advice.

Throwing an American football or baseball is perfect for developing a wrist snap that can put spin and speed on a serve.

A good server goes "up" and "out" for the ball, with the wrist snap on contact.

If you watch a lot of women's tennis Serena's serve is best.
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post #7 of 58 (permalink) Old Apr 9th, 2014, 03:59 PM
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

Practice. and then Practice. and then Practice some more. When I first started tennis a couple years ago, I bought a hopper and a case of balls and at least once a week, I'd head to the courts and just practice my serve for an hour. Now one of the best servers in my league despite using an improper grip, which I'm gradually trying to adjust.

Take a lesson with a tennis pro. They will break down for you what you are doing right/wrong and will give you concrete suggestions for improvement. You probably would only need a 30 minute lesson, and it would be money well spent.
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post #8 of 58 (permalink) Old Apr 30th, 2014, 01:44 PM
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by semprelibera View Post
The serve is the toughest shot to master especially if you didn't play tennis at an early age. You need a lot of parts to come together perfectly to have a great serve.
If your serve is awful as you say, I would say to ignore everything else, like legs, knee bend and just focus on developing a good throwing motion.
That's what the serve is. It is throwing your racquet at the ball.
American football throws is a good place to start.



Look at this football player. Replace the football with a racquet and have the left hand up and he is in the trophy position for a serve.

A good throwing motion will get you a decent serve. Then you start work on the rest.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rollo View Post
I second Semprelibera's advice.

Throwing an American football or baseball is perfect for developing a wrist snap that can put spin and speed on a serve.

A good server goes "up" and "out" for the ball, with the wrist snap on contact.

If you watch a lot of women's tennis Serena's serve is best.
This is good advice. Another practise you can do is to toss the ball up and catch it with a straight arm (without racquet) reaching up for the ball. I found this was good for toss practise and also for the action of keeping my arm straight and throwing up and out like Rollo said.

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post #9 of 58 (permalink) Old Apr 30th, 2014, 05:39 PM
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

1. The toss. Tell yourself to catch bad tosses, and force yourself to. Often I just want to hit the serve so I'll go for it on a shitty toss, but if you have the right toss you will hit a good serve if your motion is sound.
2. Legs and stomach. I have a powerful first serve because I bend my knees and then jump up and thrust my whole body forward, trying to emphasize abs area instead of just arm, so I'm putting most of my weight behind it.
3. Make sure you have a good grip. Continental is the way to go but takes time to adjust to. Still, there is a clear difference between any continental grip and one where that allows you to get a very natural wrist snap. Just mess around with your racquet a bit to find what feels right. And make sure it doesn't strain your wrist, because that is an easy problem to have as well.

In terms of mechanics it's hard to say, but try to find what feels natural for you.

Does anyone have advice on second serves though??? My first serve is very good and my second is decent when it works, but I go through patches where I just get the yips and can't get a second serve in the court. Even when it works, it's sort of just a softer version of my first serve that I try to get deep in the box rather than a shot I can actually depend on .

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post #10 of 58 (permalink) Old Apr 30th, 2014, 08:58 PM Thread Starter
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

My toss is sound Or so I'm told Thanks for the tips, all the knees bending and stuff is really helping and I have quite a decent serve when it goes in However, just like iGOAT, my second serve is I don't ever attempt for a first serve like second and I just toss up the ball and try and hit it over the net as lightly as possible

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post #11 of 58 (permalink) Old May 1st, 2014, 03:03 AM
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

^^My first serve % is actually higher than my second serve %
The biggest problem for me letting the ball drop to low which is the reason why I DF so much. I don't think hitting it lightly will be a good idea because that means you have no confidence in it which will lead to even more DFs in my opinion I mostly just slice my second serve because I used to touch it like you and I would ALWAYS double fault! Still DF but not as frequently
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post #12 of 58 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2014, 08:59 PM
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

Hi new poster.

Anyway like you I have struggle with the serve, and I doubt I will ever be able to hit big.

Pace is however not everything, in fact at rec level a hard hit serve can actually be easy to return. Most don't hit 100mph plus, so all they do is feed the returner lots of lovely pace to use against them.

The most important shot in tennis is the second serve, if you have a second serve which is 100% or near 100% reliable, you will be very difficult to beat.

To do this you need a topspin serve. Toss the ball a little to your left, bend your knees and back, bring your racket down you back in a back scrating motion, hit the ball the 6 to 12 on the racket face and don't turn your body too much into the court, or you end up with a slice serve.

It is a very reliable serve, and it fools people. They think, because it lacks pace it is easy to hit, and then they find it jumps out of their hitting zone, and forces them to generation their own pace, which rec players hate. You will get a weak return, or they will simply miss.
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post #13 of 58 (permalink) Old Jul 6th, 2014, 03:04 PM
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

Try to work on your rhytm - as you serve, count rhytmically. That's because no matter how strong your legs are when pushing off the floor, pushing of the floor must be performed at the correct time, relative to other actions.

Many players have a problem of performing actions with their arms, hips and other cooperating body parts, before action with their arms.

If your toss is bad, just toss the ball a million times without holding racquet in the other arm, after doing that, do the same but while holding your racquet and doing the initial movement with it.

Before you serve, warm up good and don't forget about the wrist - when serving, try to use pronation of the wrist to perform the serve (http://www.fuzzyyellowballs.com/vide...on-your-serve/)
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post #14 of 58 (permalink) Old Jul 6th, 2014, 03:05 PM
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

Oh, and don't complicate your serve action - if copying, try to copy simple, univeral ones like Federer or Serena.
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post #15 of 58 (permalink) Old Jul 30th, 2014, 02:28 PM Thread Starter
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Re: How to improve your AWFUL serve ?

I have to admit, since posting that, my serve has become really reliable, thanks for all the tips
Whenever I play club matches now, I average around 6 aces to 1 or 0 double faults
I really have never been able to serve topspin or slice
Flat serve does it for me very well because I am around 1.88m now (very late growth spurt!) so now pace doesn't seem to be a problem
Accuracy can be an issue but I never have an awful DF day On occasion I have a day where I'll only have 1 ace or even none but I'm happy that that is the case because IMO, it is much better than serving a mountain of aces but also a mountain of DF's.
I've tried going for slice but I genuinely cannot

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