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Veritas
Apr 16th, 2005, 06:42 AM
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 :wavey:

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 :)

VeeReeDavJCap81
Apr 16th, 2005, 06:58 AM
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!!!!!!!!!!

JohnBoy
Apr 16th, 2005, 06:58 AM
Just look at Elena Dementieva's technique... that should help your serving woes !!!

VeeReeDavJCap81
Apr 16th, 2005, 07:00 AM
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 :wavey:

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.

Veritas
Apr 16th, 2005, 07:02 AM
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 :D

And secondly, what's the "butterfly method"?

alex.2812
Apr 16th, 2005, 07:07 AM
ask dementieva to help you ;)

VeeReeDavJCap81
Apr 16th, 2005, 07:54 AM
First of all, thanks for your pointers, I'm taking 'em into consideration :D

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.

Pamela Shriver
Apr 16th, 2005, 09:00 AM
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...

Shonami Slam
Apr 16th, 2005, 12:15 PM
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.

thelittlestelf
Apr 16th, 2005, 01:13 PM
For your timing, wait for your toss to reach a peak and then hit it. That really helps me get a lot more power...

azmad_88
Apr 16th, 2005, 01:21 PM
toss ! dont throw!

Geisha
Apr 16th, 2005, 01:33 PM
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!

Geisha
Apr 16th, 2005, 01:34 PM
Breathe in when you serve and breathe out when you hit it!!!

stijntje
Apr 16th, 2005, 02:58 PM
ask Dementieva for some tips...

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

matthieu_tennis
Apr 16th, 2005, 03:53 PM
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

Veritas
Apr 18th, 2005, 01:15 PM
Hey guys, thanks a lot for all the help you've given! I really, really, really appreciate it - my serve and smashes are absolutely crap and like my dear Lena, it's making life on court a bit harder for me.

On my progress - I think I'm doing a bit better with the advice you guys have given. My ball toss doesn't stray so much to the left-hand side or behind me...but it's still a major problem. Like on Sunday, I either throw the ball too high - and because of that, I have to wait a bit for the ball to fall down, and this makes judging when to smack the ball a lot harder - or too low (ala Conchita Martinez).

My teacher made a good point about Roddick's serve - it may look ugly and bit simple, but that's almost precisely the reason he's got such an awesome serve. He doesn't do anything fancy with his swing. It's just bending his arm back, rotating his racquet and smacking the ball. I wish I could serve as well as him :o

skanky~skanketta
Apr 18th, 2005, 03:10 PM
lol!for me its just that my serve is weak as hell. i dont know how to get power off it. once in a while it can go in hard but i dont know. as for smashes, hmph, i use both hands to smash otherwise it goes out! and i never smash if the ball does not bounce. it the bounce lands low, i just groundstroke it away.

Craigy
Apr 18th, 2005, 05:11 PM
when ur losing ur timing here is what i do i had a problem eith that too. -
when ur bouncing the ball, before u serve bounce it 3 times......say 1-----------2--------3 (leaning forward) then make the ball and racket touch out in front of you. Bring ur weight back. throw the ball up and count in the exact same way as u bounced the ball and hit.

Craigy
Apr 18th, 2005, 05:13 PM
lol!for me its just that my serve is weak as hell. i dont know how to get power off it. once in a while it can go in hard but i dont know. as for smashes, hmph, i use both hands to smash otherwise it goes out! and i never smash if the ball does not bounce. it the bounce lands low, i just groundstroke it away.
bend ur knees.....a lot of power comes from ur legs. and stretch up high to hit the ball so u can hit it DOWN with a lot of POWER.

thelittlestelf
Apr 18th, 2005, 05:17 PM
bend ur knees.....a lot of power comes from ur legs. and stretch up high to hit the ball so u can hit it DOWN with a lot of POWER.No you do NOT want to hit down on your serve. That is a veryyyyyyyyy bad idea, it's hell for your wrists and it makes your serve incredibly inconsistent. Always think of serving "up" :).

Craigy
Apr 18th, 2005, 05:20 PM
No you do NOT want to hit down on your serve. That is a veryyyyyyyyy bad idea, it's hell for your wrists and it makes your serve incredibly inconsistent. Always think of serving "up" :).
No that advice was ment 2 be for smashes sorry my bad