View Full Version : My Serve Video please comment

03-11-2004, 01:17 PM
I finally figured out how to post a video clip of my serve,

Here it is, please help me.

I am a college level player, i use a wilson ps tour 90,
about my technique... i noticed i have a weird "backscratch" position, please comment,
let me know of any suggestions to make it better

03-11-2004, 04:53 PM
hmm I couldn't open it but I could save it.
You really don't have much backswing there, so it looks a little "tight" or constricted, but just before you go up for the ball, it looks fine. Good hip stretch, knee bend.

One thing I noticed is that, you don't really have much of momentum into the serve. You land barely 1/2 ft inside the baseline. It might be ok for the kicker. But for flat or kick serve, you want to land 2 ft inside the baseline.

03-11-2004, 05:34 PM
You shifted your weight to your front foot a bit too soon, so you couldn't utilize your full weight behind the serve. Your front foot didn't help in forward movement, and you wasted the loaded weight in your front foot. It wuold help if you could wind up the racquet back a little longer and use both feet to transfer your weight into the serve.

03-11-2004, 08:16 PM
The wierdness you mentioned is because you are late to take back the elbow of your hitting arm. At the moment when your tossing arm releases the ball, your right elbow points forward. And the racket is already in the backscratch positon. Then you take the right elbow back (this makes your right shoulder unfold) and after that your serve seems more or less o'k. The difference I see in pros' serves is that when they release the ball, their shoulders already make a straight line.

I don't know if changing it will help to improve your serve. It's just the difference I see.

03-11-2004, 08:32 PM
You may want to add more width to your take away to make it more classical. I like the move you make with the lower body, and transition up through the ball. If you do decide to emulate a more traditional take away like Sampras, Krajicek, or Larsson it will likely change the timing and sequence of everything else. That may cause what you already do right to change. The possibilty exists that you could correct the start of the serve, and then have to fix the later part of the serve for it all come together. My suggestions would be to try some small changes the first time out while recording it, and see if it is an instant improvement. If it works out then continue to proceed with caution. If it is a complete struggle to implement the changes, then watch the tape and see what else you would need to change to accommodate the new change. If you feel that you are going to have to do a complete tear down and rebuild of your serve to get it where you want, I would then take some time to rethink the idea along with your commitment to the change. Never be initially convinced that an alteration should always be a struggle that will eventually get better. Most positive changes are accompanied by an instantaneously positive result. If the change results in a better result but feels awkward, then it is usually because a person has a false mental picture of what they are actually doing. Good Luck!

03-12-2004, 07:31 AM
Plawan, can you reiterate on how to use the back foot and my weight

"wind up the racquet back a little longer and use both feet to transfer your weight into the serve" can you please explain how to do this, especially eh wind up the racquet back part

Kobble, when sampras serves he takes the racquet down as the ball goes up and then takes the racquet up as he is going up to get the ball...i take the racquet up as the ball goes up, is that bad? will it make a difference if i do the loop thing like sampras?

Thanks alot for the help, I have challenge matches on sunday...thats why i'm in a litttle hurry to improve

03-12-2004, 08:17 AM
What I said about wind up (take back) a litle longer is similar to what Kobble said. Nothing's wrong with racquet up when the ball up, but yours was a bit too soon and not completely synchronize with your weight transfer. Your motion was somewhat more like Chela, but I think you should use Rafter or Henin-Hardane as a model for abbreviated motion.

Your backfoot kick was good, but your front foot mainly kicked vertically, and did not help your back foot kick. The moment you jumped to the ball you weight did not swing from back foot or center of your body to your front foot, but rather just withdrew from the front foot back to center of your body. You should have your weight on your back foot a little longer and shift to your front foot just before you jump into the ball. This could be helped with the longer wind up (take back).

03-12-2004, 08:18 AM
If you do the loop, the racket will be pointing down and your elbow will be pointing upwards. And that helps.


03-12-2004, 08:50 AM
Here it is, please help me.


Your serve is classic example of what I call "Waiter's Wrist".

This is the reason why your racquet does not go any deeper into
the "backscratch".

Another thing that I noticed is that your left arm does not point up,
but more like forward.
If you watch pros on the circuit, their arm points straight up.

Because the video is made against the sun, I cannot see your ball
toss, so I cannot comment on that.

Regards, Predrag

03-12-2004, 12:53 PM
The only purpose of the take away is to establish an initial path, rhythm, and tempo for the racquet to get into an effective throwing position. Sampras sends the racquet head on a downward and then loops it back up. Krajicek takes it back horizontally, and then lifts it up into the power position. Ivanisevic draws the elbow at an almost 45 degree angle into the power position, which allows him to short cut the path. You definitely do the waiter's wrist thing on the way up, and many people see that as a flaw. The simplest solution is to make sure that the thumb and racquet head face the sky more, and also to avoid creating such an acute angle between the forearm and the upper arm early in the swing. I basically maintain a fairly flat wrist while keeping a 90 degree between my forearm and the upper arm the moment before I swing the racquet upwards. Most big servers decrease the angle as they make the move upwards, but you start the racquet out in that acute position and maintain it until you make your move up at the ball. A more classical takeaway and throwing motion would likely allow you to create more momentum into the upswing, which should translate into more effortless racquet head speed. If you have to compete by Sunday I probably would not make too many adjustments, it could just drive you nuts. If you are dedicated to building a great serve then get some videos of Sampras, Federer, Krajicek, Ivanisevic, Roddick, and Philippoussis. Then study their serves in slow motion and make notes of the common traits each of their serves have. It is much easier to grasp visually than it is to interpret a tip on this board. if you effectively implement the techniques of the six players I have suggested, then their is almost no excuse to have a less than ideal serve.

03-12-2004, 02:16 PM
Thanks alot,
i'm going to get out tommorow (saturday) and try the loop thing and the 90 degree angle between the forearm and the upper arm.
I'll record that and will try to post it.

I'm only a freshman so i have time to improve
thanks for the expertise, you guys should write a book or something

03-12-2004, 03:37 PM
1.You don't get any leg bend only forward movement.
2. One good part about your leg bend is your back leg goes forward before the front, just like samprass, this really aids geting body into the court.
3.You reach the raquet drop positoin to quick, and there is not meat to be any pause in raquet drop.
4 Any pases in serve will stuff up your timing if you want a higher ball toss or want deeper leg bend.
5. Your rauqet path needs to be longer so you have more time
6. When raquet is going up nee bend goes down.
7. Reach raquet drop position when ball starts to drop frame 8 http://www.tennisforall.org/22_ServeSEQ_leyton.htm

You really need to read the articles on samprass serve on tennisone. Radical Torso Rotation articles are the best becacuse it tells you how to develop the samprass serve using his stace.

03-30-2004, 04:20 PM
I think your serve looked fine except for the early "backscratch" position. I looked at your serve frame by frame and it looks really good. You even came off the ground naturally instead of trying to jump off like so many people do. Seemed like good pronation. Maybe you should try and add a looping backswing as opposed to just letting the racket drop down. Then again...if you're getting good results why change? :shock: