View Full Version : Forehand grip for serve?

09-21-2004, 03:33 AM
Is it considered 'bad technique' if you are using a forehand grip for serving? Half a year I changed from a backhand grip to continental and yesterday I experimented with a forehand grip, which worked very well for me. Consistency on my serve is not the best part of my game, so I was wondering if changing to this grip would lead to other problems and disadvantages like consistency, injuries etc.

09-21-2004, 05:18 AM
Usually, in the process of learning tennis, people go from eastern forehand grip to continental to eastern backhand.

Forehand grip IS a bad technique for a serve because it forces a contact point to be lower than that with the continental grip. This, in turn, leads to a smaller margins for errors.
Plus, I think, the forehand grip forces your wrist to be fixed.
This, in turn, will not allow you to have a relaxed arm, which is need for a good serve.

I would recommend you to keep continental grip and improve your consistency by other means. For ex., practice the toss. It should be not just consistent, it should be super consistent. Start with slow serves and make sure you are not rushing your motions...

09-23-2004, 06:04 AM
C_Urala thanks for your reply!

The thing with this grip is that I could really hit the sweet spot consistently, and man the pace was incredible (at least for my standard :) ) Because of the lamps surrounding the court I had to adjust my toss a little more in front of me, and I adjusted my grip (just a little) from continental to forehand grip.
Maybe the location of the toss has something to do with the best grip position.

09-24-2004, 02:19 AM
If you adjusted your grip "just a little" and you have a sound technique, then maybe it's not a big deal.
And yes, the toss location is somewhat related with the grip. (for example, if you want a heavy topspin serve, you toss almost above your forehead and you use almost a backhand eastern grip. If you want a flat serve, you toss further into the court, and the grip is usually continental) However, be careful. Slipping toward forehand grip can be tempting. For example, if you start your serve facing the net (as all beginners do) then the easiest grip will be western forehand. And because you don't have to coil/uncoil your body during the serve, it will be easier to hit the sweet spot and to direct your serve. So in the beginning, such technique would seem attractive. BUT serving like this, you'll never have really good serve.
The serve is a rather complicated motion, so don't focus only on the grip. Make sure that you understand and execute all its components.
But as a first step, keep your grip continental.

09-24-2004, 03:08 AM
BTW, try the thread
"How to teach power in serve"
There is a discussion of just your question.
(in case you missed it)