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View Full Version : Someone fix my serve please


shintan17
10-09-2007, 08:39 PM
I've just uploaded my serve video.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XWjP7vF179k

I've been working on it for last few days. I have bad stiff shoulders (on both), so I know I can't straight up my left arm during the toss more than that, but my toss has been so inconsistent. I know it's ugly but still in the process (I am good 3.5-low 4.0 at the moment, but if I can improve my consistency on the serve, I can definitely be a solid average 4.0).

Comments are greatly appreciated, but only with advices.

Thanks!!

lkdog
10-09-2007, 08:51 PM
I would suggest going over to Fuzzy Yellow Balls and checking out the lessons on the serve. Will is even left handed. :)

http://www.fuzzyyellowballs.com/

It appears from video that your toss is too far to your right and you are falling off to your right as you chase it.
It also appears you are not getting a typical racquet drop or loop behind your back. Are you using a Continental grip? Hard to tell for sure but it almost looks like you are using a forehand grip and doing the waiter thing on the swing with your palm up.

Focus on the basic fundamentals.

wihamilton
10-09-2007, 08:58 PM
Your weight is moving to your right on your serve. Try moving in the direction you are hitting. That should add some pop.

One way to change your weight transfer is to adjust your toss -- force yourself to move in a certain direction to get to the ball. RE: your tossing problems, this is 2nd hand information, but apparently Vic Braden recommended tossing by holding the ball w/your palm facing the court, e.g. the exact opposite of the way people normally hold it. This will give you a "reverse release." Would I teach this to somebody as a possible fix? No... but Vic Braden has a pretty proven track record :).

If it works let me know. I was intrigued to hear that story.

shintan17
10-09-2007, 08:58 PM
I would suggest going over to Fuzzy Yellow Balls and checking out the lessons on the serve. Will is even left handed. :)

http://www.fuzzyyellowballs.com/

It appears from video that your toss is too far to your right and you are falling off to your right as you chase it.
It also appears you are not getting a typical racquet drop or loop behind your back. Are you using a Continental grip? Hard to tell for sure but it almost looks like you are using a forehand grip and doing the waiter thing on the swing with your palm up.

Focus on the basic fundamentals.

Thanks. Yeah I know my toss is way to the right from where it is supposed to be. I need to work on that. I've checked Will's website couple days ago and surf through it, but haven't had enough time to really watch all those videos yet. I am using the continental grip, probably can't tell from that angle?

shintan17
10-09-2007, 09:00 PM
Your weight is moving to your right on your serve. Try moving in the direction you are hitting. That should add some pop.

One way to change your weight transfer is to adjust your toss -- force yourself to move in a certain direction to get to the ball. RE: your tossing problems, this is 2nd hand information, but apparently Vic Braden recommended tossing by holding the ball w/your palm facing the court, e.g. the exact opposite of the way people normally hold it. This will give you a "reverse release." Would I teach this to somebody as a possible fix? No... but Vic Braden has a pretty proven track record :).

If it works let me know. I was intrigued to hear that story.

Thanks, Will. You have an excellent site!! I will work on my toss and weight transfer tomorrow if the weather holds up!! :)

wihamilton
10-09-2007, 09:09 PM
Thanks shin! And thanks for the plug Tony :). Hope that tossing tip helps -- it sounded a little wacky when I heard it but Vic is a living legend.

Oleg
10-09-2007, 09:11 PM
It is good that you know that you tossing arm is not pointing straight up before you are ready to strike the ball. This is one of the importand fundamentals. To help with that aspect try practicing the toss and get your front hip moving forward as you are bending your knees after the toss. This will help actually straighten your tossing arm.

Unfortunately without playing it frame by frame it is hard to point out anything else other than the rhythm of your motion seems to be "slow, slow, slow" but it needs to be "slow, slow, fast". However, this is the last thing you need to worry about. Being able to feel comforatable and control the ball during the serve is the most important thing.

If you are able to post your serve as a Quick TIme video, then it will be possible to play it frame by frame and things will be a lot clearer.

shintan17
10-09-2007, 09:17 PM
It is good that you know that you tossing arm is not pointing straight up before you are ready to strike the ball. This is one of the importand fundamentals. To help with that aspect try practicing the toss and get your front hip moving forward as you are bending your knees after the toss. This will help actually straighten your tossing arm.

Unfortunately without playing it frame by frame it is hard to point out anything else other than the rhythm of your motion seems to be "slow, slow, slow" but it needs to be "slow, slow, fast". However, this is the last thing you need to worry about. Being able to feel comforatable and control the ball during the serve is the most important thing.

If you are able to post your serve as a Quick TIme video, then it will be possible to play it frame by frame and things will be a lot clearer.

Thank for the reply. Yeah, one of my friends told me about the toss and weight transter before, but until I really saw myself in the video, I couldn't really tell how BAD it was!! I am actually using the digital camera, so the video on the youtube is probably as clear as the original one. As I said, I have bad stiff shoulders, so I can't really serve hard "FAST", but I just want to work on my consistency. That's all it counts at my level :)

desilvam
10-09-2007, 10:33 PM
1) Good video quality :)

2) Fix one thing at a time. First thing to fix would be the toss. Then shoot another video with the correct toss and post it again out here.

3) Then pick the most common suggestion from here, fix it and shoot another video ...

Keep doing this and will you will end up serve like McEnroe or Goran :D

shintan17
10-09-2007, 10:42 PM
1) Good video quality :)

2) Fix one thing at a time. First thing to fix would be the toss. Then shoot another video with the correct toss and post it again out here.

3) Then pick the most common suggestion from here, fix it and shoot another video ...

Keep doing this and will you will end up serve like McEnroe or Goran :D

Thanks. I don't think I can fix the toss in a quick, so probably take a while, but I will bring my camera along with me everyday from now on, so am pretty sure that the next video will be up soon. If I could serve half as good as Goran did when he was in his prime, I don't think anyone would want to play me at the local court ;p J/K :)

sharpy
10-09-2007, 11:00 PM
this is a big one everyone's missing. your followthrough is on the left, instead of the right!

fooled the majority of righties here...

tdk
10-10-2007, 02:42 AM
this is a big one everyone's missing. your followthrough is on the left, instead of the right!

fooled the majority of righties here...

I was going to comment on that as well.....

Solat
10-10-2007, 04:19 AM
in addition to previous comments,

your racquet drop is wrist only not upper arm rotation
you have a lack of shoulder turn into the stroke, if you want more power, if you want topspin you can stay side on

shintan17
10-10-2007, 10:44 AM
Thanks for all the advices. I think I need to fix my toss first before doing anything else. I will keep you guys updated. Again, appreciate all the help!! :)

snoflewis
10-10-2007, 10:51 AM
like everyone's mentioned...you're not doing a complete toss....you're stopping your arm halfway through the toss to hit through the ball..your arm should be straight up. and your tossing behind you too much, which is causing your body to follow it, and eventually lean back

also, what grip are you using? doesnt seem like a full continental

shintan17
10-10-2007, 06:49 PM
like everyone's mentioned...you're not doing a complete toss....you're stopping your arm halfway through the toss to hit through the ball..your arm should be straight up. and your tossing behind you too much, which is causing your body to follow it, and eventually lean back

also, what grip are you using? doesnt seem like a full continental

Thanks for the comment. I will work on my toss, though like I mentioned I have very bad stiff shoulders, so I can really straighten up my arm completely like I would like to. I was already trying to put my right arm straight already. I am using the continental grip, I suppose.

drakulie
10-10-2007, 08:52 PM
Positives: Great knee bend, and pushing up into the serve.

Things to work on:

As you, and others have pointed out the toss. When you are not able to reach up with your tossing arm, you deprive yourself of a lot of power. When one gets that arm all the way up, they are in what is referred to as the "trophy pose". This is the power position, where your right shoulder would be in a much higher position than your left.

If you look at sampras here, his left shoulder is much higher than his right. From the tip of his left hand to his right elbow, you could draw an imaginary line. This is where you want to be before you begin your forward and upward swing to the ball. (keep in mind you need to do the opposite because you are lefty).

http://i88.photobucket.com/albums/k183/bigpimpinisabella/myspacesampras.jpg

Also, as solat pointed out, make sure you are not wristing your serve, but using your upper body and shoulders to uncoil all that stored energy into the shot.

Good luck, and thanks for sharing the vid.

shintan17
10-10-2007, 10:08 PM
Thanks!! I was just working on my form, and I think I could be able to figure out what I needed to do. The thing is my toss is so inconsistent that messes up my whole serving motion. Anyway, I gotta work on my toss as well as making a better trophy pose before the weather gets colder.

When you say wristing serve, it means you are using the wrist to snap the ball instead of using the whole body and shoulders? That's what it meant? Sorry, English is not my first language (though, I am a college graduate in US ;p) and sometimes don't get what it exactly means!! :)