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SirSweetSpot
11-23-2009, 07:47 AM
Hi everybody, I want to pose a question about the service stance. I'm finding myself having more success when I stand on the balls of my feet, my heels well off of the ground, throughout the entire service motion. I mean from the time I line up my feet and start bouncing the ball until I explode up into the ball.

I've been talking to people about this and I get a lot of different answers. Some keep the back foot planted throughout, some shift, raising toes and/or heels throughout the motion.

Can I get comments on this? I have found that by having my heels never touching the ground my overall balance has improved considerably, and my upward explosion into the ball is more explosive and efficient. Thanks!

SirSweetSpot
11-23-2009, 07:48 AM
Darn it won't let me edit. Anyway, I failed to mention that I have a platform stance.

larry10s
11-23-2009, 08:00 AM
if you watch videos most people dont get both heels off the ground until they get close to trophy position. being on your toes the whole time while you bounce the ball etc. to me would take alot out of your legs over a strenuous match.

fuzz nation
11-23-2009, 10:19 AM
I've experimented with this lately myself and I've found some benefit to it. I'd say that if your windup is too busy, it might fatigue your legs a bit more to be on the balls of your feet the whole time, but I don't think it's a big deal to reduce the duration of that stance just a little if you're overdoing it.

I like to rock back onto my heels and then as I start forward, I like to get up on the balls of my feet before I put up my toss. I used to spend more time with both of my feet entirely grounded, but I occasionally got some knee soreness from the combo of rotation and upward drive that I like to use for my best delivery. What I found for myself was that my legs would be more alive or active as I'd load up while up on the balls of my feet. Also, my knees were less likely to get torqued by my move to the ball. With my heels up, my feet could more easily rotate underneath me.

I'd say that my motion is a bit more pinpoint than platform and I feel better when I move forward into my set stance, sort of like Safin seems to do, but not with as much of a deliberate forward step. I also agree that getting up on my toes earlier for my windup is a sort of balance booster. I can definitely get a better feel of my positioning and alignment as I load up to hit the ball this way.

LeeD
11-23-2009, 10:54 AM
If it works, go for it.
Let's see the vid.
Or tell us how well you serve.
Me, no chance. I've got skinny calves and they like to cramp pretty easily.

SirSweetSpot
11-23-2009, 12:08 PM
I've experimented with this lately myself and I've found some benefit to it. I'd say that if your windup is too busy, it might fatigue your legs a bit more to be on the balls of your feet the whole time, but I don't think it's a big deal to reduce the duration of that stance just a little if you're overdoing it.

I like to rock back onto my heels and then as I start forward, I like to get up on the balls of my feet before I put up my toss. I used to spend more time with both of my feet entirely grounded, but I occasionally got some knee soreness from the combo of rotation and upward drive that I like to use for my best delivery. What I found for myself was that my legs would be more alive or active as I'd load up while up on the balls of my feet. Also, my knees were less likely to get torqued by my move to the ball. With my heels up, my feet could more easily rotate underneath me.
I'd say that my motion is a bit more pinpoint than platform and I feel better when I move forward into my set stance, sort of like Safin seems to do, but not with as much of a deliberate forward step. I also agree that getting up on my toes earlier for my windup is a sort of balance booster. I can definitely get a better feel of my positioning and alignment as I load up to hit the ball this way.

Yes! Also it's easy to practice this technique when you're away from the court. Say you're waiting for a bus or standing in line somewhere, you can always raise your heels and strengthen your calves and feet. The strengthening of the feet is something that isn't discussed enough it seems in the tennis world.

fuzz nation
11-24-2009, 08:27 AM
It's one more aspect of the game that gives me greater appreciation for good fitting shoes, since I think that they encourage a better connection with the surface underneath us. All this balancing, torquing, driving, sprinting, jumping...

One of the best things I've done for my general tennis conditioning is to ride a bicycle at least two times a week - nothing heroic. I'll see almost zero soreness in my knees and my legs generally have lots more endurance, especially for spending more time up on the balls of my feet when I'm serving.

LeeD
11-24-2009, 10:58 AM
Depends how old you are and what injuries you've sustained and stressed.
I'm 60, 3 years of high school football and basketball, 2 semesters CC in college, years of motocross and roadracing knee injuries, surfed competitively for over 3 years, and the knees get sore regardless of what I do short of getting younger or new cartilege.