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wfudeac
05-15-2006, 06:46 AM
Without performing an exhaustive search on "kick serve" and reading through tons of threads, I figured I would start my own. Hope nobody minds.
I really feel like I need a reliable topspin or kick serve as a 2nd serve if I ever plan on making that jump to 4.0 whenever it happens.

I know I need to bend my knees and get low instead of arching my back, and my ball toss needs to be behind my head and to the left. Do you hit the ball as it's going up, or coming back down? I can sometimes get the ball to kick to the right when I'm serving to the ad side, but the spin is very subtle, and I would like to get that vicious spin that my opponent will have trouble getting his backhand on.

Any tips?

papa
05-15-2006, 07:26 AM
Without performing an exhaustive search on "kick serve" and reading through tons of threads, I figured I would start my own. Hope nobody minds.
I really feel like I need a reliable topspin or kick serve as a 2nd serve if I ever plan on making that jump to 4.0 whenever it happens.

I know I need to bend my knees and get low instead of arching my back, and my ball toss needs to be behind my head and to the left. Do you hit the ball as it's going up, or coming back down? I can sometimes get the ball to kick to the right when I'm serving to the ad side, but the spin is very subtle, and I would like to get that vicious spin that my opponent will have trouble getting his backhand on.

Any tips?

Why would you not arch you back?

Try hitting the ball higher - much higher (the serve that is). Strike zone should be lower then a "regular" serve and I think you'll find it much easier to hit the ball on its way down - some "claim" they can effectively hit as the ball is going up but when I watch them, the ball is really on its way down or at its high point at best.

wfudeac
05-15-2006, 07:38 AM
Don't want to throw my back out since the kick serve is such a strange motion. I will try hitting the ball lower, the hard part is trying to make my racquet brush up the back of the ball.

kicker75
05-15-2006, 01:50 PM
I think the biggest thing for having a kick serve that really spins is your racquet head speed. Yes, you have to brush up on the serve (mine's about 7 o'clock to 1 o'clock - if you brush 8 o'clock to 2 o'clock you'll get more kick out wide spin in addition to the high bounce spin), but without the racquet head speed, you will not get a lot of spin on the ball. You have to swing agressively. I swing more agressively on my 2nd serve than my first. Swinging agressively is very difficult (mentally) for someone moving from the 3.0 range to the 4.0 range because we always feel we're going to double fault if we hit harder, but if your brushing technique is correct, you are in fact going to hit harder, but also with much more spin (which will bring the ball down faster into the box) You have to get over the mental hump about swinging agressively.

As far as the ball toss contact point (heightwise), I always hit the ball at the apex of the toss. I find trying to change the point of contact (again, only concerning height) can screw up my timing and extension, which causes a lot of errors.

kicker75
05-15-2006, 01:53 PM
Oh...and yes...bend your knees. A good knee bend will take stress of your back on the serve and will reduce the amount of arching you will need to do with your back. (though you still have to arch your back...just not as much)

donnyz89
05-15-2006, 02:53 PM
ACtually... you are not suppose to hit the ball as high as you would on a flat serve. Because you want to leave room for the brushing up motion. If you hit the ball as your racquet is coming down (flat serve), how would you generate topspin? its like hitting a topspin forehand, you wouldnt start high like if you would on finishing an overhead would you?

Just by telling you what to do wont help. Here are some visualizations I use/learned.

Your aiming a little higher as you swing. Like high jump. You want your ball to jump over this certain height then drop down. Its a low to high then back down motion.

Think about brushing the back of your head as you swing, that way you keep your racquet face closed.



Think about hitting the side of the frame of the racquet. That really helped me, I dont know if you see it. Try it a couple time for real, its hard. Once you can do that, you can do a kicker no problem... or the other way, once my kicker became better and more reliable, I find it easier to hit the frame too.

Try to keep the racquet parallel to the ground as long as you can as you swing up.

hope these help!

eLterrible
05-15-2006, 05:03 PM
biggest tip i ever got on the 2nd serve is to keep the wrist and arms almost completely relaxed and execute a good shoulder turn, the relaxed wrist will provide spin and the shoulder turn will produce power. (plus knee bend is the foundation)

BeachTennis
05-15-2006, 05:53 PM
ouch thats like work !!

Well the legs help but the legs are only one piece of the chain as several factors play into acquiring speed on any serve whether it be kick, slice, etc. weight transfer, firing the core, proper shoulder and trunk rotation, as well as timing and rhythm all share in the equation as well to produce more racquet head speed which in turn will produce more greater ball speed. the key is to get all the links in the kinetic chain working in unison and mastering each phase of the preparation, hitting zone, and ending of the techniques will enable this. bottom line to get more pop on the kick one simply needs to attain greater racquet head speed of which executing the above properly will supply.

Rep. Timothy Calhoun
05-15-2006, 06:27 PM
ouch thats like work !!

Well the legs help but the legs are only one piece of the chain as several factors play into acquiring speed on any serve whether it be kick, slice, etc. weight transfer, firing the core, proper shoulder and trunk rotation, as well as timing and rhythm all share in the equation as well to produce more racquet head speed which in turn will produce more greater ball speed. the key is to get all the links in the kinetic chain working in unison and mastering each phase of the preparation, hitting zone, and ending of the techniques will enable this. bottom line to get more pop on the kick one simply needs to attain greater racquet head speed of which executing the above properly will supply.

Bungalo Bill
05-15-2006, 06:39 PM
Without performing an exhaustive search on "kick serve" and reading through tons of threads, I figured I would start my own. Hope nobody minds.
I really feel like I need a reliable topspin or kick serve as a 2nd serve if I ever plan on making that jump to 4.0 whenever it happens.

I know I need to bend my knees and get low instead of arching my back, and my ball toss needs to be behind my head and to the left. Do you hit the ball as it's going up, or coming back down? I can sometimes get the ball to kick to the right when I'm serving to the ad side, but the spin is very subtle, and I would like to get that vicious spin that my opponent will have trouble getting his backhand on.

Any tips?

In order to "feel" how to get more twist and provided you are executing the motion correctly, you need to simply slow down your serve speed and practice brushing the ball to generate the spin you want.

When I played in college our coach had us stand at the back fence and loop topspin or twist balls high over the net and we really didnt worry about if it landed in or not. That was not the purpose of the exercise. The purpose was to develop the swing path, body motion, and feel on how to generate a strong spin for the twist. Afterwards, we practiced for accuracy and pace. But the motion was becoming engrained.

You might want to think about doing the same thing.

Bungalo Bill
05-15-2006, 06:40 PM
ouch thats like work !!

Well the legs help but the legs are only one piece of the chain as several factors play into acquiring speed on any serve whether it be kick, slice, etc. weight transfer, firing the core, proper shoulder and trunk rotation, as well as timing and rhythm all share in the equation as well to produce more racquet head speed which in turn will produce more greater ball speed. the key is to get all the links in the kinetic chain working in unison and mastering each phase of the preparation, hitting zone, and ending of the techniques will enable this. bottom line to get more pop on the kick one simply needs to attain greater racquet head speed of which executing the above properly will supply.

Wow, this is actually useful. Now, how does one do this?

DrewRafter8
05-15-2006, 06:49 PM
The only way that I have found to really put some great kick on the ball is to throw the ball behind my head and really arch my back. I throw the ball at least at about a 10:00 postion (I'm right handed). I saw that you stated that you don't want to throw out your back. I'm not sure that you can hit a kick serve that will be effective at higher levels without bending your back. Not saying that it can't be done, just that I've never seen such.

Edit: My kick serve somewhat favors Rafter's, you know it's coming so we put enough spin on it to get to net.

BeachTennis
05-15-2006, 06:50 PM
Wow, this is actually useful. Now, how does one do this?


Play lots of beach tennis and hit the big dipper over the net that is 6 feet 4 inches !

That will help one develop a big kick serve !

armand
05-15-2006, 07:09 PM
Most important thing I've discovered for the 2nd serve kicker: You still must put all your strength into it. Perhaps even more so than the flat first serve.

DrewRafter8
05-15-2006, 07:24 PM
Forgot to add- On my second serve kicker, I find it very important to maintain good racquet head speed. I swing almost as hard as on my first (which is generally flat), but I place much more emphasis on brushing the ball with spin.

Bungalo Bill
05-15-2006, 08:40 PM
Play lots of beach tennis and hit the big dipper over the net that is 6 feet 4 inches !

That will help one develop a big kick serve !

Okaaaaay, LOL, Beach tennis, what a joke, so you don't know?

jackofromalsager
05-16-2006, 01:41 PM
arching ur back can eventurley lead to back problems so dont do that just hit up the back of the ball!