Abbreviated Motions: A Good Thing?

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Cup8489, Jul 12, 2009.

  1. Cup8489

    Cup8489 Legend

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    Hi all,

    I was out playing with a friend today, and like always, was getting my butt handed to me (he's significantly better, and i like playing someone who can outhit me, makes me work harder to beat him)

    halfway through the second set, i decided to screw around, and we were talking about the Wimbly final. Long story short, i found out that i can hit bombs with the Roddick abbreviated serving motion. i started tinkering with it, keeping it short and sweet, but less jerky (i like fluidity, not jerkiness). I found that, on the whole, i was hitting with significantly more pace and spin on serve with an abbreviated motion as opposed to my regular, classical serve motion.

    Has anyone else had similar experiences? I think the main reason i had such success is because the abbreviated motion caused me to put more emphasis on the wrist snap, and i found that i broke 100 mph today, which for me is kind of a big deal :).

    Your thoughts?
     
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  2. ms87

    ms87 Rookie

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    you're probably tossing lower and your wrist is in a better position in the trophy position
     
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  3. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Changing motions can give you short term benefits, but if you keep that motion for a year or more, you'll find it really made no difference in the long run. We always think the grass is greener......
    If it was such a great benefit, why do you think 95% of the top tennis players use LONG service motions?
    OTOH, if you think it works, then it DOES work...for a while anyways...:)
     
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  4. OhDear

    OhDear Rookie

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    Maybe you're the type of player who loses a lot of their swingspeed during a longer service motion.

    I used to hit slow serves with a longer motion because I was doing a lot of unncecessary movement during my swing, therefore losing power.

    Of course 9/10 people will say: Whatever works, works.
     
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  5. marosmith

    marosmith Professional

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    I think it may help people who have alot of strength and want to keep the stroke as simple as possible. It allows you to just toss, bend knees, and explode. My instructor uses this motion and has used it 20 years ago before it was popularized, and he has won quite a few tournaments with it.
     
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  6. plasma

    plasma Banned

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    short motions use more muscular force, less racquet weight and momentum and cause more injuries.
     
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  7. Virtua Tennis

    Virtua Tennis Semi-Pro

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    I had to use roddicks service motion because of shoulder problems. I have definately added some speed to my serve compared to my old sampras style serve.
     
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  8. gunbuster

    gunbuster New User

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    I'll start by saying I have a pretty short service motion to begin with. However, the other day I also goofed around with emulating a Roddick-like motion and served up a few bombs. My kickers were much more penetrating and my slice was nasty. That's a big deal because I normally struggle with hitting a good slice serve.
     
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  9. ms87

    ms87 Rookie

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    yeah yeah :rolleyes:
     
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  10. MarrratSafin

    MarrratSafin Hall of Fame

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    The Roddick motion really works if you know how to do it. I use it too and my 1st serve is the best shot of my game. The pace you can generate with it is incredible!:twisted:
     
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  11. WildVolley

    WildVolley Legend

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    Any evidence for this? I've just noticed that some pros adopt short motions as a result of previous injuries - Todd Martin for instance. He claims the short motion puts less stress on his shoulder. I also recall Agassi going with a short motion when his shoulder was healing from a previous injury.
     
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  12. autumn_leaf

    autumn_leaf Hall of Fame

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    yea and maria sharapova just adopted it saying it was to help her shoulder. if it's so bad for the body wouldn't all these pros, their coaches, and their doctors know about it?
     
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  13. GuyClinch

    GuyClinch Hall of Fame

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    Not this again. There is almost no difference biomechanically from Roddick's serve and a regular motion.. An abbreviated motion is fine because really its the same motion.

    It can be helpful because of the timing issue. Everyone who serves hits the "trophy" pose. Roddick just gets to that point sooner. Its a big deal made out of nothing with regard to his serve.

    Its not going to cause injuries. Use it if you like..
     
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  14. autumn_leaf

    autumn_leaf Hall of Fame

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    well thank you for responding, but the reason why a ressurrected this thread was to find out why players move to an abbreviated serve after injuries/surgeries to their shoulders.
     
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  15. GuyClinch

    GuyClinch Hall of Fame

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    She might be using an abbreviated motion but that doesn't mean its that abbreviation thats the major change the doctors are trying to make in her serve. I think you need alot more info to make that judgement..

    Pete
     
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  16. Noveson

    Noveson Hall of Fame

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    :rolleyes: What injuries are you talking about? Sharapova just switched to abbreviated motion to PROTECT her shoulder. Roddick doesn't get hurt often, Nadal doesn't either(non serve related injuries aside), same for Monfils. Where are these people getting injured by it.?
     
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  17. ubermeyer

    ubermeyer Hall of Fame

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    Roddick is one of the best servers on the ATP tour and he uses this motion... Whatever works
     
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  18. SourStraws

    SourStraws Rookie

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    My coach told me that with the abrev. motion, you dont get the natural rotation of the shoulder that you do with the regular motion so thats why I dont use it...

    S.S.
     
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  19. volusiano

    volusiano Hall of Fame

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    I don't understand this explanation. Please elaborate. How do you not get the natural rotation of the shoulder with the abbreviated serve?
     
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  20. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    I don't buy this at all. Didn't we already have this discussion in another thread?
     
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  21. Noveson

    Noveson Hall of Fame

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    I'm glad I'm not the only one who saw this and thought he was making things up.
     
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  22. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    Wouldn't be too hasty to deem this as a honeymoon effect. It may very well be a permanent improvement (or maybe not).

    A large % of "the top tennis players use the LONG service motions" because this is the way they were taught to serve as junior players. Most will not change their service unless it is not working for them or if forced to change because of injury. As a new generation of players turn pro, we will undoubtedly see much more of the abbreviated motion -- we will probably see a much higher % of pros using it in within the next decade.

    I also find that many novice player are finding the abbreviated motion much easier to learn.



    Not quite sure what point you're trying to make here. Maria has definitely adopted an abbreviated motion since coming back from her shoulder issues. The abbreviated motion may or may not be less stressful to the shoulder. However, it is highly doubtful that it is more stressful that a fuller, classic motion.

    My own experience would seem to indicate that the abbreviated motion is somewhat less stressful to the shoulder. I currently have a serious external shoulder rotation limitation (due to an old volleyball injury). Certain movements do result in pain. Also have lesser issues with shoulder flexion and other shoulder articulations. Since these shoulder problems have come back to haunt me in the past 3 years, I've decided to adopt an abbreviated motion. It was very easy to master this change since I was already using an abbreviated motion to hit overhead smashes.

    Back to Maria. She doesn't quite seem to be comfortable with the new motion yet. Her toss is still very nigh and she needs to get accustomed to a different rhythm (or learn to lower her toss a bit). At least, this is what I saw seeing when I saw her playing at Stanford recently against Venus.
     
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  23. GuyClinch

    GuyClinch Hall of Fame

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    I agree that its unlikely its more stressful. It's just changing how you take the racquet back to the "trophy" position. That move doesn't cause a healthy person any stress either way you do it, IMHO.

    My point is that change might not be the only thing she is trying to do different to protect her shoulder.. The doctors could explain the rationale behind the changes they made to her serve from a medical standpoint if we talked to them..

    Pete
     
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  24. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    ^ Thnx for the clarification, Pete.
     
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  25. CharlieB

    CharlieB New User

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    I was taught the serve with a long motion. I got injured on my non dominant shoulder doing other sport and as a result I was forced to change my service motion. I've had an abbreviated service motion for the last 9 years and I can serve with the same speed, spin and accuracy I had with the serve I learned as a child. I must say that in the long run it makes no difference. From a biomechanics point of view an abbreviated serve motion conserves a bit more energy. From a different perspective, using an abbreviated service motion can help some players with the ball toss, as they are forced to just lift their arm in front of them rather to the side.

    Cheers,

    Charlie
     
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  26. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    I just came across a relevant Q&A on the USTA site. Excerpt from that page:

    There was hypothesis that the abbreviated technique placed more stress to the anterior shoulder, but the study discounted the theory...
     
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