Changing from Sampras motion to Roddick serve

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by Safina, Mar 2, 2005.

  1. Safina

    Safina Semi-Pro

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    I have always used a Sampras/Federer classic style motion, but my rotator cuff has been causing me problems lately.
    I know Roddick didnt develop his motion for this reason, but when I copy his motion, it seems much easier on the shoulder.

    I don't use a Pure Drive, so I don't get huge bombs with it, but it is still pretty effective.
    Anybody else switch to the Roddick style?

    I think it looks less asthetically pleasing to the eye, but my shoulder tells me to just forget about that!
     
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  2. Andy Hewitt

    Andy Hewitt Professional

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    it looks rediculous, but hey, it gets the job done... sorta :|

    then again..I got no serve what so ever, i jus smack the ball just over my head causing slices, but its better than a dinker.
     
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  3. pchoi04

    pchoi04 Professional

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    When your raquet is above the head are your strings closed (titlting towards the ground) or open slightly (strings parallel to back of head). I think I had a similar problem and I was looking threw tennis magazine and I saw that Roger Federer opened up his strings slightly making it parallel with the back of his head or I guess his back.. or arch or whatever... so I looked at my motion in the mirror and found that my strings were more closed making me tense my shoulder quite a bit. When I started to open up the strings a little i found that it relaxes my shoulder for an easier serve and im hitting better i think so...

    I'm not sure if that even makes any sense but that was my experience... Just thought I might share that...
     
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  4. Safina

    Safina Semi-Pro

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    pchoi, i can't quite visualize what you are saying, but i have changed my grip to one that probably does the same thing you talk about...
    the main cause of my shoulder distress was actually the toss!
    i didnt throw it up high enough so then I would RUSH the rest of my motion causing a ton of stress on the shoulder.
    i watched some Federer, Becker, and Sampras matches and interestingly, they all have a nice pause in the middle of the serve.
    i am working on that pause when i serve.. takes balance, calmness, and timing!
    why do i rush my serve? too excited i guess to hit a big ace... sorry mr. shoulder!
     
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  5. Marius_Hancu

    Marius_Hancu G.O.A.T.

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    I'd say make a search on
    shoulder serve
    at
    http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/search.php?
    you'll find several interesting threads, which you should read if you care about your shoulder

    Health & Fitness sections has many on that.
     
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  6. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    Incidently, Safina, a young fellow I know who trained with Roddick every day for a long time at Evert's, also has an abbreviated motion, which he specifically went to, because of shoulder problems on the backswing. That is not perhaps why Roddick went to it, (I talked to him about this one day) but a lot of people in that circle were using very short motions. It does seem to help some people, though it troubles me, that some people develop the problem on the backswing, and I like to isolate the REAL reason for the problem(which can be very difficult), but anyways, if it seems to help for you, that is great!
     
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  7. Mies

    Mies Rookie

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    I wrecked my right shoulder with serving, so be carefull. I found that I was straining it too much in the backswing of my serve, basically the same problem as Datacipher just described. I was moving my racket up with a nearly stretched arm, causing tremendous stress on the shoulder. I now keep the racket closer to my body (I keep my elbow close to my body) as I move the racket up while tossing the ball. I now serve without any pain.

    Btw, I have a high toss, so I have the time to calmly bring my racket up and wait for the right time to hit the ball. Right before I hit, I'm kind of in the same position as you would be when you are properly prepared for an overhead smash, waiting for the ball to come down to the right height.

    It's kinda diffficult to explain without images, but in short, I changed my backswing on the serve and make sure I have enough time to prepare before actually hitting the ball. It saved my shoulder from getting any worse.

    Hope this was helpfull in some way,
    Regards,
    Maurice
     
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  8. bee

    bee Semi-Pro

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    yes

    I"ve gone to a similar motion, and I like it. For me, it's a high tucked in shoulder rather than a wide slinging motion. It feels better and I have better control. Seems to help with putting some kick on the ball.
     
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  9. JennyS

    JennyS Hall of Fame

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    I prefer the Roddick motion too. The classic service motion feels unnatural to me for some reason.
     
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  10. Steve Huff

    Steve Huff Legend

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    I used a Roddick-like motion in HS (1975) and the day we clocked our serves, I could hit consistently in the 120-124 range. I changed shortly after college to a more classical motion because I found it easier to get some spin, especially more kick for a 2nd serve. I lost some speed on it I'm sure. So, maybe there's something to the "bring-the-racket-up-front" style. It seems to generate a lot of head speed.
     
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  11. goober

    goober Legend

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    Wow you were clocking 120-124 mph with a woodie while you were in high school? Impressive.... What kind of radar guns did they have back then?
     
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  12. Grimjack

    Grimjack Banned

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    Are you officially calling shenanigans?
     
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  13. Prince_of_Tennis

    Prince_of_Tennis Semi-Pro

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    I call it!!! 120 is pretty crazy but with a wood...After High school I swithced from the Roddick to the sampras motion. The sampras motion seems more natural to me because its very smooth. The roddick is a very violent jerking motion. My knees and shoulder aren't sore anymore plus I can get to net easier. 19 Year old who Serves and Volley 98% of the time!
     
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  14. Grimjack

    Grimjack Banned

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    When you guys who are claiming to be Sampras-motion users do so, what do you mean, exactly?

    Are you saying you're more a classic-style server?

    Or do you mean that you actually emulate the Sampras motion?

    Sampras sort of takes the classic motion, adds it to the much-more-sideways-than-classic McEnroe motion (Pete was almost backwards, he was so sideways), and adds foot position and torso rotation that requires near yogi-level limberness. Sampras's motion is pretty far from traditional textbook stuff, and I've never seen a club-level player who carried it off. Taylor Dent? Yes. Bob the 5.5 teaching pro? I haven't seen it.

    Federer's form is much less sideways, twisting, and radical, and is probably a form worth imitating for the casual player. But I don't see him and Pete as two peas in a pod, exactly. Are we using the two interchangably, just to differentiate from Roddick?

    I'm just curious, because maybe everyone here has been successfully emulating Pete. But most servers -- even most GOOD servers -- I see practice a much more textbookish motion, with the front toe sort of angled toward the post, and the back and torso engaged in a lot less rotation than Sampras. "Sampras serve" seems to have become synonymous with, "more classic approach," on these boards, which it wasn't.
     
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  15. joe sch

    joe sch Hall of Fame

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    Tennis can be a very simple game especially if alot of the bodies motion can be eliminated. All strokes can be racket & arm orientated, like the roddick serve. The lower the toss and the less shoulder and body twist will help you be more accurate and maybe even generate more power if your other body movements (shoulder, trunk & hip) are not adding to your serve and groundstrokes but hindering them. If you use those other body parts correctly, you can have more powerful and efficient strokes but the margin for error is much greater. These issues are involved in different schools (eras) of tennis training. Thus, you can have a very efficient serve and ground strokes by stilling the body and using a arm racket orientation, ala Roddick ! Its your choice and always very good to experiment with different techniques. This is often why players will go thru soo many coaches because they really need to find the one that will work best for thier body, mechanics and psychology
     
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  16. Kaptain Karl

    Kaptain Karl Hall Of Fame

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    I've been "reading" that, in context, to mean Sampras = Platform and Roddick = (a form of) Pin Point. Yes? No?

    - KK
     
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  17. Prince_of_Tennis

    Prince_of_Tennis Semi-Pro

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    I use the same rocking motion but my toe doesn't point up. I just plant my feet thats all.
     
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  18. babar

    babar Semi-Pro

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    I use both. When I really want to hit bombs, I use the "Roddick" motion. I have not noticed any additional strain on my shoudler after about a year of using this motion. I use a more "Sampras" type motion to hit 2nd serves and spin serves. This motion feels easier, but I can't generate the racquet-head speed I can with the other motion. It just depends on my opponent as to which serve I use more often in a match. Some people just can't return a spin serve well, while others return better off more pace.
     
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  19. Steve Huff

    Steve Huff Legend

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    I was using a PDP Open (aluminum) the day we were timing our serves. I relied a lot on it too. I think most people would find that you can hit nearly as hard with about any racket with a good motion. Even though the frames weren't quite as stiff, on a 27" racket, the sweet spot was further from the handle (due to the smaller head), so you got more leverage. There were a couple of other guys who could really smack serves in our district too.
     
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  20. baselinebrawler

    baselinebrawler Rookie

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    I switched from a classic style of pulling a sword out of a back holster to the roddick motion and noticed less stiffness in my shoulder after matches. I read somewhere that on the toss the shoulder doing the tossing is supposed to become higher than the serving shoulder. Then when you start your motion to serve you are to "throw" the serving shoulder over the top of the tossing shoulder. This with using the knee bend+hip flex has enabled me to serve bombs at times. I also have found the same motion to give pretty good spin on my kick second serve. I guess all and all it is about what feels comfortable to you.
     
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  21. Kaptain Karl

    Kaptain Karl Hall Of Fame

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    It seems like a "rough" way to describe it, but if it works for you ... great!

    - KK
     
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  22. baselinebrawler

    baselinebrawler Rookie

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    Yeah that is the "rough" version. I was just too lazy that day to write out the complete description....:)
     
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