continental grip on the serve

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Finster, Feb 6, 2012.

  1. Finster

    Finster New User

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    I am using the continental grip on my serve. I know this is the right grip to use, but I have a problem that I am inadvertently changing my grip mid serve to a more soft continental grip, I think during my racquet take back. Anyone else encounter this problem?
     
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  2. Say Chi Sin Lo

    Say Chi Sin Lo Legend

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    What's a soft continental grip?
     
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  3. Finster

    Finster New User

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    I call a proper continental grip where BOTH your knuckle and heel pad of your hand are on bevel 2 of your grip. I call a soft continental where your knuckle stays on bevel 2, but your heel pad slips to bevel 3. I think Im doing this because the real continental grip stills feels awkward to me on my serve and my hand wants move to something more comfortable.
     
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  4. Larrysümmers

    Larrysümmers Hall of Fame

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    well start out in a hard cont, and maybe you will slip into a proper. or have you tried serving in a soft on purpose? heck, maybe your serve will be better.
     
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  5. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter Legend

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    Typical! I've seen it a million times when beginners first learn what the correct service grip is. There's only one remedy. Practice serving very slowly. There is a truism applicable to learning all motor skills, you have to learn to do it very slowly before you learn to do it fast. That's how you cultivate muscle memory.

    I would suggest a basket of balls and practice your serve at literally 25% effort. Keep it nice and slow and deliberate and focus on your grip throughout your swing. Just lob the ball in the box. Repeat it 100's of times. Eventually, you will have that "aha" moment when you finally "feel" what the Continental serve grip is all about. Then you can start picking up the pace.
     
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  6. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Don't forget to ADD a super sticky grippy grip. You can use a new overgrip, use some tacky resin, or a new grip. Concentrate on a LOOSE grip using mainly your index, middle, and ring fingers.
     
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  7. Finster

    Finster New User

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    No, no, the racquet isn't slipping, I'm actually switching grips midswing, tho I don't mean to. Maybe my swing path isn't conducive to a true continental grip and that's why my hands wants to switch out of it.
     
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  8. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    The WHY is not important, the cure is. Read the last sentence again.
     
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  9. NLBwell

    NLBwell Legend

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    Duct Tape (yes, this is a serious answer).
     
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  10. charliefedererer

    charliefedererer Legend

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    Are your feet like the guy in this picture?

    [​IMG]

    If so, try moving your feet more like the smaller inset pictiure. This will make it really hard to serve with the eastern grip you assume mid swing.

    You can even exaggerate it more, like Fed does:

    [​IMG]


    You need to understand why you are doing what you are doing though, to ultimately correct the problem.


    Most beginners start to serve with their feet pointed straight to the service box they are serving into. They have to use an eastern grip to push the ball straight forward up and over the net.


    Your goal as an advanced server should be to serve with your left side (assuming you are right handed) directed at the service box at contact, not the front of your body (see pic 7 below).

    [​IMG]


    Right now, I'll bet anything you are swinging your shoulders from left to right, instead of dropping your left shoulder.

    Jim McLennan of Tennis One explains how to do this, and also why it is crucial to do it not only for a better serve, but to prevent a rotator cuff shoulder problem: Preventing Rotator Cuff Injury: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lTRvxaBMh8s


    [You'll also find it easier to do all this if you:
    1.) Keep bringing your tossing arm straight up overhead when you toss, and keep it there (pics 2,3) so you have a very steep front to back shoulder angle in your trophy pose
    2.) Form your body into the shape of a bow, as seen from the side, with your left hip out front Tennis Lesson: Serve Tips: Lead with the Hip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HgeYmEScfgQ

    Doing 1 and 2 should let you "reverse the bow" with a vertical shoulder over shoulder "cartwheel" motion (not a horizontal shoulder swing), so you'll need to maintain that continental grip to hit the ball as squarely as Soderling does In this video: Robin Söderling serve slow motion http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a56pvP1i6x8 ]

    Good luck!
     
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  11. chico9166

    chico9166 Guest

    Practice serves with a penny between the racquet and heel pad.
     
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  12. Finster

    Finster New User

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    Thanks! That was an extremely informative post. Maybe it is my stance that is making my body want to switch grips midswing. I will try to implement these things during my next match.
     
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  13. fuzz nation

    fuzz nation Legend

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    Charlie droppin' the knowledge!

    I was going to suggest the same idea of closing up your stance, but without nearly the measure of evidence that my advice is, um, well informed.
     
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  14. Nellie

    Nellie Hall of Fame

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    Further to what Charlie says, try to stay sideways when you are practicing until after ball contact.
     
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  15. Ash_Smith

    Ash_Smith Hall of Fame

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  16. syke

    syke Professional

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    If only I knew this earlier, I would have been saved from all the shoulder pains.
    I had to learn it the hard way, only figuring it out after watching repeated serve footage on dropping the left shoulder.
     
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