Does conciously aiming your serve help improve ball toss consistency?

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by HughJars, Apr 20, 2013.

  1. HughJars

    HughJars Professional

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    Was having a horrible serving game today, and in hindsight I was just blindly throwing the ball up, hoping it would go in. My focus was all internal on the action, weight transfer, grip and mechanics of the serve.

    But it has got me thinking - if you're conciously aiming your serve then you shift focus to tossing the ball into the spot to allow you to hit the ball to the area that your aiming, rather than interanlly over thinking everything to do with your action.

    Has anyone found improvements in toss and overall serving consistency as a result?
     
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  2. esgee48

    esgee48 Hall of Fame

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    They should go hand-in-hand. IMO, you really want to get the toss right first. Once that is down and the toss is consistent, then start thinking about where to place the serve and what type of serve to hit. When warming up, I will try hitting flat to the T and going out; then try it again with the slice; then try it again with topspin/kicker. Repeat until comfortable. Gives your opponents a lot to think about when you do this.
     
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  3. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    EVERY single serve should be aimed with direction and depth in mind.
    EVERY single toss should be placed with that in mind.
    You don't hit any serves mindlessly.
     
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  4. gplracer

    gplracer Professional

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    Keep your tossing hand straight. Almost all pros do that.
     
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  5. Shroud

    Shroud Hall of Fame

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    for a long time I struggled with the toss. I would get nervous in matches and my toss would be off all the time. Especially when the match was close.

    I found that my fingers were the problem and when I was nervous they would mess up the toss.

    I fixed it entirely by tossing with my knuckles. Like a knuckle ball pitch.

    IMHO I agree with lee d. Picture where the ball will land before you serve and just make it happen. Think about the result and your body will figure it out. Focusing on all the interim parts will just mess things up.
     
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  6. Bagumbawalla

    Bagumbawalla Hall of Fame

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    At first, I was thinking that this was a really "duh- obvious" question that basically answers itself-- and actually it pretty much is-- except, possibly, for the word "consciously".

    When you prctice, yes, you need to be self-aware, thinking about your mental "focus", aware of your body's position and movement. You do all those things- practice them over and over until-- like walking, or juggling, boxing, or picking the banjo- you do them fluidly-- and without very much conscious thought, at all.

    So, yes, you want to control your ball toss, learn how to focus on the ball and strike it in such a way that you control the speed, direction and spin. In my opinion, these are things you should "consciously" think about during practice- to the point that (eventually) the execution becomes almost "unconscious" in an actual match- in pressure situations.
     
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  7. spaceman_spiff

    spaceman_spiff Professional

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    I find that tossing the ball in the same spot every time helps consistency. Instead of learning to place the ball in several different spots, you only have to learn how to put it in one.

    I actually have two tosses, because my second serve has slightly different placement than the first. But, every first serve has the same toss, and every second serve has the same toss, regardless of where I'm targetting. It's just much easier for me that way.
     
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