Eastern grip for serve?

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by EuroMagnum, Oct 19, 2006.

  1. EuroMagnum

    EuroMagnum Rookie

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    I've always used an eastern grip for my serve, I can get great powerful flat serves with it, top spin serves are doable but not amazing, and a hard spin serve is nearly impossible, so i'm thinking of switching to continental like most people use.

    Do you guys use continental for flat serves too? I just can't understand how you could do that, whenever I swing with continental grip I fell like i'm coming down on the ball at an angle. I can understand why that would make spin serves easier, but how on earth would you get a good flat serve like that? I must be so awkward.
     
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  2. lolsmash

    lolsmash Rookie

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    because we don't arm the ball. We keep our arms loose so naturally, we tend to pronate, which rotates our wrist and causes the racquet face to be square when we make contact with the ball.
     
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  3. mucat

    mucat Hall of Fame

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    Eastern FH or eastern BH grip?
     
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  4. jb193

    jb193 Rookie

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  5. Janne

    Janne Semi-Pro

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    When I first started tennis I would also use the Eastern FH grip for serving but I´ve now switched to the continental and while it still feels a little weird, everything is going better!
     
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  6. In D Zone

    In D Zone Hall of Fame

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    This is a great video! I am using this serve and believe me this the serve !!!!!
    And with the right bent and coil - you can deliver a cannon serve. Its true because you cannot see it but feel the movement of the rolling of the arm. It's effortless but generate that racquet speed which provide the power and velocity to your serve. BTW - I am only 5 '7" and this serve is the BOMB! I have aced my opponents frequently with this serve.
     
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  7. bluescreen

    bluescreen Hall of Fame

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    ive been using a continental grip on my serve for about 3 years, but when i went back to my coach last summer she told me to switch back to an eastern grip! she said it makes for better wrist snap. i was obviously skeptical, but tried it out anyway. i use both in matches now. eastern helps w/ flat first serves, while i use continental when i want a little spin or need a safer serve. i only use continental on 2nd serves. euro, i see where u're coming from.
     
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  8. mucat

    mucat Hall of Fame

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    Now I am really confused... :confused:
     
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  9. mclee025

    mclee025 Rookie

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    If you want good pronation -- referred to as "wrist snap" above -- you want to use a continental or an eastern backhand grip. An eastern forehand will inhibit the proper arm motion and you're not going to get very good pronation.

    The continental and eastern backhand grip allows you to get proper body dynamics into the stroke. It let's you get your body into the stroke (e.g., roll your shoulders into the stroke).

    On the other hand, using an eastern forehand grip in a serve will likely result in arming the ball over the net. This isn't regarded as the most effective means of serving.
     
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  10. emo5

    emo5 Rookie

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    Umm that instructor looks liek a serial killer.. :-|
     
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  11. mahouFuji

    mahouFuji Rookie

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    imma semi-east for kick serves
     
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  12. Jonny S&V

    Jonny S&V Hall of Fame

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    Pat Rafter almost used an eastern for his serve, it was in the middle of an eastern and continental. A lot of S&Vs used between a strong continental and mild eastern so they wouldn't have to switch grips while going up to the net.
     
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  13. tenapasi

    tenapasi Rookie

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    I serve with eastern (not backhand) grip. I mostly serve flat. I am more comfortable serving (and pronating) with this grip than continental.
     
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  14. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Use any grip you want as long as you can hit your fastest flat first serves with direction, your most consistent second serves with placement, you can bounce your kick/twists up around forehead heights to most players, and nobody can attack your serves.
    Me, conti with slight ebh flavor, so a small grip change for the volley.
    As Edberg, as not Rafter, as Sampras, as not Becker.
     
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  15. Djokovicfan4life

    Djokovicfan4life Legend

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    Holy old thread, Batman! I think the OP's probably figured it out by now, guys.
     
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  16. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Good to see you back. Where been?
    Some players never figure out the grip they need, and are constantly reinventing the wheel.
     
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  17. wyutani

    wyutani Hall of Fame

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    I use eastern for my flat serves. It's so realiable I use it for my 2nd serve albeit slower....

    But normally if my first serve fails, I'll use continental for a Topspin/slice serve.
     
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  18. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Love the various quirks of all the players!
    A conti grip with a SLIGHT shift towards eastern forehand will hit a flat ball more consistently, and give different angles than a conti grip gives.
    A pure eastern forehand grip, which was NOT used by BorisBecker OR PatRafter, is a beginner service grip that gives some backspin when the player swings fast.
     
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  19. oserver

    oserver Rookie

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    If a player uses eastern forehand grip or semi-western grip to serve in a waiter style or pancake throwing way, that will produce a beginner serve, but one can employ usual topspin techniques using eastern forehand grip or semi-western grip to produce more advanced serves. I used to think #3 and #4 grips were beginner serve grips, and #2 and #1 grips were professional serve grips. After I tried #3 and #4 grips to do topspin serves, now I believe any grip can do any kind of serve, beginner way or professional way.
     
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  20. xFullCourtTenniSx

    xFullCourtTenniSx Hall of Fame

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    http://lmgtfy.com/?q=serve+pronation

    It's called proper technique.
     
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  21. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    While it may be possible to hit topspin and other spin serves with an Eastern FH or SW grip, should it be done? Should it be promoted? If hitting spin serves with these grips were efficient and highly effective, you would think that some top servers would be using them. Servers like Boris Becker and Serena Williams have employed a semi-continental grip for flatter 1st serves, they switch to more of a standard continental grip for spin serves.

    Sure, perhaps you can hit a topspin serve with an oddball grip, but can it be hit as effectively as a serve with a conti or Eastern BH grip? Can it be hit with as much spin or kick as effectively with sub-optimal grips? Even more important -- will hitting effective spin serves with a sub-optimal grip put more stress on the shoulder or other parts of the arm (or body)? Report back to us in another few years and let us know how the arm & shoulder are holding up.
     
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  22. Chas Tennis

    Chas Tennis Hall of Fame

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    Here is an interesting thread on the grip for the serve.
    http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=483360&highlight=strong+continental

    Notice that two reference points on the hand are placed on two reference points on the racket. All four of these reference points can be anywhere.

    See "strong continental" where the reference points are not on the same racket bevel. Is this a very popular grip among high level servers? For what type serves?

    If you experiment with the different grips - just by looking at the racket in your hand - you will see that the grips significantly affect the racket-forearm angle and also the direction that the strings face.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2014
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  23. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

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    This video is excellent in my view. He explains pronation quite well with good drills to develop the feel:

    http://www.feeltennis.net/serve-pronation/

    If you are using pronation which is driven by core and shoulder rotation; you can actually hit a flatish serve faster with a conti grip as the arm pronation at impact adds pop.

    Also, hitting a hard spin serve (top/slice) is much easier with a conti-ish grip once you get the feel for getting clean contact.

    As others have said above, 99% of the good rec servers and pros use something between a mild-conti and full EBH grip for serve. It is worth investing time into learn a conti grip serve.
     
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  24. oserver

    oserver Rookie

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    oddball grips and etc.

    With about three weeks hitting serves use these "oddball grips", the effectiveness part is pretty close to my serves using continental grip, otherwise I won't use it in recent USTA league matches. Some missing parts were in placement and double faults - my direction control and double fault rate were not as good as before but my I can bounce the ball higher now. New grips actually helped me with more spin. At the beginning, I could not bring the ball down to the service line - many serves went out beyond the baseline or directly hitting to the opposite fence. With more back bending and left hip twist (I'm a right hander), balls were getting closer to service line or getting into the box.

    As to holding up my arm & shoulder, no hurting at all so far. I have some elbow problem for years. Elbow soreness now are more a result of hitting too many serves instead the new serve forms. My shoulder, arm and wrist motions did not change much from continental grip to these unconventional grips. The new thing is the left hip. Repeated serves practice gave me sore one that hip muscle. Match play did not produce this since you have four people taking turns. The soreness will be over with rest so I hope these new serves won't cause my physical harm.

    So if the muscle soreness is a normal thing to happen with an untrained muscle group, not due to forcing the muscle to do something it should not do, (a big if here,) then I might find an under-tapped source of power - the hip muscle group. I compared my videos that using continental grip with my most recent video using #3 and #4 grips; there is a big difference in using this muscle group. The range of twist and turn there is significantly large. As a result, the turning momentum carry my body toward left side after landing, as one poster pointed out.

    All are in experimental stages so I need to be careful not over do them to harm my body. I put a warning message in my youTube video for this reason. Thanks for giving me a cautionary advise.
     
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  25. rkelley

    rkelley Hall of Fame

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    Fire this coach. Seriously.
     
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  26. The forehand

    The forehand Rookie

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    I remember that when I started the first thing I learnt about serve was pronating I spent ages just pronating the wrist with a ball against a wall.
     
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  27. The forehand

    The forehand Rookie

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    I out of a 1000 coaches would advise serving with a eastern grip
     
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  28. oserver

    oserver Rookie

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    I guess I belong to an even tiny minority, may be less than one in 10,000. But I differ from those who advise serving with a eastern grip the waiter's way (or birthday cake throwing way). The practice video I did shows that it is possible to serve in a continental way (use shoulder/arm/elbow/wrist pronations and delay the edge to face turning of the racket) but holding the eastern grip or semi western grip. I'm kind of feeling "there's just an empty space" as the saying in Phil's song "Against all odds".
     
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  29. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    So you always serve with a semi open stance? Every other server serves with a fully closed stance, and some like McEnroe close so his back faces his targets.
     
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  30. oserver

    oserver Rookie

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    Not always, as I said I used continental serve grip for six years. Using #3 and #4 grip was an most recent experiment, started in less than a month ago. I did open stance serves since March of this year. Now I got these two things all mixed up in my serves, haha, just for the fun of it.
     
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  31. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    You know, I can hit a tennis ball right handed, but I'm lefty.
    I can hit continental grip topspin forehands, heck, I did it from year's '77 thru '79, at YOUR current level. But now I hit SW grip forehands.
    I used to be able to surf. Now I can't.
    I can steer a car with my thighs, but I don't.
     
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