Has anyone on the board learned to hit 130mph serves?

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by kiteboard, Mar 19, 2011.

  1. kiteboard

    kiteboard Hall of Fame

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    I can only hit about 106 right now.
     
  2. pvaudio

    pvaudio Legend

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    Not even close. A year ago when I was using the below motion, I had it clocked at 119 max. I'm not using anything similar to that motion now, (about 100-105 now on average I'd estimate), but having worked for years solely on my serve, my newest one is by far and away the best I've ever had. Every opponent I've played against has commented that it has a lot of pace, not that it's fast. It's the action on the ball coupled with good speed that makes it difficult to return.

    But anyway, here's some ~110mph flat serves from a year ago. The one at 0:52 is a pretty solid flat serve. Note the one immediately thereafter: it's not a flat serve. It's moving about in the air and when it land, skids off and away. Spin is your friend, trust me :)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ol9rrVCPcG8
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2011
  3. Kevo

    Kevo Hall of Fame

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    If you really want to break 130mph, here is my advice. Get a small sledge hammer (4lb.) and pound metal stakes into the ground for about 3 hours every other day. Make sure to use 6ft stakes so that a lot of shoulder work is necessary in the hammering. It will be much easier to hit big serves after all this work. Please be careful and don't overdo it though. The potential for injury is certainly there. Also wear eye protection. Metal chips in the eyes are no fun at all.
     
  4. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    I'll rate Pvaudio over most everyone else, but with all that spin, barely 100's if that.
    I'll rate Kiteboard above all so far, but not above TennisBalla, GraniteChief, or JonnyS/V.
    Problem with all the excuses is they can be added afterwards. Why serve with old flat balls, when you're injured and sick, on a cold night, and say it's an example of your serves? You're bound to be called on it when you claim an excess of 100.
    Certainly, you'll be called when you claim into the 120's which is pretty fast for a very flawed motion by a very skinny guy. Not flawed, just no high elbow finish, no real fast handspeed, no body moving forwards.
     
  5. pvaudio

    pvaudio Legend

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    People have no idea just how fast a 120MPH serve is, and I mean they really don't. I was super fat as a kid, so I had to focus on trying to serve as fast as possible just to stay in a match. It worked, but then I blew out my shoulder. It's now years later that I've been working endlessly to get the most fluid motion possible, and I can say this: fluid = fast. The motion in the video is not fluid nor does it use my body effectively. Now, however, I can. It's all about making a chain of events happen in your body in perfect succession. If you've got that, it doesn't matter how big you are: you can serve like a monster. If you don't have that, then you won't.

    Even now that I do have a very fluid motion (which I haven't videoed yet :( :( ) from endless pages of tips from TTers here in my "improve serve" thread, I don't hardly ever serve flat anymore. There's no point unless you want to impress a girl, and even then, it usually backfires. People may come up to you and say "man, your serve is so fast!" which makes you feel nice inside, but then you have to stop and think about how many serves were "just long" or "just wide" or into the net, whereas if you had added a nice dash of topspin, they would have been in and even harder to return. Just food for thought for those hellbent on max serve speed from someone who's been there and thrown out that same mindset :)
     
  6. dozu

    dozu Banned

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    that's why I told Hunter, playing whack-a-mole will help his serve.
     
  7. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Sure, convention says that a moderately fast topspin serve does a good job of WINNING the point, or setting up the winner.
    But tennis is about more than just winning, sometimes tennis is about improvement, sometimes fun, sometimes to get the cobwebs out, and plenty other reasons.
    I play tennis for art form. I care little about winning or losing, but of course, would rather win than lose. But hitting great shots takes precedence over hitting more traditional "safe" shots.
    The first shot you think of as a "great" shot would be the fast first serve.
    Maybe a real pro level forehand is the next, and the perfect low backhand volley can follow afterwards, but it all starts with the first flat serve.
    If you can hit it so no one returns it, the better. If you never hit it, you will never make it better. If you never hit it during a match, it will never be good.
    So I say, a BALANCE is needed. Doesn't mean to avoid hitting flat serves, doesn't mean to ONLY hit flat first serves.
    And if your (mine) flat serves barely go 115, better to mix in some slow slices and kicking tops to make the first serve SEEM fast when you finally choose to use it. I say, a 115 is useless because nobody is afraid of it.
     
  8. pvaudio

    pvaudio Legend

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    Almost without hesitation, if I'm up by two points on my serve aka 30-0, 40-15, etc. I will throw in a slice serve out wide or a kick into the curtain. When it's gone in, it has won me the point nearly every time. So I agree with you: placement and variety >>>> speed.
     
  9. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Almost without hesistion, if I"M ahead by two points, I'll throw in my fastest flat first serve to impress myself. Normally, I'll need the safe second, which is the serve you really have to face if you play me.
     
  10. DownTheLine

    DownTheLine Hall of Fame

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    This was after about 10-12 balls of warm up.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IHZbXq6R7XA

    All in besides the 2nd serve on the far side. I've been making some adjustments to my serves I'll post another video and I'll bring back this post for you guys to compare.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2011
  11. pvaudio

    pvaudio Legend

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    Two things in order of precedence. First, keep your tossing arm up for longer. It will help you to load up your lower body more and get you to attack that ball with a vengeance. Secondly, you're salsa dancing on the baseline! If you're going to use a pinpoint stance, make one movement: the slide from platform to pinpoint. You're taking numerous steps and THEN sliding your rear foot forward. You're losing so much energy just by doing that.
     
  12. DownTheLine

    DownTheLine Hall of Fame

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    I've never looked into the tossing arm, but now I will!

    The feet...Well lets just say that problem has been cursing me for about 5 months. I have made decent progress since late Jan. Which I thought I was further along before the video, but now that I've seen it I really need to work on it.

    Thank you for your advice!
     
  13. kiteboard

    kiteboard Hall of Fame

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    Dtl, I'd say those are about 110-119, faster than other vids here with the fastest arm movement posted so far. Pv, I'd say those are about 100-110. Fun to see the vids, though. Bringing the right foot around in front like Lendl did causes hamstring issues. Does your left ham hurt after serving?
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2011
  14. bad_call

    bad_call Legend

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    good serve pace which i think qualifies you for the cfl chapter. let me bring it up with the other peeps and get a vote. :)
     
  15. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Nice live arm, you and PVaudio should have a serving contest.
    Cure for left foot is to place more weight on it, as there is no need to rock that far back when you serve. Guys like Roddick hardly rock back at all, using a modified platform stance, and still get ballspeed.
    You rock well back, then move forwards sorta ....gingerly. You make it well into the court, but not as much as your footwork woulde indicate.
    A little more sideways would have rotation added to your serve, then you can flatten it out with (if you want) a grip closer to eForehand side of conti OR just more pronation.
    Notice where your racket finishes, when it stops after ball strike. High up is very good, not near the ankle, but look at the angle, indicating sidespin had been applied.
    If you like your serves now with top/slice or pure top, your serve is just fine.
     
  16. pvaudio

    pvaudio Legend

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    Who knows, you could be right and since I couldn't care less how fast I serve anymore, I'll assume that you are :)
     
  17. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Yeah, better to give up on trying to improve first flat serve speed, because it's not important in your development as a tennis player. We already agreed that at our levels, a well placed 3/4 speed spin can win more points than missing a heater.
     
  18. kiteboard

    kiteboard Hall of Fame

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    I adjusted my estimates and edited them not before you quoted me, though! That would be like giving up on hope. HOpe is: The unreasoning belief that you will be able to hit 130mph flat serves, no matter how many times you fail trying!
     
  19. shissncg

    shissncg Rookie

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    I've hit 133 in a cage (Pilot Pen 2003). Best on court serve that I know of was 127 with one of those cheap radar boxes placed at the net. Speed has declined over the past few years (125 in the cage at Indian Wells 2005) and I can probably just barely break 120 now. I was a pitcher from age 10 to 21 so I did a lot of throwing, though not incredibly fast (maybe 80mph). The biggest factor in a fast serve are racquet speed (you need a loose arm and it helps to have good trunk rotation).
     
  20. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Of course, it's the PURSUIT of perfection that keeps tennis interesting and fun.
    I have friends who play as often as I do, or triple, who think WINNING is the ultimate feedback from playing tennis. They hit spin serves, they never try new shots, they stay back and do what they already know how to do....like 5 years ago.
    Me, I'm constantly pounding my first flats, like to vary my returns from chips to heavy tops, move during EVERY shot, and try new things like ad court twists and duece court low sliders...which I DON'T have, just to spice up the game.
    You are free to play tennis for whatever rewards float your boat. Me, it's artform, the pursuit of better, which of course, will never be achieved.
     
  21. cdubdub

    cdubdub Rookie

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    leed, i know what the problem is. i didnt claim that i could hit 120. i barely ever even hit flat anymore. i meant to say that the 1 singles player on my team can go above 120, NOT me. sorry about that confusion. Ive had people tell me that some of my best serves have been 110 or 115, but thats with new balls and +60 degree weather. I am pretty sure i do have the high elbow finish now, i now put my hip forward, but i sometimes have a tendency for my leg to kick randomly somewhere. how do i fix that exactly.
     
  22. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Kicking the leg randomly out to the side is not the worst thing, so instead of concentrating on that, I'd work on swingspeed, slowing the hand at impact, getting more twist or ab crunch into the solid serve you already have, and consistently moving well into the court during the ball strike.
    Problem is, this thread is about going past "130", and WE don't do that by including some top/slice into our first serves. Every one of you, from RoddickAce, SuperDuy, PVaudio, DTL, and you, have good service motions, but NONE of you seem to hit for speed!
    This thread is about speed, not percentage of winning serves.
    Even Nadal, with a medium speed serve, hits dead flat AT TIMES, to vary with his usual heavy top/slice first serve placements. You guys need BOTH serves, not just a 85% speed top/slice serve for your first serves.
     
  23. kiteboard

    kiteboard Hall of Fame

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    Remember Forget, and his "Kick the pony" leg motion during serve? He and Bartoli with her open the door motions are comical, "Did you see that?", motions. I hit some reverse spin kick to the right flat serves a couple of days ago, caused by pronation.
     
  24. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Geoff, do you think my g/f looks like MarionBartoli?
    I mentioned it on another thread up by the pro section.
    MarionBartoli with bigger, rounder, kinder eyes, but a mean streak just the same inside.....:(
     
  25. anontennis

    anontennis New User

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    LeeD: Not everyone posts about their own games. I would bet we have a few lurkers or folk who stick to other sections of the forums that can serve that big.

    Heck, I would wager that I could get my serve up to 130 by the end of the summer. Only equipment I have that could measure it is the FPS from a video though.
     
  26. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    127 with radar at the net is well above 130, when compared to how pro serves are clocked.
     
  27. peoplespeace

    peoplespeace Semi-Pro

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    i believe u, i was kinda joking, they looked into the net but i honestly didnt think that anybody(?!) would post a rate-my-serve-vid with two serves into the net, unless it was a joke, which it could have been given ur head gear :)
     
  28. dozu

    dozu Banned

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    Bartoli is hot.
     
  29. peoplespeace

    peoplespeace Semi-Pro

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    since u guys are asking so nicely how my atp point quest is comming along, i can say that im more optimistic than ever.... no kiddin.....first of all im far far better today than i am i those vids i posted a few months ago, and saying that, im not even thinking about shots into the net but comparing with the proper shots in the vids...but i will admit that i would not today claim that i was a 5.0 then, but i would claim that im a 5.0 today.

    I haver never i my life been as optimistic about achieving a goal as i am about the atp points and not outperformed my goal, usually when i "only" reach my goal i will¨ve been rather pessimistic as to wether i will reach it or not. So far one very corageous guy has promised his house, girlfriend, bank account, and tennis gear if(when) i reach my 5 atp points in 5 yrs and i look forward to testing the merchandice.....
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2011
  30. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Personally, I wouldn't say exactly that. But she's OK. Imagine her with bigger, rounder eyes, slightly curlier hair, and you got twins.
    Hot is Jessica Alba.
     
  31. dozu

    dozu Banned

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    yo, the freshly minted 5.0, how bout a video poll vs. a 3.5

    and the question of the poll will be, if the 3.5 will win 0 and 0; in other words, if the collective wisdom of TT thinks you can win 1 game over 2 sets,you win the poll.

    are we on? :)
     
  32. Andres

    Andres G.O.A.T.

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  33. dozu

    dozu Banned

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  34. peoplespeace

    peoplespeace Semi-Pro

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    TW told me to ignore u, however, before i reply, who is smarter, me or ur six yr old?
     
  35. dozu

    dozu Banned

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    what does that have to do with anything?
     
  36. peoplespeace

    peoplespeace Semi-Pro

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    plenty.....
     
  37. kiteboard

    kiteboard Hall of Fame

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    I'd say she is better looking than Bartoli, who looks more serious, and sadder, shorter less curly hair, smaller breasts, never smiles like your girl. She has a smile like a beam of light, unless you **** her off, then it's the van for the night! Seems like the type to kick you with her feet, out of the bed.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2011
  38. kiteboard

    kiteboard Hall of Fame

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  39. wy2sl0

    wy2sl0 Hall of Fame

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    I calculated between 97-100 on my serve (the second one in the video, I am only 120 lbs, 5'8") and my friend around 107 mph (he is 6'6' 240 lbs).

    I haven't hit a serve that well in awhile, maybe once every 5 matches.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JJ0_k_2ty4c

    My racquet is so quiet, weird.
     
  40. SoBad

    SoBad Legend

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    I hate maths but I appreciate people who love them, but I see where you are going with this maybe. By the way Berankis and Nishikori could be the greatest of all time and hit 130mph+ serves or just really good spin and placement or both and you never know.
     
  41. Fuji

    Fuji Legend

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    I have a pretty lame serve. I'm too embarrassed to post my speeds! Lets just say I go for placement over power. I don't want to hurt anyone I'm playing doubles with, with my immense power.... :D

    -Fuji

    By the way, I totally envy anyone who can actually hit 120+, that is some serious firepower you have there! I'm growing right now though, so maybe this season I'll be able to clock a bit higher then average!

    -Fuji
     
  42. DownTheLine

    DownTheLine Hall of Fame

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    How fast do you guys think mine was?

    Top post on page 9
     
  43. NinjaKiwi

    NinjaKiwi Banned

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    Could you please explain a bit on second half of your first sentence?

    Of course, I have no doubt that both players are good tennis players if they hit good spin. In your thread, I was trying to figure out your standard point of view for both players because I have one vote. I am not sure who i should vote for at this time. Pretty much so, I tend to go for Nishikori but I need some evidences to back up my statement-Nishikori is the one. Also, It's not fair for Beranki because I couldn't dig out much information about him via goodgle. Don't get wrong of me, I don't like argument at all.
     
  44. SoBad

    SoBad Legend

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    Well, it would probably be inappropriate for me and judicial misconduct almost to influence votes in that thread. Nishikori is supremely talented obviously and has the signature airgroundies, and Berankis is as well and won US Open Jr slam, and was on the verge of winning the US Open 2010 singles title, but there was a lot of gamesmanship cheating, bad umpire, and great Nadal of course. It’s your decision to make.
     
  45. fluffy Beaver

    fluffy Beaver Professional

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    I noticed you only posted kick/twist in this vid (and it's your most recent), but even going for flat out huge serves I can't picture you coming even close to 127 mph yet alone 120+ mph.

    For thise interested

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JeDX7TKsukE&feature=channel_video_title
     
  46. Devilito

    Devilito Hall of Fame

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    Some of the videos people post are better of not even being posted. What did some of you guys use, a rusted out 8mm camera you found buried under your deck? :p

    And show the entire court. If we can't see where the ball lands its impossible to judge a shot :)
     
  47. kiteboard

    kiteboard Hall of Fame

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  48. kiteboard

    kiteboard Hall of Fame

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    Fastest posted so far, about 110-119mph
     
  49. kiteboard

    kiteboard Hall of Fame

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    More like about 81mph. 30-40mph slower than dtl. Hey, dtl, get yourself radared. Fastest arm speed on the board.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2011
  50. Netspirit

    Netspirit Hall of Fame

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    Mine are ~70 mph, measured with a cheap radar. I guess I am man enough to admit that I have no serve (does not hurt me at my level at all, though, since 3.5 players generally cannot attack a weak serve effectively).

    I never practiced it though, I do not work out, sometimes do not play for months in winter, so no surprises here.

    I have no idea if my average serve will ever break 85mph. I guess it should be possible, if I take it seriously.

    I have noticed that "trying to arm it" with the shoulder does not help, but slapping the ball with the wrist (actively pronating) adds about 5mph on average. When I serve with a lighter racket, I get 5mph more.

    Observation: the ball bounces twice before hitting the standard back fence. I believe it will only bounce once once the flat serve speed reaches 80mph.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2011

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