Having shoulder pain on serves.... I need to fix my mechanics!

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by mnttlrg, Aug 27, 2012.

  1. mnttlrg

    mnttlrg New User

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    I don't know if it's possible to get actual tennis instruction on here, but I thought I'd give it a try.

    I like to hit big, powerful serves with heavy control rackets. I have tried using lighter rackets but I can't stand hitting with them from the baseline.

    Over the years, I have developed some serious shoulder pain that can go anywhere from the front by my pec around to the back and all the way to my shoulder blade. The reason I get this is because of my stroke mechanic. I use too much of my arm and not enough wrist. I toss way out in front of me and sometimes I even wrench my lower back.

    I am wondering if there is a way to adjust my delivery to still be able to attack but not strain my shoulder so much.... For example, would I have less pain if I hit more to the left or right, higher or lower, using slice or behind my head or maybe even set up my wrist in some way to get more snap / support....

    Is it better for a shoulder to hit a kick serve, slice serve, or a flat serve?

    I would love to see a video or something. I have considered getting a lesson with a pro, as long as it's someone who can work with a big server.

    Anywho, I'd love some thoughts. Thanks, everyone! :)
     
    #1
  2. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    More important, you post a vid.
    Plenty of serving vids on Youtube.
    I think body should be straight at impact, from knees to hand.
    You're probably trying to serve too fast, throwing your shoulder out of kink.
    The rackethead speed should come from the pronation movement thru the wrist, not from your hand speed.
    Think....when you crack a whip, you slow down your hand to allow the whip to go past, accelerate, then you back the hand to achieve supersonic speeds.
    Tennis serve is similar, not the same.
     
    #2
  3. directionals

    directionals Rookie

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    #3
  4. mnttlrg

    mnttlrg New User

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    Thanks for the replies!

    Good idea, I will record my serve and post a vid for you. That way you can tell me what I appear to be messing up.
     
    #4
  5. sphinx780

    sphinx780 Professional

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    A vid would help and also check out the health and fitness section. There's a wealth of info on shoulder injuries and how to help protect it once you're cleared from a doctor to keep playing instead of causing permanent damage.
     
    #5
  6. sansaephanh

    sansaephanh Professional

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    I have the same problem. I've been working on it with little success. I've tried the federer form and really like it because it helped me load my trophy pose in a slightly more efficiently, allowing me to cartwheel better and get my left shoulder down.

    But the toss is throwing me off like crazy. It's hard to get it just right.
     
    #6
  7. Chas Tennis

    Chas Tennis Hall of Fame

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    This Todd Ellenbecker video is the best detailed description of shoulder issues that I have found. At minute 8 he describes the orientation to hold your shoulder in serving to minimize the risk of impingement (similar to the Jim McLennan video advice in Reply #3).

    http://www.tennisresources.com/index.cfm?area=video_detail&vidid=3712&ATT=&reso=hi

    There are many recent shoulder injury discussions in the Health & Fitness Forum. Use to inform yourself but it is a very risky approach to diagnose or treat yourself based on the internet.

    I have read that with shoulder pain you can be doing damage without much pain so take it very seriously. Some swelling
    may also be present that might make any mechanics painful.

    Best to stop and see a Dr.

    For mechanics you need to study the serve, video your own serve (60p fps video can be useful but high speed/fast shutter is excellent). A well qualified instructor who can coach the serve is a good idea. In any case, you should especially not be experimenting with your serve if injured. Can one bad motion tear something?
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2012
    #7

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