I figured out why my serve is lame

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by arche3, Nov 13, 2013.

  1. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Sam Groth ='s a real live Dolph Lundgren
     
    #51
  2. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    He looks scary.
     
    #52
  3. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    It is regimen
     
    #53
  4. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    Orly? Thanks.
     
    #54
  5. bblue777

    bblue777 Banned

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    Is Arche3 actually computer rated, or you are saying 4.5 just because he 'plays with junior coaches'?
     
    #55
  6. dominikk1985

    dominikk1985 Legend

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    I bump my post about scapula flexibility because you have not adressed it:). tightness in the muscles around the scap can limit shoulder flexibility. doing some work on that area might be an easy way do get a few degrees more ROM.
     
    #56
  7. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    I just looked at his serve in the video below and managed to stop the action (at 0:04) close to the deep part of his drop (not easy to stop at the right point w/o a slow-mo video). The tip of his racket was pretty much at waist level -- a very good drop in my book. His wrist was cocked and his ESR was generous. It could be that his motion is so fast when viewed in real time that it "seems" that his drop is not that deep. An optical illusion, if you will.
     
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  8. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    No such thing as perfect technique. Supernormal technique, even with substandard flexibility, can still yield decent to exceptional results.
     
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  9. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    I'm actually a computer rated 5.0. I played one season on a 4.5 team and went 8-0 in singles. I was moved out of 4.5. I don't play USTA anymore. I played tennis at a California D1 college tennis program for 2 years. I technically should not have played 4.5. But the captain had me self rate at 4.5 and say I didn't play college tennis. The club hosting the team gave me a free winter/indoor season of tennis to play on their team.

    Don't hate the playa hate the game.
     
    #59
  10. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    I tried some stretches today. The throwers ten routine. I am very stiff all around my shoulder. Perhaps your right.
     
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  11. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Very few posters overestimate their level of play.
    Some exceptions of course. MMI?
     
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  12. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    I'm just trying to maximize my serve speed. Get some free points. I have decent but not great serve.
     
    #62
  13. TomT

    TomT Hall of Fame

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    I'm supposing that "racket drop" refers to the 'backscratch' position. I have a certain interest in this because at my age and with my physical limitations I think it's pretty much impossible for me to get any more of a racket drop than I already do.

    In the pictures linked to, it appears that my forearm is at around 3 o'clock at close to the max drop position. The OP said that his was around 1 o'clock max, which does seem much too high to get max speed. But if he's hitting serves at 100mph anyway, it doesn't seem like a huge problem to me (ie., at 4.5 and even higher a well placed 100mph serve can be very hard to handle, and would seem to be sufficient to get you into the point at least). I would love to have a 100mph serve.

    Disregarding that my racket head at the max drop position is angled less than optimally (due to me using an Eastern grip and hitting flat 'frying pan' serves), here's a really short vid (18 sec) of a couple of serves. For each serve there's the serve in real time, half speed slow mo, and then a picture of the racket drop for that serve. I think that the racket drop actually goes a little bit lower than the pictures show, but this is the lowest I could capture with my 30fps vidcam.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5sT1IpeuwVM
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2013
    #63
  14. TomT

    TomT Hall of Fame

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    I also feel that I'm hitting the ball harder with the same or less effort the more sideways I am. But it will take a lot of practice to groove that into a confident and consistent serve.
     
    #64
  15. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    Your not quite flat at 3 pm but it is very close? Splitting hairs. Yeah your shoulder is very flexible. I can't do that at all, how old are you and what are you eating lol., ?
     
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  16. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    What I don't understand is why TomT stands out wide 2 steps, but his opponent's fails to compensate the like amount of distance?
     
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  17. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    Oops! Forgot to include the link:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zXwidDE_TFA
     
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  18. TomT

    TomT Hall of Fame

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    This is 3.0 tennis LeeD. Give us a break. :)
     
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  19. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Actually, smarts starts at the bottom, and get's smarter as you move up..
     
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  20. TomT

    TomT Hall of Fame

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    Ok, so the main problem is a lack of shoulder flexibility. I think I understand now. It doesn't seem like you're going to be able to get more pace than you currently do. But, let's face it, a consistent 100mph serve can take you a pretty long way.

    I'm about to turn 66. I eat a home cooked diet of whole foods. Lots of meat and veggies. Not too much carbs, and no processed stuff. I also drink way too much coffee and smoke lots of cigarettes each day.

    I doubt that any of that has anything to do with shoulder flexibility though. The age thing might be correlated to arthritis and similar problems, but I don't seem to have anything like that.

    How old are you? Have you had any indications of arthritis or other movement inhibiting chronic conditions?
     
    #70
  21. TomT

    TomT Hall of Fame

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    If that's the case, then I'm in worse trouble than I thought. 3.5 is looking really far away right now. :)
     
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  22. TomT

    TomT Hall of Fame

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    At 0:33 it looks like his drop is very low. His forearm is a bit lower than 3 o'clock, and his racket is perpendicular to his forearm. His motion is so fast that it's hard to catch it at the right spot, but 0:33 is at or very close to the max drop I think. Nice serve!
     
    #72
  23. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    Actually pretty decent racket head drop. Have you considered switching from your eastern grip to a semi-continental? It should get you more forearm pronation, a bit more pop on your 1st serves and more spin on your 2nd serves.
     
    #73
  24. TomT

    TomT Hall of Fame

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    I've tried it, but it hurts my hand/wrist around the base of my thumb for some reason. Probably doing something(s) wrong. A guy in our league who has a decent topspin serve said he would help me with it during the offseason.
     
    #74
  25. TomT

    TomT Hall of Fame

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    @arche3,
    So far there doesn't seem to be a way to add pace to your serve, other than just swinging harder, or maybe following LeeD's suggestion to turn your body more.

    But again, consistent at 100mph is way more than just decent, imho.

    Anyway, good FYI thread on the shoulder flexibility issue and how it's limiting your serve speed vis less than optimal racket drop.
     
    #75
  26. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Problem here is, Arche3 is a solid 4.5, able to play in the 5.0's on good days, and often faces serves well into the 115's. Would be nice for him to get some easy points, get some soft high returns, so he can start the point on the offense.
    Worse, he's been a 4.5 for lots of years, and it's probably somewhat frustrating to see what his peers are doing with a little more pop, while he needs to work harder to win points....long rallies, more running, deeper shots, more concentration, all of which is WORK, not fun play. A 125 heater is fun play, if it goes in where it's supposed to.
     
    #76
  27. bblue777

    bblue777 Banned

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    Guys I am amazed by all the fantasy talk.

    Has ANYBODY seen Arche3's serves? or his play for that matter? Has anybody actually hit with him?

    I read some of his recent posts. His tennis knowledge (or the lack of) would put him between 3.0 and 3.5, which is why I didn't think he can beat LeeD.
     
    #77
  28. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Hey, I get flak from him as much as ANYone else, but I respect is play level, because he's not lying.
    Yes, think he posted hitting vids at some really nice ATP courts.
     
    #78
  29. bblue777

    bblue777 Banned

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    Where is the video?
     
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  30. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    "where is the video"...
    Hey, I'm basically a homeless person, no computer, no camera, no TV, don't pay rent, drive a 1979 Ford van, and live on 560 a month, I know little about computers.
     
    #80
  31. bblue777

    bblue777 Banned

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    Actually - I plan to do something like that in a few years.

    Minimalism rocks!

    I don't think such 'video' exists. He seems to be shying away when I asked him to show his serves.
     
    #81
  32. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Benefit of doubt.
    HE says his serve needs retooling. No reason to show a work in progress. Showing his old serves would only make us pick apart something out of history, and won't help him in any way.
    Suffice to say, he's VERY consistent at 4.5, a little stiff in his strokes, really good posture and balance, and obviously trained for many years.
     
    #82
  33. bblue777

    bblue777 Banned

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    Is there computer records of 4.5, or is it just hear-say?
     
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  34. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    I posted a video when I first joined ttw. After 20+ years off from tennis. It's just me working on fhs against a wall. I asked for what I can do to increase pace on my fhs. It's probably my first 10 posts on ttw. It's a youtube video and you can see my hitting and movement after 20 years off tennis. Pretty sure still much better than your hackness. Just search my posts. I have no desire to post anything else frankly because the people I would want critique from don't post crirltiques.

    I used my smart phone and windows movie maker to do it. It's just a link and probably still active if you can find the post. It was just at a park. I set my phone on my tennis bag. Pretty clear video though.
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2013
    #84
  35. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    In the CIA and FBI computes there is my juniors and college tennis records. USTA computers were not secure enough for my uber tennis so the NSA had to remove them for reasons of national security.
     
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  36. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    If you post a video of your hackness I will find the link of my video on ttw for you. Or find it yourself. Kinda weird your all hung up on my tennis on a tennis forum.
     
    #86
  37. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    Arche3 -"Your honour.....Some random ttw hack needs my tennis records. "

    Judge Judy- "interesting.... Very interesting. Have you considered a restraining order?"
     
    #87
  38. Topspin Shot

    Topspin Shot Legend

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    Where is your video? I'm curious to see it. You can e-mail it to me if you like.
     
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  39. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    It's on ttw. A link. I'll find it tomorrow if the hack doesn't find it for me.
     
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  40. Avles

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    #90
  41. Topspin Shot

    Topspin Shot Legend

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    Good stuff, arche! One tip to help your forehand: have you ever tried swinging the human racket? :twisted:
     
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  42. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    Lol. So funny.

    This thread was basically I suck at my serve. And some hack comes on here and challenges me to show my serve to prove how good my serve is? Didnt I just say it sucks?
    I know I'm not a great tennis player but I'm not so bad I need to lie about my tennis on ttw to make myself feel better about my skills.

    From the time of that wall video my game has improves 5x over. I was just back to tennis after 20 plus years off. I have a right to be a bit stiff and rusty. But the first day I got on a court after 20 or so years off from tennis I could still hit the ball fine.
     
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  43. bblue777

    bblue777 Banned

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    5X over that wouldn't be too good really.... I doubt arche3 can beat Lee.

    Anyway - what's the point of asking for serve advice without showing it.. The reason you can only serve 80 mph (REAL mph, instead of the inflated radar mph), is probably due to some other flaws.

    You look flexible enough to me. Racket drop can NOT be the issue.
     
    #93
  44. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    Based on your hackness you obviously an expert in my physical condition. It's the overhead shoulder motion I have flexability issues with. Not ground strokes. Thanks for your hack advice.

    And I never said I can or can't beat anyone. Although I'm pretty sure I can beat you 0 and 0. Left handed.

    Where is your video? Oh right.... you can't keep up more than 2 balls in a row. So it's hard to video constantly picking up tennis balls. Prove me wrong and shoot and post your own video.

    I didn't ask for advice in this thread. I posted my friend a tennis pro told me my serve issue. You can't read? Read my original post.

    I think you would be lucky to serve 25 mph and 40 mph on your ground strokes. Why don't you show us? Or will you be "shy"??? Hack.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2013
    #94
  45. Chas Tennis

    Chas Tennis Hall of Fame

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    For your research -

    Site with some discussion of shoulder flexibility.
    http://zachdechant.wordpress.com/tag/shoulder-mobility/

    About external shoulder rotation stretching

    "The one thing we don’t want to emphasize is any external rotation stretching. The anterior capsule is already loose enough due to the nature of their skill. When we stretch we are concerned with increasing movement through internal rotation."

    Study the article to see the application - just to baseball pitchers who are too tight? etc.
     
    #95
  46. TomT

    TomT Hall of Fame

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    Looking at his wall hitting vid I have no doubt that he could pop 120mph serves if his shoulder movement wasn't so restricted. But it is, at least for the time being. So, two questions come to mind. First, is there anything that a player with shoulder flexibility problems can do to increase that flexibilty without taking too much of a chance of making it worse (ie., with a comfortable safety margin)? And second, if the answer to that question is no, then can he still develop his game to the extent that regularly successful 5.0-5.5 level results is a reasonable goal within, say, a year or so?

    I would say yes, just based on the wall hitting that I saw, and my belief that well-placed, and speed and spin variable serves averaging around 100mph is good enough to do it.

    I'm thinking here about some of the all time best pitchers in baseball that were not able to throw overpowering fastballs. They beat batters by keeping them guessing using variable speeds, spins, and placements.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2013
    #96
  47. dominikk1985

    dominikk1985 Legend

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    #97
  48. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    TomT, several things...
    Turn more sideways at prep position.
    Lean forwards, so you lean forwards using your ab crunch as you swing.
    Adjust swingpath more in line with the target.
    Swing fast.
    That last is the biggest MISunderstood part of serving. Every vid shows a guy with decent form swinging away at 60% swingspeed.
    With 60, you get a weak flat serve your opponent swings back at you.
    At 90, when it goes IN, you get a weak, mishit, blocked return.
     
    #98
  49. EP1998

    EP1998 Semi-Pro

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    I wouldnt qualify that as lame.
     
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  50. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    I wouldn't qualify 4.5 as lame, either.
    He's the best player at any playground or rec center court, has been trained at tennis, and used to play at a higher level.
     

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