Improving the first serve

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Mikael, Mar 28, 2011.

  1. Mikael

    Mikael Professional

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    What's up guys,

    My problem is the following:

    - I like my second serve. It's secure, it can have a high kick, impossible to attack, can even set up points from time to time.

    - My first serve is great when it's on. It's powerful, flat. However, my first serve percentage is most often too low and makes it impossible to breeze through my service games the way I'd like.

    I know the obvious answer: "don't go so flat on the first serve when it's not on, put some topspin on it".

    The problem is, I'm unable to find that middle range where the serve is still fairly flat but with some topspin thrown in to make it more consistent. It's like either I go all out on the spin and hit a second serve or I go all out on the pace and hit a first serve. I find the swing patterns are too different and I can't do anything in between.

    Here's a vid of me serving. It's 1y and a half old but I don't think my mechanics have changed too much. 2 first serves then 2 second serves, ironically the only one I miss is a second serve.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X8RNlyPtu-U

    So there. I'd love to develop a first serve that goes in like 70% of the time, maybe not as hard but still pretty hard and with some spin on it. Kind of like what Roddick can do (but 5 levels lower!)

    Thanks for any constructive input...
     
    #1
  2. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    First of all, you never stop to set your motion, so you never load up your windup to explode into the ball. You go from one swing to another like IlieNastase, who's also never sets, but you know, he's a PRO.
    Stop, wait, load, explode.
    You gotta swing faster.
    You finish differently for each of your first two serves.
    Seems a compromise would be swinging as fast as you can, but hit a spin serve...:shock::shock: more body movement into court, more leg explosion, more faster swing, high elbow finish like one of your first serves.
    And be serious, nobody who hits a real forcing first serve get's anywhere near 70% IN. 50 in a match if fantastic.
     
    #2
  3. Mikael

    Mikael Professional

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    Thanks Lee.

    70% first serves I think is what Roddick achieves routinely, although correct me if I'm wrong (maybe closer to 60!). He gets these amazing first serve % precisely because of the spin he puts on the first serve. I know I'm not a pro but it's something to strive for...

    Points well taken on the faster swing and loading up more. To be honest I was being a little lackadaisical I think as they were practice serves (hence going from one serve to another quickly). I have to add some leg drive though, you're right about that.
     
    #3
  4. Mikael

    Mikael Professional

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    #4

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