Ladies, How Are We Feeling About Our Serves?

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Cindysphinx, Feb 7, 2011.

  1. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Do you think the women on this thread are ever going to serve or receive at 100 mph? Why is it important to them that the pro be able to do this?
     
  2. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    Exactly.

    What is most important when a woman is seeking a pro for rec tennis, IMHO, is whether the pro understands that she is not just a shorter version of a man.

    I've seen *SO* many pros in my day. Whether the pro can serve well is irrelevant. What matters is whether the pro has a good eye. Whether he can look at you hitting and figure out what one problem should be addressed first that will deliver the most payoff for effort expended.

    Cindy -- whose very best pro was a guy 5 feet, 4 inches tall whose serve was far from a weapon but who was amazing at figuring out how female students could play better tennis
     
  3. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    Hey, TennisLady! Glad to see you back!

    Yeah, it sounds like we have a lot in common. I've never really gone for heavier rackets (I think my Aeoropro drive is 10 oz plus strings) -- I think it would slow my swing speed too much.

    Thanks for the good words on the kicker. I am at that stage where I can hit it great with a pro standing next to me, but the minute I am in a match it all falls apart.

    We'll have weather in the mid-50s next week, so I will go out and do some sustained and focused practice. I think I felt something click today -- the feeling of exploding upward. Also, my pro gave me the visual image of using the racket head to strike a match, and that helped. Gotta get it squared away by Tuesday!!!
     
  4. AtomicForehand

    AtomicForehand Hall of Fame

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    I do have a flat bomb for a first serve that I regularly get aces with against the women--and usually even ace the men a couple of times per mixed-doubles match. It's all in the toss. It must be both high and a good bit in front of you, so that you are at maximum stretch when you hit the ball and so that your body weight with the swing carries you forward into the court as you finish the stroke. Think trophy position as you start.

    BTW, I hit this first serve with something very close to a forehand grip, which you're not supposed to do.
     
  5. Topaz

    Topaz Legend

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    ***disclaimer - I have not read the entire thread. So, sorry if I mention something that has been covered ad nauseam.***

    I had the classic 'fry pan' serve for a very, very long time. A lot of work, pain, sweat, and tears went into changing that. Now I have a serve that is very consistent, but not a weapon. I use a continental grip unless I'm looking to kick it to the ad court, then I move it over a bit. My kick is not a weapon at all, again, just consistent. If my opponent is a women with a 'chopper' one hand BH, I will use my 'kick' as a first serve to her on the ad court (out high and wide to her BH). I don't have a slice, or at least, not something I would classify as a slice.

    The things that I think are right about my serve - I'm finally keeping my arm loose, and just working on 'throwing' the racquet (just this morning my pro had my throwing tennis balls to get that feeling). I think I'm doing a good job of moving into the court as I serve as well. I often land on my left foot into the court (but not always!).

    My focus for my serve will continue to be consistency and placement, and then work on adding power. I did have one ace in my last match, and I was going for it...but just thinking more about swinging fast and hitting out.

    Have we discussed toss??? The toss is incredibly important...I actually practice inside sometimes just tossing the tennis ball.

    I'm 5'4", so I feel the pain of the 'shorties' in this thread. For fitness and strength, I've been doing crossfit since the summer, and I also run. Cross fit has helped my explosiveness *tremendously*! My trainer knows I play tennis and tailors my workouts appropriately.
     
  6. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    I have this question for women ....and "weak" serving men also.

    It's hard to serve anywhere near the pro's level in term of strength, but shouldn't we (me included) be able to serve correctly and within our strength?

    It shouldn't make any difference if you were a woman or not, right?
     
  7. Topaz

    Topaz Legend

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    Of course. Was this ever in question?
     
  8. eliza

    eliza Guest

    Topaz, never heard of a frying pan serve!! I am so happy to share my tears with you, last time I was playing against a Walkiria ( I mean it, she must have been 6'2"and 300lbs) and I felt my wrist shaddering........
    Two questions: 1) how do you loosen up the arm?
    2) what kind of cross-fit exercises did help?
    To 92626: not a Serena's serve, but like 105.......pleaaassseeee.
     
  9. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    What is a Walkiria? I have only heard of Amazons.

    A frying pan serve is a flat serve with a forehand grip.
     
  10. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    With a little time in the sport, anyone can learn to serve slowly without mistakes.

    The challenge is to serve correctly at the level you are playing at. Inevitably, we go for more and more, and mistakes and DFs creep in.
     
  11. AtomicForehand

    AtomicForehand Hall of Fame

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    I just got back from a clinic with four other women that ended in some doubles matchplay. During my one service game, I hit two aces and one unreturnable on my first serve, hit one bomb first serve that was (sort of accidentally) blocked back for a winner, and twice missed my first serve and had to go to the second serve (one of which was not returned). The rest of the points my first serve was returned.

    Just wanted to post some mini-stats since this thread was on my mind...maybe they might be interesting to others.
     
  12. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    I have a mini-stat.

    I was doing 8.0 mixed practice. I started off hitting only kickers, and I was quickly broken. Ugh.

    Then I started being a bit more selective. To the guy who hit flat but inconsistent returns, I hit my kicker as a first serve. He missed them!!! I guess they looked too enticing. I also threw it in as a first serve change-up to the woman, and that worked will also.

    The hardest thing for me is remembering that I am not going for pace and I am not trying to drive it through the court. Just can't get it through my head . . . .
     
  13. eliza

    eliza Guest

    You do not realize it, but it just did. Great job!!!
     
  14. eliza

    eliza Guest

    I probably wrongly translated from Die Walkure (R. Wagner): Amazons were terrific soldiers (cavalry) too, but they were Greek, whereas I was referring to the Celtic-German tale of formidable (terrifying) female warriors.

    A former poster indicated that the first flat serve is powerful when the toss is high and in front, and you lean into the shot. HOW????
    I tried but I can't get any true power: I think I use my arm instead of all shoulder.......
     
  15. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    Oh, yeah. The toss.

    I had a bad, bad case of the toss yips last year. I had to toss so many times to get one I could hit. New Pro cured me, mostly. I have to go through my toss routine each time I toss, and it really helps.

    Anyway, nice job on changing to a conti grip, Topaz! It's so much easier once you get used to it, no? I know you are crazy busy, but if you've figured out how to hit a kick serve, you are an eyelash away from being able to hit a slice.

    Congratulations! I hope we have a chance to play on the same team. I think it might not happen this year, though. Stoopid 2-player rule looks like it will be a problem again . . .
     
  16. Topaz

    Topaz Legend

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    ^^^really? Even in DC? Are you captaining in MoCo again?
     
  17. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    Yes, I'm going to captain 3.5 in MOCO but I have a two player problem that will probably keep me off the Dc team.
     
  18. Topaz

    Topaz Legend

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    Well lets see if you end up needing players shall we?

    I, uh, won't be seeing you tomorrow either...if you get my drift.
     
  19. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    Yeah, same here. I'm on five teams, which means I can't play very often for any one team.
     
  20. Topaz

    Topaz Legend

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    I was pretty bummed actually...a Sunday morning match fits in my schedule perfectly. But there also aren't many matches this go 'round.
     
  21. zapvor

    zapvor Legend

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    i want to see cindy hit sometime!
     
  22. BPeeps

    BPeeps New User

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    my serve...

    Is actually one of my better shots, suprisingly. As a 39 year old woman, it's strangely gotten better over the years...and I'm not sure why. I guess the consistent playing over the past year has helped. I can put my serve in the area of the box that I want to, and I can feel at the moment of the toss whether it will go in or not. In matches I play, I tend to win a lot of points off of unreturnable serves and/or aces. I have no idea where this freakish ability came from...maybe it oozed into me from watching too many pro matches on tv :)

    Anyway, the problem was, I had no second serve...and I had to develop other ways not to get killed, i.e. a slice serve... I also find that as I've gotten more consistent in placing my first serve, I tend to take more risks on my second serve if I'm up in score or in games.

    I'm now bent on developing a kick serve. I think if I can pull that off, it will be a miracle.
     
  23. shell

    shell Professional

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    Oh, the serve thread is back!

    Let's see if it keeps rolling. My serve is a strength, but not nearly as much as I think it can be. Also working on that second serve kick/spin serve that would just make life easier.
     
  24. Topaz

    Topaz Legend

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    The thread and you, too, Shell!!!!
     
  25. AtomicForehand

    AtomicForehand Hall of Fame

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    Been working on a kick serve for my second serve. I've gotten it to the point lately where it bounces in the service box then kicks so much that it hits the back fence before the second bounce. Now to work on placing it!
     
  26. Spokewench

    Spokewench Semi-Pro

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    Wow, are you female? If you are, that is impressive. I'd love to have a serve like that.
     
  27. Spokewench

    Spokewench Semi-Pro

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    My serve is getting better again since the weather is improving and I can practice more. I took a lesson a few weeks back and that was the first time I worked on my serve with my new instructor. His comment was "you must do well with that serve."

    I was pretty surprised because I would not say my serve is my strongest point. But, of course, when I'm relaxed and not under pressure of a match, my serve is a lot better. I just need to be able to get myself to relax and let it loose when I am in a serious match!

    Don't think that will happen soon, but hopefully sooner than later.
     
  28. Fuji

    Fuji Legend

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    My girlfriend who I play mixed doubles with has one of the nastiest serves ever. I've gotten hit with her first serve once while we were just practicing and boy did that hurt. It felt like a MLB pitcher hit me LOL! Her first serve is a lot like Roddicks, with a bit less jump into the serve. She played Volleyball for 6 years before tennis and the skills transferred over! It is scary when her serve is a lot harder then mine!!! :)

    -Fuji
     
  29. AtomicForehand

    AtomicForehand Hall of Fame

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    Thanks, 'Wench. Yes, I am. My serve is often better than those of the guys we play in mixed. They *really* don't like getting aced by a girl. :) Just got back from a mixed match a few minutes ago, in fact. I aced the guy twice. ;-)
     
  30. persistent

    persistent New User

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    Cindy there is a current video on tennis one that tells what is wrong with womens serves versus the Mans serve and what you can do about it. Hope this helps.
     
  31. shell

    shell Professional

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    :twisted: Just a little break. But I put up a forehand vid, Topaz, for some help. So I've been back a whopping couple of weeks. :)

    Leg use. My latest project. I get good knee bend, but don't use it for it's full advantage. That's what I am trying to practice now.
     
  32. Spokewench

    Spokewench Semi-Pro

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    Love that! Keep it up Atomic!
     
  33. AtomicForehand

    AtomicForehand Hall of Fame

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    Another mixed match tomorrow night. I'll let you know how it goes. ;-)

    A few more aces today in women's dubs. I like that, but I *really* like acing the guys. Mwah ha ha...
     
  34. BPeeps

    BPeeps New User

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    <clapping>

    Acing guys is always a splendid thing. Bravo!!! AF, my hat is off to you!!!

    I'm totally in girlpower mode, since talking on the midatlantic thread. :)

    I have no problem with my power serve. I took a lesson last week and am trying to develop a kick serve...talk about awkward and discombobulated. JEEZ!!! My goal is to develop this by the end of the summer....pretty ambitious, I know...but it's also kinda nice to be thrown out of the ol' comfort zone.
     
  35. DownTheLine

    DownTheLine Hall of Fame

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    I've never gotten why girls don't learn the kicker. It's such an advantage! No girl ever gets to practice against it because no girls hit it! Why do you think Sam Stouser is so good? She hits like a man.
     
  36. BPeeps

    BPeeps New User

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    I'm trying....

    I really really am...but it's such a counterintuitive motion....I'm getting the motion down and then the power will come after....

    Trust me, I took a lesson just to try to get this serve! I agree...more women should use it...it's a weapon when used right.
     
  37. DownTheLine

    DownTheLine Hall of Fame

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    Keep working on it. Also flick your wrist towards the sky like you're throwing a knife. That one tip turned my kicker from bad to insane.
     
  38. AtomicForehand

    AtomicForehand Hall of Fame

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    Good tip...thanks!

    I agree, more women should learn the kicker. Women tend to have pretty vanilla serves right up into the higher levels of club play, and I really don't understand why. Even 2.5 men usually are messing around with their serves, trying to gain a little advantage...
     
  39. DownTheLine

    DownTheLine Hall of Fame

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    Be careful because the kicker can add a lot of stress to the back.
     
  40. BPeeps

    BPeeps New User

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    wow...

    That sounds like an amazing way to think about it.
     

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