People here underestimating others serve speeds

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Nickzor, Apr 1, 2014.

  1. tennis_ocd

    tennis_ocd Hall of Fame

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    ? The OP's vid? It's a very nice looking serve. wild vid estimate - 90. I haven't seen anything here with "radar verification" save the blog with the guy's posted first serve speeds of D1 players barely breaking 100. (edit: I did see the arcade like stuff - if that's the "verification" we should just stop discussing....)

    Again, no doubt 100+ is possible and done by a small percentage of rec players. The challenge of impossibility was 120+.

    As far as competency, I'm no leed. I do have a gun. Playing around with it and it's easy to get a feel for *real* speeds. (And rec players by and large are coming nowhere near 100; small college guys I hit with do get in mid 90s.) Watching a vid and guessing is much more inaccurate.
     
  2. WildVolley

    WildVolley Legend

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    I was more thinking RoddickAce's serve videos of him hitting indoors.

    Strangely, I think you're low on the video posted in the OP, but not by an enormous amount. The video shown in the OP's original post looks faster than Sandler's 93mph serve, so I have to rate it higher than that, but it isn't clearly faster than 100mph. I think TCF is the one who claimed it was only 80mph.
     
  3. Maximagq

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  4. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Matt, I'll BET your serves become faster in a couple of years.
    Even if you don't keep up the tennis, you will be stronger, more mature, and hit flatter, drive your body forwards into your serves.
     
  5. RoddickAce

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    See I knew you could serve faster than 85mph :)
     
  6. Maximagq

    Maximagq Banned

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    Yeah I knew it too but maybe the serve in my most recent video isn't that speed. Not sure. Plus, it's a smarter tactic for me to spin every serve in to get a high percentage because I can outgrind a lot of my opponents and win with my speed on the court.
     
  7. RoddickAce

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    Yeah this is basically what I find with my 5.0 friends, they rarely go for bombs when they play matches, cuz they rely on their ground game.

    I am not 5.0, but I don't always go for big flat serves either. I mix it up and serve maybe 1-2 "pure" flat first serves per service game.
     
  8. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    So, you finally just figured out why Nadal refuses to serve fast, that Chang used 105 mph top slices, and both did OK in some good level tennis.
    Serve speed is no indicator of even decent tennis.
    Some guys serve like Somedev, some try to serve like Groth.
    Somedev usually beats Groth, but Groth can serve into the 150's.
     
  9. Avles

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    Well, you did say this:

    That's the kind of attitude that people are responding to when they say that a 100 mph serve is not really that awesome or rare (especially once you take things like spin and placement out of the equation).

    That's great that you have a gun. I wish I did-- it would be fun (and maybe even useful) for measuring relative speed of different shots, even if it was inaccurate on absolute speed. But I do wonder if you are really capturing the initial speed of the ball as it leaves the racquet.
     
  10. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Your typical rec player.... 3.5, old, fat, out of shape, uses eastern forehand grip to serve, hit's around 60 mph.
     
  11. GoudX

    GoudX Professional

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    If you have 65% of Michael Phelp's medals you might have a shot at 65% of Feds slams. Speed stats are almost irrelevant in skill based competitions, or the rec players with much longer drives than Tiger Woods would be much richer.
     
  12. GoudX

    GoudX Professional

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    Precisely, 100mph is enough to make you realise that a player can swing well, but not enough to make you stop and gasp.
     
  13. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    I think there are outfielder's out there who can throw a baseball much farther than any pitcher can. And, they might not have nearly 95 mph ball speeds.
     
  14. GoudX

    GoudX Professional

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    Either fairly tall (6'2-6'5) with big muscles and broad shoulders (Roddick to Raonic) or very talk (6'6 to 6'10) with whippy thin limbs and springy legs (Janowicz to Karlovic) seem to be ideal serving combinations.

    This is because shorter players need as much muscle as possible to maximise acceleration and force, while taller players need to limit the weight of their arms to get fast swings.

    Tall players serves look more effortless because the same rhs has a much slower swing speed at the shoulder, although it requires similar force as the arm has more rotational inertia.
     
  15. shindemac

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    I'm still trying to figure this out. Rec players top out at 70mph, but they're not really athletes. Ask them if they know how to throw, and they say no. Ask them if they practice their serve, same answer. So yes, if you think the average tennis player is old, out of shape, and plays once a week, then 100 mph would be impossible. But me, I'm neither of these and 100 mph would be a low bar.
     
  16. GoudX

    GoudX Professional

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    Max distance is just max speed and launch angle accuracy.
     
  17. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    YOU think, not me.
    Have you ever watched a javelin thrower go thru his routine?
    Have you ever watched RobertoClemente throw a baseball 330' in the air?
    Ever wonder how a dude can longjump 29', when he can only broadjump 10'8"?

    NO?
    OK.
     
  18. psv255

    psv255 Professional

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  19. Topspin Shot

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  20. psv255

    psv255 Professional

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    Yeah unfortunately I couldn't get the radar out this time, will try to get some readings in the next couple days. Only getting warmer now...
    Although it wouldn't matter, I would need someone to help me set it up to get the best possible reading, maybe around 90, and that's probably in kilometres per hour
     
  21. Ballinbob

    Ballinbob Hall of Fame

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    I bet the frame count says it's around 115mph. Psv has posted a few serves around that speed
     
  22. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    likely at only 80% of Feds ball striking ability, you would never win a round in any pro event. Agreeing with you, and just stating it more strongly.
     
  23. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    Good luck convincing many of these guys that people other than top pros can serve fast. I think Wildvolley has consistently given you the best guidance in this thread, with several dead-on posts. Imo the slow numbers by the tennis speed blog guy tend to suit his purpose to sell his speed chain to help you have a fast serve. His numbers are low due to being avg numbers, as well as taken from off court somehow.
     
  24. RoddickAce

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  25. RoddickAce

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    True, in terms of pure ball striking ability, there is very little that sets apart the pros.
     
  26. Nickzor

    Nickzor Semi-Pro

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    Well after downloading your video and importing it into editing software (Adobe Premiere) I counted your first serve at 107 mph and the second one at 121 mph!! Adobe Premiere is very accurate at things such as this, and that second serve definitely had some serious heat on it so I'd definitely believe in those speeds give or take about 2 mph either way as the frame rate counting method is about 85-90% accurate, I have a 5 second video or Federer hitting a 129 Mph serve in practice against Wawrinka and watching that serve and PSV's serve back to back, Federer's is faster but with more spin and PSV's is slower by some 10+ kph and flatter, so i think the 121 Mph estimate is almost spot on, I have plenty of pro matches on my computer and have counted numerous serves of the Pro's and the frame count method is almost always down to the tee with what the radar gun on the video says give or take about 2-3 mph as i said earlier, also given that the original videos FPS rate wasn't increased/decreased, cause if that happens what you get it 2 frames of the same images or other strange anomalies LOL
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2014
  27. Nickzor

    Nickzor Semi-Pro

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    I can easily do counts for anyone else if they have videos, I'd say my way is quite accurate, as i move the video within editing space to perfectly line up the footage and the frame count in order to have the frame begin as SOOOON as the racket makes contact with the ball, which is something i don't think anyone here probably would do, as i here people here use VLC to count there frames, doing it my way makes the process more accurate, as when people count their footage i would believe the ball doesn't make contact with the racket as soon as the frame begins, as you need to move the footage in editing space to line it up perfectly which causes you to second guess when the count really begins and add 0.5,0.2 frames etc. whereas i begin at exactly 1 FRAME
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2014
  28. Ballinbob

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  29. Nickzor

    Nickzor Semi-Pro

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    Well after the frame count process, I have your second serve at 116 mph, it was a little tricky as you can't actually see the racket make contact with the ball, but i went by ear instead which can also be a little inaccurate as in a lot of youtube videos the sound although looks in sync can be as little as a frame out of sync, which is hardly recognizable but it is when your counting frame by frame, i know this as when i skim through footage frame by frame the audio is just a TINY bit off, its that way in almost all the tennis videos I've downloaded of youtube, but back to your serve, i counted in the vicinity of 12.4-12.6 FPS which equaled 114-117 MPH is that about the speed you estimated that serve to be? (the one you hit on the red court) some serious kick and spin on that serve, i reckon you can go quicker if you flatten it out, for your first serve the one up on VIMEO i couldn't download but give me about an hour and I'll have it checked for ya
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2014
  30. Maximagq

    Maximagq Banned

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    Can you check this
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tJS19-mTVSo&list=UUAMbTeq_Edpx44kVK_V3MNw People got an 85 mph reading and I want to verify.
     
  31. cjs

    cjs Semi-Pro

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    My gut feel speedometer guestimate says around 180-190 km/h, using the ATP tournament speed gun benchmark (as opposed to the hobbiest el cheapo speed gun). Is that accurate enough for you?

    btw - hilarious to see a dude serving in jeans.
     
  32. Maximagq

    Maximagq Banned

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    It looks hella cold in New York.
     
  33. Ballinbob

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    Thanks for doing that man. I thought it was around the 105 range to be honest. I can't hit a perfectly flat serve for some reason but it's been getting better. Seems to work better if I toss out in front more

    Lol I guarantee you that's faster than 85mph.
     
  34. Nickzor

    Nickzor Semi-Pro

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  35. Maximagq

    Maximagq Banned

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    The first one was the fastest I think.
     
  36. Nickzor

    Nickzor Semi-Pro

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    Oh good cause i went ahead and counted that one anyways, and the estimation is 110.5 - 113 mph, i counted it at 111.8 mph but as it isn't 100% accurate the frame counting method, i generally add 1 to 1.5 mph give or take as rule of thumb, but yes definitely faster then 85 MPH
     
  37. Maximagq

    Maximagq Banned

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    113 mph is what I got with my iPad.
     
  38. Nickzor

    Nickzor Semi-Pro

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    That sounds about right then! I did get that also however i couldn't get the frame count to begin at the exact time your racket made ball contact, i was a teeny bit off, so just in case i subtracted a tiny bit from the speed, well 1 mph to be exact, but yes that sounds quite right, like as a said give or take about 1 mph and a bit
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2014
  39. shindemac

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  40. cjs

    cjs Semi-Pro

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    Its fast, but not that fast. A very good player drives it back at the server's feet. An average player chips it back and finds out if the server has more than a skiddy fast serve.
     
  41. psv255

    psv255 Professional

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    Thanks for the estimate Nickzor, that's cool that you use Premiere to do this stuff. man, never though I could hit around 120... sick..

    Yeah it's just warming up, it is actually around mid 50s here nowadays, better than the snowstorm every other week in Feb

    Decided to drop by the courts to practice serve since I had a racket with me!
     
  42. tennis_ocd

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    At least.

    Let’s analyze:
    Serve Speed = .65*M*C*163.4mph = 115 mph

    (M=1.0 for all but the magical San Pablo courts where normal physical laws are transcended by something bigger than earthly knowledge. Although very dependent on ball type and temperature, M has known be approaching 1.22 for righties; near god-like 1.5 for lefties.

    C is variable. It represents “cosine error.” C is calculated by back plugging in what you believe your speed is and calculating backward. E.g., if you believe the serve was 115 just assign a value to C of 1.08. SS=.65*M*1.08*163.4=115. Voila! C is a rather esoteric term as one would actually need radar numbers to apply.

    .65 is the ttw “do what the pros do” factor.)

    Formula has many applications. You want to know how much you bench press use:

    Bench Press = .65*M*1102 lbs. = 716 lbs. (Recommend a spotter or three for your first attempt.) This works with golf drives, homerun distances, sprints, olympic swim times, etc. But not slam wins, that’s silliness. M is currently undefined for bench pressing but has been recorded near 2.0 for acts of throwing; javelin, baseballs, footballs and shot-puts.

    Ignore Will Hamilton's data re: 80 mph rec averages. Ignore some blogger with an actual radar gun going around clocking blue-chip, D1, 1st and 2nd single guys and posting hard data. Apologies for even comparing ttw serves to those of blue-chip D1 players. Ignore mid-level atp fast serve fun competitions won by 123mph -- those guys have been picking up bad habits since the age of 6. That's not real life ttw speeds.

    Do use arcade like set-ups where for a few quarters you serve like a tour guy and learn you can beat Jeff Gordon at the wheel, knock out George Forman look-alikes, play a guitar like Slash, snipe like a special force soldier and discover you are a Valentino type lover by squeezing a handle.

    One last constant that never fails; 0.001. This is the percentage of guys touting their 120 out-wide, smooth as butter firsts that have been clocked. As always, entertaining.
     
  43. asimple

    asimple Semi-Pro

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    I really don't buy this technique. Those were both good serves but not 121. The first serve definitely looked out as well. It was rising going into the fence and didn't seem near hard enough to do it.
     
  44. RoddickAce

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    What did I tell ya man, no way that is 85mph lol.
     
  45. RoddickAce

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    What's entertaining is that you claim everyone else here wrong, with their serves verified, oh wait I forgot, using a radar isn't called verifying in your books.

    But okay, checking, their serve speeds with a Radar gun used at a Master's Tournament, a radar gun at LA Tennis Open, a home radar gun bought for $300, adobe premier...

    And yes only your radar gun is accurate. Because you have the most knowledge, and the most expensive radar gun in the world with the best team of people calibrating your gun, with the best rec servers and D1's coming to serve 100% effort, not caring about getting it in with any placement/spin/accuracy at your court.

    Oh and yes don't forget about the guy with the blog advertising for his serving training product.

    Edit: Regarding the fyb number, we are talking about the demographic of mot ppl on TTW->healthy, active, decent male rec players that play often. I would be interested to see the demographics of people of that FYB's 80mph figure includes. Remember, if it's an average and there are old ladies or young kids serving 50-60mph, then what is at the opposite end of the average? hmmm
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2014
  46. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    I'll see if I can take some videos with 120fps camera this weekend. I should be able to just hit right about 100mph
     
  47. RoddickAce

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    Also read this:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Progression_of_the_bench_press_world_record

    The bench record without a bench shirt is 722lb not 1102lb.

    You have committed yet another logical fallacy. I am not a power lifter, so telling me to bench 469lb (65% of 722lb) is ridiculous. As much as telling a power lifter to hit a 100mph serve.

    I have played tennis for 10 years. I have started lifting for less than year, and can bench more than my bodyweight at 4 sets of 12 reps. Give me 9 more years of power lifting (as frequent as I played tennis, if we exclude burnout), actually 10 since I have theoretically never done "power lifting" at all and perhaps I can bench 469lb.
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2014
  48. WildVolley

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    How are people calculating using frame rates?

    When using the online calculator, I'd take the original video and open it with Quicktime to allow me to do frame by frame counting. Then I'd estimate it for distance and put it in the online calculator.

    Does that online calculator still exist? I believe it was the physics model from this thread, which I honestly haven't looked at closely to see if it can be improved.

    http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=99228

    Does uploading to and from various video hosting sites play with frame rates?
     
  49. Sir Shankalot

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    Here you go matey.
     
  50. WildVolley

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    Thanks. That was the one I used in the past.

    I just tossed in some statistics from an old video not filmed on a tripod and while I could count between 13-14 frames, the low angle didn't allow me to judge impact distance well. The bounce was basically shown in a frame, but it was difficult to judge the position to the line.

    It seems distance is the big variable using this calculator. Since I have a camera that shoots at 220fps or more, I can do quite accurate frame counts. However, if you don't see the bounce it is going to be hard to do the distance calculation correctly. It would be fairly easy to set up a simple trig calculator in excel if you can see the bounce.

    So for the rest of you, put the camera higher so that the bounce distance is clear!
     

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