Should the kick serve toss also be in front of the body?

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Roy125, Feb 13, 2013.

  1. Roy125

    Roy125 Professional

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    Simple question here but should the toss for the kick/topspin serve also be in front of the body too? I know that it should be at 11-12 o'clock but not how far in front of your head it should be (or back). I ask because it's easier for me to make the ball bounce more when tossing it a little behind me, but it's easier for me to get forward momentum when tossing it in front (at the cost of bounce).
     
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  2. WildVolley

    WildVolley Legend

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    The pros all hit it in front of the body, so I'd take that to mean that you should too.

    To properly get your legs into the shot, the ball needs to be tossed a bit in front of you. As your body moves forward the contact point will be less in front than it would for a flat serve.
     
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  3. Cheetah

    Cheetah Hall of Fame

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    If you toss in front more then you can get more power from leaning into it thereby allowing your arm to be used for more spin production.
     
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  4. Roy125

    Roy125 Professional

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    So should I toss the ball a little less far on the topspin serve than on my flat, but still in front?
     
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  5. WildVolley

    WildVolley Legend

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    Yes, that's about what I've observed.

    Guys like Roddick still have the toss out front, but not as far out front, because the racket is moving more across than directly into the ball. As you've noticed, if you put it too out in front, it is going to be hard to spin. But if you put it directly over your head, you're not going to be maximizing pace and your body won't be in the proper position to really let it rip.
     
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  6. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    This is where PRACTICE comes in.
    1. Your body is moving forwards as you swing up and out at the ball. The amount depends on who you are and what your intentions are.
    2. You shoulder's pivot from one and only one spot.
    3. If you're going to stay back, your body doesn't move into the court as much as....
    4. If you're moving to service line position, you toss has to compensate for your body moving more forwards.
    Basically, the goal is an up and outwards swing with forward angle, and just as important, the highest net clearance you can get with the fastest swing you can muster and the deepest part of the court to get the highest bounce and biggest twist effect.
    Depending on how fast you can swing, the height over the net can vary, especially since we all swing different speeds.
    I like to try to aim 3' higher than the net. My slow 60 mph twists usually bounce from upper chest to mid shoulder heights.
    My safe second serve top/slice might wander in a hair faster, but only bounce maybe tummy to mid chest in height.
     
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  7. Geology_Rocks!

    Geology_Rocks! Semi-Pro

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  8. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Good vid, and the toss for the twist serve is behind the head, while somewhat into the court.
     
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  9. mntlblok

    mntlblok Professional

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    Toss

    Yeah, it is a good video. The guy can serve, too. :)

    Found the foot faults aggravating, especially across the center line.

    One exception to tossing into the court is a topspin serve that clears the net by something like ten feet whilst still maximizing spin, almost like a topspin lob. I toss that one behind the baseline *and* go as far towards a backhand grip as I can without framing it. Gives one *lots* of time to get to the net. Some folks will murder it, but most club players don't - especially if it's part of "mixing it up".
     
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  10. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    LeedD and others here have it right. The ball is usually tossed a bit forward (into the court) and either directly in front of the body (front = toward the net) or somewhat to the left side (for a righty server). However, as with other topspin serves, the server moves/leans so that they are more-or-less directly under the ball at contact. (Tho' it might still be slightly to the left at contact).
     
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  11. mntlblok

    mntlblok Professional

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    Toss position

    Agreed. Reminds me of a match I watched at the (last) national 40's clay court tournament held here (we traded it for the 55's). One of the very best players - who happens to be from LeeD's part of the world - had the second serve yips. My diagnosis was that he was putting the toss in the right spot, but *wasn't* jumping "under" it. It was painful to watch. :(
     
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  12. tennis_pr0

    tennis_pr0 Semi-Pro

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    The weight transfer is more up into the ball then forward into it like the first serve. There is no right or wrong answer here. More power with less kick, ball toss more in front, more kick, less power ball toss must be behind you, right around your left ear if you are a righty. I am more in favor of tossing the ball behind, in front will not allow you to transfer your energy up into the ball enough which is what you need for a good kick.
     
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  13. tennis_pr0

    tennis_pr0 Semi-Pro

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    Some pros toss it more in front, while other more behind. Del Po, more in fron, Fed, more behind, just as an example. I think you should be able to do both. If you want more pack and less kick, more out in front, more kick less pace, more in back. I use both of these when playing. Variety is key.
     
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  14. Fuji

    Fuji Legend

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    I do it actually right at my head, so straight up. All about the Dent kick serve where if you toss it and let it fall, it should land on your forehead! :razz:

    -Fuji
     
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  15. tennis_pr0

    tennis_pr0 Semi-Pro

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    Correct. This would be hitting the ball more behind you. if you want some nice twist action, if you let the ball toss fall is would land behind your left ear :)
     
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  16. Fuji

    Fuji Legend

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    Cool! Normally I hit Twists, but the kick is a nice change up.

    -Fuji
     
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  17. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

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    Pros usually do toss into court for kick serves a bit but not as much as 1st serves. I personally hit a lot of kicks that I toss near my front shoulder. I can hit up easier from their and seem to get more clearance over the net. I will toss it more into court if going for a more aggressive 2nd serve.
     
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