The Zen Toss

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by dmvprof, May 30, 2006.

  1. dmvprof

    dmvprof Banned

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    Yesterday I had a minor epiphany, simply put, start at the beginning.

    Trying to be critical of my own serve, I realized that my mind was always centered around the actualy contact with the ball as I swung at it. I can't say how much this dominated my mentality about my serve. When I envisioned what I wanted to do before a serve, it always had to do with striking the ball. Actually the contact of the ball with the raquet. In my simple view, that was all that mattered. My form seemed meaningless to me as long as I contacted the ball correctly and was able to drill some serves. It was as if I reverse engineered what I was trying to do with each serve.

    But that isn't how my mind works. My mind has to start at the beginning. And it has to focus on the beginning of some task, and there is something that goes on before the strike of the ball. And in tennis, this is most important on the serve because it is where you are initiating something and the beginning is very obvious, the toss.

    Here's my toss mantra.

    If I get a good toss, everything else will fall into place, so be picky about them.

    And, early results show that this works, for me.

    It gives me a single starting place, and somehow, my mind is now able to let go after the toss and let my body's motor functions and muscle memory take over without my mind in the way. If that makes any sense.
     
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  2. tnig469

    tnig469 Semi-Pro

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    in serve....the ball toss is EVERYTHING...if u have a bad toss...ur goin to have a bad everything......
     
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  3. dmvprof

    dmvprof Banned

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    Pretty obvious isn't it.

    I guess this was a mental trick more than anything. A way to get my thoughts out of the way of my body.
     
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  4. bkc

    bkc New User

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    I think the toss is so important because everybody's swinging and looking way up at the sky away from the tennis court and it requires a high toss. I think it is stupid serving like people do today. Take Sampras or McEnroe...everything is way up at the sky. Of course they did great, but at what expense... so much wasted and misdirected energy. Sampras eventually got so he just didn't have any stamina in the last couple years.

    Serve like Tanner...all the energy and focus is forward like if you are pitching a baseball. The toss is nothing.

    People are so worn out from swinging at the sky all day, and looking up there, and trying to jump up in the air:confused: :D ... that they can't play

    You'd think the opponent must be up in the air somewhere!
     
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  5. katastrof

    katastrof Rookie

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    Exactly. I used to find myself doing the service motion, working on the details, but WITHOUT ever thinking all this motion is supposed to serve the way I HIT the ball. As if the correct service motion would produce the correct pop. I had to FORCE myself to concentrate on the hit. What I did sounds stupid now, but getting over it was such an important step. After that, service starts to be more fluid, more natural, since you know better how the particular motion will contribute to your racquet speed and your contact.

    So, kudos on your Zen Toss.
     
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  6. Bungalo Bill

    Bungalo Bill G.O.A.T.

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    The Zen toss now, huh? Interesting. :)
     
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  7. BeachTennis

    BeachTennis Semi-Pro

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    Location:
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    Eyes closed 110 mph

    The key grasshopper is to place the ball

    not to toss the ball

    does the racket find the ball or the ball the racket ?

    close the eyes

    give it a try !:)
     
    #7
  8. wyutani

    wyutani Hall of Fame

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    lolz, this is impossible!! :(
     
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  9. Bungalo Bill

    Bungalo Bill G.O.A.T.

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    Good tip Beachy! Wow, I knew you had it in you. Hot damn, you made sense! Here is Sampras to support your tip. ;)

    http://www.uspta.com/html/e-lesson-Flat%20serve.swf
     
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  10. katastrof

    katastrof Rookie

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    :) Copyright dmvprof.

    Bill, I think some of the stuff accumulated in this forum should be collected in a book. Why don't you take the challenge when you are bored sometime? What do you think?
     
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  11. Roforot

    Roforot Professional

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    The rising ball lifts
    to the sky, stopping almost
    to take but one path
     
    #11
  12. andyroddick's mojo

    andyroddick's mojo Professional

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    i think thats a good idea.
    if you're good enough of a server
    you should be able to toss the ball where you want, close your eyes, and catch it. I'm always able to kinda just place the ball where I want, but sometimes it starts to drift over my head too much. but i want it just over my head. For me, my epiphany was when I imagined my serve going exactly where I want it, and most of the time, IT WORKS!
     
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  13. Bungalo Bill

    Bungalo Bill G.O.A.T.

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    Its pretty good isn't it. Maybe I should get off my rear end and write a book or something. I got enough information on this site to do so. :)
     
    #13
  14. jackson vile

    jackson vile Legend

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    Good for you, the toss is the most important thing.

    You sire are on your way:cool:
     
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