Originally Posted by Fintft
His raquet take back is so abbreviated: he just seems to take it straight up in the trophy position...I think that rather then the loop he gets his speed from a very fast knee bend and extremely fast arm.
What is this loop that everyone is talking about?
The takeback sequence has little to nothing to do with the racket head speed. Roddick actually has an offset trophy and a very deep racket drop which is part of the reason he can hit the ball so hard. The racket goes up over his shoulder line and drops and falls to the right as his body and elbow drive up to the ball. That's sort of a figure 8 motion, but I don't know if it is the one being described.
In reality, there's almost no difference in power from starting the serve from the trophy pose if you get your body in the correct and athletic position than if you do a standard windup. Think of the windup as being more about timing and ritual than in generating power, especially if you pause during the trophy.