138 KMH Serve

Mromantan

New User
Hi,

Just bought a basic tennis radar as seen in the clip, and the fastest serve IN that I managed was 138kmh, so around 85mph ? . I was under the impression that I was serving harder than that... Strangely, at the club, even coaches were not serving beyond 135kmh. Doesn't sound quite right

Does the clip look like 85mph to you as well ?

138 - YouTube
 

ServeBot

Rookie
Hi,

Just bought a basic tennis radar as seen in the clip, and the fastest serve IN that I managed was 138kmh, so around 85mph ? . I was under the impression that I was serving harder than that... Strangely, at the club, even coaches were not serving beyond 135kmh. Doesn't sound quite right

Does the clip look like 85mph to you as well ?

138 - YouTube

I've measured a lot of serves with my radar gun. I've never had someone say "wow, my serve is faster than I thought it would be." Everyone has always been disappointed when they see the number.
 

Dragy

Legend
Setting up radar gun properly is a task by itself. Misreads are very common. Rely on well calibrated ones profesionally set up in the club.

Your serve in the vid is 90-95 mph.

PS there's an uncertain issue with at what moment radar gun actually grabs the ball speed. Pro measurements are right after impact. Cheap hand devices might pick the speed halfway to the net, where it drops significantly. 95 mph serve will be less than 70 mph by bounce, go figure.
 

sureshs

Bionic Poster
Hi,

Just bought a basic tennis radar as seen in the clip, and the fastest serve IN that I managed was 138kmh, so around 85mph ? . I was under the impression that I was serving harder than that... Strangely, at the club, even coaches were not serving beyond 135kmh. Doesn't sound quite right

Does the clip look like 85mph to you as well ?

138 - YouTube
No
 

nochuola

Rookie
Setting up radar gun properly is a task by itself. Misreads are very common. Rely on well calibrated ones profesionally set up in the club.

Your serve in the vid is 90-95 mph.

PS there's an uncertain issue with at what moment radar gun actually grabs the ball speed. Pro measurements are right after impact. Cheap hand devices might pick the speed halfway to the net, where it drops significantly. 95 mph serve will be less than 70 mph by bounce, go figure.
I have always wondered this. Considering how much the tennis ball slows down because of the light weight and fuzz, the speed can be drastically different depending on where it is measured. Nice to finally know the answer.
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
Since you have the radar, why not record speed of your fastest serves?
So 85 is tops for IN serves, now find out how fast you can hit the ball.
Bet no better than 92 with your technique.
 

zaph

Professional
The brutal truth is, most tennis serves by rec players are much slower than players think. Obsessing about pace is pretty pointless, control is far more important. A player who can place their serve, change the spins on the serve and get their serve in consistantly is going be effective, even without triple figure pace.
 
Toss way too far to the right and (I am on a phone so…….) and it doesn’t look like you land inside the court. Arm action seems ok, the upper body, eh.
 

baowow

Rookie
Hi,

Just bought a basic tennis radar as seen in the clip, and the fastest serve IN that I managed was 138kmh, so around 85mph ? . I was under the impression that I was serving harder than that... Strangely, at the club, even coaches were not serving beyond 135kmh. Doesn't sound quite right

Does the clip look like 85mph to you as well ?

138 - YouTube
It's probably pretty close to correct. Not easy to hit 100+ serves. Need combo of good mechanics, rhythm, and looseness. Just looks easy on TV.
 

TennisCJC

Legend
That serve didn't look like you were going for a really big bomb and I would think that 85 mph is about right. As others said, pro serves are measured around contact. The ball slows dramatically due to air drag and it slows a lot again when it bounces. John Yandel did high speed video research and proved a 120 mph pro serve travels roughly 55 mph when the returner hits it. Just over half of the initial speed is lost due to air drag and bounce. The same is true for all other shots too. Groundstrokes and volleys lose over half their initial pace if they bounce. Also, this might blow your mind but a shot does not slide on the court and get faster unless it possibly strikes a foreign object like a leaf. When you get that sensation of the ball jumping or sliding faster at you, it is because the ball didn't slow down as much as your mind had expected.

For a decent rec level if you can hit serves like your demo, place them well, vary the placement, hit them consistently, vary the speed and spin; you'll have a pretty strong serve.
 
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