i can't hit a good 2nd serve!

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Matt H., Feb 19, 2004.

  1. Matt H.

    Matt H. Professional

    Feb 19, 2004
    ok, so i was playing my 1st round match tonight for my school's intermural tournament. Lights shut off, and i had just broken for the second time to go up 5-2 (8 game proset).

    Anyways, my 2nd serve is a lame duck. The guy i was playing, in my opinon, is probably a better player than me. He's bigger and slightly more built then i am, and his serve is a bomb, with a huge ass kick serve to back it up. I think the only reason i'm ahead right now and have a chance to pull the match off is because of my 1st serve.

    I'm a lefty, and my 1st serve has some incredible pop on it, considering i'm about 5'9", 145 lbs. But, my 2nd serve is just so utterly slow, that i'm almost embarressed by it. The form looks ok i think, only adjustments i make is that i toss the ball a little more over my head instead of at 11 oclock (i'm a lefty) and i jump more upward instead of forward.

    Any tips on how to improve the second serve? I'd really love to get more kick out of it too.
  2. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

    Feb 19, 2004
    Austin, hook 'em, Texas
    Matt, the best tip I can give you for your second serve is to find your safe, get-it-in serve and make it more like you wish it could be---that is, push it with speed and spin increases until you lose control...then, back off until you regain your control and confidence. Then, try to add small amounts of speed and/or spin until you push the envelope too far. Repeat this until you have a dependable serve that is stronger than before yet deserving of your confidence. To increase the feel and action of a kick serve, try kneeling or sitting and hitting second serves...again, start with a confident motion and push the spin and speed barriers until you lose control...then, back off until you regain consistency. Good luck!
  3. Eric Matuszewski

    Eric Matuszewski Rookie

    Feb 19, 2004
    Matt, trunk rotation plays a large role in getting racket speed/pop on all serves especially kicks where you expend alot of speed to spin the ball.

    Use this excersise to get the feeling of trunk rotation.

    twist your upper body counter clockwise (your lefty) in relation to your hips.

    As you push off with your left leg (your leaning back at the knees not bending back your spine) forcefully untwist your upper body.

    What happens is the hips are being turned and at the same time the trunk is being turned on top of the hips. The speeds of both of the actions are additive. Provided the shoulder, arm and hand actions are correct this will give you plently of power to do what you want with.
    Let us know how it goes.
  4. vin

    vin Professional

    Feb 18, 2004

    I am fighting the same problem of going up instead of forward. With the help of this board and Bollettieri's sonic serve video, I have already made some big improvements.

    Go hit a bucket of balls and work on tossing out in front. Just when you think your tossing far enough out, go even further. Eventually you'll find the right spot. The problem for me was that I was starting my coil before the toss which made it harder to toss forward. To correct this, I concentrated on tossing forward before beginning to coil.

    In addition to adding a lot of pace to my first serve, this also added pace to my second. You obviously don't want to toss as far out in front for your second, but the adjustment I made resulted in me tossing more out in front for my second than I previously did which allowed me to get some forward momentum involved.

    I highly recommend that you get the sonic serve video. I find what I learned from it to be worth much more than the $30 I paid for it.

  5. Kobble

    Kobble Hall of Fame

    Feb 19, 2004
    We are in the same boat my brother. Even at my best serving my second serve has lacked consitant pace and kick. I am finally getting my first serve back again, and my next mission is to finally figure out the big kick serve. I have experienced flashes of brilliance, and it seems that when my timing and rythym are almost ideal the second serve really lights up. I have a hunch that I do not get as far off the ground for the second as I do the first, and the decreased thrust along with a slightly lower contact point are likely the biggest factors. It is no mystery that the players with the biggest first serves are the also the players with the biggest second serves. I notice that the synchronization of their movements vary little or not at all, just a slight change in contact point and racquet path. I am starting to believe that players including myself who have a big drop off in effectiveness from the first serve to the second may not be using the same effective syncronization for both serves. If I figure it out once and for all I will surely tell you in detail how I did it.
  6. borisboris

    borisboris Semi-Pro

    Feb 19, 2004
    Sacrifice!!! I got clocked for just over a year because of dbl. faults 60 mph second serve etc. I spent the whole year working on a Boris Becker 2nd serve = one that has alittle pace but most importantly consistancy and kick. Size doesn't matter - Chang - even Agassi when he joined the tour weighed under 170. Power = legs Kick = wrist + jumping & coming over the top. It'll come around if you work for it.
  7. Mahboob Khan

    Mahboob Khan Hall of Fame

    Feb 20, 2004
    For a second serve think about the ball as a clock. Let the strings of your racket by pass the clock from 7 to 1 o clock positions. Toss the ball a bit to your left over your left ear and brush the ball from 7 to 1 o clock positions with maximum racket head speed.
  8. directionals

    directionals Rookie

    Jun 20, 2012
    If you post a video of your serves, you might get some good tips from the knowledgeable people here.
  9. cjs

    cjs Semi-Pro

    Jul 24, 2013
    Kick. Spin. Learn to rip it.
  10. Topspin Shot

    Topspin Shot Legend

    Jul 24, 2009
    Did you look at when this thread was started? I think this was the last thread on the 700+ pages of threads on the Tips/Instruction forum. I've no idea why Mahboob Khan bumped it up.
  11. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

    Dec 28, 2008
    East side of San Francisco Bay
    Second serve keys....
    Swing as fast as you possibly can, faster than for your flat first serves....because you CAN.
    Aim deep to the service line.
    Place it into the body, or wide to the backhand.
    Get it in every time.
    Practice till you can.
  12. ThiTran

    ThiTran New User

    Jun 18, 2007
    I'm working on my second serve also. From what I've read and video that I watched, it seems like you should stay sideway longer, hit up and more toward the side fence instead of forward.

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