returning serves against the body

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Roforot, Aug 24, 2004.

  1. Roforot

    Roforot Professional

    Feb 21, 2004
    Any tips for dealing w/ the jammers;
    For example, if on deuce court, the ball is jamming your fh, so you move to the left, is it better to hit down the line or cross court?
    Or if the ball is jamming bh, and you move to the right, which direction should you hit? If the ball is coming straight at you, should you defer to fh or is 2h bh more stable?

    reverse the scenarios for the ad court as well, and what is the best shot?
    I'm learning to follow wardlaws' directionals and it's helping w/ most returns, if nothing else, I don't have to think about where i'm hitting the ball.

    Thanks in advance for any tips!
  2. thehustler

    thehustler Rookie

    Aug 23, 2004
    One thing I read in a tennis magazine a while ago was to decide where to return the ball before the serve comes across. Just think if forehand back crosscourt, backhand down the line or whatever you want. This saves you that quick last second decision you have to make which can wind up in a error. I've been doing this and whenever I do I get the ball to go where I want, even if I get jammed. At that point I usually have my opponent on the defense and I'm now in control of the point. HTH.
  3. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

    May 3, 2004
    FT. Lauderdale, Florida
    Agree with thehustler. Always choose what you are going to do before the serve. If he serves it to your FH or BH, where are you going to hit it and what type of shot are you going to use? After that stay on your toes, and donot get caught flat-footed. If you are continuously having problems getting out of the way, take a step back or try and guess where the server is going if you are unable to read his service motion.

    Good luck.
  4. Chanchai

    Chanchai Semi-Pro

    Apr 28, 2004
    First thing to help me was what the others have said exactly. If there's any consistency with the opponents' serve, it works even better. In my case though, just because I'm preplanning it doesn't mean I'm going to do exactly that. It just helps me act a bit quicker as I react to the incoming serve.

    Second thing that helped me much later on was developing a slice backhand and a fadeaway forehand. Can't say I recommend these as musts... Just saying they've helped me greatly on return of serve. I just like to return serves aggressively--even if it's an aggressive slice return.

    Ultimately, the split-step and footwork are just the biggest helps. Getting out of the ball's way when it's coming out of your body is ultimately what needs to be done unless you want to have a very weak return at best (or at least I think so, I'm sure others can deal with the situation better than a lot of us and especially me).

    The biggest annoyance and hardest serves to deal with? Left-handed serves to the body. But I'm getting better at dealing with those.... Still frustrating though... Just about all left-handed serves... But for me, it doesn't help that one of my practice partners that serves lefty (this one hits righty though) is capable of also hitting a twist serve so once I have a rhythm, the ball acts more like a righty's normal kick serve, lol.


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