Role of non dominant arm in serve

nyta2

Hall of Fame
Never liked this “staying sideways” stuff. When throwing or serving your arm wants to move perpendicular to the line the two shoulders make. Your arm moves freely that way. So, if you try to stay sideways, you are either aiming your serve with your chest (where your arm can go is limited) or you are going to have to swing across the body, which seems to ask for injury.

I’ve always felt that the upper body will open the appropriate amount with where your arm goes to hit the ball where you want with the spin you are trying to achieve. Forcing your arm to fight your upper body isn’t a great idea.
i'm approximating... but my mental of where my chest is pointing at contact is:
* flat: facing net
* slice: facing side post
* top/kick: facing side fence
i use the "stay sideways" tip mainly for beginners who i'm trying to teach slice, because they want to square up their chest to the net at contact (ie. when transitioning from frying pan)
i'm not asking them to fight their arm&upper body... i want them to swing/throw toward the side post (with a slightly "on-edge" face) ... which to me feels like i'm throwing a "hail mary" footbball throw at & over the side post
if it feels like you're fighting chest&arm, usually the toss/contact is too far back and/or you're trying to "hit around" the ball to impart slice.
 

Better_Call_Raul

Hall of Fame
i hope you've sorted this out by now... definitely does not happen naturally :p

I tuck in my tossing arm near contact. As discussed in this thread, and if I understand correctly, the purpose is to sort of decelerate the torso and allow
the hitting arm to come through and properly accelerate and whip thru contact. With no toss arm tuck, you are overrotating the shoulders near contact and not incorporating the powerful arm whip

But on the follow thru, I struggle to clear the hitting arm and "swing" back the toss arm; I keep the toss arm tucked in.
Granted, this "swing back" of toss arm happens well after contact. But it is still probably important to fix.

What happens if you fail to clear the toss arm on follow through and keep it sort of tucked in? Loss of power?
:unsure:
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toth

Hall of Fame
How much schould be streched the tossing arm at the trophy position?
For example on the 1-10 scala
 

Digital Atheist

Hall of Fame
I tuck in my tossing arm near contact. As discussed in this thread, and if I understand correctly, the purpose is to sort of decelerate the torso and allow
the hitting arm to come through and properly accelerate and whip thru contact. With no toss arm tuck, you are overrotating the shoulders near contact and not incorporating the powerful arm whip

But on the follow thru, I struggle to clear the hitting arm and "swing" back the toss arm; I keep the toss arm tucked in.
Granted, this "swing back" of toss arm happens well after contact. But it is still probably important to fix.

What happens if you fail to clear the toss arm on follow through and keep it sort of tucked in? Loss of power?
:unsure:
Screenshot-2024-05-16-012553.png


Screenshot-2024-05-16-012707.png
Not strictly necessary to end like Kyrgios above and if you look at Raonic, Sampras, Krajicek, Joker, Fritz, or Nadal they don't really do that at all. They do clear it off the stomach as part of the follow through, so that might be important but they don't fling it. It partly depends on how much body rotation is utilised, and you will see pinpointers that square up more to the net like Kyrgios, Rublev, Murray, Serena, as well as Roddick (not a PPer but still has his shoulders closer to square than someone like Federer) use that "fling" as a balancing mechanism. So for some it can help with power, since when you focus too much on keeping it tucked then it can inhibit other things prior to that, maybe because they are being done incorrectly. Anyway, Fritz has his shoulders squarer to the net at contact and continues to rotate after the strike quite a lot (more than most platform servers), but doesn't "fling" the arm like Kyrgios and this is sufficient.
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Taken from:

Fritz, like Kyrgios isn't really someone to deliberately copy imo. I can't really talk, since I have a lot of Kyrgios tendencies, but there are better models and I think Raonic is one.
 

Better_Call_Raul

Hall of Fame
Fritz, like Kyrgios isn't really someone to deliberately copy imo. I can't really talk, since I have a lot of Kyrgios tendencies, but there are better models and I think Raonic is one.

Not that familiar with Kyrgios and do not really try to copy him.
I employ platform and generally try to follow Sampras and Fed.

That said, I see nothing wrong with the Kyrgios motion. Especially admire his low toss. It drops about 6 inches from apex. Maybe less than that.
I prefer 12 inch drop from apex. Gives me more time to load in trophy. Feel rushed otherwise. But eventually I will experiment on lowering the toss.
 

Digital Atheist

Hall of Fame
Not that familiar with Kyrgios and do not really try to copy him.
I employ platform and generally try to follow Sampras and Fed.

That said, I see nothing wrong with the Kyrgios motion. Especially admire his low toss. It drops about 6 inches from apex. Maybe less than that.
I prefer 12 inch drop from apex. Gives me more time to load in trophy. Feel rushed otherwise. But eventually I will experiment on lowering the toss.
Do you consciously try to stay sideways as you go from trophy to contact?
You seem very interested in the serve and I have noticed you like to experiment with different techniques and power sources, so why not post your serve in the Serve Doc thread and get his advice?
 

mario17

New User
When Roger pulls his L arm down & starts to tuck it in, his L shoulder stops moving for the most part. But his R shoulder is still moving wrt the L shoulder. However, his R shoulder is slowing down as he gets to the contact phase. As a result, the R arm and racket have accelerated past the R shoulder.

We see something similar with the 1-handed Bh of Roger (& Richard Gasquet). For the prep, the body, especially the upper torso, is coiled quite a bit. The torso uncoils for the 1st part of the forward swing — dragging the R arm and racket along with it.

Part way thru the fwd swing, the torso stops moving. The L arm facilitates this — either by stopping or by extending back in the opposite direction. When the torso is stopped, the R arm and racket accelerates forward into the incoming ball.

If I’m not mistaken, this is a momentum thing. When the body / torso is uncoiling, along with the R arm and racket, a large mass is moving at a moderate speed. When the torso is stopped, the moving mass is substantially decreased — it’s now just the R arm & racket. As a result of this large reduction in (moving) mass, the velocity of the (remaining) moving mass increases significantly.
Tx SA! Uff so much physics...
I'm well prepared now to compose good answer for 12 yo.
 
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