Serve stance and back bend

#1
So my lower back is messed. My normal stance is like Fed or Agassi. Pretty simple. Is there a way to shift my stance position to prevent or hinder my back from arching?
 
#3
So my lower back is messed. My normal stance is like Fed or Agassi. Pretty simple. Is there a way to shift my stance position to prevent or hinder my back from arching?
I switched to pinpoint which lends itself to less backbend for me. Also, you can strengthen the lower back. Mine was compressed and crooked, lot better now.
 
#5
This thread has some posts on the subject of Thorasic Extension during the tennis serve. Thorasic Extension is bending of the back higher up than the lower back.
https://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/ind...sive-internal-shoulder-rotation-serve.574744/ Search for Thorasic Extension in this thread.

The OP said that he has back issues. He should be very careful with experimenting with the serve.

ISR:
frontal Deltoid, pectoralis and lattismus dorsi mostly

pronation:
mostly pronator muscles of the forearm

BTW to get a good ISR you Need to get a good ESR first. The dynamic ESR will cause a Stretch shortening cycle in the IR muscles. Also to get good Maximum racket drop you Need to couple ESR with Extension of the thoracic spine.

https://wassermanstrength.com/high-level-throwing-dont-force-thoracic-extension/

try for yourself. first get racket drop only by ESR but a neutral spine. then couple ESR with thoracic spine Extension (draw the scapula back and "puff the chest"). That thoracic Extension (and ESR) Needs to be increasing dynamically as the hips drive.

From above post.


Reference for Thoracic Extension with conditioning for tennis.
http://www.elite4tennis.com/education-articles/2015/12/17/improving-thoracic-spine-mobility

The identified sub-motions of the serve get very complicated and many sub-motions are mixed together with Thoracic Extension, especially the Cartwheel (or 'shoulder-over-shoulder'). Thoracic Extension affects the ESR-ISR stretch shorten cycle and what comes next before impact.

I believe, but have not studied videos, that high level ATP players significantly vary the amount of Thoracic Extension used for the serve. Stats on how much of this back bending is done by the best ATP servers for each type of serve would be very interesting. Djokovic appears to be more flexible than most ATP players. Successful ATP servers using the least Thoracic Extension would probably be most interesting to me and others with much less back flexibility.

The 'chest to the sky' motion was discussed by Pat Dougherty. Interesting comments about the chest angle are at 1:22 and 3:10.
The picture of Djokovic posted by dominickk1985 (post #51) has a red line labelled "Thoracic Extension".

Pictures Thoracic Spine
https://www.google.com/search?q=tho...vQkNfPAhVMGj4KHSJiDFEQsAQIHQ&biw=1063&bih=685

Pliskova's chest up.


It is not clear how much 'chest up', or Thoracic Extension, Pliskova uses. To see it better you need high speed video and also to view more 'elbow on' along the line of the upper arm. It occurs briefly near the time of maximum external shoulder rotation (MER in some stroke reference books by Elliott et al). I also looked at a Raonic video and saw his 'chest up' or TE. Estimating TE requires careful measurements around the time of maximum external shoulder rotation.

I'd say the interesting part of this issue is to study the anatomy of the lat muscle and consider what is happening from maximum Thoracic Extension to impact. I hope to come across some research for the serve.

The biomechanics of baseball pitching has probably been studied more thoroughly than the biomechanics of the serve. Maybe dominickk1985 will find some more TE details that also relate to the serve. domminick1985, have you seen references that address details of what happens as the thoracic spine flexes for the baseball pitch?

Anyone interested in this subject should study the breakdown of the serve used by several researchers in the 2003 reference Biomechanics of Advanced Tennis and then the Technique Development for Tennis Stroke Production, 2009, by Elliott et al. This motion occurs around the same time as Cartwheel (or shoulder over shoulder), Trunk Twist and probably Somersault. Trying to figure out how Thoracic Extension biomechanically fits in with these motions is a very interesting problem.

Motions that involve spine bending or twisting at high speeds seem especially risky for injury. I'm not young and explosive back motions are not for me.
I believe - but do not know - that the function of Throasic Extension on the tennis serve may be to stretch muscles in the back. For example, the lat. ?
 
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#6
So my lower back is messed. My normal stance is like Fed or Agassi. Pretty simple. Is there a way to shift my stance position to prevent or hinder my back from arching?
As @kramer woodie says, bend your knees (more) and get your heels off the ground. Important: Note that I highlighted the last part of that. Push your hips forward as well. These steps should help to minimize the need for much arching of the back.
Note that Boris has heels off the ground with a decent knee bend. Hips forward. Nearly straight line from knees up thru torso/back. Very little evidence of back arch here. Later in his serve motion, he may drive his chest upward -- minimal stress to lower back with this action.
 
#7
So my lower back is messed. My normal stance is like Fed or Agassi. Pretty simple. Is there a way to shift my stance position to prevent or hinder my back from arching?
If you don't want to arch your back too much on the serve take a look a Wawrinka's approach.


And our own TennisBalla doesn't arch his back much. Great motion using a platform stance.
 
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#10
In order to see the maximum back bend and its time and location, you have to look at a high speed video of the serve or see several pictures. The maximum back bend is brief. This looks like Thorasic Extension at around the time of maximum racket drop. Jump has just occurred as you can see by the server's head height.



Looking at these video frames, it appears as if the Thorasic Extension is related to the jump and its maximum may occur somewhere around the racket drop. See high speed videos.


If you stretch muscles while the back is bent with Thorasic Extension consider the effect of the back bend on the stretching of the muscles. And consider when the back straightens. Looking for research on this issue if you find it.

Age and conditioning issues............?
 
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#11
You say your serve stance is like Agassi? Look at this video on the Agassi kick serve technique. He doesn't arch his back but he turns his hips away from the court and then launches himself up and out. With his bad back, arching it would have definitely shortened his career.
 
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#12
I am not a proponent of the back bend in a serve personally. Okay, mostly cuz I have enough back issues myself, but I think for most rec players, with proper swing path and using hips in an upright position is both easier for balance and easier on the body. Wawrinka is a perfect example, and it even works for Fed. :)

 
#13
I am not a proponent of the back bend in a serve personally. Okay, mostly cuz I have enough back issues myself, but I think for most rec players, with proper swing path and using hips in an upright position is both easier for balance and easier on the body. Wawrinka is a perfect example, and it even works for Fed. :)

I prefer RFs imitation of SW to the real SW serve mechanics. RF has a better right elbow position during trophy phase. A little bit more coil as well. Left arm lift direction is part of this. RF lifts tossing arm closer to parallel to the baseline (whereas SW lifts that arm more towards the net, in the general direction of his target area).
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#14
So my lower back is messed. My normal stance is like Fed or Agassi. Pretty simple. Is there a way to shift my stance position to prevent or hinder my back from arching?
If you're trying to crank up a big kick serve, that could be tricking you into arching your back too much. Righty servers like to describe the proper toss location for a kick serve as being over toward "11 o'clock" compared with a flatter serve that works with a "12 o'clock" toss or a slice serve that uses a "1 o'clock" toss.

Sometimes the easiest way to avoid unwanted back bending is to stay away from locating the toss over at 11 o'clock. Instead of using back bend to help your swing path to drive up across the back of the ball, think about letting your legs be the primary source of that upward drive, even if the toss is at 12 o'clock where you like it for your flatter serve. You'll probably feel as though your leg drive is pushing you more forward into the court when you do this right, which is fine.

One other helpful adjustment is the height of your contact point. You can generate some of that upward drive through contact for some kick spin if you catch the ball a little lower than at the top of your comfortable reach compared with the height where you probably prefer to make contact for your flat serve. The racquet still needs room to drive upward to make that kick spin.

If you're chasing a toss that's too far to the left and using too much back bend, you'll likely feel like your weight is falling off to the left after contact instead of going toward your target. Don't be afraid to experiment with a more open or more closed stance to find some relief. I'd bet that a more open stance combined with a toss properly located out in front of your toward your target would make you not want to bend or even torque on your back too much.
 
#20
Sorry I did not reply but it involves some things that I don't know much about:

1) Murray's spine looks straight except the pelvis to spine location in the second picture. I do not know much about that area of the anatomy, the lowest vertebra, etc. . Your picture was very interesting for that.
The spine.

https://www.studentrdh.com/q-the-cervical-area-has-____-vertebrae/

The pelvis & ligaments connecting the spine.
See
http://anatomysciences.com/pelvic-ligament-diagrams/

The bottom of the spine appears to be part of the pelvis or intimately connected. Connection is by ligaments and joints.
https://learnmuscles.com/blog/2017/08/29/17151/

http://www.hitachimed.com/self-lear...gModule/?WT.ac=med_mg_cussite_selflear_pelvim

2) He also does not have as much shoulder girdle-to-spine tilt that I guess he should. The shoulder girdle tilts up more on the hitting side, but I got to look into some videos. So I have to look into that, stats on what is being done, etc. I have seen posters that have a "T" between their spines and the shoulder girdle and I don't think that is correct.

3) To complicate it more the angle of the upper body (line across chest to the vertical) seems to vary for servers and serve types, especially for the kick serve. I don't have an estimate for how the chest is oriented for various servers and type serves.

Example, Stosur kick serve with chest to side. I now notice how she bends her back from this angle. Maybe low in back as for Murray? Stosur is very acrobatic for the kick serve. Some other servers also look up with head very horizontal.........I don't believe that she is looking at the ball through impact, but maybe.....


4) For everything the camera angle to the body is important for showing all angles especially, say, the question of whether - Is the spine straight or does it have a 15 d bend and the camera angle is wrong to show it?

5) All involves stats of what is being done and is a high level serve. I have not done much for the spine partly because of the camera angles.

Not much analysis on these issues.
 
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