What defines a lightning bolt service?

zill

Hall of Fame
Some clearly have faster actions some clearly slower actions. What about Isner and Opelka? Are their serves considered lightning bolt? If not what are the speed of their service motions considered as?
 

Shroud

G.O.A.T.
tossing, and hitting the ball right as it reaches the peak of the toss, not letting the ball pause, or start to come down. To time it means the toss and sevice motion happen in very quick succession, hence the name "lightning bolt".

think dolgopovolov had one, kyrgios too kinda. Roscoe Tanner is the OG of it iirc
check out dolg at 2:16 and on

 

Shroud

G.O.A.T.
Isner has a very uncomplicated and fluid pinpoint stance. I actually really like his motion.

edit: LOL look at me posting advice like an eggspert, when I serve 2 f******king double faults every service game, and can't hit a deuce slider to save my life. I'm gonna see myself out.
What? This is TT. The worse you are at tennis the MORE advice you should give here....

WHich stance do you have for the serve? FWIW I think a lightingbolt delivery is more conducive to the deuce slider...
 

sredna42

Hall of Fame
What? This is TT. The worse you are at tennis the MORE advice you should give here....

WHich stance do you have for the serve? FWIW I think a lightingbolt delivery is more conducive to the deuce slider...
If, when you first started, you picked up the racquet and instantly your body used lightning bolt type action, then maybe see where it goes and use it.
Otherwise, forget it.

I serve pinpoint, maybe kinda wawrinka-ish, not sure. Feels that way.
I cannot serve platform, cannot get any forward momentum, cannot get my hips around, only works for me for kick/topspin as it is so easy to drive straight up.
 

Shroud

G.O.A.T.
If, when you first started, you picked up the racquet and instantly your body used lightning bolt type action, then maybe see where it goes and use it.
Otherwise, forget it.

I serve pinpoint, maybe kinda wawrinka-ish, not sure. Feels that way.
I cannot serve platform, cannot get any forward momentum, cannot get my hips around, only works for me for kick/topspin as it is so easy to drive straight up.
I get it. FWIW I was pinpoint till the other day. I had tried platform and well that was not for me for some of what you mention. I have maybe 2-3 tosses per service game that I either have to catch or most likely just hit and they are all over the place. I tried the narrow platform and man serve and toss were soooo much more stable and I could still get some forward momentum Nothing like pinpoint but the advantages of more consistent tosses and more serves in and more action on the kicker was worth it.

you might try the narrow platform like roddick
 

sredna42

Hall of Fame
With that narrow platform, or stationary pinpoint (whatever it is called) again I think it is one of those things that either your body wants to do it, it just happens, otherwise don't bother, as you'll just waste years of repetitions trying to embed the motion into your body, years that could have been spent refining a motion that your body is natural at.

I hit with this bloke before a few times ages ago, has a serve like this, LOL good luck trying to get a racquet on his serve. Monstrous. Vid does not do it justice.
from about 6.30
 

Chas Tennis

G.O.A.T.
tossing, and hitting the ball right as it reaches the peak of the toss, not letting the ball pause, or start to come down. To time it means the toss and sevice motion happen in very quick succession, hence the name "lightning bolt".

think dolgopovolov had one, kyrgios too kinda. Roscoe Tanner is the OG of it iirc
In his autobiography, Tanner said that his serve was performed so quickly that it first surprised opponents, often going by before they were expecting it due to the low toss quickly followed in no time by the service motion. Tanner had a very low toss. The toss height has a hugh effect on the time between toss release and impact.

But the term 'lightning' in tennis is probably another undefined term.

Here is an instructor using the terms "lightning serve" at 25 sec.. He describes Kyrgios's low toss serve as a "lightning serve".

Another on the "Lightening Bolt Serve"
Masteryourserve.com
 
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sredna42

Hall of Fame
In his autobiography, Tanner said that his serve was performed so quickly that it first surprised opponents, often going by before they were expecting it due to the low toss quickly followed in no time by the service motion. Tanner had a very low toss. The toss height has a hugh effect on the time between toss release and impact.

But the term 'lightning' in tennis is probably another undefined term.

Here is an instructor using the terms "lightning serve" at 25 sec.. He describes Kyrgios's low toss serve as a "lightning serve".
I have played against a guy, very strong player, who has an unconventional looking serve, becker-ish weird body contortion to get his rhythm, straight into this quick toss and strike. The serve itself isn't spectacularly fast, or heavy, and doesn't kick, but it is just a PITA to face. I've thought about it before, it throws your own rhythm as a returner off, and it is hard to time your split step, the action happens that fast that you can't sync your splitstep in with them. I also remember I had to fill in for some 2.0 mixed dubs team one night, as they were desperate so did it for a laff, the one thing I found interesting was this old geezer who had this strange pancakey serve, but he performed the motion so fast that it was actually awkward to receive and took a game or two to adjust to.

In the same vein, but not a "lightning bolt" motion, Cilic's serve unsettles me. He bounces the ball for ages, while his foot does this gross twitching thing, then suddenly with no warning in this midst of this unsettling mal petit he just flings the ball up and hits it.
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
We'll let you define it for the rest of us since none of us appear to be familiar with that terminology.

If you will do that, I will respond in kind and define both choconivorous and downpause for you.
 
D

Deleted member 771407

Guest
If, when you first started, you picked up the racquet and instantly your body used lightning bolt type action, then maybe see where it goes and use it.
Otherwise, forget it.

I serve pinpoint, maybe kinda wawrinka-ish, not sure. Feels that way.
I cannot serve platform, cannot get any forward momentum, cannot get my hips around, only works for me for kick/topspin as it is so easy to drive straight up.
I kinda disagree, I think it is the most natural, efficient, and basic way to hit a serve. I've had much better success since I tried to get inspiration from roddick and Groth than from federer and co. I'd say if you are a male in shape and not to old and like to smack the ball they are the perfect example.
 
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