You've Been Served
Learn these top 5 tips to improve your serve, brought to you by Play Your Court.
Every point starts with a serve – what’s keeping yours from being great? Are there little adjustments you can make that will have a big impact? Scott and Nate from Play Your Court share 5 tips on perfecting this most crucial of tennis skills, and share a couple of video tutorials for both beginner and more advanced players.
1. Master the Continental Grip
The continental grip, or the “hammer grip,” is a must-have if you want to generate a powerful and reliable serve. An easy way to get the feel for this grip is to try and bounce a tennis ball on the ground using the edge of your racket.
2. The Correct Stance
Good serve technique starts with a strong stance. Regardless of side, a right-handed serer should setup with left foot in front and feet roughly shoulder-width apart. The front of the left shoe should be about 1-2 inches behind the baseline and toes should point toward the right net post. The back foot should be parallel with the baseline and if you were to draw a straight line on the ground along the toes of your shoes it would also point to the right net post. For lefties, simply reverse.
3. Control Your Toss
A lot of players hold the ball in the palm of their hand and roll it off their fingertips, creating an inconsistent toss. For a more consistent and reliable toss, hold the ball with just your fingertips and simply open your fingers when the ball reaches eye level.
4. Release the Tension
Gripping your racket too tight is the most common “serve power-killer.” Instead, hold your grip like you would hold a baby bird – you don’t want to squeeze too tight, but you also don’t want it to fly away.
5. The Racket Drop
The racket drop is responsible for the most power on your serve. An easy way to feel a pro-level racket drop is the 3 Finger Drill. Remove your ring and pinkie fingers from your racket and do some serve shadow swings. When you raise your racket arm with only 3 fingers, gravity will pull the racket down your back, and into the correct racket drop position.
If you’re new to tennis and need a visual on the continental grip, the correct ball toss and more then check out this great, basic serve tutorial from the guys at Play Your Court.
And if you’re more of a seasoned player and want to add a little extra oomph to your serve, then check out their lesson on Cracking the Whip.
Want even more tips on improving your serve? Join Play Your Court from June 14-18 for their special Serve Challenge which promises to add at least 15mph to your serve in just 5 days. Learn more and register for this free workshop.