Serve: Sholder turn + bending-waist-to-the-left = better serve ?

Serve: Sholder turn + bending-waist-to-the-left = better serve ?

Post by Paul Eisen » Wed, 08 Jan 2003 14:21:32


After watching a video tape of my own serve, I found
my racket swing path strangly going to the upper right
side of the trunk. Then watched Sampras's serve, and saw
him,
1. arching into the court, bending from the waist toward
   the left, after the ball toss; from the opposite side
   of the court, it looked like he bended backward
   a bit. But the later observation could be a mis-perception;
2. the racket arm swings almost straight upward, with no
   noticeable motion sideways. As he springed upward/forward

Then tried to immitate that motion, I fell backward,
toward the left side of the court after the serve. If
I don't intentionally bend the waist more at the completion
of the ball toss, I could not achieve a more straight-up
upward swing path.

I observed other recreational players having such strange
service swing path but didn't realize I have been doing
similar serves. Let me call this the "sideway swing
serve" (SSS) syndrom.
Some extreme players with extreme SSS symdrom almost
only do slice serves. Some of them toss too far to their
right, that their racket almost go underneath the ball.
I can serve flat or top spin by adjusting the toss,
pronating the wrist differently. I assume SSS is a
pretty common mistake.

Do folks have any thoughts to share on SSS ? Any
diagnosis ?

When I could swing straight-up, I did feel significant increase
in power, and control. I don't have a radar gun, but I could
see the ball hit the backfence (30 feet from the baseline)
in between waist to head level, down the T. This was when
the serve was in.

So I was satisfied about the power achieved, but do not
like to fall to the left side of the court afterwards.
It also strains the back muscles.

What is it that Sampras did that allowed him to not
fall into the left side of the court after serve ?

 
 
 

Serve: Sholder turn + bending-waist-to-the-left = better serve ?

Post by Michael Scarpit » Wed, 08 Jan 2003 23:50:12

Quote:

> After watching a video tape of my own serve, I found
> my racket swing path strangly going to the upper right
> side of the trunk.

I'm not sure I understand what you mean here. Are you arching your
back? If so, that's what you want. Most rec players toss too far to
the right (and too low). Tossing farther to the left (higher, farther
out in front) is probably the way to correct your swing. START WITH
THE TOSS, get it right, and then all this other stuff will fall into
place automatically, as if by magic.

Quote:
>Then watched Sampras's serve, and saw
> him,
> 1. arching into the court, bending from the waist toward
>    the left, after the ball toss; from the opposite side
>    of the court, it looked like he bended backward
>    a bit. But the later observation could be a mis-perception;
> 2. the racket arm swings almost straight upward, with no
>    noticeable motion sideways. As he springed upward/forward

WATCH HIS TOSS. That's the key.
Quote:
> Then tried to immitate that motion, I fell backward,
> toward the left side of the court after the serve. If
> I don't intentionally bend the waist more at the completion
> of the ball toss, I could not achieve a more straight-up
> upward swing path.

> I observed other recreational players having such strange
> service swing path but didn't realize I have been doing
> similar serves. Let me call this the "sideway swing
> serve" (SSS) syndrom.
> Some extreme players with extreme SSS symdrom almost
> only do slice serves. Some of them toss too far to their
> right, that their racket almost go underneath the ball.
> I can serve flat or top spin by adjusting the toss,
> pronating the wrist differently. I assume SSS is a
> pretty common mistake.

> Do folks have any thoughts to share on SSS ? Any
> diagnosis ?

> When I could swing straight-up, I did feel significant increase
> in power, and control. I don't have a radar gun, but I could
> see the ball hit the backfence (30 feet from the baseline)
> in between waist to head level, down the T. This was when
> the serve was in.

> So I was satisfied about the power achieved, but do not
> like to fall to the left side of the court afterwards.
> It also strains the back muscles.

> What is it that Sampras did that allowed him to not
> fall into the left side of the court after serve ?


 
 
 

Serve: Sholder turn + bending-waist-to-the-left = better serve ?

Post by Kare » Thu, 09 Jan 2003 01:35:07

Quote:

> Then tried to immitate that motion, I fell backward,
> toward the left side of the court after the serve. If
> I don't intentionally bend the waist more at the completion
> of the ball toss, I could not achieve a more straight-up
> upward swing path.

Bending waist is a good motion in serve.

Don't feel bad about falling backward to the left. I think I saw Andy
Roddic doing it sometimes.

I don't know your serve motion. It's hard to diagnose with text only.
One thing you can try, if you are not doing now, is to "bend" your
waist sideway such your front hip and front kneel point to sideline
not to the net. It may cure your left problem. I call it "show your
opponent your butt, not your belly button". Look at the picture to see
what I mean.

http://www.sportfiles.com/photogallery/agassi/FO00-03-36.jpg

Tossing the ball a little more in front of you may cure the backward
problem.

 
 
 

Serve: Sholder turn + bending-waist-to-the-left = better serve ?

Post by Kare » Thu, 09 Jan 2003 04:39:19

Quote:

> WATCH HIS TOSS. That's the key.

Yeh, that's right. Sampras put incredible spin in his tossing ball.
That's why his serve is heavy. Better yet, watch how he bounce the
ball on the ground. That's the KEY. The bounce style is different from
pro to pro. Some bounces twice, some three time, some up to 11.35465
times. Some bounces straight up and down, some with a forward curve,
and some with twister action. Some bounces with a hammer hand, some
with velvet hand, and some with wrist. You have to search the best for
you. The bounce height and tempo are determined by time of day, your
*** type, and your second best friend's pet name.

The above is some tennis instruction books are like.

 
 
 

Serve: Sholder turn + bending-waist-to-the-left = better serve ?

Post by Ash Smit » Thu, 09 Jan 2003 07:28:12



Quote:


>> Then tried to immitate that motion, I fell backward,
>> toward the left side of the court after the serve. If
>> I don't intentionally bend the waist more at the completion
>> of the ball toss, I could not achieve a more straight-up
>> upward swing path.

> Bending waist is a good motion in serve.

> Don't feel bad about falling backward to the left. I think I saw Andy
> Roddic doing it sometimes.

> I don't know your serve motion. It's hard to diagnose with text only.
> One thing you can try, if you are not doing now, is to "bend" your
> waist sideway such your front hip and front kneel point to sideline
> not to the net. It may cure your left problem. I call it "show your
> opponent your butt, not your belly button". Look at the picture to see
> what I mean.

> http://www.sportfiles.com/photogallery/agassi/FO00-03-36.jpg

> Tossing the ball a little more in front of you may cure the backward
> problem.

Another way to look at it is to get the feeling you are pointing your left
hip up to the ball (Karen's Agassi pic shows this) but as Mike says the
placement of the ball is the key.

Ash Smith

 
 
 

Serve: Sholder turn + bending-waist-to-the-left = better serve ?

Post by Michael Scarpit » Thu, 09 Jan 2003 12:49:55

Quote:





> >> Then tried to immitate that motion, I fell backward,
> >> toward the left side of the court after the serve. If
> >> I don't intentionally bend the waist more at the completion
> >> of the ball toss, I could not achieve a more straight-up
> >> upward swing path.

> > Bending waist is a good motion in serve.

> > Don't feel bad about falling backward to the left. I think I saw Andy
> > Roddic doing it sometimes.

> > I don't know your serve motion. It's hard to diagnose with text only.
> > One thing you can try, if you are not doing now, is to "bend" your
> > waist sideway such your front hip and front kneel point to sideline
> > not to the net. It may cure your left problem. I call it "show your
> > opponent your butt, not your belly button". Look at the picture to see
> > what I mean.

> > http://www.sportfiles.com/photogallery/agassi/FO00-03-36.jpg

> > Tossing the ball a little more in front of you may cure the backward
> > problem.

> Another way to look at it is to get the feeling you are pointing your left
> hip up to the ball (Karen's Agassi pic shows this) but as Mike says the
> placement of the ball is the key.

> Ash Smith

Thanks, Ash! I believe a lot of people's serve's could be ever so much
better if they could get some good advice/instruction on tossing.
 
 
 

Serve: Sholder turn + bending-waist-to-the-left = better serve ?

Post by Kare » Thu, 09 Jan 2003 22:58:09

Quote:

> Thanks, Ash! I believe a lot of people's serve's could be ever so much
> better if they could get some good advice/instruction on tossing.

Another B.S. of yours.
 
 
 

Serve: Sholder turn + bending-waist-to-the-left = better serve ?

Post by Ash Smit » Thu, 09 Jan 2003 23:47:26



Quote:


>> Thanks, Ash! I believe a lot of people's serve's could be ever so much
>> better if they could get some good advice/instruction on tossing.

> Another B.S. of yours.

would you mind expanding this Karen - what are you meaning by B.S?
 
 
 

Serve: Sholder turn + bending-waist-to-the-left = better serve ?

Post by Michael Scarpit » Fri, 10 Jan 2003 04:34:35

Quote:





> >> Thanks, Ash! I believe a lot of people's serve's could be ever so much
> >> better if they could get some good advice/instruction on tossing.

> > Another B.S. of yours.

> would you mind expanding this Karen - what are you meaning by B.S?

Apparently Karen does not understand the importance of tossing and
learning how to do it properly, or lese has some issues with me.

Regardless, I have spent considerable time and effort
working/experimenting on tossing, and I have discovered some subtle
techniques that greatly enhance the consistency, power, control, and
and effectiveness of my service and that of others through subtle
changes in tossing.

During the summer of 2001, I showed one of these suggestions to Rich
Simpson, and he immediately improved his serve. He would not stop
talking about it and thanking me!

 
 
 

Serve: Sholder turn + bending-waist-to-the-left = better serve ?

Post by Kare » Fri, 10 Jan 2003 05:21:17

Quote:





> >> Thanks, Ash! I believe a lot of people's serve's could be ever so much
> >> better if they could get some good advice/instruction on tossing.

> > Another B.S. of yours.

> would you mind expanding this Karen - what are you meaning by B.S?

Sorry, I was harsh on Mike since I wasn't in a good mood and his
continuous nonsense wasting my bandwidth.

My question to Mike is what advice/instruction you can give besides
"toss to the swing"?

To solve serve problem by teaching how to toss is not a good way. The
problem with most people is they don't know the correct swing. Once
they know the correct swing and find the their swing path, tossing the
ball to the path is NOT hard task at all for an average player.

The toss is like backswing in a forehand. It's not a good investment
to over-teach. I don't mean it's not important. But it's not something
you want your pupils too worry about.

I don't see many player toss the ball all over the place. But I see
many, many ugly, inefficient and body-harming serve montion. So can a
lot of people's serve's could be ever so much better if they could get
some good advice/instruction on tossing?

 
 
 

Serve: Sholder turn + bending-waist-to-the-left = better serve ?

Post by Paul Eisen » Fri, 10 Jan 2003 11:11:57

Quote:

> Regardless, I have spent considerable time and effort
> working/experimenting on tossing, and I have discovered some subtle
> techniques that greatly enhance the consistency, power, control, and
> and effectiveness of my service and that of others through subtle
> changes in tossing.

> During the summer of 2001, I showed one of these suggestions to Rich
> Simpson, and he immediately improved his serve. He would not stop
> talking about it and thanking me!

I have also spent some time on the toss. Taping myself and
found once my hand went "too low", before the upward motion,
compared with Sampras'. The only professional player I observed
doing the toss "my way" is the lady from Madagascar (she has
a one-handed back hand). To visualize that, imagine the tennis
ball to be extremely heavy and the only way to toss it up is to
lower the tossing hand to almost behind the left hip.
I don't know if I am doing it that way now.

Needless to say, it is not easy to have a consistent high toss.
But it is relatively easy to have a consistent low toss.

There is also the parameter of the position/direction of
the lifting arm. It could be parallel to the baseline (hand
pointing to side fence), or the left hand could point more
inside the court. Do you (or any other people reading this)
know what your toss arm's position is ?

How much does that matter ?

To digress a bit more, one of the difficulties is that it is
not easy to know whether the inconsistency is caused by lack
of practice or incorrect technique.