Stop Serving into the Net

sharapovaserveThere are way too many technical aspects in regards to the service motion to fit into one post, so today I hope to give you some valuable tips on how to stop or minimize the amount of service errors you make in the net. Remember, everybody is going to make errors in tennis, so the key is to constantly be making adjustments. Even when you are executing your shots properly and they are landing inside the court, you should still be making minor tweaks and adjustments. Unless you’re like me and have never missed a shot in your life. True story, I have never missed a ball to this day.

Common adjustments you’ll want to make:

#1. Keep your head up until after you contact the ball. Bringing the head down too early is probably the most common reason players hit the net on the serve. Even pro players need to remind themselves of this time to time.

#2. Don’t pull down your non-hitting arm too early. Your arms should work together on the serve. If you are yanking your arm down to early, this will pull your other shoulder up and push your head down.

#3. Contacting the ball too far out in front. A very common adjustment players will make is to slow down the speed of their serve. This is a big “no-no.” What you should be doing instead is adjusting your contact point. Don’t toss it so far out in the court. (If you would like me to explain why some pros are way in the court I can definitely elaborate.) Think about the angle of your racket on contact. You don’t want to toss too far behind you either, or you will start to make errors long.

#4. Rotate upward instead of sideways. Pulling the elbow down too early off the ball will create a risky trajectory and often take height off the ball. Try to get the shoulders up and over each other, like a windmill.

#5. Use your legs. You should be utilizing as much upward weight transfer as you possibly can on your serve. Evaluate which way your momentum is going and adjust it upward.

#6. Don’t try to “hit through the ball.” Given the fact that the ball only spends two milliseconds on the strings, we can confidently say that most of the serve is upward. Most of the forward part of the swing is simply going to your contact point. If you are “hitting through the ball,” it is only taking away from the control of your serve. The ball is gone before you know it. Focus on everything leading up to the contact point, and not after the contact point of the serve.

– Carlos Bermudez Tennis

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