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  1. Yann Fasilleau-Ramasy is offline
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    #1

    Tips to be a great server ?

    Hello everyone,
    I want to know your advices to become good at services. I think it's a face of my game I can improve a lot.
    Thanks a lot

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    #2
    I mean, that's a pretty broad question.

    Simple answer is: practice! 👍

    Edit: maybe you should ask something more specific (what exactly do you want to improve in your serve)?

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    Last edited by GusShnaps; 12-28-2021 at 02:25 PM.

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    #3
    There’s a few questions to ask yourself!!

    What is a good server??
    What is a good serve??
    What do you expect from your serves??

    One of the answers to the last question is EXPECT THE SERVE TO BE RETURNED, AND RETURNED WELL!! DO NOT EXPECT TO WIN POINTS DIRECTLY FROM YOUR SERVE, If you do win a direct point from your serve this is a bonus!!

    The other 2 questions are linked to each other, it could also be a case that a ‘good server’ doesn’t necessarily have to have ‘tricky’ serves.
    One of the main traits of a ‘good serve’ is that the return is predictable, this is very very important. A ‘good server’ knows this, if they serve serve ‘X’ to opponent’s Fh side, and they know that the return is a cross table FH flick 8 out of 10 times then that are extremely well placed to carry out a 3rd ball attack. This can be classed as a ‘set up’ serve or as a ‘set play’.

    There are a good number of individual parts that make up a ‘good serve’ placement, spin, speed and variation of all of them, depth, deception etc etc.

    As Gus said, learn some serves, and practice them.
    Another thing to remember when practicing is always execute the serve and return to your ready position, the return to the ready position (for the 3rd ball play) should be considered as part of the ‘serve action’.

    hope this helps!!

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    #6
    hide the ball by the head? is it ok?

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    #7
    No, you never can hide the ball.

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  8. Yann Fasilleau-Ramasy is offline
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    #8
    Quote Originally Posted by IB66
    There’s a few questions to ask yourself!!

    What is a good server??
    What is a good serve??
    What do you expect from your serves??

    One of the answers to the last question is EXPECT THE SERVE TO BE RETURNED, AND RETURNED WELL!! DO NOT EXPECT TO WIN POINTS DIRECTLY FROM YOUR SERVE, If you do win a direct point from your serve this is a bonus!!

    The other 2 questions are linked to each other, it could also be a case that a ‘good server’ doesn’t necessarily have to have ‘tricky’ serves.
    One of the main traits of a ‘good serve’ is that the return is predictable, this is very very important. A ‘good server’ knows this, if they serve serve ‘X’ to opponent’s Fh side, and they know that the return is a cross table FH flick 8 out of 10 times then that are extremely well placed to carry out a 3rd ball attack. This can be classed as a ‘set up’ serve or as a ‘set play’.

    There are a good number of individual parts that make up a ‘good serve’ placement, spin, speed and variation of all of them, depth, deception etc etc.

    As Gus said, learn some serves, and practice them.
    Another thing to remember when practicing is always execute the serve and return to your ready position, the return to the ready position (for the 3rd ball play) should be considered as part of the ‘serve action’.

    hope this helps!!
    Yes it helps a lot. I have another quest, what do you thing about high toss ? I tried to learn high toss serve but I don't know if it's really necessary, like I can improve serving with short toss, maybe it's another weapon I don't know.

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    #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Yann Fasilleau-Ramasy
    Yes it helps a lot. I have another quest, what do you thing about high toss ? I tried to learn high toss serve but I don't know if it's really necessary, like I can improve serving with short toss, maybe it's another weapon I don't know.

    I gave up on high toss serves because while they would give me more spin, I would have trouble executing those serves in tournaments. The lower toss serves (like Timo Boll's) are just a lot easier for me to execute when I'm in a close game, and I'm sweaty & nervous. Plus the spin generated is more than adequate. I think you need a lot of practice and experience with high toss serves, so if you're willing to put in the time, go for it!

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    #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Yann Fasilleau-Ramasy
    Yes it helps a lot. I have another quest, what do you thing about high toss ? I tried to learn high toss serve but I don't know if it's really necessary, like I can improve serving with short toss, maybe it's another weapon I don't know.
    High toss adds ball speed / velocity before contact which increases spin potential after contact.
    How high is high?? 1.5 / 2m+ above head height? Or higher?
    A coach I play with uses a high toss ( roughly 1.5m above his head) for his FH pendulum serve, very fast and spinny. Harder to control for a short serve ( bouncing at least twice on opponents side of net ) you will need great touch and feel to really master the high toss.
    If you can master it, then there is potential for greater spin variation (to a certain extent). Variation is key when serving!!

    Personally I use a couple of heights of ball toss, usually low for BH serve, in fact I have to remember to make sure it is at least 150mm high after leaving my palm.
    FH hook / punch serve and FH pendulum can vary from chest height to head height.
    FH reverse pendulum is usually lower max chest / chin height, I just find it easier to execute the serve with a lower toss.

    High spin can be achieved with a low toss as well, personally I would say that a low to medium toss is sufficient, but really it’s a person’s preference. Maybe start with a low toss when first learning a serve and then gradually build up to a higher toss after you have mastered the low toss serve.

    Regarding deception, contact position on the bat also effects spin and speed. So you can use the same action but not only contact the ball at different positions on the ball but different positions on the bat as well.
    Imagine a line down the centre of the handle to tip of your bat, splitting into equal halves (vertically) Contact on the bat towards the ‘leading edge’ ( for a RH player this is the left side) will produce more spin than contacting the trailing edge side (right side)
    You can also then draw lines horizontally, 2 lines creating equal 1/3’s across the bat, fast is the bottom 3rd at the tip, medium middle 3rd and slowest top 3rd closest to your hand. Then add the vertical line creating 6 segments on the bat, you now have 6 contact points that will give 6 variations from one service stroke.
    IF YOU ARE PROFICIENT ENOUGH !!!!!!! 😎😂​​​​​​​

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  11. IB66 is offline
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    #11
    Another point I forgot to mention is tempo or rhythm. It can help if you practice tossing the ball and catching it with your racket hand. counting something like ‘1000 and 1’
    ‘and’ being about 1/2 a second , with ‘1’ being about 1 second.
    You can then set a basic tempo from ball release to contact with the racket for a given toss height. Obliviously the lower ball toss will be a shorter period of time, something that’s hard to ‘count’!!!

    I agree with AndyK that the high ball toss is difficult, you feel like it takes ages for the ball to come down and then feel that the serve action can feel rushed and twitchy!!
    Finding the tempo/height relationship will help along with mastering actually tossing the ball a consistent height and it arriving back at a desired contact position each time.


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