15/Love Vol. VI: The Shut Down Serve

November 1, 2011
by Justin

There was one thing that set tennis great, Pete Sampras, apart from his competition; his devastating serve. No one in tennis history has served with more power and accuracy than Sampras. It didn’t matter if he was playing on clay or grass, Sampras brought his A game every time he stepped onto the court. There is not one discipline in tennis that is more important than the other, but no skill can frustrate an opponent more than a great serve. If you want to take your tennis game to the next level, you must address the two most important aspects of your serve; accuracy and power. Here’s an example of Sampras’ extreme serve power. He actually breaks right through Pat Rafter’s tennis racquet.



If that happens to be a weakness in your tennis game, www.scoutme.com has got you covered. Volume six of 15/Love is here to save the day, with some helpful tips to help you dominate any tennis court. If you aren’t caught up with all of the prior articles, here’s what you missed: In volume one (http://www.scoutme.com/tennis/15love-vol-1-why-lateral-quickness-is-the-difference/) we touched on lateral quickness, while in volume two (http://www.scoutme.com/tennis/15love-vol-2-shoulder-the-load/ ) the focus was shoulder strength. The third installment (http://www.scoutme.com/tennis/15love-vol-3-restore-the-core-with-estrada-fitness/) was brought to you by Estrada Fitness, as trainer Jason Estrada showcased his cutting-edge, tennis-based, core strength workouts. Volume four was about the backhand (http://www.scoutme.com/tennis/15love-vol-4-the-land-of-backhand/) so naturally the next progression is the forehand (http://www.scoutme.com/tennis/15love-vol-v-for-the-love-of-the-forehand/). Here are some tips and techniques to improve your serve.



Current American tennis star, Andy Roddick has one of the most powerful serves in the game. His main problem, outside of his backhand, is his accuracy. A solid way to improve you serve’s accuracy, is to split the service box you are aiming for in two. Aim for each side of the imaginary line on the court, hitting your tennis ball as deep in the box as possible. Switch sides of the court and aim your ball in the same manner you did in the first part of the progression. This tennis drill is great because it teaches you to play each match with precision. Every tennis player has a weakness (backhand or forehand) and this is an effective method in exposing that aspect of his or her game. Here is a demonstration of this tennis drill in action:



Topspin Serve

One of the most difficult serves to against in the game of tennis is the topspin serve. If added to your repertoire, this valuable weapon could be the reason you dominate the court. Even though this is a little more advanced than the flat serve, this along with the slice are valuable skills. To execute this type of serve you must throw the tennis ball more above your head and swing the racquet up, and outside the ball in one fluid motion. Here is another great video that breaks down every facet of the skill:


A game of tennis is comparable to going to court; you’d rather be the judge than the defendant. Until the next time, I rest my case. Check back next week for more tennis tips, drills and techniques. This is 15/Love and this Yorick Hempstead, signing off.


Yorick Hempstead is an ex-college athlete who is a sports blogger for Scoutme.com. He is always talking sports on twitter @HempsteadHuddle. 

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