Top Poster: antoni
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where on the baseline should u stand when hitting a flat serve
where on the base line should a player be standing in order to hit an effective flat serve
well usuallits a flat serve up the T, its the lowest part of the net and also the shortest distance for the ball to travel. So id say about 1 or 2 feet from the middle line
The best place to stand depends on where you want to place the serve. The following diagram shows how varying your serving position, changes your serving angle.
If raw speed is what you're after, serve the shortest distance = from the center mark on your side to the "T" in the service court. Such a serve hit flat is the fastest one you can hit. It's popular when serving in the deuce court, because it goes to the receiver's backhand.
Of course, beware of telegraphing your intentions by where you position to serve.
If you vary your serving position and the receiver doesn't vary his receiving position, he probably doesn't notice what you're doing or doesn't know it matters.
I agreed with Fed, you should stand near the middle. Since there is no top spin on the ball, the margin of error to clear the net is small. Here is the link that shows you on how to hit a flat serve:
The advice here is correct. However, one thing to understand, a 'flat' serve is seldom hit flat. Sampras averaged over 2500 rpms of spin on his 'flat' first serve which averaged 120 mph. There is no way Roddick can get his 155mph bomb in with out some spin. There must be some element of topspin to make this fast of serve arch over the net and still land in.
At the club or recreational levels, we often see a player actually try and hit flat, only to get a first serve in by sheer luck (when the player accidently hit enough spin at the right height to get it to go in.) More often, such players put the wrong kind of spin on these big attempts, ending up hitting balls a mile out and yet clear the net by a small margin.
While a discertation on the serve is not possible in such a forum, it is possible to mention that you will want to drive forward with the body, staying sideways as the racquet moves up and across the ball as it is moving forward as well. This will not only give you the basis of an exceptional first serve, it is also the foundation for a consistent second serve. (With less forward emphasis and more 'across the ball' emphasis.)
Position on the baseline will be dependent on singles or doubles play, of course. Singles, your down the T serve is one of the best options since you are going over the lowest part of the net. However, don't rule out the out-wide serve since you have about 8 inches more service box to land the serve in.
same position always
Your position depends on single or double game, your skill at serving and moving, and your opponent skills to return.
In a single game, I'ld recommend to stay close to the center of the field.
Firstly so you don't tell too early to your opponent what kind of serve you plan. Secundly if your serve is pretty slow for your opponent or you don't move fast, it's best to keep close to the center of the field. But then it's best not using a flat serve too. As a second serve is usually slower, take the same position as you second serve.
From there, if you hit hard enough to surprise of opponent, try body line (not too often !) or the center line. Understand the lack of spin makes it easier fro your opponent to return or block it, so you have to make your opponent move to return (body line) or be taken by pure speed (shortest ball path, center field line).
Nevertheless, your opponent adapt to your serve and be far behind his baseline and then your serve will have no effect of surprise. With no spin he can just block his return a get passing shot winners.
My last advice : forget about flat serves, use it only once or twice a match for the surprise. Hitting with spin doesn't involve no power. So hit hard with spin, your opponent will only notice the path change involved with spin, after the bounce, having less time to adapt his return.
To illustrate, I remember Agassi's serving very close to the left corridor, in his first french open. He used to kick it wide to the right side and then following it with a big forehand in the other diagonal. Lots of points won that way until he played Wilander in semifinal (? not so sure about that !).
Wilander has never been famous for his powerful game but he managed to return Agassi's predictable serve taking the ball right after the bounce, attacking along the line to get winners and forced errors...Never saw Agassi doing it again after that.
So keep the same position for all your serves !
I don't know why people are telling you to change your court position depending on the type of serve. Trust me you don't want to do that. When you change your position on the baseline for each individual type of serve you telegraph to your opponent exactly what you are going to hit. This means that he will be waiting for a particular type of serve and will probably crush the return. I would recommend learning to hit all types and placements of your serve from one positon for singles and one for doubles. Usually, for single it is best stand maybe 1.5 -2 feet away from the hashmark and in doubles closer to the alley. What you percieve as a flat serve is probably a serve with slight amount of slice and a lot of pace ( it looks flat but it isn't).
Hope this tip was helpful.
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