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  1. #1

    At which point do they measure the serve speed?

    Okay, so i'm posting this and hoping to get a clarifying response:
    I've been thrown into an identity crisis as of late - ye see, i'm a power server (at least i thought i was) - i've had it video analysed at 196 km/h.
    But then last week, my coach pulls out this strange little apparatus and sets it right under the net. And truth be told, i couldn't push it up over 145. Not once.
    I thought i was ridiculous - i'm 15, and i average 6-12 aces per best-of-3. I outserve players 3 years my senior. So.. At what point of the flight do they measure the speed?!

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagnusEffect View Post
    Okay, so i'm posting this and hoping to get a clarifying response:
    I've been thrown into an identity crisis as of late - ye see, i'm a power server (at least i thought i was) - i've had it video analysed at 196 km/h.
    But then last week, my coach pulls out this strange little apparatus and sets it right under the net. And truth be told, i couldn't push it up over 145. Not once.
    I thought i was ridiculous - i'm 15, and i average 6-12 aces per best-of-3. I outserve players 3 years my senior. So.. At what point of the flight do they measure the speed?!
    It's usually within 6 or so feet of the ball leaving the racquet.

  3. #3
    Okay. I think with the speed decrease i saw on the video, that puts my serve in the high 180's. I'm less worried then.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by tennisking1 View Post
    It's usually within 6 or so feet of the ball leaving the racquet.
    +1

    So I have to ask.. when you hit those aces, what part of the box do you normally go for?

  5. #5
    I'm a rightie, so usually heavy slice from the deuce court or straight down the T from the ad side. Sometimes (just to be a real prick ) i slice the serves down the T.

  6. #6
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    Did I read right?
    All your service aces are from SLICE serves?
    And you hit 180 km/hr, or 120 mph SLICE serves?
    Even Goran or Sampras can't do that except with their best serves.
    I'd bet your slice serves are slower than that.
    Now your first FLAT serves might go 125mph, or even slightly higher, but no chance when you add the extra sidespin.
    Gotta be real.
    My first flats nowadays around 115-120, and EVERYONE stands back 6' behind the baseline to successfully get a look. It goes POP, and everyone around the courts look over.
    My fastest slice serves maybe top out around 90mph.
    My normal second serves closer to 75mph.
    My twists prolly 65mph.

  7. #7
    Of course i don't hit heavy slice serves at 180 km/h
    They don't go any faster than you mentioned. The reason they are so effective is that in Denmark, young players, even at the highest levels, are rarely encouraged to experiment with their serves (in fact, few of them have a kick serve, and most of them are horrible at returns. They don't really slice, either.), and therefore, the slice serve takes them by surprise. Every single time. Oh, and besides, 180 km is only 110 mph.
    I'm a tall guy, and i work out a lot, so i've got lots of net clearance and big mass behind my serves.
    I do hit some slice/topspin serves at 110-115 though, and they do break quite a lot to the left on impact.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagnusEffect View Post
    Of course i don't hit heavy slice serves at 180 km/h
    They don't go any faster than you mentioned. The reason they are so effective is that in Denmark, young players, even at the highest levels, are rarely encouraged to experiment with their serves (in fact, few of them have a kick serve, and most of them are horrible at returns. They don't really slice, either.), and therefore, the slice serve takes them by surprise. Every single time. Oh, and besides, 180 km is only 110 mph.
    I'm a tall guy, and i work out a lot, so i've got lots of net clearance and big mass behind my serves.
    I do hit some slice/topspin serves at 110-115 though, and they do break quite a lot to the left on impact.
    i can see that. we've already covered the topic that pros rarely hit a flat serve. they are more like slice topspin first serves traveling upwards of 120.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagnusEffect View Post
    Of course i don't hit heavy slice serves at 180 km/h
    They don't go any faster than you mentioned. The reason they are so effective is that in Denmark, young players, even at the highest levels, are rarely encouraged to experiment with their serves (in fact, few of them have a kick serve, and most of them are horrible at returns. They don't really slice, either.), and therefore, the slice serve takes them by surprise. Every single time. Oh, and besides, 180 km is only 110 mph.
    I'm a tall guy, and i work out a lot, so i've got lots of net clearance and big mass behind my serves.
    I do hit some slice/topspin serves at 110-115 though, and they do break quite a lot to the left on impact.
    A Dane! Well Magnus, my good friend that I worked with at Saddlebrook/Hopman was Rene Moller. He is originally from Denmark but spent most of his life in New Zealand before coming over and playing at Auburn University. Great player. Coached Samantha Stosur for a bit.

  10. #10
    Wow! I must admit though, i have very little love for our coaching system (we rely on the same methodology in all sports), which treats young players as incompetent children. There is no real effort to teach young players proper topspin unless they start VERY early and have talent, serves are largely neglected, and players are forced into a mould (double-bend western grip, two handed backhand. Ugh. Disgusting, if you ask me). If you look at Caroline Wozniacki, she isn't really that great a tennis "player". The reason she is so good is because she is a mental bastion and because she's in great shape. I think the same thing applies to the best danish kids, too.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagnusEffect View Post
    Wow! I must admit though, i have very little love for our coaching system (we rely on the same methodology in all sports), which treats young players as incompetent children. There is no real effort to teach young players proper topspin unless they start VERY early and have talent, serves are largely neglected, and players are forced into a mould (double-bend western grip, two handed backhand. Ugh. Disgusting, if you ask me). If you look at Caroline Wozniacki, she isn't really that great a tennis "player". The reason she is so good is because she is a mental bastion and because she's in great shape. I think the same thing applies to the best danish kids, too.
    Come on over to the States. Good schools, great tennis, and you play as you choose to play. That is one of the reasons I just joined the Smith/Stearns Academy. The kids act right (they get along and have a good time and don't scream, curse, and yell) and they have their own identity when it comes to their tennis. I have seen a number of academies that you have to play and learn their "system". What a joke! A good coach can take any style of player and help them to become better. The coach should mold to the player's style. The player should not change for the coach. All of these theories about "10,000 hours of court time and training" and yadda, yadda, yadda are absolute crap. I have seen numerous juniors spend hours and hours on the court and they go the other way. They play poorly. I have personally taken juniors from big academies who were distraught over why they were losing ground in their rankings and helped them turn things around. The biggest gains made with good players is in the mental department. You can hit a ball until you are blue in the face, but if you don't learn to think for yourself out on the court, believe in your game, and know your game and have confidence in it, you will LOSE! Practice and play with purpose is the key to top performance.

  12. #12
    Yeah, well, thanks for the offer, but i'm not that good XD I think i'll concentrate on getting into Harvard or Johns Hopkins Med - and then maybe there'll be time for tennis after that.
    BTW, i'm having a bit of trouble with pronation - i can't pronate unless my racquet faces edge-first into the court through my entire swing - but i know i should have that L-shape!
    I've had video taken, and i do have elbow drop, but for some reason i can't pronate with proper backswing

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagnusEffect View Post
    Yeah, well, thanks for the offer, but i'm not that good XD I think i'll concentrate on getting into Harvard or Johns Hopkins Med - and then maybe there'll be time for tennis after that.
    BTW, i'm having a bit of trouble with pronation - i can't pronate unless my racquet faces edge-first into the court through my entire swing - but i know i should have that L-shape!
    I've had video taken, and i do have elbow drop, but for some reason i can't pronate with proper backswing

    Do you have the correct grip? Needs to be a good continental grip. If you don't use this grip, the buttcap of the racquet will constantly hit you in the wrist and stop you from pronating. If that is not the issue, take the racquet to the ear and practice "throwing" the racquet at the ball. Get used to the feel of the pronation and then turn it into easier serves with your normal swing. Then, slowly add pace until you are there. Make sure your toss is over head as well because if it gets too far to your right (if you are right-handed) you will automatically have a slice motion. Otherwise, take your time and slow it down to get the motion you need to allow you to pronate. Ball toss overhead..........

  14. #14
    I always use the continental or eastern backhand (depending on how much spin i want, of course) - and i can pronate fine (i can hit serves in the 110's, as listed above - hard to do without pronating :P) - but not unless my racquet edge actually faces into the court before the upward swing - the result is that my arm cramps into my body, and i know i can break 120 if i can get a loose swing going, which is hugely frustrating.
    I mean, i can make OK contact with the L shape, but it feels wrong, so to speak.

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