We all want to hit a better serve, right?
What better way to improve your toss & motion than from the top four seeds at Wimbledon in 2019. Those players were:
- Novak Djokovic
- Roger Federer
- Rafael Nadal
- Kevin Anderson
My Wimbledon Channel analysis focuses on things that the players do well, and also some improvements that they can make. Here’s the video…
2019 Wimbledon Channel
Craig Analyzes Serve Technique Of Top 4 Seeds
Take-Aways For Your Game
1. Opposite Hand
The opposite hand does a lot in the ready position of the serve. Look where my opposite hand (right hand) in the pic below – right around where the throat and the head of the racket meet. The opposite hand helps with:
- It holds the weight of the racket, keeping the hitting arm (shoulder, elbow, wrist) relaxed in preparation for the serve.
- It keeps the racket head up.
- It moves the racket away from the body.
2. Elbow Down & Away
Novak’s old serve, from around a decade ago, saw his right elbow get too close to his body. This pic below looks great, where the right elbow is down below the right shoulder, positioning all his energy to go up to the ball.
3. Finish Tall
Novak is clearly bent over too low at the end of his serve. Coaches use the term “collapsing” when they see this. Look at the pic of Roger further down the page in an identical position of his motion – much taller. The big benefits of staying taller in the follow-through are that it helps keep you higher at the point of contact, and it helps you recover quicker for the return coming back at you.
4. Eyes Forward
Players tend to look all over the place right before they serve. Look at Roger below, keeping a keen eye on the returner. That’s where your eyes should be before the toss.
5. Stay Tall
Roger’s front knee has bent a little to absorb the impact of coming back to the ground after the serve. That’s a really efficient position because he is ready quicker than Novak (pic above) for the return coming back in play.
6. Driving Up To The Ball
Your target when serving is not the service box on the other side of the court. It’s the ball up in the air in front of you. In the pic below you can see every segment of Roger’s body is committed to driving up to contact. High contact is everything on a serve.
7. Full Extension
Rafa is reaching up as high as he can to make contact, which dramatically helps to take the net out of play. Most recreational players don’t come close to this kind of “reach” up to contact.
It’s always good to learn from the best in the game when looking to improve your own serve.