Perfecting your Serve

The serve as a creator of chances and free points, hopefully.

Spectacular or not, you should ask yourself what your serve adds, or possibly takes away, from your game. Does it create chances for you to apply pressure to your opponent or even set you up for a winning shot opportunity? Worse, does it do this for your opponent? I guarantee there is at least one player at your club or in your leagues who wins the majority of the points from serving and then puts away a weak return with a dropdrop volley or little boast. Typically this person is older and needs the serve – commonly a lob serve – to create chances for them as they can’t compete physically and win points through retrieving or through creating opportunities with consistent drives. Why though can’t even the fittest and accomplished players extract weak returns with their serves? The serve should be seen as a shot with the potential to start off an attack. If your serve is hard to return, you can force a weak shot so you can start attacking to apply pressure immediately, maybe even win the rally. Why waste such an opportunity to create an opening? The serve is a great opportunity due to its unique nature in giving you the time to line up your shot and play it exactly as you wish without pressure.

Take a moment to reflect on your game and think about whether the serve creates any chances for you to attack or if it actually gives your opponent an opening. If it is giving your opponent a chance to attack or isn’t creating anything for you, it’s worth taking some time to practice your serve.