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Tennis Anyone
July 1994 Article

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"Serve & Volley"

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John Mills, USPTA

The most common reasons a player gives not to serve & volley plus corrective corrective measures.


I: My serve is too weak - the very nature of playing serve & volley tends to force a player to throw their ball toss farther in front to create a "leaning effect." Waiting behind the baseline to make sure your serve is in is the real killer - always assume your serve is in and be on your way to the net.

II: I hate the "lob" return off my serve - fear of the "lob" return is usually caused when the server is moving toward the net at an out-of-control speed. They are moving so fast they cannot stop and go back to track the lob over their partner's head.

III: I don't feel like I am fast enough - an interesting note in serve & volley is that you only need to be fast in doubles for 5 or 6 steps. Consider this speed the speed you would have on a super highway - tennis is a game of short bursts of speed.

IV: I hate the wide angle return of serve - fear of the "wide angle return" is usually caused by a player not "reading" their opponents racket. After they move in their 5 or 6 steps (called a split-step) they stay there too long, thus giving their opponent too much angle.

V: The ball is always at my feet - this excuse can be attributed to (a) your serve being not deep enough or forcing enough; (b) failure to read the opponents racket; (c) not taking your first 5-6 steps fast enough; or (d) standing still too long near the service line and waiting for the ball to come to you - go to the ball!

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This column is copyrighted by John Mills, all rights reserved.

John Mills currently teaches tennis at the University of Houston, Clear Lake campus. John Mills' experience includes four years as head pro at the Windemere Racquet & Swim Club, where he was responsible for organization of all tennis activities at the club. John also played college tennis at the University of Houston and has spent 20 years teaching tennis at the Memorial Park Tennis Center, the Pasadena Racquet Club, and as the head pro at the Bay Area Racquet Club.


 

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