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The Tennis Business Discussion Forum Archive

[tennisbiz] Re: Stopping student from leaning in too early on serve

From: Philippe Azar <>
Date: Thu 23 Oct 2003 17:55:17 +0300

<x-charset iso-8859-1>If Paul Fein is going to disagree with Miguel Hernandez's assertion that the
ball toss is not all that important to the success ratio of the serve, I am
going to disagree with Paul Fein.

I challenge all you teaching pros who teach ball toss, to get out on the
court and try tossing the ball 10 times so that it lands in the same spot
every time. You will more than probably get 10 different marks, hence 10
different tosses. And if you cant do it yourself, your pupil is even less
likely to find joy.

Lets not forget that most of us are either right or left-handed and that the
serve consists in tossing the ball with our opposite & uncoordinated hand.
If you want further proof of how uncoordinated you are, just try throwing
the ball as far as you can with your dominant and then non-dominant arm. You
will notice that, besides a difference in distance (strength), your
non-dominant arm will feel all wobbly (ie: un-coordination).

The sucessful overhead is another example of why we should not teach our
pupils to rely on the perfect toss: the ball toss is coming from opponent!

In fact Paul, I'm afraid that you do contradict yourself in your last
"Under those adverse conditions [wind, sun], more skillful tossers will be
the servers most able to adjust their tosses with precision and keep serving
at a relatively high level. "
It affirm's Miguel's point that the best servers are flexible enough to
'fix' their serve according to variable tosses forced upon them by wind and

A strong but flexible wrist is indeed the common denominator amongst the
best and most consistent servers.

I'm afraid that this has gone a little astray from the original question
about the teenage boy who leans too early into the serve (try having him
serving from down on his knees and progressing onto a normal standing serve
where he is not allowed to move his feet from the floor) but I do feel that
it is important to bust the tossing myth.

The toss is not the be-all or end-all of a good serve.

All the best to all

Phil Azar
DFITS Pro-67 rating/ Former top 2000 in my neighborhood

Received on Thu Oct 23 2003 - 09:18:04 CDT

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