By Larry Hodges
If you want to maximize the effectiveness of your service game, take some time to really think about it. Analyze your current serves, and what you want to do with your serves – what shots you want to set up. Then analyze how to best connect these two.
Here are a few pointers. Good luck!
1. Use serves that set up your game. For example:
- Loopers might want to serve short backspin or no-spin to get a backspin return. If you want to ensure a deep return, short sidespin will usually do the trick.
- Counter-drivers and hitters might want to get right into a topspin rally – so serve mostly topspin or fast & deep serves.
- Hitters should really mix their serves up to try to fool opponents into hittable returns.
2. Make sure to mix up the spin, speed, direction, and depth of your serves. However, learn to serve with the same motion so you don't telegraph your serve.
3. Develop a few “trick” serves that’ll get you some “free” points. These include serves that look like one spin but are another, or sudden fast serves. Probably the single most effective of these types of serves are fast no-spin serves to the middle, which are put in the net over and over. Another is a sudden down-the-line serve, often for an ace.