Break Back With Virginia Tennis

November 1, 2008 | Featured in the November/December 2008 Issue

Topspin, flat and slice—three different serves that will turn you inside out if you’re caught flat-footed on the tennis court.

If you’re constantly on the receiving end of aces, it’s time to fine-tune your game with the help of University of Virginia coach Brian Boland.

Here, Boland serves up some tips for setting up and returning an opponent’s serve.

Ready Position
•    Wide-base stance, feet just beyond shoulders
•    Racket out in front of your body in a comfortable position
•    Eyes on the ball

Boland: Having your eyes on the ball means seeing the ball as it leaves the hand of the server. You want to start having that visual effect early.

The Serve
•    Start moving forward once the toss goes up
•    Get into a split-step stance when the ball is struck

Boland: Everything’s out in front, you’re moving forward, and you want to go forehand or backhand.

The Return
•    Move forward into shot
•    Turn and push off your outside foot to shorten backswing
•    Keep your wrists firm on the follow through for forehand and backhand returns

Boland: You do not want to have a big backswing. The serve is hit with some force. The bigger the backswing, the less control and accuracy you have.

Topics: TENNIS
Zac Clark
- Zac Clark is STACK Media's Custom Content Manager. Prior to joining STACK in September 2008, he served as an editorial assistant for USA Hockey Magazine...
Zac Clark
- Zac Clark is STACK Media's Custom Content Manager. Prior to joining STACK in September 2008, he served as an editorial assistant for USA Hockey Magazine...
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