3 Tennis Serving Drills for a More Powerful, Accurate Serve

Improve each element of your tennis serve, then put them together for a powerful serve with three tennis drills from Olivia Self.

Tennis Serving Drills

If you are having problems serving or want a better way to warm up your serve, these tennis serving drills are for you. They isolate the crucial components of the serve so you can work on each one and then combine them for a full killer serve.

Tennis Serving Drills

1. Body Rotation

This drill focuses on rotating your body to the ball. Do not try to hit the ball into the service box. It should go in that general direction, but since you haven't added the snap component yet, it should fly long.

  • Stand facing the net near the center mark at the baseline, as you would for a regular serve, but do not turn to the side.
  • Pivot on your left foot to rotate your body to your regular serving start position as you toss the ball.
  • Explosively turn your body back into the ball.

Repeat this drill until you feel smooth and comfortable with your body rotation.

2. The Reach

This drill focuses on where you make contact with the ball. You should reach as high as possible and connect with the ball when your arm is fully extended.

  • Start in your regular serving position with the side of your body facing the net.
  • Toss the ball, then attack! Reach up, hit the ball as high as possible and swing straight through.
  • Try to hit the ball to the fence beyond the other end of the court. If the point of contact is correct, you can generate a lot of power.
  • Keep your eyes on the ball the whole time—that's a key to everything in tennis.

If you hit a floater that sort of lobs or makes an arching shape in the air, you've hit the ball too low. You must swing through this motion and strike the ball high.

3. The Snap

This drill focuses solely on the snap aspect of the serve. A good snap will generate a lot of power and drop serves in the box.

  • Stand in your regular service position, toss the ball up, catch it at peak height and immediately snap your wrist down through your follow-through.
  • Your goal is to bounce the ball on your side of the court with a lot of power. It should bounce somewhere between you and the service box closest to you, on your side of the net.

This drill is hard to master, but it has a great payoff for your serve. Your wrist must be loose and relaxed enough for the snap. Here's a video demonstration of what the drill looks like.

The final step is to put the three drills together and go for your complete serve. Each element should be warmed up so your serve will be smooth and easy, yet powerful.

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