Serve and Volley Like a Pro: Tennis Footwork Tip


Could you benefit from a tennis footwork tip to improve your serve and volley? If so, keep reading! In this tennis article, I will review one of the biggest misconceptions about serve and volley technique for footwork.

Serve and Volley Technique: Footwork Mistakes

Jeff Salzenstein demonstrating serve and volley technique with a large, low step.


The best tennis footwork tip I can give you for the serve and volley is to focus on footwork. Most people take short, choppy steps before the split step. You would be surprised how many high level tennis players I see making this mistake. There is so much of a focus on the split step, that the transitional footwork between the baseline and the split step is often neglected. Down the road, this mistake can seriously hurt your performance. Apply my tennis footwork tip, and you’ll upgrade your serve and volley to the next level.

Don’t worry, it is not all your fault. There are several tennis coaches and even academies that have standardized teaching short, choppy tennis footwork with serve and volley technique. So, what’s so wrong about this tennis serve footwork? This type of footwork forces your body to stay more upright. When you are upright, it makes it significantly more difficult to execute your first volley.

Correct Tennis Serve Footwork

Jeff Salzenstein demonstrating incorrect serve and volley technique with short, tall steps.


We have now identified a mistake in most player’s serve and volley technique. Now, how do you apply my tennis footwork tip to fix it? When you serve and volley, think of your tennis movement forward as low and large. Immediately after serving, stay low. Continue to move forward with large strides preceding your split step. If you are a visual learner, picture a bar above your head that you need to stay under. You should be moving forward as if under the low ceiling of a crawl space.

Take a look at some of the top pros serve and volley technique. When you watch, count the number of strides they take before the split step. If you do your research, I bet you will find that a majority of successful serve and volleyers take big, low strides. Most likely, they are only taking two or three steps before splitting. Professional level serve and volley technique is not out of reach. You can achieve top serve and volley form by applying my serve and volley pro tips. For example, think about how many steps you typically take while approaching the net. If you are taking more than three steps before splitting, correct it. Try adding in low and long steps into your serve and volley practice to look more like the pros.

Tennis Footwork Tip Summary

Jeff Salzenstein coaching a tennis player demonstrating serve and volley footwork.


In conclusion, try to avoid taking choppy, short steps with your serve and volley. Instead, focus on my tennis footwork tip and take low and long strides as you come out of the serve. If you feel like your serve is getting in the way of good serve and volley technique, check out my tips on how to improve your serve. As always, consistent and purposeful practice is the secret to improve your tennis game. Continue to practice my tennis footwork tip, and I guarantee you will be more successful with serving and volleying.


By Jeff Salzenstein, Founder Tennis Evolution

Jeff is a former top 100 ATP player and USTA high performance coach committed to helping players and coaches all over the world improve.

P.S. – Want to take your serve to the next level? Avoid power leaks on your serve with this little known “elbow the enemy” move. Click here to get instant access.



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