Today, I will discuss a simple key on how to jump on your serve and explode up to the ball with your legs. Timing when you hit the ball is key. However, countless recreational players jump and make contact at the wrong time on the tennis serve. This concept applies for both platform and pinpoint serve stance.
If you jump on your serve, you could be making a common mistake that you’re not aware of. I’ll explain it in more detail and share how to fix it during my serve analysis of a young player. You can watch the video at the top of this article and simply follow along my notes on it.
First, he actually explodes up the ball, but makes contact at the wrong time. For instance, he’s going down toward the ground after his jump while making contact with the ball. The timing of how his lower body works with his upper body is not correct.
In fact, he’s touching the ground again when he hits the tennis serve. Hence, he’s losing out on hitting the ball at the maximum height. Moreover, he can’t get his whole body into the serve if he has lost the energy of his legs as he hits the ball.
Likewise, he hasn’t even gotten to the racquet drop position when the legs go straight before leaving the ground. The key is to make contact with the serve at the highest point of the jump. In other words, when you’re at maximum distance off the ground.
Make Contact As You Jump Up
So, how do you get yourself to swing at the ball while you’re at the maximum height of your jump? First, I recommend starting to serve into the side or back fence to take the pressure off yourself. Thus, you can focus on the timing of the jump as you hit your tennis serve. You don’t want to feel like you are changing your timing and trying to get the serve in at the same time.
To break the habit of hitting the ball while you are going down, concentrate on swinging at the ball as you’re jumping up. You want to feel like you are hitting your serve on the way up. You should exaggerate this feeling if you know that you have the habit of hitting the tennis serve on the way down. Consequently, you’ll be able to hit bigger serves from a higher point.
I hope you enjoyed today’s article on how to jump on your serve. This is one of the keys to tap into your true serve potential and improve your tennis game. Consider recording a video of yourself and compare it with the instruction provided. Thus, you can become aware whether you’re making the same or a similar mistake. You now have the tools to fix it the right way.
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.
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