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Tennis Lessons - Delivering the Perfect Flat Serve

Updated on February 26, 2014
Flat Serve
Flat Serve

What is a Flat Serve?

Commonly seen in professionals and club members, it is a type of serve done with an eastern forehand or a continental grip – in the latter the player holds the racquet as if it were an axe. The path is swung directly to the ball, so it cuts immediately into the air minus the spinning.

The flat serve has a small margin of error, since it has to come close to the net. Often used in grass courts, the flat serve is considered as one of the most challenging moves in tennis, aside from the overhead serve.

Now that you know what a flat serve is, read on to learn more about the tips on delivering the perfect flat serve. If you need more info check tennis lessons san diego.

Prepare your Stance

Stand sideways, keeping your feet a body width apart. If you are right handed, place the left foot so that the baseline points toward the right net post. Situate your right foot in such a way that it takes the role of the back foot. For lefties, do the opposite.

grip the tennis
grip the tennis

Prepare your Serving Technique

  • Hold the racquet with the proper grip, keeping it relaxed and loose along the way. Hold the ball with your other hand, using only the tips of your fingers.
  • Toss the ball forward, leaning towards the right side of your body. Raise your head to track the ball.

Prepare for the Backswing

As the ball is tossed, ready your racquet for a backswing. Your back-swing can be circular, wherein you lower down the racquet before you get back to the trophy position (racquet head upward, keeping the elbows bent and pointing towards the direction of the back fence.)

While the arms are readying for the flat serve, bend your legs in order to place the weight on your back foot. Coil your trunk and let the racquet arm drop below your shoulder level. It is up to you whether or not you want your feet to stay in their previous positions.

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Prepare for the Swing and Contact

Once the ball is launched, bend your legs and prepare your feet for ground take-off. Revert the racquet into the backscratch position, wherein the racquet is pointed downward.

Launch your body, straighten your elbows and pronate your wrist. Hit the ball squarely from behind.

After the ball is served, bring the racquet downward. Extend your arm out in front of your body as your front foot lands before the back foot.

Prepare for Landing and Recovery

The last aspect of delivering a flat serve, recovery is wherein the player does a quick step as he reverts his racquet back to the starting position.

Should you wish to rush the net, land the front foot? Once in the desired position, perform the split step.

Remember, if you want to hit the perfect flat serve, you need to keep in mind these two things: speed and proper placement. By minding these tips – and by practicing as often as you can – you can perfect your flat serve in no time.

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