My favorite serve (as far as reliability) is by far… the slice / side-spin one. Period!
The Slice, especially used on the second serve, allows me to keep the ball low (cannot be attacked by returner), consistency (due to the spin that slows down the ball in the air) and makes it hard to be returned at my feet if I decide to move up to the net behind it.
These are just some of the benefits of the slice serve without counting the easiness to learn and execute it.
I want you to try, learn or improve it too. Therefore I have created a two-part video lesson showing you some progression drills that you can apply to learn or improve your slice serve.
Whether you are a beginning or intermediate player, these video drills will teach you the essential elements for hitting a reliable slice serve in a very short time.
I just finished shooting the videos for the “Strategic Serve Practice” and as I was presenting the best possible serve strategies I came to the conclusion that, if one wants to begin the point right, she/he must consider practicing, improving and using the body serve.
The body serve is the one which the server aims directly at her opponent.
I do not mean you shouldn’t go for the returner’s weak side (if she clearly has one) but in case there is not a significant one, the body serve has many advantages:
– if hit with a decent pace the body serve can jam the returner and the result can be a floating return in the middle of the court (which the server can attack) (Serve Tennis Tactics)
– a body serve does not allow the returner to create angles (as opposed to a wide serve which gives the opponent many options to play with)
– it forces the returner to hit the ball while moving away from it (blocking or pushing the ball) – most of the players practice hitting balls while moving to and not away from them
– the body serve is great for serve-and-volley players because the return is most of the time weak due to the before mentioned reasons.