My Best Tip for a Good Serve Toss

tennis serve toss
I’ve recently received an email from a tennis player asking me what would be the best tip I could give her to improve the serve toss.

While there are many tips you can get on the serve toss, it is well-known that a good serve depends on the quality of the toss.

I’ve found that the best way to consistently put the ball in the air for serve is to “lift” it while trying to impart as little spin on the ball as possible.

By doing that you will limit the amount of wrist and fingers action when releasing the ball.

And, to have a good balance while serving, keeping the tossing arm up longer (instead of letting it come down early) really makes a difference in your serve control and consistency.

Try these two tips and you’ll see a considerable improvement in your serve.

Have fun on the court!

Cosmin Miholca

Cosmin Miholca

Certified Tennis Coach

Check out my work at WebTennis24 where I share with you my best video tennis lessons, drills and tips for players, coaches and tennis parents.

How to Avoid Choking When Serving in Tennis

tennis serve
One of my subscribers recently shared a story. He told me how he is teaching a young man, whose serve is great during his lessons, when there is no receiver at the other end. During the tennis matches though, when there is the pressure of having somebody return the serve, his student often chokes. 

He wanted to know what he can do to help him…

My advice (which I’m hoping you will find useful too) was the following:

His student is probably too concerned with what the opponent’s reply will be. He’s anxious about the return and therefore he cannot relax when serving.

He must be taught to focus (when serving) on things like breathing, spin, and visualization (seeing the ball go to a certain spot inside the service box, etc.) – this would help him take his mind off of his opponent.

He should also have somebody return his serve (e.g. his coach, practice partner) most of the time he practices it. 

Of course, his coach will have to stay next to him and correct the serve technique most of the time, but they should change it up sometimes.
For example, the student can hit 20 serves with the coach next to him, then 20 serves with the coach returning the serves – in that case, the student should be doing it until the coach/practice partner returns 20 balls; and so on.

My overall point is that every time someone works on their serve, they should do some pressure practice of it too.

Cosmin Miholca

Cosmin Miholca

Certified Tennis Coach

Check out my work at WebTennis24 where I share with you my best video tennis lessons, drills and tips for players, coaches and tennis parents.

How to Avoid Double Faults in Tennis

avoiding double faults in tennis
Are you tired of serving double faults and giving your opponents free points?

How frustrating is it to see the tennis ball in your hand, giving you total control of the beginning of the point yet… you fail to get one out of the two serves in?

The following tips will help you avoid missing your serves and enjoy your tennis:

1. Use Spin
Imparting slice or topspin on your serves (on the second attempt in particular) will save you from giving points away or being put in defense by your opponent’s return.
The spin brings the ball down due to the air friction, therefore, you will not miss long too often. 

2. Relax Your Arm
Begin your serving motion with your hands and arms relaxed and in front of your hips. Many times I see people beginning their serve motion by holding the ball and racquet too high (chest level) before tossing the ball – this action tightens your shoulders and arms.
Keep a loose grip on the racquet at all times.

3. Breath
Your breathing should be slow and shallow before you begin your serving motion.
Inhale as you toss the ball up, then exhale as you swing up to hit it. 

4. Toss It Right
One way that will improve your toss consistency (and as a result, your serve) is to always “push” the ball up with as little spin as possible. That action will relax your arm and your toss will not affect your body balance.

5. Visualization
Before you toss the ball up, visualize the racquet hitting it, the ball going over the net, and landing in the desired spot inside the opposite service box.
This is probably the most powerful aspect of your serve – seeing and believing what you want to happen. 

Try these pieces of advice, not in the match, but in your practice first. Then, as they become habits, you will carry them into your matches too.

Cosmin Miholca

Cosmin Miholca

Certified Tennis Coach

Check out my work at WebTennis24 where I share with you my best video tennis lessons, drills and tips for players, coaches and tennis parents.

Why You Shoud Slice Your Second Serve


Even as an experienced player, I have had to pay for multiple shots I wouldn’t tactically place right in my serves when playing against some of my top juniors.

To not begin in such a defensive situation, we will be looking in this article at one very important stroke that you should perfect – the second serve.

You just missed your first serve. When preparing your second serve, you see your opponent stepping in the baseline, ready to attack. You’re in trouble. Once you land that hit, your opponent will be all over your second serve.

What can you do so that your second serve will not put you in defensive mode?

SLICE IT!

Why slice and not topspin or kick?
For these two simple reasons:

1. Slice (side-spin on the serve) will keep the ball low.
As a result, your opponent will be forced to play the ball by hitting up, decreasing their chances of putting it away (or attacking it) from a low contact point.

2. The spin will make it harder to control the ball when your opponent returns it.
Especially if you are a doubles player, think about serving and volleying. Would you not prefer to hit a slice so that your opponent would return the ball high and set you for a high volley? On the other side, if you choose to go for a topspin serve as a second delivery and move up to the net, the returner will attack the high bouncing serve of yours and put it down to your feet.

In conclusion, practice your slice serve as often as you can so that you will see great results when the time comes up to hit a second serve.


Cosmin Miholca

WebTennis24

Cosmin Miholca

Cosmin Miholca

Certified Tennis Coach

Check out my work at WebTennis24 where I share with you my best video tennis lessons, drills and tips for players, coaches and tennis parents.