Confused By Pronation Of A Tennis Serve? Your Questions Answered...

Feel Tennis Instruction
13 Oct 201916:29
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TLDRIn this instructional video, Thomas from Phil Chinese addresses common misconceptions about the 'pronation' movement in tennis serves. He explains that pronation, often misunderstood, is essential for a powerful serve, especially with a continental grip. Thomas clarifies that pronation is not just wrist movement but involves the forearm and shoulder rotation. He demonstrates how to maximize pronation's potential for flat, slice, and topspin serves, emphasizing the importance of practicing this complex movement to improve serve speed and power. He also discusses the limitations of using a forehand grip for serving and the benefits of the continental grip for serving variety.

  • 🏸 Pronation in tennis is often misunderstood; it is more complex than just the end motion of the serve.
  • 🀲 The term 'pronation' in coaching refers to the complete motion of the serve, which includes internal shoulder rotation and other anatomical actions.
  • 🎾 Pronation, by definition, is the turning of the forearm and wrist together, and is a necessary part of serving with a continental grip.
  • πŸ‘‰ Holding a continental grip requires pronation to hit the ball effectively; without it, the ball would not be served correctly.
  • πŸ€” Players often ask if they are pronating correctly, but the real question is whether they are maximizing the potential of the pronation movement.
  • 🚫 It's impossible to serve without some degree of pronation when using a continental grip; the racket face must turn to hit the ball properly.
  • πŸ”„ Even in topspin serves, pronation is present; the racket must turn into the ball to generate power and spin.
  • πŸ”„πŸŽΎ Pronation is crucial for maximizing serve power, regardless of whether the serve is flat, slice, or topspin.
  • πŸ‘€ Observing professional players in slow motion can help understand the full range of pronation and how it contributes to a powerful serve.
  • πŸ’ͺ Practicing pronation exercises is essential to feel and utilize the full potential of the forearm twist in serving.
  • πŸ€·β€β™€οΈ While some professional players may appear to serve without full pronation, they still engage in the movement to some extent, contributing to their serve's effectiveness.
Q & A
  • What is the main topic of the video?

    -The main topic of the video is to clarify misconceptions about the pronation movement in tennis serves, particularly in the context of the servpro nation movement.

  • Why is pronation often misunderstood in tennis serves?

    -Pronation is often misunderstood because coaches sometimes use the term to describe a complex motion that includes internal shoulder rotation and other anatomical terms, which can be confusing to players.

  • What is the actual definition of pronation in anatomy?

    -In anatomy, pronation refers to the turning of the forearm so that the palm faces downward, which is just one part of the complete motion described by coaches as pronation in tennis serves.

  • Why do coaches call the complete motion of serving 'pronation' even though it's more complex?

    -Coaches use the term 'pronation' for the complete motion to simplify the teaching process, as explaining all the anatomical details would be too complex and potentially confusing for players.

  • What is the first misconception about pronation that the video aims to clear up?

    -The first misconception is that players believe they might not be pronating when serving, especially if they hold a continental grip, but in reality, pronation is an essential part of serving with a continental grip.

  • How does holding a continental grip affect the need for pronation in serving?

    -Holding a continental grip necessitates pronation to hit the ball correctly. Without pronation, the player would not be able to turn the racket face to the ball and would likely hit with the frame or graze the ball.

  • What is the difference between pronation in a topspin serve and a flat or slice serve?

    -In a topspin serve, pronation involves opening the racket face slightly as the ball is hit to impart spin. In contrast, a flat serve requires full pronation for the racket to turn 90 degrees by the time it reaches the ball, while a slice serve involves partial pronation with the racket still angled when hitting the ball.

  • Why is it important to maximize the potential of pronation in serving?

    -Maximizing the potential of pronation allows players to generate more power and speed in their serves. Without fully engaging the pronation movement, the serve may lack the necessary force and effectiveness.

  • What is the significance of the wrist and forearm position in pronation during a serve?

    -The wrist and forearm position are crucial for pronation as they allow for the twisting motion that imparts power to the serve. While the exact wrist position isn't as critical, the overall movement of pronation in the forearm is essential.

  • Can someone serve effectively without pronation?

    -No, serving effectively without pronation is not possible, especially with a continental grip. However, some professionals like Kiki Bertens may have adapted their technique to serve powerfully despite not following the textbook pronation method.

  • What is the advantage of learning pronation with a continental grip instead of a forehand grip?

    -Learning pronation with a continental grip allows for greater variation in serves, such as hitting flat, topspin, or slice serves. A forehand grip limits the ability to add spin and variety to the serve, making it less versatile.

🎾 Understanding Pronation in Tennis Serves

In this paragraph, Thomas from Phil Chinese addresses common misconceptions about the 'servpro nation' movement and the complexity of pronation in tennis serves. He explains that pronation is often misunderstood due to the way coaches teach it, emphasizing that the term 'pronation' in tennis is simplified to describe a more complex motion involving internal shoulder rotation. Thomas clarifies that pronation is the turning of the forearm and hand, and it's essential for players with a continental grip. He demonstrates that without pronation, serving the ball is impossible, as it would result in a frame hit or a grazed ball. Thomas also addresses players' concerns about whether they are pronating correctly, asserting that if they use a continental grip, they are indeed pronating, but may not be maximizing the movement's potential.

πŸŒ€ Pronation in Topspin Serves Explained

Thomas continues the discussion on pronation, this time focusing on topspin serves. He illustrates the importance of pronation by showing what a topspin serve would look like without it, emphasizing that without turning the racket into the ball, the serve would lack power and travel a short distance. He explains that pronation begins as the player approaches the ball on the edge and completes as the racket face opens up during contact with the ball. Thomas suggests that players might not be maximizing the pronation movement, which is why they may not achieve the desired power or spin on their serves. He also touches on the differences in pronation between flat, slice, and topspin serves, highlighting the importance of practicing the movement to feel the forearm twist and achieve a more effective serve.

πŸ”„ The Role of Pronation in Flat and Slice Serves

In this section, Thomas elaborates on the role of pronation in flat and slice serves. He uses a visual demonstration to show the difference in pronation between these two types of serves and how it affects the ball's trajectory. For a flat serve, the racket turns 90 degrees by the time of contact with the ball, completing the pronation movement. In contrast, a slice serve involves partially completing the pronation, hitting the ball while the racket is still angled, which imparts spin. Thomas points out that regardless of the serve type, the pronation movement is always initiated, but the key is to maximize its potential for added power and speed. He advises players to ensure they are actively completing the pronation movement to enhance their serve's effectiveness.

πŸ† Professional Variations and the Importance of Grip

Thomas concludes the video script by addressing a question about professional players who may appear to serve without pronation, using Kiki Burton as an example. He asserts that even professionals with unconventional techniques, such as Burton's waiter's grip, still engage in pronation to some extent. However, he emphasizes that the continental grip is taught for its versatility in serving, allowing players to hit flat, topspin, and slice serves comfortably. Thomas also demonstrates that while it's possible to serve with a forehand grip, it limits the ability to vary serves and achieve spin. He encourages players to learn and practice the correct pronation movement to unlock the full potential of their serve, regardless of professional variations.

Pronation refers to the rotational movement of the forearm or foot. In tennis, it involves the inward rotation of the forearm during a serve. The video clarifies the common misconception that pronation is the complete arm movement in serving, but it's specifically the forearm rotation.
πŸ’‘Continental Grip
The Continental Grip is a way of holding the tennis racket, often used for serves and volleys. In the video, it's emphasized that pronation is necessary when using a Continental Grip, as without it, the serve would lack direction and power.
πŸ’‘Internal Shoulder Rotation
Internal shoulder rotation is the inward turning movement of the shoulder. The video mentions this as part of the complex motion involved in serving, which is often oversimplified as pronation.
πŸ’‘Topspin Serve
A topspin serve is a type of tennis serve that makes the ball spin forward, causing it to dip quickly. The video explains that pronation is still necessary in topspin serves to give the ball enough power and direction.
πŸ’‘Flat Serve
A flat serve is a tennis serve where the ball has little to no spin, traveling straight and fast. The video discusses how pronation is fully completed in a flat serve, with the forearm turning 90 degrees to hit the ball squarely.
πŸ’‘Slice Serve
A slice serve is a serve with sidespin, causing the ball to curve. In the video, it's explained that pronation is partially completed during a slice serve, resulting in the angled impact of the racket on the ball.
Biomechanics refers to the study of the mechanical laws relating to the movement or structure of living organisms. The video touches on the importance of biomechanics in serving, highlighting how body rotation and muscle engagement contribute to serve power.
πŸ’‘Waiter's Grip
The waiter's grip is an incorrect way of holding the racket, where the palm faces upward like a waiter carrying a tray. The video uses this term to explain why pronation is still essential, even when a professional player like Kiki Bertens uses a waiter's grip.
πŸ’‘Maximizing Pronation
Maximizing pronation involves fully utilizing the forearm's rotational movement to generate power and control in a serve. The video stresses that many players might initiate pronation but not maximize its potential, resulting in less effective serves.
πŸ’‘Forehand Grip
The forehand grip is used for hitting forehand strokes, with the racket face naturally open. The video contrasts this grip with the Continental Grip, explaining that pronation is not needed with a forehand grip because the racket face is already set to hit the ball directly.

The servpro nation movement in tennis is often misunderstood due to its complexity.

In tennis coaching, the term 'pronation' is used to describe a complete motion involving internal shoulder rotation and other anatomical terms.

Pronation by definition is the turning inward of the forearm and hand, but in tennis, it's used to describe the motion from the start to the end of serving.

Players with a continental grip must pronate to hit the ball effectively.

It's impossible to serve without pronation if holding a continental grip.

Players often confuse the lack of visible pronation with not pronating at all.

Professional players maximize the potential of pronation to generate power and speed in their serve.

Pronation exercises are crucial for players to feel and understand the forearm twist motion.

A topspin serve without pronation will not generate power or travel far.

Even with a forehand grip, pronation occurs, but it's limited in terms of serving variations.

The difference in pronation between flat, slice, and topspin serves is subtle but significant for ball control.

A flat serve requires full pronation for maximum power, while a slice serve involves partial pronation.

Regardless of the serve type, the pronation movement is essential for ball impact and power.

Coaches emphasize the importance of maximizing pronation to develop a powerful serve.

Professional players like Kiki Bertens may have variations in their serve technique, but they still incorporate pronation.

The continental grip is preferred for its versatility in serving different types of spins.

A forehand grip limits the ability to vary serves but can still generate fast serves.

The serve's power comes from biomechanics, body rotation, and core muscles, not just grip or pronation.

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