The Serve – 011

The Arm Tuck

…when there’s Nowhere Else to Go

Many aspects of correct practice happen organically, especially if the coach, parent or teacher leads – coaxes – a player along a correct technical path:

  • not everything needs to be spoken,
  • but avenues of development need to be understood and overseen.

The Arm Tuck

For example, what I shall call the Arm Tuck, (or Arm Wrap, Arm Pull) which we see here, usually takes care of itself because, within the throwing action of the serve, there’s nowhere else for your (now) redundant arm to go.

But for the sake of a knowledge base, we’ll deal with it anyway.

The Arm Pull/Tuck happens when the ball has been placed up into the perfect contact zone, and the racket hand is set to throw the racket head at the ball.

Look at Rafa Nadal, Pete Sampras, Marat Safin and Nole, and you’ll see that, as each turns into the throwing action, the ball placement hand pulls into the tummy, basically to get out of the way and make room for the other half of the body to get on with its job of unturning into a throw of the racket head.

As I say, this will mostly happen naturally.

And whilst it isn’t something you would necessary practice or teach, it’s certainly worth being aware of.


These two frames of Pete Sampras, below, are unlike any of the other serve contacts we’ve seen – this one is lower, and slightly this side of his head, as opposed to being directly above it (and to the right).
It’s something we’ll look at in the more advanced pages – for those of you who do not know, ponder what Pete might be hoping to achieve by placing the ball thus?
All will be revealed.

The Serve – 012

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