The Serve – 012

The Unturn

Letting it Unfurl

As we’ve seen, every serve on these pages starts off side-on to the net, and some players (like Mac and Pete) turn so far sideways that they show their back to their opponent, prior to unleashing their throw.

Remember the 3 point thumb roll, which unangles the racket face in 3 linked stages?

Good servers also unturn from being side-on to the net, which is aligned to the thumb roll and also best understood in 3 stages.

The 3 Point UnTurn

Look as Big Pete and Marat Safin…

  • 1 & 2 throw from a side-on stance (stance is valid on a serve!)
  • 3 connect with shoulders and chest parallel to the net, and
  • 4 follow through to being unturned (eventually), especially at the shoulders, as Marat does in 5.

If the ball is in the right place, this 3 stage unturning of your side-on position should happen naturally: if it doesn’t, look for the reasons why – is the ball far enough forward to allow or invite this unwinding?.

You can also see here the alignment of the 3 point unwind to the 3 point thumb roll.

  • A: angled body + angled racket in 2.
  • B: at contact in 3, unangled shoulders + unangled
  • racket
  • C: both angled racket and angled body have been unwound, particularly above the waist, in 4 & 5.

Serving is easy when you UNcan…

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