If you’re looking to improve your tennis game, you’ve come to the right place. With some 30,000 people coming through the Palmetto Dunes Tennis Center every year and more than 40 different Hilton Head tennis clinics available every week March through October, we know how to help you better your skills.
Here some tennis tips from our Hilton Head tennis pros at the Palmetto Dunes Tennis Center:
For a more consistent toss on your serve
Pump your arms like a sprinter
If you have to sprint a considerable distance, say from behind the baseline to inside the service line or from corner to corner, you’ll find that you can move much faster if you take your nondominant hand off the handle and pump your arms like a sprinter. If you need to hit a two-handed shot, you can put your hand back on the racquet just before swinging.
Decide ahead of time
Indecision is costly in tennis, but there are two times when you should never be guilty of this cardinal sin: when you are serving and returning serve. Before you step up to the line to hit a serve, know what kind of placement, speed and spin you want to give it. When returning serve, decide and picture in your mind what you’ll do with the ball on both forehand and backhand sides if you get a good swing at the ball.
Watch the contact or see the sound
Everyone watches the ball, but not the contact of the ball. Keep your head still until you can see the blur of the ball, a yellow streak, coming off of your racquet. Or think of seeing the ball all the way in to your racquet until you hear the sound hit your strings. You should not look at the other side until after your follow-through.
Your grip tension must be relaxed on every stroke. Over-squeezing makes the whole arm tense up, which causes you to muscle the ball over the net. This can create tennis elbow down the road.
On a scale of 1 to 5, your grip tension should never be tighter than a 2 tension -- 1 being as loose as you can hold, 5 being as tight as you can hold. Be even lighter on your serve and overheads where it should be a 1 ½ tension.
Imagine you are holding a baby bird and you don’t want him to fly away but you don’t want to smash him in your hands either. That’s a relaxed grip tension. So think of being relaxed and effortless but not muscling the ball.
Serve Like Agassi
Very few people can blast a serve like Andy Roddick, so, instead, take Agassi’s approach. Agassi moved his serve around the box and would often hit a big kicker to start off the point. At times he would go for an ace with a flat serve, but usually he would hit a slice or kicker with varying speeds and placement to keep his opponent off balance. Agassi used his serve to set up points rather than trying to finish them.