Learn kick serve

In 4 steps to the perfect tennis kick serve as a beginner

In 4 steps to the perfect tennis kick serve as a beginner

The kick serve is a variation of the tennis serve. The goal of the kick serve is to give the tennis ball a forward spin and not the highest speed, so that the ball bounces high quickly when it reaches the opponent’s side.

The kick serve is used either as a tactical variation on the first serve to drive the opponent out of the court or as a safe second serve to give the opponent as high and therefore difficult a hitting point as possible. In this case, the drop stays in a high arc over the net and lowers just before the T-line and then bounces quickly and high.

Most tennis pros often play a kick serve as a second serve, but tennis beginners can practice this stroke as well. Below we explain to tennis beginners the 4 steps to the perfect tennis kick serve: from the service grip, to the backswing, the motion sequence to the outswing.

1. Tennis grip to kick serve

For a kick serve, similar to the normal straight serve or the slice serve, the so-called Continental grip is a good choice.

Kick serve in Continental grip as a right hander

The type of serve you play depends not on the grip but on the way you throw the ball and the way you move.

2. Tennis backswing

As always, you stand behind the baseline on the left or right side of the center line and are turned sideways to the net. As a right-hander, your left foot is approximately parallel to the baseline.

Your upper body is also turned sideways to the net and you stand wide-legged and comfortable. This starting position gives you a stable stance for the serve.

The backswing is identical to the normal straight serve until the ball is tossed.

As a right-handed player, the tennis ball is in the left hand. Many players bounce the ball again to be able to concentrate fully on the serve.

You bring the tennis racket in front of your body and the tennis ball and the tennis racket touch each other with outstretched arms. The tip of the racket points in the direction of the service court and off you go: you drop the tennis racket from the front downwards while the arm remains stretched. You swing the racket back up from the net in the opposite direction.

Both arms are still extended and go parallel – with the open palms – upwards. The weight is shifted to the back foot at the same time.

Then you toss the tennis ball up with an outstretched arm – but to play a kick serve slightly offset to the back left as a right-handed player or back right as a left-handed player – while the arm with the tennis racket bends so that the tennis racket feels like it is being put into an imaginary backpack. The hand without the racket remains directed upwards towards the ball and stabilizes your movement.

In addition, you bend your knees on both sides – a little lower on the back foot.

3. Tennis movement

For the perfect movement of the serve, the hitting arm is then accelerated upwards and you wipe over the ball while it is falling down – not while it is rising up – and thus at the highest possible point at the height of the body or slightly in front of the body. You wipe over the ball with the tennis racket from behind. The hand directed at the ball is at that moment already on the way down again.

Your weight is shifted forward from the back foot through complete knee extension to get even more power out of the serve. Shortly before the point of impact of the tennis ball, additionally snap your hitting arm wrist at the top, so that a little extra spin is mobilized here as well.

4. Tennis outswing

For the outswing of the kick serve, continue the natural motion sequence: swing the tennis racket down past the other side of your body and take the 2nd hand back to the racket handle and move to the center of the court or starting position.

Again, note that both the backswing, motion sequence and outswing is a fluid motion.

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