How to Get Your Kick Serve to Drop Like a
Boomerang! Hi guys, I’m Clay Ballard with Top Speed
Tennis. Today I have a great drill for you guys who
are struggling with your Kick Serve. Do you feel like you tend to push, even on
your kick serve? You’re not really getting that snap, the
ball’s not really diving down into the court the way you’d like it to? I have a great tip for you guys to really
help you get that ball to dive. It’s pretty easy to do. We’re going to go over the proper motion
and then give you some drills to help ingrain this. Let’s go ahead and get started! When we’re getting the Kick Serve, the key
to a great Kick Serve is to really have that racket snapping upward, so you get a lot of
topspin on the ball as it’s making contact. To go ahead and demonstrate this, as we’re
getting this Kick Serve we want the racket not only to be moving forward… If I’m going this direction, I want my racket
to be moving forward, but I also want it to be kicking up and really grabbing these strings
to put a lot of spin on that ball. Most of us understand that, but it really
comes down to the technique and how we do that. There are two pieces that are really going
to help you to do this, but first let’s demonstrate the incorrect motion. A lot of times what I’ll see people doing
when they’re trying to get the Kick Serve is they’ll get their racket loaded up. Instead of letting the racket drop down and
then kick up, what they’ll do is take the racket back and then immediately try to push
up on the ball. It just doesn’t have that snap. If you look at the tip of the racket in relationship
to the butt end of the racket, the racket comes here and then from there it immediately
goes up. They’re just pushing through that shot. What we need to have happen are two things. Number one, we want to go ahead and let the
tip of that racket drop down. That’s what they call the Racket Drop; you’ll
hear people refer to that many times. As we’re going up, the racket comes up and
then the racket tip drops down behind my back. Now you can see the butt end of the racket
is well above the tip of the racket. From there, that’s so crucial because now
we can kick up with some good force as we come on through. That racket is really snapping as we’re
coming into that ball. It’s getting a lot of speed on that upward
motion, and the strings are really going to grab the ball and get a lot of spin. The second thing I see that people really
struggle with on the Kick Serve, that goes hand-in-hand with this, is getting their arm
far enough behind their head. As you’re doing the Kick Serve, you want
this hand to be moving behind your head so that you have plenty of room to let this racket
drop. If I get the racket over top of my head, if
I let it drop it’s going to hit my right on the top of the head. Obviously, I don’t think you’d do that
more than once! If you go ahead and get this hand going behind
your body enough, let that racket tip drop down, then you can kick up really, really
nice. What I want you to do to get used to this,
is first just go slow motion. We’re going to do this in three pieces. First off, we’re going to go ahead and get
into the trophy pose. As you’re doing this, when you’re getting
in the trophy pose you want to make sure that your hand is getting well behind your head. This would be in line with my head. Now this would be behind my head, where the
racket’s actually moving back this way a little bit more than you would with your first
serve. That’s the first piece. Go ahead and do this a few hundred times,
to really get comfortable with that racket moving back behind your head in that direction. The second piece is going to be the drop. We’re going to go ahead and go Piece #1,
pause. Piece #2, I’m going to let that racket drop
so my hand is rotating until now the tip of my racket is pointing down toward the ground. Piece #3, we’re going to go ahead and just
act like we did on the normal serve, like we’re going to throw that racket up toward
the ball. I want you to imagine the tip of that racket
kicking up in this direction to help get that spin. Piece #1…Piece #2…Piece #3, we’re really
getting that to snap as we come on through. Do these three pieces in slow motion. Once you get comfortable with that — at least
a few hundred reps. Once you get comfortable with that, let’s
go ahead and do all three of them together. I’m really letting that racket kick up into
the ball. Once we’re comfortable with all three of
those and we’ve moved them into one fluid motion, now let’s go ahead and practice
with the racket. We’re going to do this by making it a little
easier on ourselves at first. I’m going to grab this racket a little bit
up on the handle here. I’m almost to the end of the grip, so I
have more control over the head. I’m going to simply do a couple of these
drills and practice getting that ball to snap down into the opposing side of the court. There we go, that ball is really dropping
down. Once I’m comfortable with that, slide all
the way out to the end of the racket. You’ll have a little more speed, maybe not
quite as much control. Gradually build up that speed until you become
very, very comfortable with this. Hey, guys. I hope you all really enjoyed this
video! As a bonus for you all, I have another video
from our Power Serve series. I’m going to play a preview from this. If you want to watch that entire video, plus
the entire Power Serve series absolutely free of charge, just click the link that pops up
on the bottom of your screen, or down in the description if you’re on a mobile device. If you want to help us to really grow this
channel and help me to keep giving you guys the best quality videos that I can, click
the Like button, +1 this video on Google. That really helps us out to support the channel,
and always remember to subscribe. That way you’ll be notified when we come
out with new videos; you’ll be the first to see them. Good luck to you guys, and good luck with
that serve! …bow and arrow, like an Indian bow and arrow. I’m going to go ahead and hold this racket
out, going directly across the court. I’m going to pull this racket back just
like I’m shooting an arrow. I’m going to get this racket to load back
as far as I can go. The tip of the racket is going to pull back
as far as I can. My elbow is now going to pull away from my
body and I should feel a good stretch in my right pec, and in my right shoulder. I should be fully loaded here. The only difference between this and the trophy
pose, is two things. Number one, I’m going to do this again and
instead of my racket facing forward, now my racket is going to be facing up at about a
45° like this. Again, I’m going to pull this arrow back,
turn my racket up to a 45°, and now I’m in the correct position. Number two, instead of shooting this arrow
directly across the court, now I’m going to shoot the arrow toward the ball that I’ve
just tossed up in the air. Let’s again imagine that I’ve just tossed
the ball, and now I’m going to…

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Dennis Veasley

63 thoughts on “How to Get Your Kick Serve to Drop Like a Boomerang! (Top Speed Tennis)”

  1. Like the forehand lag, I am wondering if the racket drop should be a natural movement caused by the kick from legs and shoulder rotation at the same time. It just doesn't feel right when I try to drop the racket intentionally. Besides, the racket has to drop anyway due to the nature of this movement and human anatomy. Just look at the slow motion video of even a beginner serving, you will see the racket drop. It's simply impossible to swing the racket without dropping it during serve.  The reason why the pros seem to have a very obvious racket drop is again because of their very relaxed arms and grips. The more relaxed the arm and loose the grip, the more the racket drop.

  2. Nice video, it's my go to serve during tournaments now (I couldn't land a single serve like this before I watched this video) and can you try to do a 'tips to volleying/smashing' video…? 

  3. Great one. I can pick up the topspin but my kick doesn't have the speed. would it be caused by the snap? How can it be improved?  

  4. Clay, one added tip that always helps me is the ball toss location.  The further back over my head I toss the ball, the more I can lean back and really put spin on the ball with awesome consistency.  Use for second-serves or change-of-pace first serves.  Ball toss location is roughly comparable in importance to where you setup to a golf ball. 🙂

  5. Hey Clay.
    I really struggled with a cream puff for a second serve just to keep it in.
    Watched this video yesterday and tried the drills on the court today.
    When I did the drill where you choke up near the top of the handle, I was amazed.
    I was able to get every serve in, with decent top spin and lot more pace than my current second offering.
    I know it is supposed to be a drill to develop an effective top spin, but this choked up grip serve is temporarily my new second serve during matches, at least until my first serve becomes more consistent.
    Thank you.

  6. I have been seeking a lot help with the Boomerang and the topspin motion. And when i saw this video, it made me write down the notes to memorize every part of it. It really helped. Thanks so much for your great video. 🙂

  7. For a flat serve, can I imagine a clock  on the back of the ball, with the clock face pointed to the back fence. Whereas on the kick serve, the clock face is on the left side of the ball, with the clock face pointed towards the left side fence?

  8. What about the toss of the ball? Where to follow through and how to twist the wrist after contact? The position of the feet when lading? Arching the back is a NO GO, you forgot to mention that as well… Great vid anyways, thanks man, appreciate the tips!

  9. The way you explain techniques is in my opinion the best on you tube. I've had significant improvement in my serve and forehand and its because you go into great detail without getting confusing. I've done practice drills based on several videos, I loved the how to cheat to get speed, made me realize the difference in grips and helped me find my preference. Great stuff Clay.

  10. The reason why you didn't demonstrate your topspin serve is because I bet you can't do it.  The way your motion is there is no way you'll have high bouncing spin.

  11. Your tips were good.  Most of what you said applies to every serve, not just the kick serve.  Don't forget about the toss location.

  12. that's bull, the racket drop needs to be unintentional, a consequence of the arm accelerating up and forward. Don't listen to this

  13. When performing the kick serve, where is the contact point on the ball? I understand I have to brush at a 6 to 1 or 7 to 2 diagonal, but where do I hit the ball exactly on the diagonal, could you make a video and put a dot on the ball where I should be hitting? I think it is a little on top of the ball.

  14. hi , i'm a beginner and i have some trouble to serve , i manage to put the ball in the course but not with much power ,how to do ?

  15. Bravo, Clay, a really useful tip, so clear I've improved my serve with this lesson. Thank you a lot..

  16. Hello Clay,
    In viewing videos on the web, few instructors, when referencing the kick serve, stating to pronate sooner or pronate later when hitting up to achieve a specific ball action. I am confused. It is apparent to me that one must raise or lower the ball height to determine when to pronate. Your thoughts please.

    C. Owens

  17. Advice: when you trip over your words, do another take. Production value is what will give you more subscribers as you create good content – now you need to present it properly.

  18. I have watched so many topspin/kick serve instruction videos on youtube. There are more than 20. I always start playing the video with hope, and end with disappointment. Finally, I broke down and wrote this comment – Everybody talks about the grip, the toss, the movement; everybody talks about the brushing up, the clock face, the pronation, the racket head speed. Not a single video mentions the timing. Some videos compare the differences between a flat serve vs a topspin serve. In that, only the grip and the racket movement are discussed. The difference between the two serves in timing maybe only a fraction of a second, but THAT, makes the world of difference, and that is the most difficult thing to learn. An average player gets used to hitting the flat serves at the highest point would have heck of a time STARTing the swing slightly later to meet the ball half way down to allow the extra room for brushing up. The intuition built over time on when to begin the swing in order to meet the ball at the highest point for flat serves is extremely difficult to overcome. And no one, not a single video discusses how to adjust the timing to meet the ball half way down for the topspin serve. Very disappointing … People who watch your video and do everything exactly like you said, still have little success in mastering the kick, some can tear their hair out and don't know why … timing is the missing link.

  19. Hey ! 300k views on this video even if you apparently don't know how to hit a kick serve… Imagine all the people you are giving bad advice… If you want to make videos about the kick serve, maybe you should wait until you know how to hit one, don't you think?

  20. But The example you showed you swung pretty Much directly through your target, grow come you made spin anyway?

  21. Guarantee this guy cant hit a kick serve that drops like a boomerang…just another hack "explaining" how to hit a kick serve but cant hit one..not even ONE to demonstrate…he has NO kick serve….Just slow motion explaining like all the other fake tennis "experts"…..Lets see you hit just one nasty, high bouncing kick serve……he can't…..

  22. his technique looks very bad to me. All weight on front foot, looks like a two stage movement not fluid, and no shoulder turn during prep. Sorry but this just isn't good

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