THE SERVE

“It is probably one of the biggest differences between padel and tennis in many ways. Firstly, you are not serving for above your head but from waist height. Secondly, the ball must bounce before you strike it. Thirdly, as you improve, it is unlikely you will be able to win points off your serve”

LEARNING THE SERVE

Like in tennis, if you don’t get your first serve in you will be allowed a second serve so why not go for your first serve a little more. Also like in tennis, if the ball hits the top of the net and falls in your opponent service square you will get a let. However it is not as straight forward as tennis as the second bounce matters. The second bounce must also be in play such as bouncing within the playing surface or off the glass wall. If the second bounce is off the side fence, the serve is considered to be a fault and the server is not able to repeat the serve.

It is important to have a good serve as this will allow you to gain positive court position and build up to an offensive match winning shot. It is always best to aim your serve to hit the side wall (glass area) just past the side fence. This will allow your opponent little time to re-adjust their shot after the ball has re-bounded off the wall.

However, variation of the serve will keep your opponent on their toes.

It is important to take your time with the serve and ensure you place the ball where you think it will have maximum effect. This is the only shot in the game that relies completely on you and is not dictated by the previous shot, so do not waste this opportunity.

Like in tennis, you must serve in padel diagonally but from behind the service line rather than the base line.

Technical Points:

To prepare yourself to serve, fi rstly place your feet side on with your front foot pointing in the direction you would like the ball to go. Hold the ball at shoulder height in front of you with you bat raised above your shoulder with a bent arm and slightly bent knee.

Drop the ball (do not bounce the ball) and after allowing the ball to bounce once (the pressure of the ball should provide a bounce to waist height) strike the ball with your body coming through the ball in a forward motion.

With the forward body movement, after contact has been made with the ball bring your back foot forward to finish the shot in front of you and your bat over the opposite shoulder. With this forward movement, you should continue into the net to take your second shot as a volley.

Players must have the serve into their training plan, allowing and make it easy improving your game by having a good technique padel serve.

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