One thing parents or even coaches should learn to adjust is using appropriate language when teaching children. I have heard many coaches tell clients that the hardest shot in tennis to learn is the serve. In fact, they are all as easy as you make them!
Although this footage was taught on a course for players aged 6-8, the steps below are supremely useful for teaching anyone of any age.
The key is keeping the rhythm of the arms throughout this serve without breaking this down.
Notice the two separate homework instructions in the video to help work with the serve.
Step 1 – Start with the hand
Pat the ball over with the hand and ensure you use the set homework shown to help with this part.
Be aware that for youngsters to throw the ball up straight will take lots of practice.
Step 2 – Place the hands on the strings
By doing this the player automatically uses the correct serve grip (continental).
You will also naturally pronate the racket throughout (if you do not understand this term do not worry! All good serves have this action).
Step 3 – Slide the hand down to a choked-up grip and hit up on the ball
When the ball is placed (not thrown or tossed) in the air at its peak, I explain to juniors is the peak of the mountain. The racket needs to go over the mountain. This enables the racket to hit up on the ball.
Step 4 – Full grip and finish with the strings to the ground
Ensure that the elbow stays up to start the rotation around the elbow early on, as part of the throwing action.
Step 5 – Utilise the elephant’s trunk
This helps complete the rotation around the elbow and ready for the full serve action.
Step 6 – Full serve from the baseline
Add the follow through by catching across the body for a great flat serve.
Enjoy the steps and good luck for many aces in the future!