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Biomechanics of the Tennis Serve: Implications for Strength Training

Roetert, E Paul PhD1; Ellenbecker, Todd S DPT, MS, CSCS2; Reid, Machar PhD3

Strength & Conditioning Journal: August 2009 - Volume 31 - Issue 4 - pp 35-40
doi: 10.1519/SSC.0b013e3181af65e1
Article

THE DESIGN OF STRENGTH AND CONDITIONING PROGRAMS SPECIFIC TO TENNIS HAS RECEIVED SIGNIFICANT ATTENTION, PARTICULARLY OVER THE PAST 25 YEARS. MUCH OF THE AVAILABLE RESEARCH IS BASED ON OUR KNOWLEDGE OF THE PHYSIOLOGICAL DEMANDS OF TENNIS. LESS IS KNOWN ABOUT THE LINK BETWEEN THE ACTUAL STROKES (SERVES, FOREHANDS, AND BACKHANDS) AND THE SPECIFIC TRAINING METHODS NEEDED FOR OPTIMAL PERFORMANCE OF THESE STROKES. IN FACT, MOST OF THE BIOMECHANICS LITERATURE SPECIFIC TO TENNIS HAS FOCUSED ON THE AREAS OF PERFORMANCE, PHYSICAL STRESS, AND EQUIPMENT DESIGN. THIS REVIEW WILL FOCUS ON THE GAME'S MOST IMPORTANT STROKE, THE SERVE, AND RECOMMEND SPECIFIC STRENGTH TRAINING EXERCISES TO HELP OPTIMIZE PERFORMANCE OF THIS STROKE.

1United States Tennis Association, Boca Raton, Florida; 2Physiotherapy Associates Scottsdale Sports Clinic, Scottsdale, Arizona; and 3Tennis Australia, Melbourne, Australia

E. Paul Roetertis managing director of the United States Tennis Association's Coaching Education and Sport Science department.

Machar Reidis the sport science manager for Tennis Australia (TA) and is a high performance TA coach.

Todd Ellenbeckeris a physical therapist, clinic director, and national director of Clinical Research-Physiotherapy Associates Scottsdale Sports Clinic and the director of Sports Medicine ATP Tour and Chairman USTA Sport Science Committee.

© 2009 National Strength and Conditioning Association