service return requires good reflexes, and itís one of the most important
shots in the game. Most players do not practice the service return specifically,
and it shows.
Use the continental grip, as itís the most common and allows you to
Get a partner to serve the ball to you on a repeated basis.
Practice hitting with both you and your partner standing at the service
line, taking shorter swings and reacting quickly.
Have your practice partner stand at the service line rather than the
baseline, and serve the ball to you. This will give you little time
to prepare and therefore force you into a compact swing mode.
Make sure to split step just as the ball is being served.
Step into the ball with your left foot (as a right-hander) for forehand
return, or with your right foot for a backhand return. This gives you
more power and lets you step across to cover the wide-angle serves.
As the speed of the serve gets faster, your service return will become
a quicker, shorter swing rather than a regular groundstroke with a big
If the ball comes really fast and you have little time to react, place
your racquet out forward in a volley or blocking position to put the
ball at your opponentís feet.