Articles, Blog

How to Play Tennis : How to Hit a Flat Serve in Tennis

November 5, 2019

Hi, my name’s Lincoln Ward. I’m a USPTA certified
tennis instructor in Austin, Texas, with Lone Star Tennis Company. Today I’m going to talk
to you about hitting a flat serve. The most important part of your flat serve is your
ball toss. You have to toss the ball about–you want to create a forty-five degree angle between
the baseline in your arm when you’re tossing the ball up, so it’s going to go out into
the court. When you go to swing, you’re going to take your racket back, bring it back there
to your shoulder, reach forward and out, and pronate your wrist through the shot, following
through all the way to your other hip–your left hip if you’re right handed. Don’t put
on the brakes. If you try to freeze up and stop right here, you’re not going to have
any power. You want to swing through the serve. Swing completely through it, not brakes. Your
brakes will stop naturally when you come across your body. Now, it’s real important to toss
the ball nice and high, and reach forward to hit the shot. As you’re tossing it, you
want to lean over your front foot to have a consistent ball toss. Your ball toss makes
a difference in your serve. When you’re holding your grip for your serve, you want to hold
a continental grip. That’s bevel number two. Between bevel two and three. And way you have
a nice handshake grip, and when you go through your stroke, you’re able to pronate your wrist
out to get a little more power through the serve. That’s how to hit a flat serve. My
name’s Lincoln Ward. Thank you very much.


  • Reply David Leøng Music September 29, 2008 at 3:25 pm

    wow was it raining?

  • Reply Mike Strater September 30, 2008 at 4:53 pm

    this video sucks ass,. and your serve sucks also

  • Reply Vickie Mares January 28, 2009 at 7:20 am

    at 0;17 its like pure belly

  • Reply Josep Vargas February 21, 2009 at 3:31 am


  • Reply Lao Pao March 3, 2009 at 2:57 am

    thxs is the kick serve and flat serve for both hands or they have to be a certain hand like kick serve right hand and flat serve left hand

  • Reply XD010203 June 16, 2009 at 2:42 am

    We normally use flat serves to put a lot of power on them, so he needs to make clearer the point of the serve. We can Actually make a really powerfull flat serve with a kick serve grip, if we make the motion shorter we can generate a lot of power that can be pretty useful for flat serves.

  • Reply kevin nguyen June 24, 2009 at 7:55 pm

    naw u hit frame

  • Reply lolanubislol June 29, 2009 at 6:46 pm

    as67as, hit with the center/the sweet spot. however, how you attack the ball is with the frame of your racket. hit low to high. come in at the ball from under the ball, hit the ball in the center, and follow through above the ball, this will brush the ball and create a top spin on the ball, forcing more pressure on the top of the ball, and that pressure difference from high to low will drag the ball back down to the court and with enough spin, will speed up when it hits the ground.

  • Reply gewooneerlijk July 25, 2009 at 12:58 am

    thanks for advice

  • Reply kdawgpwns August 28, 2009 at 10:53 pm

    dont put on the brakes

  • Reply Addison Davis August 29, 2009 at 7:00 pm

    no its the top spin that is common

  • Reply historian111z August 30, 2009 at 3:13 pm

    hello linking ward.

  • Reply crazy4corbinbleux October 24, 2009 at 2:30 am

    im nervous beause tennis tryouts are tomorrow and this isnt showing me anything!!

  • Reply arceus1 December 1, 2009 at 4:14 pm

    If you are best in forehand grip serve, then it's no problem. But you can try it, maybe you're even better then.

  • Reply Viktor Meira Lins December 29, 2009 at 11:24 pm

    your racket isnt following the exactly way of the ball.. it is going a little to the right in the begining of the movement and ending more to the left of your body… careful not hit your legs… flat serve is dangerous for the shin.

  • Reply Alexander Cortez March 18, 2010 at 2:03 pm

    @viktorml i agree, i already hit my legs before

  • Reply Salty Windows March 25, 2010 at 2:26 am

    @Golfman5000 Why not! Try living in Ireland!

  • Reply Robbie Carrico March 29, 2010 at 4:56 am

    @Golfman5000 haha i bet they only had one day to film and didn't have a choice cuz normally you cant play tennis in the rain at all

  • Reply [OCB] September 3, 2010 at 9:39 am

    What people don't realize is that at the recreational level, even lower level tournaments, you're better off hitting a well placed serve with spin as your first serve and a consistent second serve with spin. It's only the pros that are that good that they only double fault a few times per match, regardless of first serve percentage. I think it's better to hit a good second serve type first serve, so you rarely put yourself under too much pressure.

  • Reply Jason Duong April 9, 2011 at 4:12 am

    Hey don't make fun of my friend like that, he can play tennis better than you -_-

  • Reply SYNCpro May 24, 2011 at 5:48 pm

    hold 4 – FAT

  • Reply Dreyhov May 25, 2011 at 7:33 am

    hold 5 to pee pee pee pee pee pee pee

  • Reply Kevin Lai July 25, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    hold 1 for shut the fuck up

  • Reply TheMoonsHalo August 11, 2011 at 1:53 pm

    this would be better if not widescreen that way we can see your hand all the way through

  • Reply Derek Ruan August 26, 2011 at 5:18 am

    line fault

  • Reply Matthew Trotman October 1, 2011 at 11:41 pm

    I am chuffed that he is a southpaw! Me too!

  • Reply Matthew Trotman October 1, 2011 at 11:45 pm

    This sounds good to me!been trying to flatten out my serve but is sooooo slicy!

  • Reply Matthew Trotman November 14, 2011 at 12:54 am

    Ha ha! Had some coaching and my serve is very flat and fast know! He misses out bringing your racket up to your shoulder to have a big swing when you serve! I am guessing he means flick when he says pronate!

  • Reply February 4, 2012 at 11:44 pm

    In the early part of my game I had a great flat serve. AFter learning how to put spin on the ball I never been able to get my flat serve back

  • Reply TrevorAugustine March 17, 2012 at 1:30 am

    you suck ass because you dont demonstrate you idiot

  • Reply Matthew Trotman July 1, 2012 at 11:49 pm

    Seocom. I had that problem briefly after I learnt to do topspin. If you get in a problem just count to about 5 before you swing .

  • Reply pakadots August 6, 2012 at 4:08 am

    Eat shit TrevorAsstain

  • Reply Matthew Trotman February 1, 2013 at 1:19 am

    I don,t think this video is bad and I think he is a proper coach . Having said that a coach who taught me how to serve flat is not a registered coach, but he has been playing for years and has taught me a fast serve. I,ve tweaked it a bit as I,ve learnt, but it,s effective . I don,t see anything wrong in what this guy says and it looks a effective service action to me . Maybe not a pro,s but come on , what club players serve like pro,s ?

  • Reply FancyCheese April 2, 2013 at 2:33 am

    Or What I'm Doing Is To Learn The Flat To Make My Kick Serve Easier.

  • Reply Ballad Productions July 19, 2013 at 1:18 am

    I should report you for abusing your capslock

  • Reply Matthew Trotman October 24, 2014 at 11:03 pm

    Well I've been playing about 5 years now. I have a ok flat serve I serve around 60 to early 70s MPH. Wish I could build it up to be a bit quicker. I have a knee bend a hip turn a wrist snap but not much power for a 6 foot 1 guy

  • Reply Matthew Trotman June 20, 2019 at 12:45 am

    Yeah by biggest problem is the height on my ball toss and the direction of it . I serve too far out too the side . I am left handed and need too reach out too the left for the serve . I struggle with full extension as well as I started as a adult .

    I get away with it because I am tall .

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