The pickleball serve in this writers opinion is a most underrated opportunity of the pickleball game to increase the pressure on your opponents and by default win more games.
The major reason that this ex-tennis player thinks the commonly accepted pickleball faux pas of normal play which is to just play it safe and get the serve in, is because there is no second serve in pickleball like there is in tennis.
The ‘just-get-it-in’ and play safe approach is ingrained to most picklers mode of play, however if played with a whole new and aggressive approach it could open up a huge opportunity to apply more pressure from the get go and put your opposition on the back foot with their first play of the ball.
It means that first serves would be more like that seen in tennis. Yes there is only one serve but with specific practice of serve, which I rarely see pickleball players do, your serving game pressure can drastically improve. Why, because a long well placed serve to a corner, down the line or to a specific weak area of the receiver provides for a massive advantage with its increased difficulty of return over the comparative middle of the court just-get-it-in lob so commonly seen in many pickleball games.
The normal pickleball serve or more appropriately,
the normal attitude of a pickler in serving is to just get it in to play safe
and then the game is on – hoping with fingers crossed that if you do get it in
play, your opposition players have a chance to mess up.
To a tennis player or let’s be truthful here, an ex tennis player, this doesn’t make good game sense and simply fails to take advantage of the opportunity that is presented with every serve. Sure. The first serve of tennis enables you to stack on the pace simply because we have one serve in reserve if we fault the serve. However, while the fast paced heat is normally taken out of the second serve, nothing else is. In fact more of what makes a good serve comes into play.
In my ebook - Pickleball Sport - How to Think and Play Better, A tennis players approach to playing Pickleball
We covered off on the 9 considerations to your serve being
8. Keep it short - sometimes
9. Server position
You can get a complimentary copy of this ebook here.
We explain the nominated considerations and why it should make up a part of your game. The benefits are literally in the title “How to Think and Play Better”. The ebook goes into and steps you through the game play and explains the game plan or strategy of pickleball and most importantly why.
Yes this page is all about the pickleball serve but it should not be at the expense of not mentioning the aim of the game. After all, both are designed or intended to improve your game and present a great opportunity to better your win ratio.
An easy way to justify having a good serve is when you have tried to return a good serve but failed to for whatever reason. If it challenged your ability to do so, would it not be great to be able to apply that same pressure to all players who face your serve with every serve?
Of course it makes sense to have a consistently good pickleball serve at the ready. With not too much practice this can become a real game changer and start winning you games. And no, it is not the only thing to get good at- it is not the only thing that can improve your game but just imagine for a moment that your serve really was as good as the rest of your game – or that you had a serve that was actually better than your ground play. Imagine if you could get your serve and game play to the same standard, do you think your game would improve? Do you think you would win more games?
So… let me share my biggest gift to you at this moment and that is to simply train the way you want to play. Essentially it says, who cares who wins the game if you are training which by definition means you are learning to get better. You will go through a learning curve and possibly a losing streak, but it is not forever. As you get better at what you practice, you will find that playing it safe is not in fact safe.
A pickleball serve training or practice session should be a compulsory part of your training. The other side of serving however is just as important. Your pickleball return of serve like any shot in the book is important but seems to be another great underutilized opportunity to really put some pressure on the receiving side. You can up the ante a bit. Learn how at: Pickleball Return of Serve – A Great Underutilized Opportunity
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