Especially on the serve there is a great variety in the motion of top players. In this article, we first look at the difference between Nadal and Dimitrov, in terms of height of toss ( distance from the ground) – then we will look at the entire path of the ball to the point of impact.

Path of the ball when tossing

In the swing path animation, we will focus on the ball from the moment the toss beginse to the point of impact. Nadal starts a lot higher resulting in a relatively short and fast toss. Dimitrov brings his arm further down to start and lets go of the ball lower resulting in more of a sweeping motion. Nevertheless, both players produce almost the same ball height with their individual movement (2.17 m Dimitrov, 2.13 m Nadal). However, Dimitrov’s ball path measures 1.56 m, Nadal’s 0.92 m). Many roads lead to Rome 😉

The differences in ball tossdo not only depend on the individual technique, but are also influhenced by the tactical intention: flat serve or kick.

First with Nadal …

The ball toss is slightly curved and is ideal for eaither a flat or a slice serve.

… and with Dimitrov …

Dimitriv tosses the ball for a kick serve to the left back, so that the racket can move – from about 7 to 1 o’clock (if you visualize a clock) for the kick serve.

Note for training:

A good player is quite capable of generating different spin with the same toss by using his forearm. Nevertheless, different tosses are a suitable methodical tool to prac tice spoin variations – for example, for the kick serve, a slightly left and behind the head toss is encouraged. However, extreme tosses lead to extreme swings, you have to know that and pay attention to it.

The videos were shot at the Madrid Open.

If you are serious about improving your serve, take a look at our complete serving course:  The Serve you always Wanted
We will guide you step by step and help you improve your fundamentals, learn or polish your spin serves and add miles to your serve.