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Interactive Forum June 2017: Nick Krygios First Serve

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  • Interactive Forum June 2017: Nick Krygios First Serve

    Nick Krygios First Serve

    Nick Krygios does things differently, to make an understatement. That also seems to apply to his serve. Does he turn the hand and racket over in the followthrough? Yes. No. Where is his racket and hitting arm at the deepest moment in the knee bend? As far to his side as Roddick—or further maybe? Even though he starts with a downward windup?

    Look at his head position at contact. His shoulder rotation or lack of. Take a look at his starting stance with one foot in the air, how he swings his arm and racket across his front leg, how the weight starts, how it shifts, and the role of the back leg in the uncoiling.

    Does his technique make his serve great? Or is his serve great despite of his technique? Or both? Anyone else confused as to what to make of it all?


    Last edited by johnyandell; 06-02-2017, 09:15 PM.

  • #2
    MP4 Version - Nick Krygios First Serve



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    • #3
      I cant tell if his push is off his back leg or not. his dead looks at the direction of serve before contact his shoulder turn is 90 degrees to base line or there abouts

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      • #4
        I believe his good serve secret comes from his very loose arm and even flexible wrist. The other factors comes secondary in my opinion. i.e. ball toss, relatively higher jump, arm pronation after the contact. I believe a comparison of the his serve with Monfils' serve will reveal a lot of other secrets. I think these 2 guys are probably the best servers on the tour excluding the giant guys.

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        • #5
          He has a fast arm that is for sure. Why does he pronate on one serve and not on another? What's he doing with the back foot in the air? Does anyone else think he is probably manic depressive?

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          • #6
            Originally posted by gursoycu View Post
            I believe his good serve secret comes from his very loose arm and even flexible wrist. The other factors comes secondary in my opinion. i.e. ball toss, relatively higher jump, arm pronation after the contact. I believe a comparison of the his serve with Monfils' serve will reveal a lot of other secrets. I think these 2 guys are probably the best servers on the tour excluding the giant guys.
            Good points...

            He has a loose and fast arm much like Monfils. It's one of those nuances of serving that is hard to quantify. Is it illusionary or is his arm truly looser than others? Henri Leconte also served with a seemingly looser arm than others of his generation.

            Does Federer truly float? Or is he secretly working his cogs off like Rafa Nadal? Is what seems effortless movement just an illusionary, innate quality.

            It's things like these that make tennis fascinating, things that cannot easily be explained by science.
            Stotty

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            • #7
              I think that when we see him bring his arms forward and then back he appears to be establishing a pendulum "in the slot" if you will. Setting up this way locks in his motion in the way a spinning gyroscope will resist motions that are not in this direction. By stretching his arms fully he might be working out the "wiggles" and getting maximal resistance to subsequent jerky motions that he may anticipate in his motion thus giving him an enhanced sense of control and confidence. Because his motion establishes this straighter line (and simpler dynamic with less moving parts in different directions?) he is forced to give up some of the horizontal circular loading and rely more on end over end shoulder rotation. Less torso rotation also gives him less time to set up the power position and forces (or takes advantage of his natural) quicker hand speed.
              It may be that this straighter line is, at this time, his comfort zone, and/or he has figured out intuitively that this is the best way his body works.

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              • #8
                Lots of stuff to think about. Servers move the front foot and back foot in a number of ways. For the front foot there are heel walkers (Boris Becker, Pete Sampras, Serena Williams, Maria Sharapova, and Lindsay Davenport), toe walkers (Rod Laver, Andy Roddick, Roger Federer, and Justine Henin-Hardene), heel and toe walkers (John McEnroe), foot walkers (one of the originals was Lew Hoad, and Fernando Verdasco), not foot walkers (John Isner), and foot rollers (Andy Murray). Within these categories there are players who pivot the foot and those that don’t pivot the foot.
                Nick Kyrgios is a heel walker who doesn’t pivot although in the second slow motion in the ad court there is some pivot.
                Whether a heel, toe, or foot walker I prefer some pivot of the foot. Although non-pivoters get more forward linear movement, I think some pivot leads to more rotation away from contact which I think leads to more variety as well as some hiding of the variety-although I’m not sure Kyrgios is looking for variety or deception on 120 mph second serves.
                I also prefer a pivot because I have seen more upper arm and shoulder issues with the lack of rotation.

                What I think is “newer” is the larger off the court back foot step down.
                Goran Ivanisevic had the same heel walk without the pivot and wide back foot but not the back step down-he also extended his arms. Stan Wawrinka is a heel walker with no pivot and a version of the back foot step down but without the foot off the ground. Isner is a non-foot walker with a back foot step down but again not off the ground. Federer also has a back foot step down, but not as much as Kyrgios. Coco Vandeweghe is another version of a heel walker with a pivot and a back foot step down that is off the ground but less than Kyrgios’. While watching the French Open Mens’ Doubles Final I realized that Santiago Gonzales is a heel walker, with a pivot, and the big back step down similar to Kyrgios.
                And there is Raonic who has the big back foot step down and the heel walk with a pivot. He too extends the arms as does Ivanesivic, Gonzales, and Kyrigios. As with all these movements I think players are looking for bigger serves and the extended arms I think create a bigger space in which to make the moves.

                My question is how did Kyrgios come to serve this way-is it learned from experimenting, watching and copying-for example did he copy some of Ivanesivic, or someone else, and then make his own version? Did someone teach him and if so, what was their model and thinking for particular movements?

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                • #9

                  SJ,
                  This is the basis for an article. Any interest??

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                  • #10
                    I'd be extremely interested in an article. I also think a back view including the entire ball toss would shed more light on his serve as well. In fact seeing second and first serves would be even more enlightening.

                    I've watched lots of online footage of serves....

                    His serve reminds me of Dustin Brown's quick action serve. The way their right shoulders dip down during their swing.... I believe the classical serve is taught by keeping you hitting shoulder "up" and parallel to the court despite your non-hitting shoulder and body being tilted upwards. But Kyrgios and Brown seem to buck this conventional wisdom (wisdom spouted by Federer when asked about his serve secrets "keep the elbow up") and let their elbow/upper arm drop during the stroke. I think this drop in elbow/upper arm angle allows them to have a quicker action as well as a much deeper racquet drop. However, I think the elbow drop tends to lead to more slice serves and make sit more difficult to make flat contact.



                    Kyrgios' serve also really looks like he is "snapping his wrist" to me and makes contact similar to Andy Murray. Doesn't seem like he gets that full hand, arm, and shoulder rotation that we talk about on this website.

                    In summary he has the starting arm action of Dustin Brown and the hand,arm,shoulder rotation of Andy Murray... Can this be right? He serves loads better than Murray!
                    Last edited by timaku; 07-17-2017, 09:20 PM.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by johnyandell View Post
                      SJ,
                      This is the basis for an article. Any interest??
                      It would be interesting to hear your thoughts on any differences you see with him that you feel are getting away from the fundamentals of all the great servers.

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