Tennis drills: The return of serve

Drills: achieving a good return of serve

An easy way to work on your return of serve?Here are two drills that will help you make steady progress. Listen to the coaches and learn.


If there's one shot that's hard to play, it's the return of serve. It's not all about what you do. You might have a good return, but if your opponent has a strong serve, it may not be enough. So how do you go about improving your return? Here are two drills that will help you make steady progress. Listen to the coaches and learn. 

Tennis drill: The return of serve

Drill 1 

Objective: Cut off the ball/cut the angle/block your return. 

Player 1 stands one or two metres behind the service line with a basket of balls. 

Player 2 (the person working on their return) stands in the position they normally return serve from. 

The server hits first serves into the service box, in different areas. 

The returner should aim to execute a good split step so they can drive themselves forward to return the ball. 

Ideally, they should be stepping into the court to try to block and cut off the angles open to the server. 

Do ten sets of high-intensity serves.


Drill 2

Objective: Work on picking up the line of the ball and your reaction time. 

Player 1 hits sets of ten serves. 

Player 2 stands in their normal return position but with their back to the server. 

The server calls out when they are about to hit the serve.This is the signal for the returner to turn around and try to hit a good return by picking up the flight of the ball and reacting in time. 


Feel free to repeat these drills and perform on the court! 

Tennis drills: the return of serve.



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