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How To Reduce Double Faults and Gain More Confidence For Your Tennis Serve

Updated: Feb 8, 2022

Between your first tennis serve and your second serve, what goes through your mind?

“@#$%, better keep it safe and put the ball in.”

“Argh, swing the racket up, toss properly and bend the knees a bit more.”

“I am going to make a double fault again!”

“My toss sucks all the time!”

Are you thinking of any of the above statements between your serves? If you are, you are not alone.

Tennis Serve Tips: Use Simple Cue Words To Reduce Double Faults And Gain More Confidence.

Why are cue words so important?

When it comes to a tennis match you bound to face some stress and anxiety. There is no time for you to think about technical aspects of the serve. For example, you can’t possibly remind yourself I need to straighten my tossing arm. I need to stay sideways longer or I need to bend my knees more. All these technical aspects should be addressed or solved during your serve practice.

In a tennis match, you only have a few seconds to prepare for your serve. So it is tremendously helpful to have some cue words to help you when you are serving for your game.

In today’s lesson I am going to share some simple cue words that you can use and that can definitely help you in your match.

I will be going through different situations of your service games and share some appropriate cue words with you.

Situation 1: First serve goes to the net.

When I say simple cue words, it means that it should be a very short 2-3 words or very short phrase to tell your brain what you should be focusing on for your serve.

For example:

If my serve landed into the net as shown in the image below.

Then for my second serve what I need to remind myself will be to aim higher, because the ball went to the net.

So, my keyword will be “aim higher” or you can also tell yourself “I want to brush higher.”

And you can choose the one you prefer, either “aim higher” or “brush higher”.

Situation 2: First serve went long.

The next cue that I want to share with you is when your serve goes long or goes out of the tennis court as shown in the image. The cue word that you can use will be “snap.”

So, if your serve is going wider then you want to bring the ball down a little bit.

In the image above, my serve went very long, and if I want to bring my ball down a little bit I can tell myself “snap.”

Another cue that you can use other than snap is you can tell your brain to bring the ball down or lower.

Situation 3: First serve went extremely wide.

The next possible scenario could be I want to serve out wide towards my opponent but I notice that the trend of my serve is such that it goes extremely wide. So, what can I tell myself?

I can shift my target by telling myself “aim middle.” I can aim to the middle of the service box so that I can actually bring the ball back to that service box. I can still achieve my out wide serve.

As shown in the image, if I serve an extremely out wide serve. Then, I want to “aim middle” and bring the ball in.

By telling myself to serve slightly to the middle, my serve is now able to shift inside of the serving court. And I can still achieve my out wide serve.


In short, next time you go for your tennis match prepare some easy to remember cue words. I am sure these cue words could help you to reduce the number of double faults. In addition, it gives you more confidence in your tennis serve.

Go ahead and prepare some cue words for your tennis serve. Don’t forget to share your experiences with me in the comment section below.

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