The serving motion can be particularly challenging for the shoulder. It needs to control the arm in the tough overhead positions as well as generating enough power for a 263 km/h serve (well…that is if you’re Sam Groth).

Why does it hurt

Impingement, tendinitis, bursitis and tears often gets thrown around as causes of shoulder pain. But in reality, for most tennis players, regardless of what it is – all we need to do is “free it up and get it stronger”

Free it up

Making sure our shoulder can move through the whole range is essential. In most cases it is restricted by tight or sensitive muscles, so things like foam rolling, massage and taping can often help in the short term.

Get it stronger

Once most of the symptoms are settled and you have regained the movement, strengthening your shoulders in the overhead position is the next step. The stronger those muscles are, the better it will cope with those high loads as you reach back and power through the serve.

Here is one of many exercises we can do to strengthen

Does serving technique matter?

Yes. Everyone has a slightly different service motion, but making sure that we are positioning the shoulder and the arm in the optimal position will allow the shoulder to generate power more efficiently. We will look at everything from the ball toss, the trophy position to how you are making contact with the ball.


As always feel free to message us on the drift chat box, email or book in online at 1 of our 3 locations in Sydney;

iMove Physio Miranda

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iMove Physio Panania

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iMove Physio Rozelle

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