Why does my elbow hurt when I serve in tennis?

After about 10 serves or so the area around my elbow begins to ache. The ache is mostly on the muscle in between my bicep and my elbow. Is this from improper serving mechanics? (I have never been coached) If so, what are the correct mechanics to serving without hurting myself?
Even though I haven’t been coached I have done some self research. I use a continental grip on my flat serve and an eastern backhand on my spin serves. Going through my motion, I noticed that I snap my elbow, should I use more shoulder, or just strengthen my elbow like others have suggested?

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  1. Emmanuel, 28 January, 2010

    Well i’ve been playing for 2 years in my school team, and while practicing my serves my elbow started hurting, i think your just serving too hard or serving the improper way, you will get use to it.

  2. pinkloveee, 28 January, 2010

    maybe you have tennis elbow.

    check out this site and see if this sounds like the kind of pain you are having…


  3. ai_iverson93, 28 January, 2010

    I’m picturing a person serving and maybe you put too much force on when you serve. Since serving is a pretty strong action, you may be overdoing the power on your arm.

  4. [M]arcus-*, 28 January, 2010

    u may have tennis elbow!

  5. Lauren, 28 January, 2010

    You might have tennis elbow. If your not coached, you might not be holding your racket correctly, which can cause pain. For serving: I’m right handed so I don’t know if the left hand part is correct.

    Right handed: right hand on bottom, left on top. take your right hand down on your back while your left hand is throwing the ball. right arm reaches up and hits the ball.

    Left handed: left hand on bottom, right on top. same motion as right hand, except right hand throws the ball.

  6. Bahrom, 28 January, 2010

    Yeah, I’ve had this pain for an extremely long period of time. Your elbow is weak, so do more push-ups, pull-ups and exercises that strengthen your arm. You could do lots of other exercises with dumbbells. They helped me a lot. You also have to exercise your shoulders, etc.(your whole body).

  7. NAJBOLJI JE NOVAK, 28 January, 2010

    uwww, dude you might have tennis elbow.(knock on wood you don’t) even though that is quiet rare in mens tennis these days.
    you’re probably serving really hard. i think
    you should stop playing tennis for a bit to rest it.
    i have a friend that had the same problem as you did. he stopped
    playing for a while, (still plays after that). it’s cause you serve to hard that happens. you either need
    to change your style of serve or do some push ups or lift some
    light weigths to stengthen your elbows and arms. this
    why i personally don’t serve that hard, but i sometimes get back or shoulder problems cause i tend to twist when i serve causing shoulder
    to hurt and i bend really low. once i hurt my back that it was so hard for me to sit. so what i did was rest and exersice with weights and i was good as new.

  8. kandykane, 28 January, 2010

    It’s definitely tennis elbow! You better go see someone about it or it will get worse! Physical Therapy…even though it sounds bad, its what you need. What you don’t want is it to get worse…then it will hurt more often, and not only just when you serve! It’s due to improper motion and strokes, and using more of your arm strength versus your body and shoulder strength. You should rely more on the turning of your shoulders in strokes, it is more natural and healthy for your body, and it can be stronger with less effort.

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