17 Common Types of Pickleball Serves

By: Brandon Fritze

Struggling with different types of pickleball serves? Today, I’m going to reveal all the secrets of the various types of serves in pickleball that the pros use to dominate their opponents. So, no more losing; it’s time to claim victories and make your mark in the pickleball world.

Meanwhile, do you know one of the most influential elements of pickleball is serving?

It’s basically the starting point for each rally. So, in this post, we’ll look at the Seventeen pickleball serves that give you the knowledge and confidence to take your game to the next level. Having it in mind, let us know the 17 types of pickleball serves.

Types of Pickleball Serves

Types of Pickleball Serves?

There is a wide variety of pickleball serves. But we have gathered the most important ones to help you elevate your pickleball journey to the next level.

Without further ado, dive into the details.

1. Pickleball Forehand Serve

It is one of the most basic and widely used serves in pickleball.

Hitting the ball with the paddle held in a forehand grip executes this serve, making it an easy and effective serve for beginner and intermediate players.

You can deliver it with either topspin or slice, making it adaptable.

Additionally, this serve can be a powerful weapon for you if you want to set the tone for the rally, putting pressure on the opponent right from the start.

Read our article on “Pickleball Forehand Serve” if you want to know more.

2. Pickleball Backhand Serve

Pickleball Backhand Serve

Another famous serve in pickleball is the backhand serve.

While it is less prevalent than the forehand serves, it can be just as effective.

The player performs this serve by striking the ball with the paddle on the backhand side of the body. But it has a different angle and spins on the ball than a forehand serve.

It can be a tricky and unpredictable move, catching the opponent off guard and changing the game’s dynamics.

Backhand Serve in Pickleball

3. Pickleball Overhead Serve

The player carries out the overhead serve by hitting the ball above the head and using the power of their upper body to drive the ball into the opponent’s court.

Advanced players often use this serve as it requires a lot of skill and practice to execute correctly.

Consequently, it can be a potent tool for players looking to dominate the rally from the start, putting their opponents on the back foot.

As per official rules, this serve is not legal in Pickleball.

Pickleball Overhead Serve

4. Pickleball Overhand Serve

It uses a more conventional method that is comparable to a tennis serve.

The server must use its dominant arm to produce force and control while swinging the paddle overhand.

The overhand serve enables players to strike the ball with more force and height, applying pressure to their rivals and sometimes creating favorable situations for the remainder of the point.

Pickleball Overhand Serve

5. Pickleball Underhand Serve

To perform this underhand serve, swing the paddle upward below the waist.

Beginners and anyone who desire a more regulated and precise approach frequently choose this serve.

The underhand serve gives more control and placement than the overhand serve, which allows players to position the ball tactically and start their preferred style of play, even if it may not have as much force.

Pickleball Underhand Stroke

6. Pickleball Jump Serve

The jump serve is an aerial serve that players use to put pressure on the receiving player.

Players perform it by jumping into the air, striking the ball with great force, and launching the rally with energy

The jump serve is a great way to start the game with power and set the tone for the rest of the match, starting strong with a mighty leap.

Note: This serve considered to be illegal in Pickleball.

Pickleball Jump Serve

7. Pickleball Dink Serve

The server basically designs this serve to keep the ball low and slow.

The server basically executes this serve to keep the ball low and slow.

They play a soft serve aimed at landing the ball just over the net in a non-volley zone.

Moreover, it can be an innovative and effective method to change the game’s pace, leaving the opponent scrambling to react.

8. Pickleball Paddle Serve

In the paddle serve, players hit the ball with the paddle’s edge instead of the face.

The players often use this serve as a tactical move aimed at catching the opponent off guard and making it difficult for them to return the ball effectively.

It can be a sneaky and effective way to keep the opponent guessing and disrupt their rhythm.

9. Pickleball Centerline Serve

It aims directly down the center of the court, splitting the non-volley zone in half.

The basic purpose of centerline serve in Pickleball is to make the ball returning difficult for the receiving player, dividing the court and putting pressure on the opponent.

Moreover, it is a unique way to mix up the game and keep the opponent guessing, drawing a line down the center of the court.

According to official Pickleball rules, this serve considered to be illegal in Pickleball.

10. Pickleball Power Serve

It means the serve to deliver maximum power and speed, putting pressure on the opponent from the start.

Advanced players often use this serve to set the tone for the rally and dictate the game’s pace.

It can be a dominant and imposing move to leave the opponent struggling to continue the game.

11. Pickleball Lob Serve

Pickleball Lob Serve

The lob serve is a high, slow serve executed to land the ball deep in the opponent’s court, giving them less time to react.

The players often use this serve as a strategic move aimed at putting pressure on the opponent and forcing them to make a hurried return.

You can utilize it to manage the rally and disadvantage your opponent.

Lob Serve in Pickleball

12. Pickleball Spin Serve

The pickleball spin serve is a cunning move in which the server gives the ball spin while serving.

Players may create a spin that causes the ball to bend unexpectedly by combining their wrist motion with their paddle angle, making it difficult for their opponents to predict the ball’s trajectory.

Despite its recent ban by the USAPA, it remains a crucial aspect of the game for professional Pickleball players.

13. Pickleball Topspin Serve

The server delivers the topspin serve to put a lot of spin on the ball, causing the ball to dive down quickly toward the receiving player.

The player often uses this serve as a pressure-building tool, forcing the opponent to make a quick return and making it difficult for them to maintain control of the rally.

You can conveniently play it with a forehand or backhand grip, allowing you to target the opponent’s weaknesses.

14. Pickleball Chainsaw Serve

The server slices the ball with this serve which is a solid and aggressive play.

When the ball makes contact with the paddle, this method quickly and sharply spins it, significantly forcing the ball to serve.

Because of its speed and unpredictable nature, the Chainsaw serve makes it challenging for opponents to return the ball successfully.

However, this serve is not legal in Pickleball as per Pickleball rules.

Watch the following video to learn more about Chainsaw Serve.

15. Pickleball Drop Serve

The drop serve in pickleball requires dexterity and accuracy.

The server softly drops the ball over the net with little power during this serve, frequently leading it to just clear the net before falling near to the server’s feet.

Players may catch their opponents by surprise by using a light touch and deliberate ball placement, pushing them to move fast and making it difficult to perform a forceful return.

16. Let Serve in Pickleball

When the server in pickleball strikes the net but still manages to cross it and land in the appropriate service court, it is known as a let serve.

In this instance, the server redoes the serve, and neither player receives any points.”

The Let Serve allows the server to change and attempt again while maintaining fairness and removing any possible benefit earned from a fortunate net contact.

Let Serve

17. Pickleball Bounce Serve

Here the server bounces the ball before striking it. Before serving, players might purposefully bounce the ball on the ground to give their serve more spin and unpredictability.

Because of how the ball bounces, it is more difficult for opponents to predict and successfully return the serve.

Final Thoughts on Different Pickleball Serves

Up until now, you know that pickleball serves are an essential part of the game and can significantly affect the outcome of a match. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned player, it is imperative to master these serves in order to confuse your opponent and gain the upper hand on the court.

So I would advise you to incorporate different kinds of serves into your game and you will see a noticeable improvement in your overall pickleball skills.


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