How to serve in pickleball?


Pickleball, one of the fastest-growing sports in America, offers fun and social play for people of all ages and skill levels. A strong serve is essential in taking control of this fast-growing sport; unlike tennis' underhand serve requires finesse and strategy when taking control. But, how to serve in pickleball?

This guide provides the knowledge and techniques for you to master pickleball! With it comes everything you need to create an unstoppable service to become the master of pickleball!

Underhand Serve: A Pickleball Definenta 

Pickleball's unique underhand serve is one of its distinguishing characteristics, unlike its powerful overhand counterpart in tennis, requiring controlled underhand motion instead. This evens out the playing field for players of differing ability - yet don't underestimate its significance; an effectively executed underhand serve sets the pace for rallies while placing pressure on your opponents and creating scoring opportunities! 

Under the Hood: Essential Elements to Consider for Your Serves

Before discussing different service types, let's familiarize ourselves with some fundamental rules and grip. 

Serve Rules

  • Underhand Motion: The paddle must swing upwards in an underhand motion.
  • Contact Point: The ball must be struck below your waist (think belly button).
  • Paddle Face: The paddle face must be below your wrist at the moment of contact.


For optimal control, adopt the continental grip by holding onto your paddle handle like you are shaking hands - this allows for smooth swings and efficient power transfer. At GatorStrike we carry an extensive selection of comfortable pickleball paddles including precision striker pickleball paddles or our ever-popular carbon pickleball paddles so that you're sure to find your ideal match!

Serve Styles for Every Skill Level

Now that you understand how tennis serves work, let's understand the different serve styles you can include in your game:

Underhand Serve Technique (Beginner)

Serving is at its core. Here, the focus should be on consistency and getting the ball into play as soon as possible. Learn to master its mechanics: a balanced stance with a smooth drop of the ball and controlled swing for making contact.

Key Points: Precision over power! Repetition is essential in mastering this service.

Lobster Serving (Intermediate)

As your confidence builds, try switching up to the lobster serve - this involves using an upper swing motion with deeper strokes for greater depth and pressure on opponents.

Key Points: Involve your opponent by forcing them to adapt their positioning, keeping them guessing with a variety of depths and surface textures.

Power Serve Technique (Advanced)

A power serve combines weight transfer and torso rotation to generate an explosive serve that may catch opponents off guard.

Key Points: Exploit weaknesses in your opponent's positioning while remaining vigilant to maintaining control while increasing power.

The Angle Server (Advanced)

Create additional layers of strategy with angle serves. By targeting side court areas just outside the "kitchen", this serve creates an awkward angle for opponents when returning it - forcing your opponents to go around an unusual route to return their serve!

Key Points: Use this serve strategically and disrupt your opponent's rhythm to increase effectiveness.

Serve Your Way to Victory! 

Master the underhand serve and add different styles into your repertoire to gain a significant advantage on the pickleball court. Consistency, control, and strategic targeting are key components to an effective serve that leads to victory!

Check out GatorStrike's extensive collection of pickleball accessories - including top-of-the-line sets, precision striker pickleball paddles, and carbon pickleball paddles - to upgrade your game and secure victory! Visit us online now at the GatorStrike website!

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