(Video) Sidespin serve – tips and tactics

(Video) Sidespin serve – tips and tactics

One of the most popular serves in table tennis is the forehand sidespin serve, also known as the pendulum serve.

It’s a popular serve because you can get a lot of spin and you can do lots of different variations. You can serve side-backspin. You can serve side-topspin. You can serve it short . You can serve it long. You can serve it cross-court, down the line or in the middle.

All of these variations makes the serve very effective.

I have been using this serve for 10+ years and it’s a great service weapon to have. At a lower level, players really struggle to return the serve. You can win lots of cheap points. At a higher level, you can put your opponents under a lot of pressure by using all of the different spin and placement variations.

As you can guess, I really like this serve!

In this coaching video, I explain how to do the serve, how to get lots of spin, how to vary spin and how to use the serve to set up a 3rd ball attack.

Video length: 08:25


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About Tom Lodziak

I’m a table tennis coach based in Cambridge in the UK. As well as coaching I also write table tennis articles and make table tennis videos. Read more about me.

3 thoughts on “(Video) Sidespin serve – tips and tactics

    • Well I suppose it’s more back-side. You certainly want aim contact towards side of the ball if you can, as this will help give you sidespin and forward momentum.

  1. Hi Tom,

    I want to play more topspin serves, mainly to avoid pushing too much and be able to attack, but I find them pretty difficult! Any chance you can create a YT lesson which you go deeper into topspin serves?

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