Serve efficiency development in women's vs. men's professional tennis.

Ralph Grambow, Philipp Born, Craig O'Shannessy, Jonas Breuer, Dominik Meffert, Tobias Vogt

Publication: Contribution to journalJournal articlesTransferpeer-review


Purpose. The purpose was to identify possible gender-specific differences in long-term serve efficiency development in
professional women’s and men’s tennis.
Methods. The analyses focused on 2 approaches: (1) total tournament comparison and (2) 2nd tournament week vs. 1st tournament
week comparison. The data include all single matches at the Wimbledon Championship between 2002 and 2015
(ladies: n = 1771, gentlemen: n = 1772).
Results. The findings showed significant development differences in favour of elite men over elite women in both comparisons.
Regarding the total tournament comparison, men’s development of 2nd serve points won (p < 0.001; r = 0.86),
1st serves in (p < 0.05; r = 0.72), and double fault (p < 0.001; r = 0.85) percentages improved significantly more. As per the
2nd tournament week vs. 1st tournament week comparison, men’s development of 2nd serve points won (p < 0.05; r = 0.68)
and double fault (p < 0.01; r = 0.86) percentages improved significantly more.
Conclusions. The study revealed serve efficiency development advantages for men over women in both comparisons, especially
regarding the quality of the 2nd serve, whereas no development advantages in favour of women over men could be
observed in any analysed parameter, indicating possible needs to adapt elite women’s coaching.
Key words: elite, coaching, practice, gender, game opening, Wimbledon
Original languageEnglish
JournalHuman movement
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)128-137
Publication statusPublished - 2022