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Brian Dimsho
Brian Dimsho is a USTA certified official and the resident official of the Orange County Grand Prix.

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warm-up rules
by Sam

Q: I have seen serving warm-ups conducted numerous ways. The receiver hits the ball back to the server until he/she is finished taking serves and then the receiver takes his/her turn at serve warm-up. Then, of course the more common, one serves as many balls as they're holding and then they switch. Usually one server is finished taking serves before the other and the receiver hits the ball back to the server (or practices returning) until the server is finished their serving warm-up. Other than the obvious time restraints, are there any designated rules for warm-up, i.e. "you can't return my serve!!" ? Thanks

A: There is no set rule about returning warm-up serves and I have seen just about every way it can be done as well. I have seen players get mad about the returning of these warm-up serves as well. I think the the best way to handle this issue is to let your opponent hit some warm-up serves than if you want to return some of them infom them that you will be returning some back as they don't want to be in their serving motion and have to worry about your returning back at them. Than give them the same courtesy and let them return a few of your warm-up serves if they want. But remember the short warm up peroid before the match is just to get you loose and get the blood flowing. It is not supposed to allow you to work on your total game as you should have arrived ready to play.
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