The service is always a subject of debate in padel. Much easier for players than the tennis serve – which requires years of practice – the commitment to padel is ultimately more problematic for referees, at least at the professional level. And while foot faults can sometimes be difficult to judge, the real issue is how high the ball is struck.

A difficult rule to apply

Indeed, international regulations stipulate that the impact between the racket and the ball must be below waist level. On paper, the rule is not really complicated, but in reality, it is much less simple than it seems.

Indeed, with the clothing, the speed, the sometimes unfavorable lighting, the distance between the chair and the court... it is never easy for the referee to see if the ball was hit below the waist of the server or not . Especially since the players, who want to complicate their opponents' returns as much as possible, seek to hit the ball as high as possible, even if it sometimes means exaggerating a little...

What to do to avoid problems?

In recent years, there have been many controversies regarding the service, with time lost to watch the action on video, refereeing errors, players getting annoyed, etc.

At present, there does not seem to be a miracle solution, but some ideas are nevertheless emerging.

One of them would be to move to a single service. Instead of the two service balls that players currently have, we would move to just one. A foot fault or a serve too high and it's a direct lost point. Enough to perhaps discourage a little those who tend to want to play with the rules during the first serve... Furthermore, this would make the game a little more fluid, even faults on the first ball are obviously much less frequent in the first serve. padel than in tennis.

Another possibility, which is not incompatible with the first, would be to have a technological tool allowing you to know exactly when the service is good and when it is bad. A bit like the let sensor used in tennis, with imagine a beep that would sound when the server hits the ball too high. However, it is difficult to know whether a solution like this is really possible in the short term, due to the technology it requires. We have also seen in recent months that the Foxtenn system is not yet completely ready…

While waiting for a future where it will certainly be possible to judge everything in a fraction of a second with precision thanks to technology, we wonder what the authorities that regulate our sport can do to reduce problem situations on serve. Ideas ?

Xan is a fan of padel. But also rugby! And his posts are just as punchy. Physical trainer of several padel, he unearths atypical posts or deals with topical subjects. It also gives you some tips to develop your physique for the padel. Clearly, he imposes his offensive style as on the field of padel !