Danielle Collins has been one of the lucky pros that's been getting to practice during quarantine. It's not for nothing as she's prepping for this weekend' UTR Pro Match Series tournament in West Palm Beach, Fla.
Collins joined Mackenzie McDonald and host Prakash Amritraj for a UTR All Access Series conversation to talk college tennis, the pro grind, injuries, quarantine life and more. In answering some fan questions, Collins gave great advice for how you can have a serve as powerful as hers (it starts near minute 38 in the video).
"It takes me back kind of to when I was a junior and I struggled with my serve a lot," the 26-year-old said.
She said her dad took her to a lot of coaches to try to fix her service motion, and they found solace in Elena Dementieva—who was notorious for double faulting and still won so much she was No. 3 in the word.
"I really wish when I was younger I would have spent more time working on the serve," Collins said. "I think back to how many groundstrokes I would hit each day, and I know it was like thousands and thousands of balls. And on the serve, maybe it felt like a lot, but it may have been only 50 or 75."
When I was growing up as a kid, I spent hours everyday hitting thousands of balls against my ball machine ????????????????????????????????I am so thankful for coming full circle with sports tutor, during such a difficult time in the world. Being immunocompromised, I’ve been really having to distance myself. I love that I’m still able to work on my game. #likeakidatchristmas #sportstutor #tennistutor
Collins spent four years working on her game in college (winning two individual NCAA titles for Virginia) before taking her serve and groundstrokes to the pro tour. She reached the 2019 Australian Open semifinals and has been ranked as high as No. 23. Yet, she still sometimes finds herself needing to serve out a basket of balls after practice.
"Since I've been out of college I've kind of come to that realization and I spend a lot more time working on my serve," she said. "It's something I really try to focus and work hard at. You have to take time work on your serve and not everybody does that."
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