Background: Previous research has developed an observational tennis serve analysis (OTSA) tool to assess serve mechanics. The OTSA has displayed substantial agreement between the two health care professionals that developed the tool; however, it is currently unknown if the OTSA is reliable when administered by novice users.

Purpose: The purpose of this investigation was to determine if reliability for the OTSA could be established in novice users via an interactive classroom training session.

Methods: Eight observers underwent a classroom instructional training protocol highlighting the OTSA. Following training, observers participated in two different rating sessions approximately a week apart. Each observer independently viewed 16 non-professional tennis players performing a first serve. All observers were asked to rate the tennis serve using the OTSA. Both intra and inter-observer reliability were determined using Kappa coefficients.

Results: Kappa coefficients for intra and inter-observer agreement ranged from 0.09 to 0.83 depending on the body position. A majority of all body positions yeilded moderate agreement and higher.

Conclusion: This study suggests that the majority of components associated with the OTSA are reliable and can be taught to novice users via a classroom training session.

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Published in Journal of Medicine and Science in Tennis, v. 22, no. 3, p. 6-12.

© 2017 Society of Tennis Medicine and Science

The copyright holder has granted the permission for posting the article here.