A groove set ups

When is the best time to activate the A groove?

s.lp, activate, s.hp s.hk shosho
jump, activate, land, c.lk
same as above, but j.lk right before landing (for high/low mixups)
HK hurricane, s.lp, activate, c.mk s.hk shosho
meaty dive kick, land, activate
activate, overhead, shosho

although these are all good, getting s.jab activate, link anything is pretty hard to get consistently unless you practace the shit out of it. some basic scrubby techniques (albeit they still work when you play your footsies right) are:

roll activate
dash activate
walk up activate
and you can mix all those up with throw.

i think sakura plays best when she uses meter to punish mistakes (a la ricky ortiz). Youll notice that he likes sit on meter all day until an opening rather than busting (and having it blocked) it as soon as you get full meter, a mistake lots of newer a groove players make.

but again if youre really into setups, then you can try using fancy ones like:

activate, fierce/strong fireball, roll, overhead. that one is pretty damn hard to block, mix overhead with low short/forward. There is a way to make it an ambiguous crossup, but i dunno how to do that. try experimenting with that.