Like in any other sport, in tennis, knowledge of the equipment is a must, especially for the beginner or for those who want to start their journey in the beautiful game of tennis.
There are nine basic tennis types of equipment that you need to know along with building the right technique that will help you become a good tennis player.
Basic Tennis Equipment
- Tennis Racket: This consists of a string heating surface attached to the head of the frame for the purpose of hitting the ball.
- Tennis Ball: This is a yellow or white colored spherical ball with a diameter of 2.5 and 2.625 inches to fly over the net and bounce on either side of the playing surface.
- Net: It is rectangular in shape with a height of 3 feet (0.914 m) at the center and divides the court into two equal parts.
- Tennis Shoes: A pair of good tennis shoes is necessary for better stability, support, and traction, and also the desired comfort.
- Tennis Clothes: Tennis clothes need to be comfortable to wear and keep you dry during the match.
- Grips: It helps hold the racket for the execution of shots during a match.
- Wrist Band: It prevents the sweat to come down from your hand to the racket handle.
- Head Band: It prevents the long hairs covering your eyes from obstructing your eye vision.
- Tennis Bag: It helps carry tennis rackets and other equipment in a convenient way.
Apart from this basic tennis equipment, a cap, towels, water bottles, and energy drinks are helpful to keep you fresh during a match.
Let’s come to know more about the above-mentioned tennis equipment.
In the past, wood is used as a material for tennis rackets. But today, many metals replace wood for the making of a racket. A tennis racket consists of a frame and string area.
The frame has three parts.
The head is oval in shape and the upper part of the racket is where the strings are connected. It is the main and also the hitting surface of the racket. The throat is the second part that joins the head to the handle. The handle is the end part of the racket for holding the racket in the most convenient way.
The racket has the following characteristics.
- The total length of the racket shall be 73.7 cm (29’’).
- The total width of the racket shall be 31.7 cm (12.5’’).
- For hitting the surface, the maximum length and width shall not exceed 39.4 cm (15.5’’) and 29.2 cm (11.5’’) respectively.
The ball is spherical in shape and has a uniform outer surface covered by a thin layer of fabric. There are two types of tennis balls. One is pressured and another one is pressureless. The pressured ball is more popular.
Though there are some variations of balls according to the playing condition like in a slow, medium, fast, or court at a high altitude, in general, the tennis balls conform to the following characteristics.
- The weight of the ball shall be 56 – 59.4 grams (1.975 – 2.095 ounces).
- The diameter of the ball shall be 6.54 – 6.86 cm (2.57 – 2.70 inches)
- Tennis balls are either yellow or white-colored.
For juniors aged below 10 years, the balls are lighter in weight and larger in size. They also can choose different colored balls like yellow, red, orange, yellow with a red dot, yellow with an orange dot, and yellow with a green dot to play the game.
The net is used to divide the tennis court into two equal parts so that the ball can fly over the net to bounce on the surface of either side. The net has the following characteristics.
- It should be fully extended up to the net posts to cover the whole space between the two posts.
- The mess in the net shall be small enough so the ball can’t pass through it.
- The height of the net at the center shall be 3 feet (0.914 m) and 3.5 feet (1.07 m) near the neat post.
The shoes are also essential in tennis to move fast on the court confidently and to get rid of injuries.
These shoes give you stability, balance, and support. These shoes are durable and also give you the desired comfort. You may choose different types of tennis shoes according to the playing conditions like clay court, grass court, and hard court.
In tennis, shoes should have the following characteristics.
- A good grip of the outsole to prevent it from slipping
- A tough outsole that gives the shoe durability.
- Cushioning to get rid of injuries on your feet and legs
- Tough upper that gives the stability for moving around the court
The object of tennis clothes is to make you feel comfortable and dry during the match. For male players, a t-shirt that is not too loose or too tight and shorts above the knee height is the ideal choice. For female players, a one-piece dress or a t-shirt and skirt or shorts or skirt with built-in shorts is suitable. The female players also have a sense of fashion which brings more designs and colors.
The grip is used to hold the racket for the purpose of hitting the shots during a match. Though there are various types of grips according to the preferences of playing shots, three grips, continental (chopper), eastern, and semi-western are more popular.
Also, an overgrip may be handy to provide more cushion, absorb the sweat and protect the original grip.
The wristband helps you in two ways. You can prevent the sweat from coming from the handle of the racket to make it slippery. Also, you can dry out the sweat on your forehead to keep your eyes clean.
Like the wristband, the purpose of the headband is to absorb the sweat to prevent it from falling into your eyes. It has also an additional function. It ties the long hairs so that your eyes are not covered by the hairs to obstruct vision.
When you will go to play tennis, you have to carry a lot of things, like rackets, grips, balls, and other equipment. A tennis bag is very useful to carry all equipment and other items. It also helps protect your rackets from being damaged.
The Continental (or “Chopper”) grip is the most suitable grip for beginners. This grip offers a wide variety of shots to restrain beginners from changing their grip while learning the basics of the game.
Yes, tennis shoes are different for these courts as the nature of the playing surfaces of these courts demands different needs. For a grass court, a flatter outsole is necessary not to damage the court. For a clay court, a great grip is a must for sufficient traction whereas, for a hard court, a tough outsole and cushioning are necessary to protect your feet and legs.
The maximum length of a racket is 29” (73.7 cm). For juniors, the racket length should not exceed 25″ (63.5 cm) and for adults, rackets of 27” (68.58 cm) long are more popular.
A larger head size gives more power whereas a smaller head size is for more control.