Begin with the grip. The most common grip in tennis is the eastern forehand; the eastern forehand grip is also the best choice as you learn to play tennis. Use it for your forehand drive and the majority of your shots. Place your hand flat on the racket strings, and then slide your hand down to the handle. Wrap your fingers around the racket. Your first finger should be forward slightly as if you were holding the trigger of a gun. Keep all tensions out of your fingers. The eastern forehand grip is often called the “shake hands” grip by those who have just begun to learn to play tennis, because, in essence, you are shaking hands with the racket. For most people, it is the preferred grip for serving — particularly, when you first learn to play tennis.
Sometimes a company will include some extras in with the tennis racquet and these are always nice to have. So if you can get a nice cover to help protect your racquet when not using it or a can of decent tennis balls this is never a bad thing. Don’t make it a point of emphasis in your tennis racquet buying decision but these things are a nice bonus if you can get them.
Hi, my name is Jamie. I have been teaching tennis for about 14 years and have a love and passion for teaching tennis to anyone who is wanting to learn and improve their game. I have been working at Punahou School for the last 12 years and have done group, private, and cardio tennis lessons there and have a good foundation of how to build lessons and skills within my students through effective progressions that have worked to build state ranked juniors. I am USPTA Certified and Cardio Certified. Please let me know how I can help you to work on technique and strategy through a game based learning approach. ... View Profile
Learn to play doubles tennis. Doubles tennis has two players on each side instead of one. You’ll use the wider court dimensions, but the rest of the scoring and rules remain the same. The big challenge for doubles tennis beginners is to learn how to interact with a teammate. Ask other tennis-playing friends to teach you the best strategies for doubles tennis.
It is imagined that clock faces were used on court, with a quarter move of the hand to indicate a score of 15, 30, and 45. When the hand moved to 60, the game was over. However, in order to ensure that the game could not be won by a one-point difference in players' scores, the idea of "deuce" was introduced. To make the score stay within the "60" ticks on the clock face, the 45 was changed to 40. Therefore, if both players had 40, the first player to score would receive ten, and that would move the clock to 50. If the player scored a second time before the opponent is able to score, they would be awarded another ten and the clock would move to 60. The 60 signifies the end of the game. However, if a player fails to score twice in a row, then the clock would move back to 40 to establish another "deuce".
So, as you now know, learning to serve is essential as you learn to play tennis. Here’s how (for right-handed players — left-handed players should reverse the directions): Stand with both feet behind the baseline. Assume a sideways stance with your left foot pointed towards the right hand net post. Hold the ball in your left hand. Raise your left hand throwing the ball upwards about one foot in front of your left foot and about eighteen inches above your reach. While the ball in the air, move your racket back and up. Hit the ball at full stretch, with your racket arm straight, at the highest point possible. You are switching the weight of your body from your back foot to your front foot to give added strength to your shot.
Here is a great racquet from a very reputable tennis equipment manufacturer. Wilson is a well-known name when it comes to quality tennis products, to say the least, and this good racquet does not disappoint. It features such things as grippy string technology that quickly dampens the energy of the ball as it strikes the racket so you can get better spin on your return shots. It is also ultra-lightweight and has a new class paint finish that gives it some style.
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Heavy Hitter: It should not be a shock that Roger Federer’s racket of choice is one that only a true surgeon of the court can use effectively. It has both a postage stamp-sized 90 square-inch head and a 12.6oz body that will feel like swinging a hammer to the uninitiated. The reason for the added weight is basalt graphite placed in the handle. It gives experts a better feel for the ball and helps counter-weight for really deep, powerful swings meant to stick the ball in the chain-link. Using this will feel like jumping into the deep end of the pool, but if you can master it, you can use anything. Net fighters and spin doctors will both have a lot of difficulty doing battle at the net while back court clubbers will find it to be a deadly weapon. [Purchase: $159+]
In the early 1980s, "graphite" (carbon fibre) composites were introduced, and other materials were added to the composite, including ceramics, glass fibre, boron, and titanium. Some of the earliest models typically had 20% or more fiberglass, to make them more flexible. Stiff rackets were typically not preferred by most players because of their familiarity with the comfortable softness of wood. These early models tended to be very flexible and not very powerful, although they were a power upgrade over wood and metal rackets. Wilson created the Jack Kramer Pro Staff, the graphite version of the wood racket of the same name extremely popular in the late 70's and early 80's. This was the origin of the extremely influential Wilson Pro Staff 85. Chris Evert's first graphite racket was this Jack Kramer version, which had 20% fiberglass. It was not a market success and she, along with everyone else, quickly replaced it with the stiffer Pro Staff 85, which had 20% kevlar. It used the same mold and had the same braided graphite, but offered a very noticeable improvement in power. The very popular Prince original graphite, an oversize in its most popular form, was also quite influential and used by many pros, especially as juniors. Jennifer Capriati and Monica Seles, for instance, used the Prince graphite to contest their influential Wimbledon match in 1991 that has often been hailed as the beginning of the power baselining game in the WTA, although that claim is somewhat hyperbolic and is, in large part, due to the mistaken impression that the players were hitting much harder when, in fact, the rackets were more powerful. However, the very large head size, when compared with the midsize and, especially, the old "standard" size, made it easier to produce power. The racket also had an open string pattern. The Prince "original" graphite name is rather a misnomer, as it went through some significant design adjustments over its lifetime. For instance, the truly original model had a reverse teardrop head shape, something no subsequent versions had. Stiffer composite rackets, when compared with the first and second generations of graphite composites, are the contemporary standard. The last wooden racket appearing at Wimbledon appeared in 1987, long after they were abandoned by practically all professionals. Borg tried to stage a comeback with his standard wood racket, after his premature retirement, but it quickly ended in failure, as the standard wood was no match when placed against a stiff midplus graphite. It is also commonly argued that Chris Evert would have been able to beat Martina Navratilova during the latter's most dominant period if she had switched from her wood racket years sooner. Additionally, the last influential wooden racket, the Prince Woodie, had layers of graphite to increase its stiffness and was an oversize. It was used by Tommy Haas, Gabriela Sabatini, and quite a few others. It offered very little power but did offer much more surface area than a standard-size wooden frame. Sabatini found it helpful, as compared with smaller rackets, due to her production of heavy topspin. The only woman to beat Martina Navratilova in 1984, Kathleen Horvath, used the Prince Woodie, one of only six losses Navratilova suffered in a three-year stretch involving 260 matches.
Head size plays a very key role in a racket's performance characteristics. A larger head size very generally means more power and a larger "sweet spot". This is an area in the string bed that is partially more forgiving on off-center hits and which produces more ball-reflective power from string deformation, known as the trampoline effect. However, large head sizes can increase twisting, which makes off-center hits more difficult to control and can reduce a player's overall power production due to the playing compensating for the extra inherent power, typically with stiffer strings to reduce the increased string deformation of large heads. A smaller head size generally offers more control for many shots, particularly the service and groundstrokes aimed near the lines, but can lead to more shanks (wild misses, from hitting the frame or missing the sweet spot). This drawback is most common for professional players using single-handed topspin backhands, as well as for recreational and aged players at net. Shanking due to small racket head size is typically exacerbated by racket weight, which slows the reaction time, as well as, to a lesser degree, the racket's balance point. In professional tennis, currently-used racket head sizes vary between 95–115 square inches (610–740 cm2), with most players adopting one from 98–108 square inches (630–700 cm2). Rackets with smaller and larger head sizes, 85 and 120–137 square inches (550 and 770–880 cm2), are still produced but are not used by professionals currently. A very small number of professionals, such as Monica Seles, used 125 square inches (810 cm2) rackets during some point in their careers. Rackets with smaller heads than 85 square inches (550 cm2) have not been in production since the 1980s and rackets with larger head sizes than 137 square inches (880 cm2) are not currently legal for the sport, even though only elderly players typically choose to use rackets beyond 115 square inches (740 cm2) and it is nearly unheard-of for a serious player who is not elderly to choose a racket over 125 square inches (810 cm2). The WEED company, founded by Tad Weed, specializes in producing very large rackets, primarily for the elderly market. Rackets that are moderately higher in power production, moderately lower in weight, moderately larger in size, and which typically possess a slightly head-heavy balance are often called "tweener rackets." Rackets that have the smallest heads in current use, the highest weights in current use, and headlight or even balance are referred to as "players' rackets". Oversize rackets, typically 110 square inches (710 cm2) in size, were once pejoratively referred to as "granny sticks" but resistance to them being seen as illegitimate rackets for younger players decreased dramatically with the successful use of these rackets by a small number professionals such as Andre Agassi and Pam Shriver. Originally, even midsize frames (85 square inches (550 cm2)) were considered jumbo, and some top players, such as Martina Navratilova and Rod Laver said they should be banned for making the sport too easy. Later, these same professionals, including John McEnroe, signed a letter supporting a switch back to wood frames, or a limitation to the original standard size of approximately 65 square inches (420 cm2). Perhaps the last professional to use a standard-size racket in professional tennis was Aaron Krickstein, known for the strongly-contested match against Connors at the 1991 US Open. He used a Wilson Ultra-II standard-size graphite racket also used in the 1980s by the hard-hitting teen Andrea Jaeger. The first oversize, the fiberglass Bentley Fortissimo from Germany, was praised by racket designers but was considered too large to be taken seriously by the small number of players who were exposed to it.
Tennis also became popular in France, where the French Championships dates to 1891 although until 1925 it was open only to tennis players who were members of French clubs. Thus, Wimbledon, the US Open, the French Open, and the Australian Open (dating to 1905) became and have remained the most prestigious events in tennis. Together these four events are called the Majors or Slams (a term borrowed from bridge rather than baseball).