Notable tennis tournaments previously held on carpet courts were the WCT Finals, Paris Masters, U.S. Pro Indoor and Kremlin Cup. Since 2009, their use has been discontinued on the top tier of the ATP. ATP Challenger Tour tournaments such as the Trofeo Città di Brescia still use carpet courts. The WTA Tour has one remaining carpet court event, the International-level Tournoi de Québec.
Throughout most of tennis history, racquets were comprised of laminated wood with smaller heads of about 65 square inches. It was not until the late 1960s that steel and aluminum started to be used by professional players like Jimmy Connors. Since the late 1980s, graphite and carbon fiber are the main materials chosen for crafting racquets that are used by professional and amateur players alike. These racquet materials allow the frame of the racquet to remain lightweight but stiff enough for increased control and stability.
This discussion is very timely for me because not only is it helping me stabilize my game, my daughter is now six and showing interest in “Playing tennis.” When she was four and five that meant catching and sweeping the ball along the floor with a racket back and forth with me, and now it means gripping the child’ racket her aunt brought her with both hands and hitting FH on the soft coach’s ball I toss or hit softly to her. She is a natural leftie, and I showed her a LH grip with two hands, but often she uses the RH backhand grip instead, and I just let her go with it. What is amazing to me is how good her balance is and how well she steps in and rotates through the stroke, pulling the racket through. She is already an accomplished dancer and seems to understand how her body moves, and that clearly helps, but her synthesis of gripping, which she was taught, swinging, which she imitates, and rotating with balance is just natural.
Badminton rackets are light, with top quality rackets weighing between about 70 and 95 grams (with guts ). Modern rackets are composed of carbon fiber composite (graphite reinforced plastic), which may be augmented by a variety of materials. Carbon fiber has an excellent strength to weight ratio, is stiff, and gives excellent kinetic energy transfer. Before the adoption of carbon fiber composite, rackets were made of wood to their excessive weight and cost.
The rules of modern tennis have changed little since the 1890s. Two exceptions are that from 1908 to 1961 the server had to keep one foot on the ground at all times, and the adoption of the tiebreak in the 1970s. A recent addition to professional tennis has been the adoption of electronic review technology coupled with a point-challenge system, which allows a player to contest the line call of a point, a system known as Hawk-Eye.