Another theory is that the scoring nomenclature came from the French game jeu de paume (a precursor to tennis which initially used the hand instead of a racket). Jeu de paume was very popular before the French Revolution, with more than 1,000 courts in Paris alone. The traditional court was 90 ft (pieds du roi) in total with 45 ft on each side. When the server scored, he or she moved forward 15 ft. If the server scored again, he or she would move another 15 ft. If the server scored a third time, he or she could only move 10 ft closer.
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Kolkmann stresses the importance of taking no shortcuts during the preparation phases. "For our courts, we require at least a 10-inch stone base over a geotextile fabric. We use 6 to 8 inches of clear stone [screened and washed limestone used as a drainage medium] and then a 2- to 4-inch lift of 3/4-inch minus stone. The entire court is surrounded by 4-inch drain tile to reduce the amount of surface and subsurface water that gets under a court. The lift of clear stone also allows the water to drain under the court much faster, should any get underneath. All the stone is laser-graded to the correct slope."
Even your choice of shoes, socks, and other clothing are important considerations when you learn to play tennis. As opposed to running shoes, tennis shoes are made to withstand side-to-side movement. They should have a herringbone tread for longer lasting protection and grip. Socks should be thick and able to absorb sweat, thereby preventing infections such as athlete’s foot. Generally, tennis clothing is white, a color chosen to best reflect the sun and keep the player cooler. (Wear the appropriate gear even when just beginning to learn to play tennis!)
In doubles, service alternates between the teams. One player serves for an entire service game, with that player's partner serving for the entirety of the team's next service game. Players of the receiving team receive the serve on alternating points, with each player of the receiving team declaring which side of the court (deuce or ad side) they will receive serve on for the duration of the set. Teams alternate service games every game.
The tiebreaker – more recently shortened to just "tiebreak", though both terms are still used interchangeably – was invented by James Van Alen and unveiled in 1965 as an experiment at the pro tournament he sponsored at Newport Casino, Rhode Island, after an earlier, unsuccessful attempt to speed up the game by the use of his so-called "Van Alen Streamlined Scoring System" ("VASSS"). For two years before the Open Era, in 1955 and 1956, the United States Pro Championship in Cleveland, Ohio, was played by VASSS rules. The scoring was the same as that in table tennis, with sets played to 21 points and players alternating five services, with no second service. The rules were created partially to limit the effectiveness of the powerful service of the reigning professional champion, Pancho Gonzales. Even with the new rules, however, Gonzales beat Pancho Segura in the finals of both tournaments. Even though the 1955 match went to 5 sets, with Gonzales barely holding on to win the last one 21–19, it is reported to have taken 47 minutes to complete. The fans attending the matches preferred the traditional rules, however, and in 1957 the tournament reverted to the old method of scoring.
Balls wear out quickly in serious play and, therefore, in ATP and WTA tournaments, they are changed after every nine games with the first change occurring after only seven games, because the first set of balls is also used for the pre-match warm-up. As a courtesy to the receiver, the server will often signal to the receiver before the first serve of the game in which new balls are used as a reminder that they are using new balls. However, in ITF tournaments like Fed Cup, the balls are changed in a 9–11 style. Continuity of the balls' condition is considered part of the game, so if a re-warm-up is required after an extended break in play (usually due to rain), then the re-warm-up is done using a separate set of balls, and use of the match balls is resumed only when play resumes.
It wasn't until the 16th century that rackets came into use, and the game began to be called "tennis", from the French term tenez, which can be translated as "hold!", "receive!" or "take!", an interjection used as a call from the server to his opponent. It was popular in England and France, although the game was only played indoors where the ball could be hit off the wall. Henry VIII of England was a big fan of this game, which is now known as real tennis. During the 18th and early 19th centuries, as real tennis declined, new racket sports emerged in England.