Different Types of Tennis Courts

Different types of courts favor different types of tennis players. Any player can win any match on any court, but he must make the proper adjustments to his tennis game to do so. There are 3 different types of courts: clay, hard, and grass. Different courts are common in different parts of the world. In America, hard courts are more common. However in continental Europe and Latin America they predominantly use clay. Here are some tennis tips to keep in mind about how each court will play, and strategies that work best on these tennis courts.

Clay: There are two types of clay commonly used: Green(America) and Red(Europe). The biggest thing about playing on clay is that it slows the ball down and gives a high bounce. Since the clay will slow down a big serve and hard passing shot it is essential to have 3 qualities:

1) Good Conditioning- since both players will have more time to react to shots, points typically will be longer. You must be able to last throughout these grueling points.

2) Consistent Ground Strokes- In the same vein, your opponent will be able to run more down, so you won’t be able to get out of a point with 1 or 2 good shots.

3) Quickness- You must be able to run down and recover quickly in long points or your opponent will take advantage of your slow feet by moving you from side to side or with drop shots and lobs.

Clay courts also give players the unique opportunity to slide, a tactic that many tennis pros use to maintain body control while hitting shots on the run.

Hard: Hardcourts move very quickly, unlike clay courts, and favor big servers and heavy hitters. If you hit a couple good shots on a hardcourt you will probably win the point. On hardcourts, the speed of the ball is determined by the amount of sand on it. The more sand on the court, the slower the ball speed. One of the reasons that hardcourts are so popular in the US, especially in the northeast, is that they are the cheapest to maintain. Places that are too cold even to play outdoor tennis for most of the year don’t want to spend that much money to keep up their courts.

Grass: While at one time these were the most popular courts to play on, they are almost extinct due to their expensive upkeep. If you have knee problems you may want to try grass courts as the softer surface will help you. However, this softer surface makes it extremely hard for most players, because grass courts are so quick and the ball doesn’t bounce as high. The low, unpredictable bounces make serving and volleying a popular technique. Please see CoachUp’s How to Adjust to Grass Courts for more information about playing tennis on grass.

If these tips still do not help your game, it may benefit you to hit with a tennis coach on every surface. He can tell you the alterations you need to make to improve your chances of winning!