Tennis Equipment – A Rundown
Like most sports, there are various pieces of tennis equipment needed to play the game. It is important for players to choose the right tennis equipment, particularly when it comes to rackets, in order to play the game effectively.
The main pieces of tennis equipment are rackets, balls and shoes. Other pieces of equipment such as shirts and shorts/skirts are needed but these do not particularly affect the performance of players as much as rackets, balls and shoes.
The racket is the most important piece of equipment in tennis for obvious reasons. It should be comfortable to hold and feel like an extension of the arm. There are any amount of rackets out there of varying weights and lengths.
Normally, there are 4 groups of tennis rackets. These are the beginner, intermediate, advanced and junior rackets.
Anyway, here are the top 10 intermediate racquets if you still can’t decide what you will get.
It is down to individual choice as to which weight and length best suits each player. The standard length of an adult size racket is around 27 inches and around 15 inches for a junior player. There are restrictions however on length and width of rackets.
They must be no longer than 29 inches (73.66cms) including the handle and 12.5 inches (31.75cms) in width.
The playing surface of the racket head should be no more than 15.5 inches long (39.37cms) or 11.5 inches wide (29.21cms). There are no restrictions on the weight of rackets but all modern rackets are made to be as light as possible.
Most modern rackets are made from lightweight materials such as fiberglass and graphite. Laminated wood frames were used before these, up until the 1970s.
The lightweight materials allowed racket heads to become bigger and enabled players to have more control of the ball and generate more power and accuracy.
The strings are a crucial part of the equipment of a racket. Generally, the tighter they are strung the better it is for generating control and spin. If there is slightly less tension in the strings, this tends to allow for more power to be generated.
Traditionally, strings have been made from animal gut, which is seen as the best material to maintain a high level of tension. The majority of professional players use animal gut but it can be expensive so most players at lower levels of the game use strings made from synthetic materials such as nylon.
Attention should also be paid to tennis grips. They should not be too big as this will cause a strain or too small as this can lead to damaging the hand, wrists or elbows. A good way to find out the correct grip size is to measure the distance from the middle crease of the hand to the top of the ring finger.
The next piece of equipment is, of course, tennis balls. The core of the ball is made from rubber with a wool or nylon shell on the outside known as the nap. The ball must be between 2.5 inches (6.25cms) and 2.63 inches (6.57cms) in diameter and must weigh at least 56 grams, but no more than 59.4 grams.
It is often the case that balls are changed a number of times during a tennis match. The reason for this is that official rules stipulate that they have to bounce between 53 and 58 inches after being dropped on to concrete from a height of 100 inches.
As they are being used, tennis balls tend to lose pressure and this affects bounce. It is also the case that the fluffier and tattered a ball becomes the slower it flies through the air so players prefer using balls that are smoother.
In general, any type of trainer or shoe can be used to play tennis. However, if it is possible it best to try and use trainers designed specifically for the game.
The sole grip is a crucial part of tennis equipment as players need traction to move in different directions on various types of surface. A herring-bone tread is regarded as the best type of grip to use. Players need to slide a lot too, so specially designed trainers allow them to slide safely by having extra ankle and side supports.
So, that’s the basic equipment in order to play tennis comfortably. As you gained more experience, you can customize your racquet to your liking and choose other types of string if you want to.