Celebrities Who Play Tennis

Marco Tardelli playing tennis

Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

Celebrities Who Play Tennis

Tennis is enjoyed by the young and old, the talented or not so talented, and as it would seem – by the rich and famous too.

The latter is precisely what I’d like to talk about in this quick piece, for many people are curious as to whether their celebrity heroes actually play the same sport that they love.

After doing my research, I can confirm that a rather impressive number of celebrities do play tennis, and some are reportedly quite good at it!

Of course, I cannot confirm this with my own eyes, but I can share with you the information that I’ve found.

So, let’s have some fun, shall we?

Surprise tennis court enthusiasts!

Ellen DeGeneres

Ellen DeGeneres

Ellen DeGeneres may have shot to fame thanks to her amazingly popular talk show, but rumor has it she enjoys whacking a tennis ball around too.

While there aren’t really any reports on when DeGenrer first started playing the game, she has made her love the sport well known in recent years.

This just goes to show that tennis is a sport that can be learned and enjoyed at any age, especially when you consider that Ellen DeGeneres is currently 63 years old.

This is impressive in itself, although I would like to know whether she brings her typical comedy to the courts or whether she gets extremely competitive out there!

 I wouldn’t like to say, but either way, it’s pretty cool that she enjoys a good game of tennis away from the TV set!

Brad Pitt

Brad Pitt

In terms of famous Hollywood actors, it’s hard to think of many that are more popular or famous than Brad Pitt.

This man has evolved to become a bit of an icon over the years, and he has been in some ridiculously popular films during his long acting career.

But as you’ll have guessed given the topic of this article, Brad Pitt is reported to enjoy playing tennis while he’s not putting together blockbuster films.

Things have been this way for quite a while for Brad too, as he first picked up a racket back in high school and actually represented them against other schools in Missouri.

While I obviously didn’t see him playing all the way back in 1981, one would assume that he was rather decent at the game to get onto the school team. And as you can see in the photo, he even played with a wooden racket all those years ago!

Kate Middleton and Prince William

Kate Middleton And Prince William

If you enjoy a bit of the Royal Family, I have a feeling you will be quite familiar with these two celebrities.

Of course, Kate Middleton and Prince William are very much in the spotlight when it comes to the Royals, mainly because Prince William is set to be the next King of England.

Call me old-fashioned, but I think it’s somewhat fitting that William enjoys a ‘gentleman’s game’ as it was once known. It’s also rather cool that his wife, Kate Middleton, enjoys a game of tennis as well.

I’ve actually seen these two on a number of occasions sitting in the Royal Box at Wimbledon, and I must say, they get rather into it! I wonder if this passion and competitiveness flow over when they go and play against each other?

Bill Gates

I was debating whether to include Bill Gates as a celebrity or not, but when you consider that the guy’s net worth is over $120 billion – how could he not be classed as rich and famous?

Now, Gates enjoys the game of tennis a little differently from others on this list, since he’s not afraid to get into the spotlight and put his skills on show.

In fact, he has participated in a number of charity tennis matches over the years. Perhaps most famously, he played in the ‘Match for Africa’ while teaming up with Roger Federer against Rafael Nadal and Trevor Noah.

Ben Stiller

Now we have another famous actor who enjoys a good bit of tennis, this time in the form of Ben Stiller.

The only thing about Stiller is that he has confessed that he isn’t awfully good at the game, as confirmed when he attempted to rally a few balls with Rafael Nadal in the past – something which Stiller claims to have been ‘very embarrassing’.

The cool thing is that while he didn’t perform too well with Nadal, he claims that this prompted him to start taking lessons and he has since grown to love the sport.

Not only is he an avid player, but he is also an avid fan, regularly showing up to events like the US Open to watch the top players in action.

As it happens, one of my all-time favorite moments was when Andy Roddick went to ask Ben Stiller for an autograph after his match at the Open one year.

Usually, it’s the other way around, but when you’ve got an actor with the caliber of Ben Stiller in the crowd, I guess you have to ask.

Matthew McConaughey

Matthew McConaughey

Last but not least, we may as well wrap things up with one of the biggest celebrities of our time – Matthew McConaughey.

Much like Brad Pitt and Ben Stiller before him, McConaughey has been in all kinds of blockbuster films, although I’ve yet to see him playing tennis in any of them!

However, he reports that he developed a love for tennis while back in high school, until he, unfortunately, broke his foot, which pretty much ended his high school tennis days.

Now he is a famous actor, he apparently loves taking to the court when he gets some spare time away from the movie/TV sets.

I’m sure that this is a great way for him to stay in shape for roles that require him to be lean and fit, although I would like to know if he is any good!

I can imagine that for a guy who also played football and basketball in his youth that he might be fairly decent, but who’s to say?

Notable mention:

Marco Tardelli is famous for the goal he scored in Italy World Cup Final in 1982. However, after his professional soccer career also likes to keep fit playing tennis.

Marco Tardelli playing tennis

Here is the compilation of celebrities playing tennis:

I hope you’ve enjoyed this rundown of famous celebrities who play tennis. And if you have more to note, please let us all know in the comments!

Tyson Fury Vs. Deontay Wilder 3 Aftermath

Tyson Fury Vs. Deontay Wilder 3
  • Nobody should question the heart of Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury.
  • Tyson Fury greatest heavyweight fight of this Era.
  • Case for Oleksandr Usyk to be the top pound for pound if he beats Tyson Fury.

Few days have passed since this TERRIFIC FIGHT, and WHAT AN EXCITING FIGHT it was!

We witnessed the best heavyweight fight in recent years. It will go down as one of the classics, NO DOUBT.

Legend Lennox Lewis summed it up perfectly:

who would expect to fight like that I mean the first fight was good, the second fight was great, this was this one was the icing on the cap

-Lennox Lewis

My FAVORITE PART of the fight was Sugar Hill instructing Tyson Fury in between rounds:

Jab his fucking head off.

-Sugar Hill

It was so old-school and classic.

Nobody should question the heart of Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury

It gave me GOOSEBUMPS when Max Kellerman said during the middle of the fight sth to the like: “even though Deontay Wilder loses this fight, he left a mark in the history book and proved himself for getting knocked down and come back to knock Tyson Fury twice in around.”

What Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury showed in the ring IS GREATNESS. As Max Kellerman said, Deontay Wilder will always be remembered FOR this historic fight.

The first knockdown of Deontay Wilder’s bell saved him, but coming back and knocking down Tyson Fury twice in a round is AMAZING!

Both Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury DISPLAYED TREMENDOUS HEART and courage in the FIGHT; we boxing fans are THANKFUL for their performance Saturday night FROM THE BOTTOM OF OUR HEARTS.

Deontay Wilder was unhappy that his former trainer Mark Breland threw in the towel in Fury vs. Wilder 2.

Deontay Wilder wanted to GO OUT in his shield, and that is exactly what happened Saturday night.

Malik Scott said in his interview (42:40) that:

“he (wilder) felt he just felt as though that last fight he didn’t really get to show people what he’s really really made of and not just power he wanted to show people he’s made of passion grit heart.”

-Malik Scott

This is AN INSIGHTFUL interview by Deontay Wilder trainer Malik Scott.

Deontay Wilder, you displayed all that Saturday night, and you are a true Warrior.

No one should ever question the heart of Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury.

What a fantastic display of

  • Passion
  • Grit, and
  • Heart

Fury vs Wilder 3 is THE TYPE OF FIGHT that you are on the EDGE OF YOUR SEAT the entire fight…the whole fight..

..and even though Tyson Fury was coming along strong, winning the round, it was a VERY COMPETITIVE FIGHT t, unlike their second fight, which was one side in favor of Tyson Fury.

Why is Tyson Fury the best heavyweight of this Era?

Even though Oleksandr Usyk has three more belts after winning, Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury currently hold the WBC belt; Tyson Fury became the Lineal heavyweight champion after beating Wladimir Klitschko.

Tyson Fury OUTBOXED the great Wladimir Klitschko, and now Tyson Fury knocked out ONE OF THE MOST devastating knocks out the artist of this Era in Deontay Wilder.

Wilder vs. Joshua will still be a TERRIFIC FIGHT, but with Joshua’s couple of losses against Andy Ruiz jr and Oleksandr Usyk and Wilder couple of losses against Tyson Fury.

So THE GYPSY KING will still remain King of the heavyweight division.

Below is an excellent interview from the legend Emanuel Steward from 2012 about Tyson Fury’s potential before Tyson Fury was a world champion (he also speaks highly about Deontay Wilder).

Tyson Fury was humble TO SPONTANEOUSLY catch a plane to see the Emanuel Steward and how the story unfolds is awesome!

Hate him or love him; one thing we can AGREE ON is Tyson Fury, a very charismatic man.

If Emanuel Steward was still alive but maybe up in the sky, he is proud of his Tyson Fury and nephew Sugar Hill.

Case for Oleksandr Usyk to be the top pound for pound if he beats Tyson Fury

Before Oleksandr Usyk joined the party, there was AN ARGUMENT if Tyson Fury, Deontay Wilder, or Anthony Joshua was the best heavyweight of today’s Era.

Let’s look at another fighter who fought a naturally bigger fighter than him his entire career and had impressive wins.

Later in his career, Manny Pacquiao fought naturally BIGGER FIGHTERS than him, like Miguel Cotto, Antonio Margarito, and all the welterweights.

Manny Pacquiao was NOT JUST competing at flyweight but was a world champion at flyweight. He MOVES US one-third of his body weight to win titles IN EIGHT DIFFERENT WEIGHT CLASSES, a record that may take centuries to break.

It is impressive that Pacquiao is even competitive against Floyd Mayweather, a NATURALLY BIGGER and the best pure boxer of his generation.

Pacquiao always fought the TOUGHEST OPPONENT as he moved up in eight different weight classes, and at the age of 42…

.. he wanted to get in the ring with Errol Spence, a fighter IN HIS PRIME, the best welterweight right now is amazing! (sadly the fight got canceled due to Errol Spence last-minute eye surgery before the fight)

Manny Pacquiao recently HUNG UP his gloves, three months shy of his 43rd birthday, but the boxing is STILL ALIVE and in good hands with guys like Tyson Fury and talented fighters like Oleksandr Usyk in the heavy weight division and a stacked talent at various weight classes.

Oleksandr Usyk, just a year ago, was an IBF, WBA, WBC, WBO, and Ring cruiserweight champion. So if he beat Tyson Fury, Usyk has to be on the top on the pound-for-pound list.

Only time will tell IF WE get to see this fight against Tyson Fury and Usyk, but we will see a high-level chess match in the ring once this is guaranteed.

Until then, ENJOY watching highlights of the best heavyweight fights we witnessed, which is what I will do.

How to clean a tennis court

How to clean a tennis court
  • When it rains heavily, outdoor hard courts create puddles that can be cleaned using a roller or a squeegee.
  • During autumn, make use of a leaf blower to sideline the gathered leaves on the court.
  • A court and line sweeper can be used to keep your clay court clean.
  • Cleaning court is well worth it for your improved playing experience.

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

Tennis is an awesome sport, that we all know. And one of the sure-fire ways to keep it as fun as possible is to play on a clean court.

I’m not talking about trash here, I’m talking about keeping the actual court surface as clean as possible.

This is done to guarantee that the ball bounce is as true as possible, to ensure that your sneakers don’t get messed up, and to create a court that gives you the best chance of playing your best tennis.

That’s not too much to ask, right?

But since there are many different tennis court surfaces out there, the way to clean them does vary. I’ve covered all of this throughout. 

Cleaning various tennis courts

Outdoor hard courts

When you play outdoor tennis, the court, as well as yourself, is exposed to the elements. This includes wind, rain, sun, and whatever else mother nature chooses to throw our way.

All of these elements can impact the surface in different ways, although two common factors that cause the court to be ‘dirty; include leaves and water.

i) When it rains, the court gathers water, and this can create puddles while making the surface very slippery. The best way to then clean the court is to use either a roller or a ‘squeegee’, which are two pieces of equipment that let you absorb the water and push it away from the court.

ii) The second most common factor is leaves. This is particularly true in the Autumn, where leaves can gather on the court and become a bit of a nuisance.

If you are playing at a local club, I’d recommend asking the managers or groundsmen if they have a leaf blower or a rake. I know, it’s annoying to do this, but at least you will then get a clean court to play on.

Indoor hard courts

If you are playing tennis in a part of the world that can get pretty cold, there is a strong chance that you’ll be playing indoor tennis a lot of the time.

Of course, indoor courts are shielded from the elements, so you won’t have to contend with any weather or leaves blowing onto the court.

However, one thing you will need to deal with is the accumulation of tennis ball fluff!

If you’ve played a fair bit of indoor tennis before, you’ll know what I’m talking about. But if you haven’t, let me clarify this mystery.

When tennis balls are being whacked around all day long, little bits of fluff will fly off them, and after hours and hours of play, this fluff can build up. You’ll often see it around the court, in corners, and around the chairs around the net (if you have some).

It also gets all over your shoes, which can get pretty annoying, especially when you start to bring it home with you. The only way to then clean this is to actually clean the courts, and there are specific court cleaners that most clubs have, which you can use to do this. 

Clay courts

Clay court tennis is more unique than the rest. It’s pretty much the only surface that leaves evidence of the play, with ball marks, shoe marks, and large sliding marks on the court where players have moved around.

Usually, players (or maintenance staff) will sweep the court and do the lines once used, leaving behind a nice clean court for you to come and play on – as seen at Roland Garros.

But if you get unlucky, you’ll come to the clay court and it won’t have been swept or cleaned. In this case, you’ll need to remove the evidence of the previous play yourself.

There are two pieces of equipment used for this:

1) The first is the actual court sweeper, which is usually a brush or a net, and you can then drag it around with you to smooth out the court surface and remove all marks.

When this is done, however, you actually drag the clay over the lines of the court. Therefore, you must then use…

2) The second tool, which is the line sweeper. You’ll need to brush the clay away from all lines on the court to leave it clean

But here’s the good news, once you get efficient at doing this, it shouldn’t take more than a few minutes to clean a clay court.

Grass courts

There are only a few professional tournaments in the world, such as Wimbledon, that are played on grass. So needless to say, this is the least common court surface that you’ll need to clean before play.

But with that said, there are many clubs that do have grass courts, although the standard of these courts can vary greatly.

In my experience, one of the most annoying parts of grass court tennis is the little divots that emerge on the court,

And yes, these require cleaning or tidying up before play.

The only way to do this really is to wander around the court, and tapping on the divots with your foot to make them flat again. This can be fairly time-consuming, but hey, if you want to play on a nice clean grass court, that’s what you need to do.

Unfortunately, if the court surface isn’t flat, which is something I’ve found at many clubs that have grass courts, there is not much you can do – as that will be a job for the maintenance staff or contractors.

My conclusion

Keeping a clean tennis court does take work, but it’s well worth it. There is nothing worse than playing on a court that is compromised simply because of inconveniences like ball marks, divots, ball fluff, or water and leaves.

And since the tools you must use to clean the courts are usually accessible, at any reputable tennis club, you should be able to get your hands on them easily.

On a more positive note, certain clubs employ full-time maintenance teams too, so there is always the chance that you won’t have to clean the court personally!

Did you find this piece useful? Have you experienced these inconveniences in the past? Let us know down below.

Professional tennis players who started late

John Isner Professional tennis players who started late
  • The Great Roger Federer started hitting tennis ball at age 8 and played soccer long with tennis for many years.
  • Dominic Thiem didn’t even contemplate playing tennis before age 6 which interestingly is late compared to top tennis players like Djokovic and Nadal, Serena Williams who started swinging tennis rackets at age 3.
  • A late bloomer John Isner didn’t pick up a racket until he was age 11.

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

There are many professional players on both the ATP and WTA circuits that started playing tennis aged 3 or less.

In fact, when researching the top players…

I discovered that this was pretty much the norm!

I’m fairly sure I was still learning how to color in images correctly at age 3 – never mind hitting a tennis ball.

But amazingly, when you look at players like Nadal and Serena Williams, they first started whacking balls around as toddlers. 

I found this pretty interesting, especially since I didn’t start hitting balls until around 8/9, and I like to think that I still turned out okay.

So, as you’ve guessed from the article topic, I’ll be running through some players who had a relatively late start, with three high-profile players making the list.

Three players who arrived quite late to the party

Roger Federer

That’s right, arguably the greatest tennis player of all time, Roger Federer didn’t start hitting tennis balls until he was 8 years of age.

When you compare that to two of his nearest rivals, Nadal and Djokovic, they had 5 years of practice as a head start!

And even when he picked up a racket to start playing, he apparently played soccer just as much as he did tennis.

Federer himself claims that he only started to play more tennis because he was better at that compared with soccer, and the coach reportedly got angry about Federer missing all of the games to play tennis. 

I actually had the same story, although I didn’t quite turn into Roger Federer (obviously).

I was handy at both tennis and soccer as a kid, but sooner or later, the commitments to both can get too much, and I was forced to pick one or the other.

I don’t regret my decision to stick with tennis, and I doubt that Federer regrets his decision either!

Dominic Thiem

Dominic Thiem has been knocking on the door at the top of the men’s game for a while now.

And as you might recall, he had his first real breakthrough at the 2020 US Open, securing his first Grand Slam title against Zverev in an epic five-setter.

But believe it or not, Dominic Thiem didn’t even contemplate playing tennis until the age of 6, which is still much later than some of the other top guys.

And apparently, he didn’t take the game too seriously at this age, so I’d imagine he didn’t start to practice properly for a good year or two after this. 

Of course, 3 years might not seem like much at such a young age, but I’ve no doubts that this would put him behind in terms of his development.

Just imagine needing to go through the same learning elements that his peers had already gone through, and then accelerating his development to then compete with the likes of Nadal and Djokovic.

It’s fairly impressive, and I take my hat off to the guy, truly. 

John Isner

I’ve saved the best for last, for this one will take your breath away. While Federer started playing at the age of 8, and Thiem started playing at the age of 6, John Isner didn’t pick up a racket until he was 11 years of age.

This is amazingly late to pick up the game compared to many of the other top players, and I often wonder whether this late start aided in his decision to go and play college tennis prior to joining the ATP Tour.

This late start in itself is quite unique, but the fact that he managed to reach the top of the game having come through the NCAA system is also quite unique.

You really don’t see many players come through the collegiate system and then reach the top of the game.

But with that said, Isner also has a secret weapon – his enormous serve. I’ve watched him play matches where guys seem to be almost dodging his serve, which can often go North of the 140mph mark

What is the right age to start?

Although I’ve highlighted three players that started the game relatively late, compared with other high-profile players anyway, it’s normal to still have this question in mind.

And to answer the question with a concrete number, I don’t believe that this is the right way to approach things.

Instead, I believe that a child should only start when they express an interest in doing so, and when they have the right attention capacity to be able to practice properly.

Although many players have started as early as 3 years of age, I have coached groups of 3-year-olds, and trust me – they weren’t ready.

But of course, I also understand that there will be kids that can focus at this age, and there will be kids that express a real interest and motivation to learn tennis.

One thing I will say, however, is that I wouldn’t force your child to play the game. 

I’ve seen parents drag their kids to the court for a coaching session, and if the kid doesn’t want to be there, it is a waste of both their time and the coach’s – not to mention that it’s a waste of money for the parents.

So I would absolutely approach this question with an open mind, and talk things through with your kid (as best you can at such a young age), as this is the best way to determine whether they should start playing or not.

My conclusion

I trust that you found this article both fun and informative, as I really enjoyed finding the information to give to you regarding our professional players.

These three examples go to show that a child doesn’t need to start swinging a racket while they are still in diapers to go on to become a champion. In fact, it shows more than ever that starting playing when they are ready is always the best solution.

Do you know of any other late bloomers in the world of professional tennis? Let us all know in the comments.

What is a rally in tennis

What is a rally in tennis
  • Whenever you see players thrashing the ball back and forth on a tennis court, this is called a ‘rally’.
  • Once the serve goes into the right box and the serve is returned in the court; the rally has started.
  • Rally involves volleys, drive volleys, overheads, drop shots, forehands, and backhands, making the game unpredictable and exciting.

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

Of course, rally structures and lengths can vary quite significantly, but at the very fundamental level, it’s all about consistently hitting a ball in the court between two or four players.

When kids are starting out in tennis, you’ll often hear coach’s asking them to rally their age, which is something that is used as a good baseline for the kid’s progression and skill level.

As an adult or a more advanced junior, coaches will start to introduce patterns of plays in rallies, and

Why these should be used?

This is actually a topic that is more in-depth than you might initially think, so let me cover some of the more complex details.

A breakdown of a tennis rally

The serve

In competitive tennis, a rally always begins the same way, with one player hitting a serve.

Of course, the serve needs to land in the diagonal box opposite their side, and a player has two attempts to do this successfully.

If a player misses both serves, they have hit a ‘double fault’, and no rally will actually take place. But if a player does hit either the first serve or second serve into the box, the rally is now started. 

With that said, if the server hits a very powerful and precise serve, there is always the chance that this would result in an ace or an unreturned serve. 

The return

Assuming the serve goes into the right box, the rally is live, and it’s then up to the opposing player to return the serve. In tennis, a lot of time you will hear players talk about the importance of the serve and the return.

And I must agree with them – the serve, alongside the return, are the two most important strokes in the game.

For returning, a player is usually looking to block the ball back to a decent length from a first serve, therefore neutralizing the play. 

But for a second serve, the returner can usually look to be more aggressive and try to dominate the rally from the get-go.

Of course, this all depends on how good the serve is, and how confident the returner feels with their skills to take control of the point.

Currently, we live in a blessed era of tennis, and it just so happens that Novak Djokovic is the best returner of serve that there has ever been.

He has truly mastered the art, and he is also responsible for what many people call ‘the best return’ ever – check it out here:

The reason this is viewed as one of the best ever is that he then went on to win the trophy, having faced these two match points against the great Roger Federer.

The rally itself

If the serve goes well, and the return is subsequently hit into the court, the rally is now well underway.

From here, it’s all about who can outsmart, outhit, and outmaneuvered their opponent to ultimately win the rally and the point. 

The rally will always consist of forehands and backhands, but it could also involve volleys, drop shots, drive volleys, as well as overheads.

It all depends on how the rally plays out, and since no rally is ever the same, this makes the game of tennis particularly enjoyable and unpredictable. 

Tips on winning a tennis rally

To focus solely on our topic here, which is the rally, I will be skipping past the serve and return.

Instead, I’ll be focusing on general tips you can use to turn the rally in your favor:

Play to the opponent’s weakness

Everybody has a weakness in their game, you’ve just got to find it!

Once you have figured this out, it’s time to pressure the opponent on this weakness, as this will create a better chance that they might hit an unforced error.

For most players, their backhand will be weaker than their forehand, but not always!

That’s why you’ll often see players going after their opponent’s backhand, in both men’s and women’s tennis. 

Keep a good length on your shots

I can always remember the first coach I ever had telling me this. He used to say that if you hit your groundstrokes within a meter or so of the baseline.

How could the opponent then attack you?

I kept this advice with me throughout my career, and I must say – he was right.

With that said, you won’t be trying to hit all of your shots deep in the court, for it’s important to work your opponent around the court with the use of angles too. 

But if you are just trading from the baseline, it’s a good idea to keep your length and then wait for the right ball to attack.

Vary the shots

This is something that isn’t used enough in tennis. I can say this with absolute confidence, as I’ve witnessed players at all levels fall victim to the same mistake.

If you always hit the same type of shot, over and over again, the opponent will get used to it and then you won’t be able to surprise them with anything.

Therefore, why not mix up the speed of your groundstrokes, the height, and also adjust your position to give them a different view too? 

Play to your strengths

Just as you need to play to your opponent’s weaknesses, you need to play to your strengths.

For example, if you have a great down-the-line forehand, it wouldn’t make much sense to constantly hit your forehand cross-court!

It’s important that you know with absolute certainty what your strengths are too, as this will prove pivotal in the strategies and patterns of play that you use. 

My conclusion

I hope that this has helped you grasp what a rally entails, as well as provided an insight into some of the more intricate details.

I also hope that you can then use the tips I have given and introduce them into your own game, and I firmly believe that your tennis level will rise as a result of what I have talked about here.

Did you enjoy the piece? Feel free to add your comments below or share this piece with friends or family who might also find this information useful. 

What to wear to play tennis

What to wear to play tennis Andre Agassi
  • Make sure your clothing is comfortable and effective.
  • There is no rush regarding what clothes you purchase, so just take your time, do your research, and pick the right clothes for you!
  • Your choice of tennis clothes allows you to express a bit of personality.

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

There is nothing worse than being out there on the court, whether in practice or in competition, and the clothing you have doesn’t feel right.

Unless you’re competing at Wimbledon, which has an all-white clothing requirement, you can pretty much wear whatever you like to play tennis. Of course, within reason!

A traditional player needs to have the right pair of tennis shoes, athletic shorts and t-shirts, comfortable socks, and other optional accessories.

People obviously have their own preferences concerning materials, styles, and brands, but I do have a FEW TIPS on what the correct clothing should be.

So without further ado, let’s get started.

My advice for every item of clothing

Tennis shoes

Arguably, this is the most important part of your tennis kit. Your tennis shoes need to be comfortable, with great padding, lightweight, and durable.

There are many BRANDS that create great tennis shoes these days, but I must say that Nike and Adidas are a cut above the rest.

Of course, you don’t have to select a pair of shoes from these guys, but just make sure that whatever shoes you do use, that you feel comfortable and unhindered when playing in them.

Trust me – your feet will thank you!

Shirt

You can pretty much choose three styles of shirts to play tennis in.

  1. You can go for a traditional polo shirt, which is often the choice for a guy like Federer.
  2. You can go for a standard t-shirt, without the collar
  3. Or you can go all guns BLAZING like Rafael Nadal – often seen wearing tank tops in his early career.

If you haven’t got the biceps for it, however, I’d stick to one of the first two options – unless you look something like this:

With this said, I do have a recommendation, especially since many of us play tennis in warmer climates.

When you purchase a shirt, make sure it has some form of cooling technology, as this will help to reduce sweat build-up, and it will keep you feeling comfortable out there on the court.  

Shorts

Once you’re all warmed up and raring to go, you’ll no doubt remove the sweatpants and start playing in your shorts.

Much like the shirts I’ve talked about above, you’ll want to ensure that your chosen shorts have a cooling material and that they aren’t overly heavy.

After all, you want to glide across the court as quickly and as EFFORTLESSLY as possible, so heavy shorts are a big no!

Another factor to think about is to ensure that the shorts have deep pockets. When serving, you will usually keep a ball in your pocket should a second serve need to be hit.

Although if your first serve does go in, you’ll then be playing the rally with a ball in your pocket.

Believe it or not, even professional players have become unstuck with this, as their pockets were not deep enough for the ball to stay in them.

If the ball actually flies out mid rally, you then need to play a let, not to mention that you might injure yourself by standing on the loose ball.

Socks

Choosing an appropriate pair of tennis socks will serve you well in the long run, trust me!

I’ve gone for cheap socks in the past, without assessing the padding and comfort, and ended up with blisters galore.

Not much fun!

So please, learn from my mistakes and get yourself a pair of socks that are made of soft material, and that have padding in all of the right areas.

Specifically, it’s important to pick socks that have padding in the heel, toes, and of course, this padding needs to be durable too. 

It’s no use picking a pair of socks with great padding that wears out within a few times of wearing them.

I usually purchase Adidas socks for playing, as they are somewhat cost-effective and highly comfortable. But it’s up to you which socks you go for. 

Optional extras

Now that I’ve covered the basics of what all tennis players need to have/wear, I’d like to throw in a few extras:

Hat

Personally, I cannot play in a hat. When wearing one, my depth perception always feels somewhat distorted – maybe it’s all in my head…

Who knows?

But if you are playing in the beaming sun, wearing a hat can be a good option, especially since it PROTECTS your face from the damaging rays.

Most hats are pretty similar in tennis, but just like the other items of clothing I’ve previously discussed, make sure it is lightweight and breathable.

Wristbands

Some players play without them, some play with one on their dominant wrist, and some use two!

I actually use a wristband on my right wrist (my dominant side), not because I wipe the sweat from my brow with it, but because it gives my wrist some support when striking the ball.

Again, this is completely optional, but if you are someone who sweats quite heavily out there on the court, it is definitely worth using at least one wristband.

Headband

There are two reasons that you might want to use a headband.

Firstly, if you have long hair, it is a good idea to use a headband to keep the hair out of your eyes.

But even if you have SHORT HAIR or no hair, you can still use a headband to stop the sweat from coming down into your eyes.

Remember James Blake?

The guy was as BALD as they come, but he used a headband for that specific reason.

Oh, and he was also a fantastic player!

If you adapt your tennis wardrobe based on the information here, let us know. Please let us know the impact on your game too, and do share your experience or insights in the comments!

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