What Is the Height of a Tennis Net?

What Is the Height of a Tennis Net?
  • 3 feet – 0.914 meter

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

The rules of tennis, including the specifics for things like the net, are determined by the ITF – International Tennis Federation.

As stated in the rules on their website, the height of the net should be 3 feet.

This is 0.91cm, or 0.914cm if you want to be exact.

It’s WORTH NOTING that this is the required height at the center of the net.

Of course, this is the LOWEST POINT of the net, and the metal cord that runs through the net is then attached to the net posts at either side of the court.

You should measure the height of the net using a tape measure to ENSURE COMPLETE ACCURACY.

But if you don’t have such a tool handy, there is actually a ‘cheat tactic’ you can use to check the height of the net.

You can measure one racket length up from the ground, and THEN ROTATE your racket sideways and add this on top of the original measurement.

The edge of your frame should nestle nicely in line with the net tape, and that will ensure that the net is more or less the required height.

And finally, any good net will then be strapped into the ground at the CENTRE LINE.

This is done to ensure that the net isn’t affected by wind and that the height of the net holds constant when the balls hit it. 

The Ways That You Can Adjust the Height of a Net

Since a tennis net is adjustable by nature, this means that you can take it upon yourself to set the height.

Of course, if you are competing or training on a full-size court, you’ll want to set the net height to 3 feet.

In most tournaments, the official will actually do this for you, so don’t worry if you’ve never done this before!

But with this said, there are a few ways you can adjust the height of a tennis net:

1) A ‘Net Winder’

If you are playing at a local club, or any club for that matter, there should be a net winder at the side of the court.

This is a brass-looking lever in most cases, and you may use this to adjust the height of the net at the net posts.

If you look on the side of a net post, there should be a small bolt that this net winder attaches to.

It is sized PERFECTLY TO FIT these little things, so all you have to do is attach it and start winding the device to adjust the height.

I found this cool video that gives you a quick overview too:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFK1u3aorLw

When you are doing this, you are actually adjusting the tension of the cord running through the top of the net.

WIND IT TIGHTER, the cord becomes tight and the net height will rise.

Wind it looser, and the net will start to sag lower.

This is useful if you are playing on a court with small kids or juniors, where they might benefit from a lower net height.

2) The Net Strap

The net strap runs directly up the middle of the net, and much like the cord of a net, the strap can be adjusted.

You can adjust this by altering the tension of the strap at the back, much like you’d adjust the tension of the straps on a backpack, for example.

This is the best way to get an accurate net height, as when you apply the RIGHT TENSION with the net strap, the net cannot really move around even when the balls fly into it.

Working in tandem with the cord running through the net tape, these two bits of equipment are mainly responsible for setting the correct net height.

On the subject of the net strap, and before we continue, net straps can also be hooked into the ground beneath the net.

You should always look to do this, particularly in windy conditions as this will hold the net’s height in place

3) Using Singles Sticks

Last but not least, singles sticks can also alter the height of the net

. If you’ve not seen singles sticks before, these are put within the alleys on a court and they prop up the net at the sides.

This actually changes the height of the net at the sides of the court, as it lifts the net at the point that is in line WITH THE ALLEYS.

As the name indicates, these sticks are only used for singles, and they should never be put on the court for doubles.

Singles sticks are only really sold at one height too, so if you are using any, or you are buying new ones online, they will usually fit the standard height.

Note that this doesn’t actually change the height of the net in the middle, it simply boosts the height of the net in the alleys.

Does the Height of the Net Matter?

In a word, YES, the height of a tennis net absolutely matters.

The ITF has set the net height at 3 feet for a reason, and that is to keep the net height in line with the regulations for the rules of tennis in general.

At the same time, this is the accepted height for a tennis net across the board, from junior tournaments all the way to international events.

Now, if you are competing in any of these events, the officials or tournament organizers should ENSURE that the height of the net is set correctly.

But if you are competing with friends or you are hitting the practice court, you’ll need to measure the height of the net yourself.

In practice, you can probably get away with the net being off by a few cm, that’s if you’re not overly bothered about being precise.

Or you might not have access to a tape measure to ensure accuracy.

In this case, you should use the cheat tactic I mentioned above – something which I use all the time down at my local club I might add!

So there you have it, the height of a tennis net explained. If you found this article useful, jump into the comments and let us know.

How to Swing a Tennis Racket

How to Swing a Tennis Racket
  • Groundstrokes – low to high extended swings
  • Serving – up and over the ball
  • Volley – short punch & slight downward motion

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

Tennis is an extremely technical game. In fact, I believe it to be one of the MOST TECHNICALLY CHALLENGING SPORTS in the world.

Of course, other sports such as golf might be considered just as technical by others, but I’m speaking from my own experience here.

And on the subject of tennis being a very technical sport, one of the MAIN THINGS you have to GRASP as a beginner is how to swing the racket.

Now, with tennis having multiple shots involved in the sport, there isn’t just one answer here, as you can see above.

For GROUNDSTROKES, it’s all about swinging low to high to get that ball LOFTED OVER THE NET.

However, for serving, you want to reach up and hit over the ball as serving is a POWER SHOT!

Then we have volleys, which require an entirely different swing altogether.

Don’t worry, if this seems a lot, I’ve explained each in much greater detail below.

The Different Swing Patterns Explained

If you are concerned about how to swing your racket for DIFFERENT STROKES, I’m going to work from the presumption that you are relatively new to the sport.

Of course, that’s absolutely fine, and I’m pleased you are seeking external help with YOUR GAME!

So on that note, please let me try and explain how to swing the racket for the different strokes in detail:

1) Serving

Serving – this is one of the MOST IMPORTANT shots in tennis.

After all, if you are going to play competitive matches at some point, you will need to serve every other game in singles.

But at this point in your tennis development, there is NO POINT WORRYING about hitting different spins or trying to hit the fluff off the ball.

For now, let’s FOCUS on getting you a consistent serve by developing your understanding of the swing path.

When serving, your aim is to toss the ball up a height that is about AS HIGH AS YOU CAN REACH with your racket in your hand.

Of course, that’s much higher than your head!

So when the ball is at its highest point, you should be swinging up to the ball and then turning your wrist at the top to actually hit over the top of the ball.

This wrist snap is where MUCH OF THE POWER comes from on a SERVE, and a great example would be Roger Federer:

2) Groundstrokes

Groundstrokes describe both the forehand and backhand in tennis.

And once you are involved in a rally, these are the shots that YOU WILL HIT THE MOST.

As you advance in your game, you will start applying different spins in Various Scenarios to get the upper hand.

But all of that will come in good time.

For now, your groundstrokes need CONSISTENCY, and that can be achieved by following a simple low to high swing path.

On both sides, your racket face should be slightly open, meaning that the palm of your hand will be facing upwards as you approach the contact point.

Of course, with the racket face being open, this means that the ball will then go upwards as YOU HIT IT.

After all, you need to clear the NET WITH YOUR SHOTS!

Even as you develop your game and you start to add different spins, this low to high swing path remains the same.

3) Volley

Remember I said volleying is completely different from the other strokes?

I WASN’T LYING!

To be perfectly honest, out of all the strokes I’ve talked about here, it took me the longest to learn how to hit an effective volley.

That’s because the recommended swing path and the way to hit the ball is the COMPLETE OPPOSITE of what you think is true in tennis.

When volleying, you need to have a very short punch on the ball, as that’s how you are able to get the RIGHT CONTROL. 

And when you actually ‘swing’ to the ball, the swing path should be horizontal or slightly downwards – depending on the height of the shot you are receiving.

If a ball comes to you at shoulder height, this is where you can have a Slight Downward Motion towards the ball, giving it a nice bite as it hits the court surface on the other side of the net.

But if the ball is waist height or even lower, you can’t swing down to the ball as you’d hit it in the net.

Check out this video to see what I mean:

3) Slice Groundstrokes

On occasion, you may want to use a slice groundstroke to MIX THINGS UP A BIT.

Most players will look to do this on their backhand side, but you can hit slice forehands too if you want.

Now, with a slice backhand, while this is still classed as a groundstroke, the SWING PATH IS DIFFERENT from traditional groundstrokes mentioned earlier.

When you hit a slice, you need to chop down through the ball to keep the TRAJECTORY LOW and MAINTAIN A LOW BOUNCE on the other side.

To achieve this, you should start with your racket up around your shoulders, and then Chop Down and through the shot to get the desired result.

Choosing when to use a slice is the tricky part.

I like to use it as a mix-up to traditional groundstrokes, as well as when approaching the net.

However, other people like to use a slice backhand as a defensive or NEUTRALIZING BALL.

It all depends on who you are playing with and what you feel most comfortable doing.

But regardless of the purpose of your slice backhand, make sure you keep the swing path EXACTLY as described above.

And please – make sure you HIT DOWN THROUGH THE BALL rather than horizontally, as this will reduce the risk of floating your shot into the air.

Did you find this article useful? Feeling more confident with how to swing a tennis racket now? Let us know down below.

Why Do People Put Tennis Balls on Walkers?

Why do people put tennis balls on walkers
  • Used to glide across a surface (double usage)
  • To protect the frame of the walker
  • The perfect size

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

You’ve probably seen it before – people using tennis balls on the legs of their walkers.

This has been done for DECADES ALREADY, obviously by those who need assistance with walking.

While you might not be at that age yet, it’s worth taking the information in for future reference!

You don’t even need to be old to use a walker to be perfectly honest. I’ve seen tennis players using walkers after an injury too. Sure, it’s not much fun, but every little helps.

So, as you can see from the points I’ve raised above, there are three reasons for using tennis balls on walkers.

  1. The first is for those who HAVE TROUBLE actually lifting the walker, hence the need to SLIDE IT instead.
  2. The second is to actually protect the bottom of the walker’s legs. These are usually made of rubber but they can get damaged over time, which is why tennis balls are sometimes put on the ends.
  3. And tennis balls are the BEST OPTION rather than slicing up others such as squash balls.

They are a perfect size, and I’d like to DIVE A BIT DEEPER into each of these points right now.

But first, if this is a new concept for you, check out this video on how to actually put tennis balls on a walker:

The Main Reasons Explained in Greater Depth

At a glance, the reasons I’ve mentioned above might not seem significant.

But once you understand exactly why I’ve picked these three points, as detailed below, you’ll realize why these need to be noted.

Using as a Glider

By nature, walkers are used as a piece of equipment to help people with mobility issues.

This can arise from a whole range of problems, ranging from age to injury.

However, those who are having significant difficulties IN LIFTING THE WALKERS will sometimes stick tennis balls on the ends.

Why?

One, because they might NOT HAVE THE STRENGTH to pick up the walker when moving along.

And two, because this means they can glide across the surface without having to pick it up – providing a WIN-WIN solution.

Tennis balls are STURDY and SMOOTH when sliding across surfaces, making these a stable and helpful solution for those wanting to glide along with a walker.

Of course, this then gets a little tricky if the surface isn’t smooth such as GRAVEL OR LOOSE STONES.

However, that’s a topic that somewhat goes beyond the scope of this piece.

Protecting the Frame

Putting tennis balls on the end of the walker isn’t just an ASSISTANCE EXERCISE.

In fact, the rubber that goes on the ends of a walker’s legs can easily get damaged, especially when used OUTDOORS.

That’s another reason why some people look to put tennis balls on the END OF THE LEGS.

By doing this, the tennis balls will bear the brunt of the IMPACT with the ground when using the walker.

Of course, cutting up a few tennis balls and putting them on the legs is much cheaper than replacing the entire walker.

This is true even if the walker is used in adverse weather conditions.

Tennis balls can get wet and wear down over time, but they will completely protect the rubber on the legs.

And once they are WORN DOWN to the point where they are no longer providing adequate stability, they can simply be replaced.

Perfect Size

There is a very distinct reason that tennis balls are used instead of balls from other sports.

One of the main reasons is because tennis balls are a PERFECT SIZE.

When they are cut up into the cup shape needed to put them on the walker, as shown in the video, they are PERFECT TO GRIP the legs of the walker.

Other balls such as squash, racketballs, and a whole range of others just wouldn’t be suitable.

And if you picked a ball that didn’t grip the legs of the walker well, the whole purpose of adding stability to the walker GOES AWAY.

What Tennis Balls Should You Use to Do This?

Now we arrive at the final question – exactly what tennis balls should you be looking to use in this scenario?

After all, there are many different kinds of tennis balls these days, so it’s better to know the EXACT ANSWER before making a guess!

Regular Tennis Balls

The main reason I advise using regular tennis balls is that these have the Right Pressure and Materials.

Sure, when the tennis balls are cut up, the internal pressure goes away, but the rubber and outer materials REMAIN INTACT.

So when regular tennis balls then come into contact with the ground, they WON’T COMPRESS as much as other tennis balls.

Of course, this works to provide the desired amount of stability when using the walker. 

Worn Tennis Balls

Let’s be honest – it would get PRETTY EXPENSIVE if you were constantly chopping up new tennis balls and sticking them on your walker.

Therefore, do yourself a favor and steer clear of using brand new tennis balls for this purpose.

Instead, I would advise using tennis balls that are somewhat worn and no longer good for actual play.

After all, you are probably going to toss these balls away anyway, so why not give them another purpose?

Final Thoughts

I hope that you don’t have to consider this activity for yourself any time soon.

But then again, if you happen to GET INJURED or you need walking assistance for some reason, understanding why tennis balls are a good choice is never going to be a bad thing.

You may even want to learn about this for a friend or relative.

All the same, now that you understand which balls to use and why they are used, you are in the perfect position TO LEND A HELPING HAND!

Did you find this article useful? Have anything to add? Jump into the comments if so.

What Is a Double Fault in Tennis?

What is a double fault in tennis
  • A player misses both their first and second serves
  • Impact – loses the point without the opponent needing to hit a shot
  • Frequency – not seen in volume with professional players

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

Hitting a double fault is one of the worst feelings in tennis – trust me.

This occurs when you:

  • Step up to the Line
  • Miss Your First Serve, and
  • Then Miss Your Second Serve Too

Of course, nobody wants to hit double faults, as it gives the opponent a COMPLETELY FREE POINT.

Now, at lower levels of tennis, double faults are actually fairly common.

That’s because players are still working on their games and improving, especially concerning the serve.

However, in professional tennis, double faults don’t tend to happen with extreme regularity.

They do, of course, occur in matches though.

Take guys like Alexander Zverev as an example, he can often get the yips on his serve and throw in a BUNCH OF DOUBLE FAULTS.

Getting these ‘yips’ was also a major problem for Guillermo Coria, a talented clay courter who struggled with double faults for years.

As you can imagine, double faults can be hugely detrimental to a players performance and confidence.

But why do they happen, and is there ANY PARTICULAR SITUATION in which they become more frequent?

Read on to find out.

In what instances might a player hit a double fault?

As I’ve stressed above, double faults do happen in the professional game.

Sure, they’re not AS FREQUENT as they might be in amateur tennis, but they have the same detrimental impact.

Why do they occur? I’ve discussed this below.

I) Trying to Go For Too Much

For a double fault to happen, the server MUST MISS BOTH their first and second serves.

Now, missing a first serve happens all the time in tennis. (check out my guide how to serve better in tennis).

But missing the second then hands the point to the opponent.

In my experience, and from my observations over the years, one of the MAIN CAUSES of double faults is when someone tries to go for too much.

This means they are trying to hit the second serve too hard or go too close to the lines.

Both of these results in a RISKIER and LESS CONSISTENT SERVE.

However, this is sometimes done as a reactive measure when playing against phenomenal returners of the ball.

Nowadays, Novak Djokovic has THIS EFFECT on his opponents in their service games.

But besides the great Djokovic, Andre Agassi would have the same impact on guys he played against.

He was SO DANGEROUS off the return that guys would try and hit a big second serve TO AVOID Agassi taking immediate control over the point.

II) Huge Pressure From the Returner

This brings us to the point I’ve touched upon above.

When you are serving against a great returner of the ball, it’s normal to feel under more pressure and believe that YOU NEED to hit a better second serve.

This in itself will cause a player to hit far more double faults than they might usually hit during a match.

But it’s not just consistent returners like Djokovic, and previously Agassi, that have this effect.

It’s also very apparent when guys play against BIG HITTERS of the ball.

These days, guys like Berrettini, Shapovalov, Sinner, Rublev, and many others can absolutely unload on the ball.

And this is certainly true on the return of serve.

Imagine trying to put the second serve in play when you’ve got guys like that down the OTHER END.

I can only guess at the pressure it puts on the quality of the second serve.

III) General Match Pressure

Tennis is an extremely psychological sport.

In fact, many psychologists say that 90% of tennis is mental.

While I don’t know about that, the psychology of the game DEFINITELY HAS AN IMPACT on player performance.

And in the case of double faults, when a match gets tight, these can start to fly in more than you might expect.

Of course, when serving, it is ALL ON YOU.

And if the match is at a pivotal point:

  • Your Arm Can Get Heavy
  • Your Technique Might Start to Wobble, and
  • You May Have a Harder Time Hitting a Quality Second Serve

All of this is PERFECTLY NORMAL I’d like to add.

But regardless, match tension and pressure inevitably start to alter the double fault numbers

How to avoid hitting too many double faults

At the end of the day, we all want to avoid hitting double faults in matches.

While it might not always be possible to HIT ZERO in a match, we can certainly reduce them.

Here are my top tips on doing exactly that:

1) Focus On Making the First Serve

This may seem overly obvious, but players don’t tend to think about it.

To hit a double fault, I’d LIKE TO EMPHASIZE that you need to miss both serves!

So rather than getting to the pressure situation where you must make the second, why not simply make the first?

To do this, stop trying to hit the fluff off the ball and add a little movement to it. 

You could also start to HIT MORE BODY SERVES rather than trying to paint the lines down the tee or wide.

2) Add More Spin to the Second

By this, I don’t mean slow down your racket head speed and push the ball.

That’s a common mistake that players make for second serves.

Your racket head speed should still be rapid, but now you should try and add some slice or even topspin to the ball.

Doing this slows down the ball in the air, but IT GETS THE BALL deviating once it hits the surface, making it tougher for your opponent to hit.

3) Don’t Worry About Your Opponent

Speaking of your opponent, try not to pay any attention to their position, abilities, or anything else for that matter.

The serve is ALL ON YOU and that’s how things should stay.

So even if they are a great returner, don’t let that put you off going for your favorite serve, even if that plays to their strengths.

Also, don’t think too much about them hitting A CLEAN WINNER on the return. If they do that, too good.

But at least make them replicate this to win points rather than handing the point over with a double fault.

Has this article helped you understand double faults?

Are you now more knowledgeable on why they occur and how to avoid them? Jump into the comments and share your thoughts.

How to Improve Footwork in Tennis

How to Improve Footwork in Tennis
  • Specified fitness routines – SAQ (Speed, Agility, Quickness)
  • Live ball drills with focus on footwork
  • Practice with intensity, light on the feet, use aids if necessary

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

If you are to improve your game, FOOTWORK IS EVERYTHING.

It paves the way to being in the right position FOR EACH AND EVERY SHOT YOU HIT.

Great footwork means you can really maximize the way you strike the ball.

Sloppy footwork will cause your technique to break down and you won’t hit your shots correctly.

One of the best, in my opinion, is Rafael Nadal – just check HOW INTENSE he is with his feet in the video here:

Bear in mind that’s how he moves his feet in practice!

When he gets into a game, his footwork is EVEN MORE INTENSE.

You can even hear the squeak of his shoes on the surface when hustling TO EVERY BALL.

But of course, we can’t all be as exceptional as Rafael Nadal on a tennis court. We can, however, improve our footwork drastically to reach our full playing potential.

You can see my top three tips above, but I’d like to DIVE DEEPER on each tip to really show you what you can be doing – starting today.

The three tips explained

There are LOADS OF WAYS you can improve your footwork in this day and age.

Naturally, different coaches and players have their own thoughts on how this is achieved in the best possible way.

But for me, the three tips discussed below have proved pivotal through my entire playing career, which is why I’d like to go into greater depth right now.

SAQ Routines

Fitness and footwork routines have gone through ALL KINDS OF branding changes over the years.

But I can remember when I was a kid, we had a routine called Speed, Agility, and Quickness.

Basically, this is where the coach took us to one side for anywhere between 30 minutes to one hour and hammered home FOOTWORK DRILLS.

We would often get the ladders out there on court, and weave in and out with specific footwork patterns.

But we would also get the cones out there on the court and practice moving around the courts with our rackets, SHADOWING CERTAIN SHOTS at various points on the court.

The whole objective of this was to get the FEET:

  • Firing Faster
  • Be More Precise With Our Strokes, and
  • Build Up a Natural Intensity to Our Movement

SAQ training had a HUGE IMPACT on me as a child, and it no doubt led to the footwork levels I still enjoyed as a competitive adult.

Check out this resource for a list of footwork drills you could get started with right away.

Live Playing Drills With Footwork Focus

Although fitness and footwork drills without a ball are HIGHLY BENEFICIAL, sometimes, you just can’t beat the real thing.

The number of tennis drills you can do is obviously rather extensive, and not all of them depend on great footwork.

However, that’s not our goal here.

Our goal is to identify drills that will improve your footwork.

You’ll find that most of these ‘footwork focused’ drills get you to work on Specific Footwork Patterns instead of getting your footwork sharper in general.

For example, rapid-fire volley drills get you to focus on the split step to prepare for each BALL COMMING AT YOU.

GHB Pro Agility Ladder Agility Training Ladder Speed 12 Rung 20ft with Carrying Bag

And if you perform a drill where the coach feeds you a running, wide ball, you might be focusing on the flow or power step.

Sometimes, you might be working on a transition ball too, which then REQUIRES YOU to flow forward up the court instead of horizontally like a wide ball.

Head actually has a fantastic series of tennis drills you can check out right here should you want to EXPAND YOUR KNOWLEDGE on this some more!

General Intensity When Practicing

Rather than being quite specific like my previous two tips, this one has to come from within.

It’s entirely up to you how hard you practice, but if you can constantly practice with high intensity, I guarantee that YOUR FOOTWORK WILL GET BETTER.

And when I say intensity, I mean:

  • Keeping Your Feet Dancing Between Shots
  • Always Executing a Split Step
  • Making Those Adjustments Around the Ball, and
  • Giving It 100% Effort at All Times

If you want to take things further too, YOU CAN.

Back in the day, I would make conditions with friends on the court that the first guy to make an unforced error would need to do 10 push-ups.

This fear of ‘punishment’ AUTOMATICALLY RAISED THE INTENSITY, and we would even play with weights on our ankles sometimes.

All in good fun of course, but it definitely helped the footwork.

Benefits of improving your footwork

At the end of the day, why should you worry so much about your footwork?

After all, isn’t hitting the ball the most important thing?

Well, I would have to say NO, because everything stems from footwork.

And here are the benefits of working on it:

1) Quicker Around the Court

If you are quick around the court, you can get in the:

  • Right Position for Your Shots
  • Hang in the Rallies Longer, and
  • Your Defensive Game Will Improve Dramatically

But you can ONLY BE QUICK around the court if your footwork is on point! 

2) Set Yourself up to Hit the Ball Correctly

You could have the best technique in the world, but if your footwork isn’t great, having awesome technique won’t matter.

You need to get your feet planted right and your body in the perfect position if you are to hit the BEST POSSIBLE SHOT.

Of course, this only occurs when you are moving your feet correctly.

3) Maximize Your Potential

Above all else, improving your footwork means that you are giving yourself the best shot at playing your best tennis.

And if you repeatedly work on your footwork, YOUR ENTIRE GAME WILL IMPROVE as a result of better

  • Movement
  • Fitness, and
  • Agility

Trust me, I’ve seen the improvements this can have on players, and it is WELL WORTH going through the pain barrier.

Have you found this quick read useful? Do you have any specific footwork drills you’d like to share with our community? Let us know in the comments.

error: Content is protected !!
Scroll to Top