Ten ways to get started in tennis
What better time than now to pick up a racquet, head to your local courts and have a hit? Here are 10 ways in which you can get started in the game.
What better time than now to pick up a racquet, head to your local courts and have a hit?
We’ve hopefully made this process a little easier for you by outlining 10 ways in which you can get started in the game and enhance your tennis-playing experience.
By getting involved, you’ll join millions around the world who are already enjoying the wonderful sport of tennis.
You can’t play tennis without getting your hands on a racquet. So the first step to getting started in the sport is to secure one that meets your needs. There are many factors to consider when selecting a racquet – such as price, size, shape, weight and strings – so make sure you check out our guide to choosing a racquet before you go shopping! You’ll also need some tennis balls – find more information on these and other tennis equipment here.
There’s no shortage of places to play tennis in Australia – within 15 kilometres of Melbourne’s CBD alone, there are nearly 1000 courts across more than 130 venues. Thanks to Tennis Australia’s “find a court” function, you can simply punch in your suburb, town or postcode, hit search, and see where the closest courts are to you.
Should you want to take your skills to the next level, some tennis lessons will help you on your way. During these, a coach can help you with the technical and tactical side of the game, improving your stroke production, footwork and shot selection to make you a better player. It’s best to seek out a Tennis Australia coach member as they will be qualified, insured and screened; for more information, see our guide to what to look for in a coach, or find one near you now using our “find a coach” function!
It’s a great idea to next put your lessons and learnings into practice on the court. The saying goes that practice makes perfect, so get working on your game! Former top 50 star Scott Draper can help you do so with his handy instructional videos to help you execute the perfect strokes.
Becoming a member at a local club means that you will have plenty of courts on which to practice, and lots of people around to hit with. And it’s the perfect setting for joining a social or competitive team, where you can meet new people and enjoy a regular hit or match, which will do wonders for improving your game. Several clubs around Australia are taking part in the World Tennis Day festivities – you can find out what they’re offering and maybe even take advantage of the chance to join up!
Because you’ll be charging around the court and working up a sweat – quite often in the heat of summer – it’s important that you wear suitable clothing. And it doesn’t hurt to look good either! Find all you need to know in our guide to tennis attire and footwear to ensure you look, feel and play great when you get onto the court.
Given that you’ll most likely find yourself officiating your own matches there’s a responsibility on your part to know the rules of tennis to ensure a fair and smooth contest. And familiarising yourself with tennis’s unique etiquette – like apologising for winning a point on a net cord – will contribute to a more enjoyable match played in a wholesome sporting spirit.
With its lateral movement, frequent changes of direction, bursts of speed and different surfaces, tennis places some unique demands on the body. If you want to meet those demands and get the most out of your game, you can train accordingly; we’ve developed a guide to some tennis-specific workouts that will help to get you in tip-top shape for when you step out for a match.
For those who love to compete and who want to test their mettle against other players, there are plenty of options. Tournaments are held regularly all over Australia for players of all different ages and standards, or if you prefer team competitions, you can compete in a range of tennis leagues through your local club.
You don’t have to play in a sanctioned competition to enjoy the game. You may play tennis primarily for its health benefits; if so, you should check out Cardio Tennis, a high-energy workout combining drills, point play and exercises with up-tempo music, all while wearing a heart-rate monitor to help you get the most from your workout. And for those taking their first steps in tennis, such as young children, programs like MLC Tennis Hot Shots use modified racquets, balls and courts to allow for more control, development and, ultimately, enjoyment.
Want more information on how you can get started in tennis? Contact your Tennis Australia Member Associations.