The importance of the court surface to the nature of tennis is the very reason for the proliferation of tennis surface types, which have developed from the early days of the garden lawn.
The court influences how the players move around and how the ball bounces. Of all the equipment, it is primarily the court surface to which the player must adapt their game.
The limitations provided by varying climate, the seasons and the maintenance demands required to produce a natural grass surface of acceptable quality soon led to alternatives being sought in the form of clay (originally crushed brick), followed by other granular mineral surfaces, cement, asphalt and timber. As materials technology developed in the twentieth century, the introduction of new man-made, synthetic surface types accelerated: including polymer coatings, cushioned coatings, rubberised shock pads, textiles, artificial grasses and clays, plastic modular systems, etc.
In this section you can find information on the following areas:
- ITF Court Pace Classification Programme
- ITF Court Recognition
- Test procedures for Classification and Recognition
- Research into shoe-surface interaction
The Facilities Guide is an excellent resource for those looking to build their own tennis centre and further information on court surfaces, construction and a range of other areas.