Tennis Courts – Different Surfaces and Speeds

With tennis popularity on the rise, inventions keep going to discover good quality tennis court surfaces for players. The three main types of tennis courts available include grass, clay, and hard surface. While any court material can favor any player, different parts of the world are known to commonly use particular tennis court types. The US is known for its common use of hard material while Europe has focused predominantly on the clay surfaces.

Tennis Courts Guide

What are the features of these court surfaces?


Grass court popularity is slowly dying. This is because of their high maintenance cost. The grass tennis courts are soft grounds that favor smooth playing. They are the best for players’ physical health. Grass courts allow for very swift movements and thus fail to be in favor of a player. The ball also doesn’t bounce so high thus able to create trouble for players who have not been using grass courts.


There are two types of clay commonly used. These are the green and red clay. Clay tennis courts usually allow players a chance to slide which is useful for ball hitting while on the run. Clay material has a good bounce effect on the ball during play. It allows for the ball to go down thus giving a higher bounce. However, this type of floor usually slows down a big serve.

Unfortunately there are more disadvantages of clay tennis courts, check them out here.

Hard surface

Hard surface tennis courts are quite different from clay courts. They allow for bigger serves and favor swift movements. If you want to are a fan of big hitting, then this is the best court to use. In hard courts, the amount of sand on the floor will determine the speed of the ball. If there is plenty of sand, then the ball will be slow in movement. The hard surface courts are easy to maintain and they demand lower costs in care.

For more information on maintaining hard surface tennis courts, check out the PitchCare website.

Grass Tennis Courts

Tennis court surfaces and speeds have been a subject for debate among many. Not all have accurate knowledge of how the surfaces affect the ball speed. The International Tennis Federation has a court pace rating system which they use on sports. This usually plays a part in determining a player’s score.

Since different court surfaces have different effects on the tennis ball movement, the ITF uses court pace rating systems to measure ball effects. It looks into the changes in the velocity of the ball taking into account things like friction which all happen after the ball has hit the ground. The court pace rating is usually set after a series of tests have been done on a surface from the time an air canon is used to fire out the ball at a set speed. The complexity of the formulas set to identify the court pace rating is a subject for another time.

It is also good to bear in mind that natural conditions affect the speed and deflection of a ball. Weather conditions like wind, humidity, and air density play a role in the speed of the ball. Playing on damp grounds from the rain will also affect the deflection and the bounce of a ball.