Tennis is one of the most popular sports in the world, with millions of players pursuing it in a professional or recreational capacity.
But one of the most important components in any sport is the presence of a playing surface. In tennis, that happens to be a court, which is a rectangular-shaped surface that is critical in enforcing the rules for players and enabling those watching to understand the game.
The Essential Features Of A Tennis Court
While tennis is famed for being an individual sport, it can also be played by teams, split into pairs. Individuals compete in singles matches, while pairs compete in doubles matches. Tennis is also one of the very few mixed-sex sports in the world. Such matches are referred to as mixed doubles.
According to the International Tennis Federation (ITF), which is the umbrella body in charge of governing the sport, tennis courts have to be rectangular in shape and which shall measure 78 feet long (23.77 m) and 27 feet wide (8.23 m) for singles.
The length remains similar in doubles but differs in width. Doubles courts measure 36 feet wide (10.97 m). These dimensions are considered standard and adopted by all tennis tournaments within the professional landscape.
The court is divided across the middle by a net suspended by a cord and held on opposite sides by metal posts. The baseline refers to horizontal parallel lines on the width of the tennis court where players stand just before a serve and where they are mostly positioned during the match play.
Inside the baseline are five unique boxes on each end. The identical ones are the doubles alleys, which are not joined together but have a similar cause. These boxes basically distinguish a singles court from a doubles court.
Then, there is a "No man's land" box, which refers to the largest box on the court, which is the first box inside the baseline (or between the baseline and the half court). As the unofficial name suggests, players don't particularly want to be stationed there while playing, as most return balls land there.
Lastly, the two identical boxes are just above the No-man's land. This area is called the half-court. Although similar in size, these two boxes have different names. They are called the deuce service box and ad service box and are named after the tennis scoring system.
So How Big Is A Tennis Court?
While those who follow the sport on TV cannot appreciate the size of the court due to factors such as camera angles, framing of shots, and depth perception - the tennis courts are strikingly big.
The full-size court, including the doubles alleys, is 2,808 square feet (roughly 261 square meters). The playing area equates to the same floor area of three Bungalows in the United Kingdom. You could build FOUR Converted flats, which on average measure 700 square feet (65 square meters) in the United Kingdom.
Moreover, tennis courts would fit at least four pickleball courts within a tennis court. A standard pickleball court measures 44 feet long and 20 feet wide, which is similar to a doubles badminton court.