How To Play Tennis? Detailed Guide – 2022

Last updated on August 20th, 2022 at 07:49 am

If you are keen to learn how to play tennis, here is a guide explaining everything from court layout to tennis rules. Tennis is one of the most physically taxing sports that help us improve our fitness and keep us in shape.

It is a demanding physical activity requiring every muscle group in the body to work rigorously for a longer period. Also, it helps us improve our hand-eye coordination and decision-making ability since you have to decide in a few seconds where to hit the ball to win a point.

Whether you want to join the game as a tennis professional or hobbyist, it is critical to understand the scoring system, court layout, and basic rules of tennis. However, it seems a bit difficult since it’s hard to decide where to begin. To help you out there, I’ve composed this guide:

How To Play Tennis? Form basic rules to the scoring system and tennis supplies; I’ve added everything, making it easier for you to learn tennis.

How To Play Tennis?

Object Of The Game

Tennis is played in a rectangular court, equally divided into two parts with a net running across the center. The player hits the ball to make it land with the margins of the opponent’s court. You score a point if the opponent fails to hit the ball back to your court within the margins.

Court Layout

A Tennis court is a rectangular area drawn with margin lines. It measures 2106 square feet for singles, and for doubles, the court is 2808 square feet. The net running across the center divides the court into two halves.

The baseline is parallel to the net, and it is the farthest boundary of the court. The distance of baseline from the net is 37 feet in singles and 36 feet in doubles. The baseline is the point from where you serve.

Centre mark line begins from the center of the baseline and runs perpendicular to the net. The server either positions himself on the left or right side of the center mark and cannot cross the line while serving.

Service Line is also parallel to the net, and it runs halfway between net and baseline. The line defines the boundary within your serve must land. Any serve to land beyond the service box will be considered as a serving fault. Sidelines are the lines that run perpendicular to the net and define the side boundaries of the court.

What Equipment Do You Need To Play Tennis?

What equipment do you need to play tennis?

For playing tennis, you need a tennis racket, tennis shoes, and a best tennis balls. A quality tennis racket will help you learn the tennis skill more quickly and make your practice rewarding.

If we talk about shoes, any sneakers will do the job for hobbyists. But the best idea is to buy special tennis shoes, especially if you have a professional approach. If you join a sports club, you may be asked to buy tennis shirts and skirts also, however, it is not mandatory in every case.

How To Play The Game?

The game begins with a toss, and the winner decides who will serve first. If it doubles, the winning duo can mutually decide which player is going to serve first. The first server gives you the advantage to begin the play since you have complete control over this stroke.

So let begin with the rules of serve in tennis. To strike first serve, the player takes position behind the baseline and to the right side of the center mark. For the second point serve, the player takes place behind the baseline to the left of the canter mark.

Once the server takes the position to serve, he cannot change it; otherwise, it will be considered a foot fault. The server tosses the ball in the air and hits it before it touches the ground. Also, if the server’s feet touch the imaginary extension of the baseline, it is also a foot fault.

A fair serve is when the ball lands within the boundaries of a diagonally crossed opponent’s service box. It must not hit the net or another solid fixture. If the ball touches the net, receiver’s body, or another thing within the court, it will be a let serve and not considered as service fault.

Two consecutive service faults will make you lose the point, and the opponent team will serve.

How To Return A Serve?

If you are in the receiver courts, it is important for you to keep your mind active and decide the best stroke to return the serve. These are some basic strokes that tennis players use.

Forehand Stroke

To play a freehand stroke, hold the racket in your dominant hand. The inner side of the palm should be facing forward and keep the racket at the back. Then swing the racket across your body in a direction where you want to land the ball.

A forehand stroke will let you play outward and upward strokes. The freehand group will let you get the ball coming at lobs or short angles.

Backhand Stroke

Backhand stroke is played by holding the racket in both hands. Keep the racket outside out and hit the ball at a slightly upward angle. Since you hold the racket with both hands, there is no need to put extra effort into this short.

This is the best stroke to return the low balls with heavy backspin. Also, it is easier to hit the ball that is close to the body with a backhand stroke.


tennis Volley is another technical stroke that especially comes into play when you have to face a low serve. Volley is a stroke in which you hit the ball before it bounces on the ground. This aggressive stroke lets you interrupt the rally timing and will make your opponent run ragged.

The best position to play a volley is closer to the net or at the service line. Volleys usually prove unpredictable and unacceptable for the receiver, giving you an instant point win. There are two types of volleys.

Backhand Volley is when you hold the racket in your dominant hand, and the backside of your hand faces the net. While playing freehand volley, the backside of your hand faces the baseline.

Score Calculation

The game starts with 0-0 or love-each. Then it increases to 15, then 30, then 40, and then game points. The server’s point is announced first. For example, if the player on the non-server end sores the first point, it is announced as love-15.

You need to keep track of your score to determine your position in the game. The match is either of two or three sets and to win a game, you must reach seven points with a margin of two. Read complete guide on how many set’s are there in a tennis match.

General Rules In tennis

  • If your racket or any part of your body touches the net, you lose a point.
  • You must hold your racket all the time during the game. If you throw the racket at the ball or drop it, you will lose a point.
  • You must hit the ball after the first bounce, and if it bounces twice, you will lose the point.
  • If both players or teams reach 6-6, a tie-break is announced. If the tie break is announced at 6-6 points, the first player to score seven points wins the tie and set. If this is announced for six games to 6, the player who first gets the margin of two points wins.
  • After every service point, the serve-side is altered.
  • The court ends are altered when the sum of the pints reaches six and multiples of six.

Frequently Ask Question of How to Play Tennis


So these are some basic rules that you need to keep in mind while playing tennis. If you are keen to learn how to play tennis, it is advised to start practicing tennis from today. Begin with basic skills like how to hold the racket and use your body during the game.

Plus, it is advised to choose opponents who already know how to play tennis. If you are a beginner, avoid playing doubles games since it involves additional skills like team coordination and interaction.

Start with practicing with the basic backhand and forehand stroke and gradually move towards advanced skills.

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