How to Start Playing Tennis

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Date Submitted: 02/15/2011 01:06 PM

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How to Start Playing Tennis

When you take that first step toward playing tennis, you don’t need to spend any money on new clothes or new sneakers. You will be much more comfortable and relaxed wearing the shorts, t-shirts, and sneakers you are used to. The only equipment you will need to buy is a racket and some balls to practice with.

The things to consider when purchasing a racket, in addition to the cost, are the size of the grip, the length of the racket, and the size of the racket face (the stringed portion of the racket). There is an enormous assortment of rackets from which to choose.

Rackets come in several grip sizes: 4 1/8; 4 3/8; 41/2; 4 5/8; and 4 7/8 inch circumferences. Make certain you can get your hand around the racket easily. After you grip the racket, the tip of your thumb should meet the first joint of your middle finger, with the hand spread out loosely around the racket.

As far as the size of the racket face is concerned, there are three basic shapes from which to choose: standard, mid-size, and oversized. An oversized racket face is approximately 110 square inches or larger. A mid-size is usually 90-95 square inches. Anything less is in the standard category. The larger racket face gives you a larger hitting area and, therefore, a much better chance of making contact with the ball. Success in hitting the ball will boost your self-confidence and make it more likely that you will enjoy the experience. It is no fun to swing and miss. I recommend the mid-size racket as I find the hitting area large enough and the racket more easily handled.

A new can of balls costs from $3.00-$4.00. However, if you can get enough used balls from your tennis-playing friends, you can save yourself some money. Also, to reduce the frustration of bending over to pick up balls throughout the practice, you may want to invest in a ball hopper to hold the practice balls. These come in different sizes. The middle size holds approximately...