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Tennis is a social game, a game involving simple politeness and consideration. Everyone will enjoy the game so much more if those standards are maintained.

Here are some of the most important tennis etiquette rules:

  • Talk quietly when standing near tennis courts that are in use.
  • Never walk behind a court when a point is still in play. Wait until the point is over and then cross as fast as possible.
  • If people are already on your court, don’t disturb them until their time is up.
  • Always come prepared. Bring not only balls but towels and water to drink when it is hot. (Note: balls are provided for VTA Play Sessions and tournaments)
  • Offer to bring new balls or organize a system to decide who brings the balls.
  • When you’re ready to play, put racket covers, ball cans, jackets etc., out of everyone’s way. Please ensure that all garbage (including used ball cans and lids) is removed from the court and disposed of appropriately.
  • To see who serves first, spin your racket or toss a coin. If you win the toss, the choice is yours. You may serve first, or you may choose to receive first or to pick which end of the court you want to start playing on. As a third choice, you may make your opponent choose first.
  • When sending balls back to a neighbouring court, roll them along the back of the court. Never send them back while play is in progress.
  • Retrieve balls for your partner and your opponent.
  • Call your own lines and let your opponent hear the call. If the ball is good say nothing and play on.
  • Always respect the line calls of your opponent.
  • If there is a disagreement, offer a let. In other words, replay the point, even if it was a second service.
  • If you’re not sure whether your opponent’s shot is in or out, it’s in.
  • There is no need to return a bad serve. It is quicker to stop the ball and put it in your pocket or roll it to the side of the court – it will help your game move quicker.

Official rules and Code of tennis.


Further tips and resources: