As the warm weather approaches, many tennis players will take their game from the indoor courts to the outdoor surfaces. After playing indoors for consecutive months, it is easy to get acclimated to the indoor conditions. In this article, we want to prepare you for the main differences between indoor and outdoor courts. Whether you are a high school tennis player looking to excel this season or the weekend warrior trying to defeat your opponent, these tips will make the transition to outdoor courts easier for you.
It is nice playing indoors while having consistent conditions each time you play. This is certainly not the case outdoors on the courts in the spring. The wind can be gusting up to 20 MPH and you’ll need to prepare for this. Some players have more difficulty hitting cleanly in the wind than others. Short, compact, relatively flat strokes will be the least affected strokes. Hitting flat means hitting straight into the path of the ball, instead of trying to brush up or down on the ball with a swing that runs largely perpendicular to the line of the ball’s flight.
When there are poor weather conditions such as wind or moisture on hard outdoor courts, it can lower the speed of the surface compared to indoor courts. You’ll need to adapt your game to slower conditions. If you have a heavy forehand that your rely on for a lot of winners, you will want to diversify your game to incorporate a slice and a serve and volley strategy if the outdoor courts are playing to a slower condition.
There are many tennis players that don’t have the luxury of playing indoor tennis during the winter. This results in rustiness when they hit the outdoor courts. A great tip that we provide to our players is if you haven’t played tennis in a while to focus on the main fundamentals. When you get back on the outdoor courts, make sure your footwork is flawless and that you see yourself hitting the back of the ball before looking up. Focusing on the fundamentals will lead to better strokes and avoid rustiness.
The sun is obviously not going to affect you if you are playing indoor tennis. Once you hit the outdoor courts, especially during the summer, make sure to prepare for the weather conditions. Staying hydrated before and during the match can help you outlast your opponent. Additionally, wearing a hat or a visor and resting in the shade can preserve energy. It doesn’t seem like rocket science but every advantage over you opponent can make a difference.
Hopefully you were able to get through the cold weather conditions this winter. Whether or not you were able to get on the courts, if you follow the tips referenced in the differences between outdoor and indoor tennis courts, you’ll be well on your way to having a successful outdoor season.