Rules Of Tennis Every Beginner Should Know

Do you idolize Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Novak Djokovic? Maybe you admire the strength and speed that comes with fresher faces in the game, such as that of Naomi Osaka who defeated Serena Williams in the 2018 U.S. Open. No matter who you’re rooting for, there’s no denying that the spirit of competition gets anyone excited.

If you want to be one of the greats, there is absolutely no shame in starting out small and working your way from the ground up. To do this, you must know the basic rules of tennis. After all, you just can’t be hitting balls left and right without knowing its possible repercussions, right?


Whether you’re an overly enthusiastic supporter or simply someone who wants to venture into the field of sports, knowing how to properly play the game gives you advantages. Apart from preparing you for hard-hitting opponents, you’re sure to cover the groundwork and all the basics.


What You Need To Know About Tennis

Let us get into the nitty-gritty of it all and familiarize you with the rules and equipment in this sport.


Equipment And Players

  • Tennis racquet – A tennis racquet is made up of strings framed in a crisscross and weaving manner. The frame must not go over 32 inches in length, while its handle should not be longer than 12.5 inches in width.
  • Ball – A tennis ball is normally white or yellow-green in color.
  • Tennis court – A court can either be grassy, carpeted, made of clay, or can be a hard surface. Games and tournaments typically pick one type of court and utilize the same material all throughout the event.
  • The number of players – In a game of singles, a player faces off against another player on the other side of the court. Meanwhile, in a game of doubles, two teams comprised of two players each play against each other.

Rules Beginners Must Know

  • A coin toss determines which player serves first and where they should serve from. A racket spin may also be done to determine the player or team who goes first.
  • Starting from the baseline, the player who serves must ensure that the ball falls over the net in order to continue the play.
  • A server who fails to bring the first service may go again and try his hand at another round. However, another failure will result in points loss.
  • Service must first be conducted by the first player/server to start the game. The service ball should bounce first before the opponent can return it.
  • Players or teams can only hit the ball once.
  • Players or teams must wait for the ball to pass the net prior to returning the ball to the other side.
  • A ball that hits or touches players will be penalized.
  • Balls that touch any line or boundary fall will be considered in. However, a ball that goes out of this line is automatically considered out.
  • Players must not go over their opponent’s side.
  • Players should not touch the net nor the posts on either side.
  • Players must not distract nor use foul play in the game. Doing so allows the wrongdoer to lose the point.
  • Above all, a ball must bounce in the parameters of the court to be in play.



There are a total of six games in a tennis match. The player who reaches game with a two-point lead first wins the match. To win a set, a game must be won with four points each.

The scoring system starts from zero, otherwise called love. The points then progress as 15, 30, 40, and game. Should both players or teams get 40-40, the game is called a deuce. In order to win the game, a player or a team must score two advantage points to get ahead.



Tennis matches may be pretty nerve-wracking to watch, especially from the sidelines. Now that you know the rules and basics of this game, you too can play tennis with your friends and family. Who knows, in a few years’ time, you might just rival the likes of your favorite tennis players in the field.