What is Tennis: Definition and 200 Discussions

Tennis is a racket sport that can be played individually against a single opponent (singles) or between two teams of two players each (doubles). Each player uses a tennis racket that is strung with cord to strike a hollow rubber ball covered with felt over or around a net and into the opponent's court. The object of the game is to manoeuvrer the ball in such a way that the opponent is not able to play a valid return. The player who is unable to return the ball will not gain a point, while the opposite player will.
Tennis is an Olympic sport and is played at all levels of society and at all ages. The sport can be played by anyone who can hold a racket, including wheelchair users. The modern game of tennis originated in Birmingham, England, in the late 19th century as lawn tennis. It had close connections both to various field (lawn) games such as croquet and bowls as well as to the older racket sport today called real tennis. During most of the 19th century, in fact, the term tennis referred to real tennis, not lawn tennis.
The rules of modern tennis have changed little since the 1890s. Two exceptions are that from 1908 to 1961 the server had to keep one foot on the ground at all times, and the adoption of the tiebreak in the 1970s. A recent addition to professional tennis has been the adoption of electronic review technology coupled with a point-challenge system, which allows a player to contest the line call of a point, a system known as Hawk-Eye.
Tennis is played by millions of recreational players and is also a popular worldwide spectator sport. The four Grand Slam tournaments (also referred to as the Majors) are especially popular: the Australian Open played on hard courts, the French Open played on red clay courts, Wimbledon played on grass courts, and the US Open also played on hard courts.

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  1. PeroK

    I Tennis Probabilities Challenge

    Let's assume that a player has a probability ##p## of winning a point on the opponent's serve. 1) What is the probability (##P##) of a break of serve - i.e. winning the game? 2) What is the expected number of break points per service game? PS I had a mistake in my original calculation for 2)...
  2. C

    Impulse integration for a Tennis Racket hitting a Tennis Ball

    For this, Can someone please tell me why they integrate the impulse over from ##t_i## to ##t_f##? Why not from ##j_i## to ##j_f##? It seems strange integrating impulse with respect to time. Many thanks!
  3. themethetion

    B Calculating the perfect tennis shot using vectors

    Context: I must develop a vector that models the path of a tennis ball using vectors without physics formulas I have developed a function that represents the perfect shot in tennis in terms of x & y where x is the court's length and y is the height. And then x & z where x is the court's length...
  4. paulimerci

    Which statement is true? (Velocity and Acceleration of a Tennis Ball)

    I understand that when a tennis ball is in motion, the velocity vectors and acceleration vectors are pointing in the same direction. When the ball slows down, it is decelerating and comes to a stop. In the above statement, I understand that from the given angle, both vectors are pointing in the...
  5. WMDhamnekar

    MHB Winning Tennis with Probability 0.3 and 0.7

    Hi, What is your probability of winning a game of tennis, starting from the even score Deuce (40-40), if your probability of winning each point is 0.3 and your opponent’s is 0.7? My answer: I think the sequence of independent trials are required to win a game of tennis...
  6. J

    I Confirm 6ft Tall Boy Throwing Tennis Ball 🎾 in Gym

    Hello I’m hoping someone could help I was asked by a fellow student the following question A 6 foot tall boy is stood in his schools gymnasium, he throws a standard full-size tennis ball 🎾 up in the air to the height of 20 feet and it lands back into his hand at the same distance from the...
  7. T

    Lift, Drag, Magnus, Bernoulli, Tennis ball fuzz, etc.

    Hello, My background is not fluid mechanics. Yet, I am trying, very late in life (near retirement) to understand some things, now that I have time. I have always been confused about the qualitative descriptions about the role of dimples on golf balls and fuzz on tennis balls. Sometimes, the...
  8. A

    Tennis Ball Launcher: Build a Mechanical Launcher

    I have a project which consists in making a tennis ball launcher for training kids (6-12 years), but there is a catch, the mechanism can't have any elastic parts (springs, bands, rubber). It has to be purely mechanical. I need help
  9. prashantakerkar

    I How have changes in table tennis racket design affected the game?

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Table_tennis_racket Would like to know the impact for the table tennis game if the racket is changed to a String type Lawn tennis or Badminton racket? Thanks & Regards, Prashant S Akerkar
  10. Wes Turner

    B Improving Tennis Analysis: Incorporating Three Outcomes and Serve Probabilities

    I am trying to analyze the game of tennis. I started very simply by analyzing just the ground strokes, ignoring the serve, and calculating the odds of winning a single point given the odds of returning each ground stroke. I got a surprising (to me) result showing that the player to goes first...
  11. H

    MHB Probability of winning a point on serve in tennis

    Hello, my question about calculating the probability in tennis I know that to calculate Pwos (probability of point won on oun serve ) for each player the following formula is used... # P(no Fault) -The probability a player's first serve not faulting # P(win/no Fault) -The probability a player...
  12. M

    Equations to model tennis ball motion

    I'm creating a tennis game and at this point I'm trying to model ball motion. I found multiple lectures on projectiles equations of motion which seem to apply well for when ball is not moving, but they do not take into account the velocity may have at the time of impact. For example, I found a...
  13. JTC

    Golf ball and Tennis ball turbulence

    So I have read many articles on tennis ball fuzz and golf ball dimples and I am more confused than before. Here is one that says that the dimples make the golf balls go faster: https://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/sports/golf/basics/question37.htm And just when it makes all sense, I read...
  14. C

    How to find velocity given force and time? (tennis)

    Hey all, so I've got a math project due this weekend and I could seriously use some advice. I am trying to figure out a way to calculate tennis serve speed given a video. I am using this 6000 FPS video here: Assuming the racket string tension to be 50 lbs (222.41N) I used vectors and geometry...
  15. ferrariistheking

    Work, energy, power tennis ball problem

    Homework Statement A force applied to a tennis ball is described by the function F(x) = 2x + 5, with the force in Newtons and the position in meters. How much work does the force do on a tennis ball as it moves from -2.5 m to a new position of 2.4 m? Homework Equations F(x)= 2x+5 force x...
  16. E

    A tennis ball bounces off a wall....

    Homework Statement A 60 g tennis ball with an initial speed of 37m/s hits a wall and rebounds with the same speed. This collision lasts for two seconds. What is the maximum value of contact force during the collision? Homework Equations p=mv The Attempt at a Solution So I multiplied the mass...
  17. B

    Force exerted on counter-rotating wheels by a tennis ball

    Homework Statement I am trying to figure out what torque is applied to 2 wheels counter-rotating at 4,000 rpm when a tennis ball is squeezed between them and then propelled forward (because the wheels are counter-rotating).This is how a tennis ball machine propels a ball forward. I know the...
  18. D

    Automated tennis ball launcher for my dog

    Hi all, I thought I would post my thoughts/progress on designing and building an automatic tennis ball launcher for my dog. The little fella gets a bit bored during the day when we are at work, so I want to build him this so he has something to do other than push a basketball around the...
  19. T

    B Mastering the Physics of Table Tennis: Understanding Forces and Flight Dynamics

    i was watching a video of physics of table tennis and got interested to work it out for myself forces to be considered quadratic drag force magnus force gravity m : mass of the ball v : velocity of the ball w : angular velocity of the ball(assuming for simplicity not changing during the...
  20. T

    This is a logic problem about tennis.

    Homework Statement Pat beat Stacy in a set of tennis, winning six games to Stacy’s three. Five games were won by the player who did not serve. Who served first? source: https://ocw.mit.edu/courses/mathematics/18-s34-problem-solving-seminar-fall-2007/assignments/hw8.pdf Homework Equations N/A...
  21. Z

    Veocity time graph for a tennis ball during a rally?

    Hi all, I am trying to draw a velocity time graph for a tennis ball during a rally. I am aware that the horizontal component of the velocity/speed will be constant, assuming negligable air resistance, and that the vertical component of the velocity will be a sawtooth shape. However I am unsure...
  22. williamwong0402

    2D kinematic problem: Tennis serve

    Homework Statement Serving at a speed of 170 km/h a tennis player hits the ball at a height of 2.5 m and an angle θ below the horizontal. The service line is 11.9 m from the net, which is 0.91 m high. What is the angle θ such that the ball just crosses the net? Will the ball land in the service...
  23. K

    Analysis of tennis string tension

    I have a decent background in physics, but something that has always confused me is how to think about how the tension of the string in a tennis racquet affects how the ball leaves the strings. For example, the traditional lore in tennis is that tauter strings will give more control, whereas...
  24. blixel

    Class Project: Tennis Ball Launcher

    What I'm here to find out I am in the early stages of planning for a tennis ball launcher I'm doing with my group for a class project. I want to find 2 cheap electric motors that will spin fast enough, and have enough torque, so that I can attach some wheels to the spinning motors for the...
  25. russ_watters

    News Australian Open Women's Final: 60 Grand Slams, 4 Legends

    My interest in tennis has waned somewhat over the years, but I did DVR the Australian Open Women's Final and I'm watching it now (no spoilers, but I already know who won). In introducing the match, one of the commentators said this may be "the greatest weekend in the history of tennis" and I...
  26. yesudeep

    How Does Physics Impact Tennis Performance?

    Namasté, I'm an avid tennis player trying to deepen my understanding of tennis and its equipment. I hope to learn more about this subject. Thank you. :) Cheers, Yesudeep.
  27. Thejas15101998

    Wavelength of a Tennis Ball at 0 Velocity

    In the De Broglie equation : λ = h / (m v) what happens when the velocity of an object is zero? I see that we get ∞ wavelength . It is not making any sense to me. Could anyone please help me. Let's take the object to be a tennis ball say.
  28. A

    HW questions about Forces with ball examples

    Hey all, I'm don't have the firmest grasp on physics and a little help would be much appreciated! So two questions: 1)a physics student watching a tennis match states, "while the ball is in contact with the racquet, the racquet exerts a larger force on the ball than the ball does on the...
  29. Lechiam

    Sign of Acceleration of dropped tennis ball at the floor

    Homework Statement You drop a tennis ball on a hard floor, and it bounces upward. If the x-axis is directed upward, what is the sign of the acceleration while the ball is in contact with the floor? Homework Equations a=v/t The Attempt at a Solution I thought that the acceleration when the...
  30. O

    A Why does the Dzhanibekov effect occur in rotating tennis rackets?

    Hello all, I can understand the mathematics of this phenomena First, one can solve the Euler equations of motion numerically, using Runge-Kutta and plot the motion. Also, the path of the angular velocity vector will like on the kinetic energy ellipsoid and the angular momentum vector...
  31. M

    Combinatorics: tennis game with 8 people

    Homework Statement 8 friends are playing a tennis game together. How many different doubles games of tennis can they play? Homework Equations Combinations The Attempt at a Solution Well, I solved this problem by saying: we choose a group 4 people from 8 to play, so order is not important...
  32. J

    How does friction create spin in a tennis ball

    Homework Statement So I have to do a report about tennis and about the spin. I understand how the magnus effect works and how the ball will bounce but am still unable to figure out how the actual spin is created by the contact with the racquet and the moving ball Homework Equations T=Fr The...
  33. Claire Augustus

    Project Help - Mousetrap catapault to launch cut tennis ball

    Homework Statement "Take a tennis ball and cut it into 2 equal halves. Take one of them and cut it again equally. You now have 1 half tennis ball and 2 quarter tennis balls. Glue the 2 quarters to the half, one to its outside (convex) and one to its inside (concave). Design, build and test a...
  34. O

    Tennis Ball Collision Homework Solution

    Homework Statement A 0.060 kg tennis ball, moving with a speed of 2.50 m/s has a head on collision with a 0.090 kg ball initially moving toward it with a speed of 1.00 m/s. Assuming a perfectly elastic collision, what is the speed and direction of each ball after the collision? Homework...
  35. P

    GeForce Impact: Tennis Ball Hits Head

    I have a question concerning GeForces. imagine a tennis ball that weighs 57 Gramm Hits a human head that weighs 4 Kilogramm on the forehead, at a speed of 120 kilometers per hour. the head moves back 15 centimeters until it stops because of the resistance of the spine. how much g-force did the...
  36. Z

    Ratio of Forces by from Tennis Serve?

    Homework Statement During a tennis volley, a ball that arrives at a player at 40 m/s is struck by the racquet and returned at 40 m/s. The other player, realizing that the ball is out of bounds, catches it in her hand. Assuming the time interval of contact is the same in both cases, compare the...
  37. wolram

    How many ways can you arrange 128 tennis balls

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/01/160127053413.htm Researchers have solved an apparently overwhelming physics problem involving some truly huge numbers. In summary, the problem asks you to imagine that you have 128 tennis balls, and can arrange them in any way you like. The challenge...
  38. J

    Is this book wrong? Tennis ball rebound speed

    I am reading a book abut tennis physics and I have seen a result that I feel is wrong. We have a tennis ball and a racket, and several cases: 1.- Ball hitting stacionary racquet that is sustained with your hand. (I agree with the results of the book here, it is just to show how they are...
  39. G

    Tennis ball gun, muzzle velocity

    I am designing a tennis ball gun and am trying to work out the forces involved. It is essentially elastic powered but at this stage all I need to know at this stage is this: with the gun at a 20 degree incline what muzzle velocity would result in the ball traveling 50 metres?
  40. B

    MHB Kate's Chances of Winning a 5 Match Tennis Tournament

    The Probability of Kate winning a tennis match is 80%. If she enters a 5 match knockout tournament, find the chance of her: a) winning the tournament: Is simply 0.8^5 = 33% b) winning the tournament given she wins her first three games: Is the intersection of the two over the probability she...
  41. D

    Kinematics Tennis Ball Problem

    Homework Statement ) You are given the task of shooting a tennis ball from ground level through 2 hoops. The two hoops’ centers and the launch site are located in the same vertical plane, and the hoops are oriented perpendicular to the ball’s proposed trajectory and also in a vertical...
  42. C

    Determining the height of an angled projectile after 10m

    Homework Statement Jason is practicing his tennis stroke by hitting balls against a wall. The ball leaves his racquet at a height of 43 cm above the ground at an angle of 80° with respect to the vertical. The speed of the ball as it leaves the racquet is 25 m/s and it must travel a distance of...
  43. Bailey

    Falling objects: Tennis ball vs. feather

    Assuming air resistance, when a tennis ball and a feather are dropped from the same height? Which statement is true: A: Tennis ball has more mass so it will fall faster. B: Tennis ball has less surface area so it will fall faster I think the answer should be A, but the textbook say B is true...
  44. S

    Time Dilation with a Tennis Ball

    So I just finished reading my textbook on special relativity and am a bit confused by the discussion of time dilation. We equip an observer with a light source, a mirror, and a clock and herd him onto a train moving at constant velocity relative to a second observer located at the station. If...
  45. J

    MHB Calculating Probability of Winning a Point on Serve in Tennis

    Hi, I'm trying to make a tennis betting model but I'm struggling to get my head around how to calculate the probability of a player to win a point when serving. So: How can I calculate the probability, p, of a player winning a point when serving given: The percentage of first serves that the...
  46. goonking

    Solving Tennis Serve Force w/ Constant Acceleration

    Homework Statement During a tennis serve, the ball goes from rest to approximately 32.3 m/s. The average power generated during the serve is equal to 2672 Watts. If the acceleration is constant during the serve, what is the magnitude of the force acting on the ball? Homework Equations P= F v...
  47. M

    Modeling the Kinematics of a Tennis Serve

    Hey Guys, I know its an Odd Question but i have an assignment where i should be doing a tennis serve and taking a video of it, importing it on laptop and draw graphs and make conclusions about its position with time and compare my results with theories, so any suggestions on how to do that, in...
  48. arpon

    Tennis Ball Dropped: Will It Ever Come to Rest?

    Homework Statement A tennis ball is dropped from a point 4.9 m above the ground. Every time it hits the ground, it bounces back to ¾ of its previous height. How long will the ball take to come to at rest? [ignore the time required for hitting the ground and turning back] Homework...