Choosing a Tennis Surface


There are a wide variety of court surface options available for your new tennis court. The primary variables to consider are the hardness, speed and maintenance requirements of the court.

Here is a brief primer of your court surface options, from softest surface to hardest surface.

1. Natural Grass Tennis Court

2. Har-Tru (Clay) Tennis Court

3. Synthetic Turf/Fabric Overlay with infill (sand, Har-Tru, etc.)

4. Hard Tennis Court (Asphalt or Concrete) with Cushion and Acrylic Color System

5. Hard Tennis Court (Asphalt or Concrete) with Acrylic Color System




1. Natural Grass (Soft Surface/Fast Pace/High Maintenance)

Choosing a Tennis Surface

Natural grass courts, like those found at Wimbledon, provide the softest surface to play on. Natural grass courts also provide the fastest speed of play. Playing on grass is a wonderful experience. However, there are very few natural grass/turf courts in the United States – less than 500! This is largely because grass courts are difficult to build and even harder to maintain. Owning a natural grass court is similar to owning a golf putting green and all that entails – mowing, fertilizing, weed control, etc.

If you are interested in building a grass court, your best bet is to locate and hire a golf course construction or maintenance firm. That firm can then turn to 10-S Tennis Supply for the court equipment needed. From a court supply perspective, there is very little to purchase for a natural grass court. Here are the court supplies we would recommend:

Product # Name Quantity Required Price Total
AL2004 10-S Prestige Tennis Net 1.00 $ $
DC2013 Edwards Wimbledon Square Tennis Net Post 1.00 $ $
CH1003 Center Pipe Anchor 1.00 $ $
$
Shipping TBD
Tax TBD




2. Har-Tru (Clay) Courts (Soft Surface/Slow Pace/High Maintenance)

Choosing a Tennis Surface

Har-Tru (clay) tennis courts are very popular for their superior playing characteristics. A Har-Tru court provides a consistently slower ball bounce than other surfaces. This results in longer rallies, a greater variety of strokes and a more controlled game. Playing tennis on a Har-Tru court requires the development of strategy and skill and promotes endurance and patience. The rise of the European and South American players on the men's and women's professional tours has been largely attributed to learning the game on clay courts. The United States Tennis Association (USTA) is now encouraging its most promising players to train primarily on clay tennis courts by installing Har-Tru courts at all of its national training centers.

Har-Tru and natural clay courts offer additional health benefits. The granular Har-Tru surface acts as a shock-absorbing cushion, allowing players to slide into their returns. This prevents the joint jarring stops all too common on hard surfaces. A recent study revealed that one out of every two tennis players is likely to suffer an injury during a six month period. The study attributes injuries of the lower extremities, the back and the groin to two factors: court surface and shoes. Unique tennis surfaces that permit sliding, as a Har-Tru tennis court does, result in 85% fewer injuries than hard surfaces. Har-Tru courts promote the game for life, from early childhood into retirement. Avid players find that Har-Tru courts allow them to play the game every day without soreness or pain.

Har-Tru courts are also ready for action in a matter of minutes after a rain shower. Water is absorbed through the surface and into the base. The slope of the court then allows excess moisture to run off. Since a Har-Tru court retains moisture and breathes during the hottest days of summer, the surface remains an average of 20% cooler than hard courts - a real advantage in Florida and the Sunbelt states.

Since there are so many advantages to owning a Har-Tru tennis court, why isn’t every court a Har-Tru court? The simple answer is maintenance! Har-Tru courts require daily, weekly, monthly and annual maintenance. They also require the regular use of water to keep the courts moist, playable and structurally sound. The advent of subsurface irrigation like the FDC HydroCourt system for Har-Tru courts has reduced the maintenance requirements for Har-Tru courts.

If you are interested in hiring a contractor to build your new Har-Tru tennis court, we strongly recommend our sister company, Fast-Dry Courts, Inc. We have included helpful links to the Fast-Dry Courts, Inc. website and information request form here:

www.fast-dry.com

If you are interested in purchasing the products to build your own above-ground, sprinkler-irrigated Har-Tru court, here are the supplies we would recommend for the construction (See our section of Court Maintenance Equipment for products required to maintain your new court after construction):

Product # Name Quantity Required Price Total
OL1012 Har-Tru - 80 lb. bag1,000 $ $
QL2002 Herringbone Line Tape1.00$$
RC1012Aluminum Nails - 2-1/2"1.00$$
YC4002Hunter I-40 Stainless Steel High Speed8.00$$
DL100010-S Aluminum External Wind Post1.00$$
DH501310-S PVC Net Post Sleeve - Pair1.00$$
CH1003Center Pipe Anchor1.00$$
AX1003Six Star II Tennis Net1.00$$
$
ShippingTBD
TaxTBD




3. Synthetic Turf/Fabric Overlay with infill (Medium-Soft Surface/Medium-Slow Pace/Moderate Maintenance)

Choosing a Tennis Surface

Synthetic membrane/turf courts that are in-filled with Har-Tru, rubber or sand provide some of the same attractive playing characteristics as a Har-Tru clay court, with lower maintenance requirements. There are several products on the market that fit this category, including ClayTech (synthetic membrane infilled with Har-Tru), Classic Clay (synthetic membrane with synthetic infill) and OmniCourt (synthetic turf with sand infill). These court systems offer a medium-soft surface and slower pace of play. Some, like the ClayTech and Classic Clay products, also provide players with the ability to slide. These types of courts are not as soft as a Har-Tru court, primarily because they are installed on top of a concrete or asphalt base. However, the big benefit that they provide is lower maintenance. Typically these courts require little or no water, only daily grooming and occasional replacement and redistribution of the infill material. These courts can also be installed over existing hard courts in most cases.

If you are interested in hiring a contractor to build your new synthetic turf/fabric overlay tennis court, we strongly recommend our sister company, Fast-Dry Courts, Inc. We have included helpful links to the Fast-Dry Courts, Inc. website and information request form here:

www.fast-dry.com

If you are interested in purchasing the products to build your own synthetic turf/fabric overlay court, contact the manufacturer of the turf or overlay system for information on purchasing their systems. Here are the court supplies we would recommend for the construction (See our section of Court Maintenance Equipment for products required to maintain your new court after construction):

Product # Name Quantity Required Price Total
DL1000 10-S Aluminum External Wind Post 1.00 $$
DH501310-S PVC Net Post Sleeve - Pair1.00$$
CH1003Center Pipe Anchor1.00$$
AX1003Six Star II Tennis Net1.00$$
ShippingTBD
TaxTBD




4. Hard Court with Cushion and Acrylic Color (Medium-Hard Surface/Medium-Fast Pace/Low Maintenance)

Choosing a Tennis Surface

Hard Courts with cushioning and an acrylic paint color system are a popular solution for customers that want the low maintenance of a hard court with some of the resilience and “give” of a soft court. Several rubberized cushioning systems have been developed to ease the pain of playing on a hard court. Some cushion systems like Premier Court utilize a rolled cushioned mat that is overlaid on top of the concrete or asphalt surface. Other cushion systems like DecoTurf, PlexiCushion and NovaCushion utilize 2 to 3 coats of heavy grade rubber granules followed by 3 or more coats of fine grade rubber granules that are squeegeed on top of the asphalt surface.

Cushioned hard courts can have a medium to fast pace of play depending on how much sand is used in the acrylic coatings. The big draw for cushioned hard courts is that they require virtually no maintenance. You simply have to blow or brush leaves and debris off the surface and pressure clean as needed!

If you are interested in hiring a contractor to build your new cushioned court, we strongly recommend our sister company, Fast-Dry Courts, Inc. We have included helpful links to the Fast-Dry Courts, Inc. website and information request form here:

www.fast-dry.com

If you are interested in purchasing the products to build your own cushioned hard court, here are the supplies we would recommend for the construction of a new court with the Plexicushion Prestige system used at the Australian Open. The products below assume a 10 coat system (1 coat of Acrylic Resurfacer, 3 coats of Plexicushion Base Coat, 3 coats of Plexicushion and 3 coats of Fortified Plexipave) on a single 7,200 SF tennis court (See our section of Court Maintenance Equipment for products required to maintain your new court after construction):

Product # Name Quantity Required Price Total
5C6001 Court Patch Binder - 5 gallon drum 1.00 $ $
5C3055Acrylic Resurfacer - 55 gallon drum1.00$$
5C8255BCPlexicushion Base Coat - 55 gallon drum10.00 $ $
5C8255 Plexicushion - 55 gallon drum 5.00 $ $
5C1021 Fortified Plexipave - 30 gallon drum5.00 $ $
5C4001Textured Line Paint - 1 gallon drum1.00$$
5N4015Seal-a-line - 1 gallon Squeeze Bottle1.00$$
DL100010-S Aluminum External Wind Post1.00$$
DH501310-S PVC Net Post Sleeve - Pair1.00$$
CH1003Center Pipe Anchor1.00$$
AX1003Six Star II Tennis Net1.00$$
$
ShippingTBD
TaxTBD




5. Hard Court with Acrylic Color (Hard Surface/Medium-Fast Pace/Low Maintenance)

Choosing a Tennis Surface

Hard courts typically consist of an asphalt or concrete base which is patched, sealed and colored with an acrylic court surfacing system. Hard courts are very popular among our customers for a variety of reasons. The most compelling advantage of an asphalt tennis court is that it requires little or no maintenance on a daily/weekly/monthly basis. This makes asphalt tennis courts very compelling for private homeowners, apartments/condominiums, schools and municipalities. Hard court owners can also customize the color and speed of the court to suit their individual preferences. Many private homeowners and facilities utilize their hard tennis courts for other activities, including basketball.

The downside of hard courts is that they are very tough on the body, particularly older tennis players. The speed of play can also be quite high and hard courts reflect heat, making them uncomfortable in the summer months or high heat environments.

If you are interested in hiring a contractor to build your new synthetic turf tennis court, we strongly recommend our sister company, Fast-Dry Courts, Inc. We have included helpful links to the Fast-Dry Courts, Inc. website and information request form here:

www.fast-dry.com

If you are interested in purchasing the products to build your own hard court, here are the supplies we would recommend for the construction of a new asphalt or concrete hard court with the NovaSports acrylic system. The products below assume minor patching of the asphalt surface followed by the application of a 4 coat Nova acrylic color system (2 coats of Nova Acrylic Resurfacer, 2 coats of Nova Combination Surface) on a single 7,200 SF tennis court (See our section of Court Maintenance Equipment for products required to maintain your new court after construction):

Product #NameQuantity RequiredPrice Total
5N7010Novabond - 5 gallon drum1.00$$
5N2005NovaSurface Acrylic Resurfacer - 55 gallon drum1.00$$
5N1005 Novacrylic Combination Surface - 30 gallon drum2.00 $ $
5N1000 Novacrylic Combination Surface - 5 gallon drum 4.00 $ $
5N4005 Novatex Line Paint - 1 gallon Squeeze Bottle3.00 $ $
5N4015Seal-a-line - 1 gallon Squeeze Bottle1.00$$
5S1001Masking Tape - 1" roll1.00$$
DL100010-S Aluminum External Wind Post6.00$$
DH5013 10-S PVC Net Post Sleeve - Pair1.00$$
CH1003Center Pipe Anchor1.00$$
AX1003Six Star II Tennis Net1.00$$
$
ShippingTBD
TaxTBD