8U & 10U Tennis
Little League baseball players don’t play their games at SunTrust Park. Youth Soccer doesn’t use a field the same size as World Cup. So why does tennis ask our youngest athletes to play on the same size surface as a professional at the US Open?
Finally, the sport of tennis is scaled to fit the size of our young players!
Kids need a ball that is sized and paced to their playing abilities. A regulation tennis ball moves too fast, bounces too high and is too heavy for their smaller racquet.
For 8 and under, a red foam or low compression felt covered ball moves slower, bounces lower and travels less distance.
For 9-10, an orange low compression ball moves a little faster and travels farther than the ball used with the younger group, but still has a lower bounce than the standard yellow ball.
For an adult player to succeed at tennis, racquet control is essential. Same goes for kids. But since kids are smaller than adults, kids have trouble controlling full-sized racquets. They’re too long, too heavy, and the grips are too large. Kids need racquets that are proportionate in length and weight, and have a grip that fits their smaller hands.
For 8 and under, the racquet should be 19, 21 or 23 inches.
For 9-10, the racquet should be 23 or 25 inches.
Court Size Net
10 and Under Tennis uses equipment that is scaled to the size and ability level of young children. Children 8 and under will play on a court that is 36 feet long and 18 feet wide.
The net is 18 feet long and 2 foot, 9 inches high. Portable nets and support systems are available from many manufacturers, and temporary nets can be constructed using tape or caution tape tied to existing nets, fences or even chairs.
A regulation net is used on the 60-foot court for youngsters 9-10. If you are not using an existing court and net, the net height for the 60-foot court is 3 feet.
For players 8 and under, match play is short and sweet. Kids play the best two-out-of-three games; each game is 7 points. The first to win two games wins the match. The longest the match should last is approximately 20 minutes.
10U should play the best-of-three sets; the first to win four games wins a set using no ad scoring. If one player wins the first two sets, he or she wins the match. If the players split the first two sets, the third set is first to 7 points.