Watching from home, tennis courts from different events can often appear different in size.
This is due to a whole array of reasons including camera angle, position, the camera’s distance from the players and even the type of court.
That said, in nearly all circumstances, tennis courts are the same size. At least, that’s the case in the professional circuit where courts must have the same specifications.
This can change when you take into account recreational or touch tennis courts, but the vast majority of courts you encounter will likely be the same size.
So, exactly how big is a tennis court?
This is exactly what we’re going to take a look at today.
Tennis Court Dimensions
Of course, the dimensions of the playable area will vary depending on whether it’s a singles or doubles match.
These dimensions are:
Singles Tennis Court Dimensions
- Length: 78 ft / 23.77 m
- Width: 27 ft / 8.23 m
- Surface Area: 2,106 sq ft / 195.7 sq m
Doubles Tennis Court Dimensions
- Length: 78 ft / 23.77 m
- Width: 36 ft / 10.97 m
- Surface Area: 2,808 sq ft / 260.9 sq m
It’s worth mentioning that additional space is required around the court itself. This is often called the runoff. The runoff starts are the outer most lines of the court, and finishes at the back stop and side stops – these are pretty much just walls around the court.
For recreational purposes, the runoff is often the area in between the court itself and an external fence, with the fence being the back and side stops.
In a tournament location, this additional space is required for equipment, staff and to provide the players with enough room outside of the court itself (this is especially true with clay courts). Therefore the run off tends to be much larger on professional courts than recreational ones.
Due to the importance of this additional space, the ITF has recommended minimum distances between the base and sidelines and their respective back stops. These are:
- Minimum distance between baseline and back stop: 21 ft/ 6.4m
- Minimum distance between the sidelines and the side stop: 12 ft/ 3.66m
Recreational/ Club Play
- Minimum distance between baseline and back stop: 18 ft/ 5.48m
- Minimum distance between the sidelines and the side stop: 10 ft / 3.05m
Specific Area Dimensions
Now that we’ve taken a look at the dimensions of the court itself, let’s take a closer look at the specific dimensions of each area of the court.
You can also see the image below of an annotated court for reference.
- Tennis Net Height: 3 ft/ 0.9m
- Tennis Net Width (singles): 33ft/ 10.1m
- Tennis Net Width (doubles) 42ft/ 12.8m
- Length of Service Box: 21 ft / 6.4 m
- Width of Service Box: 13.5 ft / 4.1m
- Area of Each Service Box: 283.5 sq ft / 26.3 sq m
- Backcourt (No Man’s Land): 18 ft / 5.5 m x 27 ft / 8.2 m (486 sq ft / 45.2 sq m)
- Doubles Alley: 39 ft / 11.9 m x 4.5 ft / 1.4 m (175.5 sq ft / 16.3 sq m)
- Center Line: 4″ / 0.1 m long
What About the Net?
The net poles are placed 3 feet outside the singles sideline for singles, and 3ft outside the doubles sidelines for doubles. This means that the net is approximately 6 ft wider than the court itself.
It’s worth noting here that most clubs will not have courts designed especially for doubles or singles. Instead, most places use a doubles net for the duration of a tournament. An exception to this is Wimbledon Centre Court.
The tennis net height should measure 3 ft/ 0.9m in the centre and 3.5 ft/ 1.1m high at each pole.
What About Indoor Tennis Courts?
When playing tennis indoors, the ceiling of the room can become an issue. You don’t want to execute the perfect lob, only for it to bounce of the ceiling a moment later.
With that in mind, the ITF recommends that the distance from the court surface to the ceiling should be a minimum of 30 ft/ 9.14m.
Other than that, the dimensions of the court itself remain the same.
Your Questions Answered
Ok, here’s a few common questions to round out the end of the post.
How long is a tennis court?
A tennis court is 78 ft/ 23.77m
How wide is a tennis court?
A tennis court is 27 ft/ 8.23m wide for singles and 36 ft/ 10.97m wide for doubles.
How many square feet/ square meters is a tennis court?
A singles tennis court is 2,106 sq ft / 195.7 sq m and a doubles tennis court is 2,808 sq ft / 260.9 sq m.
Are professional tennis courts longer?
No, professional, club level and recreational tennis courts are the same length.
Well there we have it.
Hopefully now you’ve got a better understanding of how big a tennis court is.
If you’ve got any questions, feel free to get in touch with us via the comment section below.
Thanks for stopping by.
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