The net is our first opponent when we play the game of tennis. It’s 42 inches high at the net posts and 36” inches high at the center, and it is essential to know the tennis rules surrounding it.
So here they are, and they are very simple:
But what happens if a tennis ball spins back over the net?
A tennis ball spinning back over the net isn’t a very common occurrence, and the official International Tennis Federation (ITF) rule about this can be a bit confusing.
The ITF rulebook states:
“If the ball is hit and due to the spin or wind it is brought back over the net to the side of the original player who hit the ball, the opponent is allowed to reach over the net and play the ball without touching the net or the opponent’s court.”
So, suppose a tennis ball you have hit comes back over the net (either due to incredible backspin or the weather) before your opponent has a chance to hit it.
In that case, your opponent can reach over the net and play the ball.
However, this really isn’t a common occurrence in professional play or recreational play.
When you are playing tennis, be sure not to touch the net or any part of it, like the posts or straps with your body, clothing, or racket.
What happens if you do?
You lose the point, plain and simple.
Even if you lose grip of your racket and it touches the net, you will lose the point.
In recreational play, like tennis leagues and tennis tournaments, you and your opponent are responsible for being aware of when one of you touches the net.
It’s important, to be honest about it, and honestly, it’s typically a funny moment on the court when it happens.
In professional play, normally, the umpire and line judges are responsible for watching out for this.
Although, there have been times that they totally miss when a player touches the net, and it’s cost their opponent the point.
In tennis, it is allowed to hit the ball around the net. In this case, the ball does not have to be the height of the net post.
If you ever witness a shot like this, where the ball is hit around the net post and lands inside the opposite side of the court, it is one of the most amazing shots to see.
Rafael Nadal is known for this shot, and it’s been dubbed “The Banana Shot” – there are loads of videos out there on the internet that shows all the times he’s hit a successful banana shot.
He makes it look easy, but don’t be surprised if you try this shot the next time you are on the court, and it doesn’t work for you. Because it likely won’t.
There are a few more rules in tennis regarding the net. I will go over them below so that you can take them into account in the future.
Now you know all the ways the net can get in the way (or help you out) during a tennis match.
The most important rules are not reaching over it to hit a ball and not touching the net with part of your body or racket when the ball is live.