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Tennis Tips for New Fans

Like any sport, tennis is confusing to watch if you never played it yourself or you didn’t grow up watching it. Here are a few things you can do to learn more about the sport.

1. Read about the basics. Here are a few sites you should visit to learn more about the game:
SportSpectator Fan’s Guide to Tennis: Our 10 minute guide to tennis.
Wikipedia tennis Write-up: Good wiki community write-up on tennis.
-1b. Consider buying one or several of the following books:
Dummies Guide to Tennis

2. Watch a televised match. The commentary makes the sport much easier to follow and will help you pick up the lingo. Commentators use the language and provide analysis that will help you learn. Tennis is an international sport and there are frequently games on tv (view schedule).

3. Watch a major tournament and follow a player. Tennis is much more fun to watch when you are rooting for a player. If possible, choose one of the four "Grand Slam" Tournaments such as the US Open (2 weeks in Aug/Sept), Australian Open (January), French Open (May/June), or Wimbleton (June/July). These are the most important tournaments in terms of both prestige and payout. If you have to choose only one day to watch, watch the final day (view schedule). Another fun event to watch is the Davis Cup, where countries play in head-to-head match-ups.

4. Play. If you've never played before, have a friend that plays take you out to hit the ball around. Most cities have public courses (high schools, parks, etc) where you can play for free and learn more about the game. Getting on the court with someone who plays the game will help you learn the basics.