Tennis 2012-12-12 17:31

History and Introduction of the Sport

Tennis has a long history, the earliest existing origin dates back to France in the 11th century where a game called “jeu de paume” was very popular in the courtyard of the monastery. The game used the walls and slant roof of the monastery as part of the competition field, and the players hit the ball with their palms. Gradually, this activity came to the French royal court and quickly became a kind of entertainment among the aristocrats at that time. At first, they played indoors and then moved to the outdoors. In an open area, two people stood on two sides of the rope which was pulled up in the middle of the area as a dividing line and then stroke back and forth the cloth-ball which was filled with hair. The paddle for the ball appeared in the 16th century which greatly promoted the development of this sport event.

There was plenty of well-clipped grassland in England for croquet competition in the 19th century. In 1875, All England Croquet Club had to turn some of the playgrounds into the courts for lawn-tennis in order to raise money. This shows that the lawn tennis has eventually become a popular sport among the mass. In 1913, 12 countries namely Australia, New Zealand, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Britain, Holland, the Soviet Union, France, South Africa, Sweden and Switzerland, sent representatives to the meeting in Paris to discuss and unify the rules of tennis which also marks the establishment of International Lawn Tennis Federation (ILTF). Although Spain didn’t send the representatives but it confirmed the contents passed by the meeting. In 1923, the International Lawn Tennis Federation made the official rules of tennis in the regular meeting in Paris. In 1977, the federation canceled the word “lawn” and changed their name to International Tennis Federation (ITF).

The early tennis competition in Olympic Games only allowed amateurs to participate. Because of the difficulty in defining a player as a professional or an amateur, tennis disappeared for a long time from the Olympic Games after 1924. Only until 1988 did tennis came back to the Olympic Games. In 2005, tennis was put into the competition events list in East Asian Games in Macau.

Basic terms of tennis competition

Ace: The server gets the score directly due to the speed or position of the ball which make the receiver unable to catch.

Advantage: if two sides were going fifty-fifty before the final round, the one who gets a score first gets the advantage.

Break Point: the server or receiver who gets the point can get one score of the round; if the server or receiver wins the Break Point, he or her has broken the opponent’s serve.

Double Fault: there are two chances to serve the ball for every point; double fault will lost that point.

Love: Point Zero.

Spectators’ Manners:

1. The spectators should enter the stadium on time, and be seated on their own seats before the competition begins. Eating, chatting, walking, staying in the passageway, and watching on the railings are very improper behaviors. Spectators can have a rest when the players change courts and rest. After the competition begins, the spectators should keep absolute silence and not to interrupt the player. It’s necessary to turn their cell phones to mute or vibrate, so the players can focus on the game and perform well in the competition.

2. The timing of applause is also very important. During the competition, the spectators should be quite and only when one side get a score can they cheer for the winners. They should stop cheering when the player is about to serve a ball. It is very impolite to give applause when a player makes a fault in serving or hitting a ball.

3. Using the flashlight to take photos is also prohibited in the tennis court during the competition. The flashlight may block the player’s sight which leads to the suspension of the game. When a spectator picks up the ball hit by the player, make sure to throw it back into the court after each one-score round is concluded, never throw the ball into the court in the course of the game for it may interrupt the competition.

There are many manners in watching the tennis game, unlike the excited atmosphere in the live football and basketball competitions, tennis is a gentlemanlike sport and has its own cultural background and conventional manners, so both the players and the spectators should understand the culture of tennis and abide by the rules.