Playing a sport is a fun way to get some fresh air and exercise, and tennis definitely offers a full-body workout. If you’ve been thinking of spending some time at the courts this year, though, you’re going to need the right equipment.
Getting the right tennis equipment and accessories is a bit more complicated than just digging that ancient racket out of the garage. Choosing the right racket actually takes some thought. You also need proper shoes for all the running and moving around you’ll be doing on the court.
All of this is why preparing to play tennis, even as a beginner, requires some research. Fortunately, though, we’ve done that for you!
Choosing the Right Racket
Not all tennis rackets are created equal. When it comes to shopping for a beginner’s racket, it’s wise to consider a few factors. First, a racket with a larger head will make it easier for you to hit those balls, but it’s also heavier, which might not be what you want. Something midsize and weighted might be better.
The HEAD Ti.S6 is a good choice for beginners. It has a midsize head and comes with a cushioned bag for extra protection when you’re traveling or on the go.
The Right Pair of Tennis Shoes
Sure, you can wear any old shoes on the tennis court, but you shouldn’t. Because you’ll be moving around a lot, and especially from side to side, you want shoes that offer more lateral support. This will prevent you from rolling your ankle. Who wants to be off the courts for a month and constantly icing an injury?
How many tennis balls you’ll want depends on how much running around you want to do while you’re learning the game. When you’re starting out, you might swing at a few balls, then collect them all when you run out. After you’ve gotten more experience, though, you’ll probably only need two or three balls.
For the best quality, we recommend tennis balls made by a company that’s focused on tennis, like these three-packs from Wilson.
Head- and Wristbands
Tennis is a sweaty sport. You move around a lot, so sweat is bound to start bothering you at some point. You don’t have to deal with it, though—prevent it, instead.
Terrycloth wrist- and headbands are super affordable and will prevent sweat from getting in your eyes or your grip from getting to slick. This Favofit set is available in several colors, and includes a headband and two wristbands.
Toss It All in a Tennis Bag
While tennis rackets usually come with a bag, you’ll probably need more space than that for all your other equipment. A handy backpack, like this one from ACOSEN, makes it easy to carry multiple rackets, balls, extra gear, and even a couple of bottles of water so you can stay hydrated while you play.
Once you’ve stocked up on your equipment, all you need is a tennis court with a regulation net. You don’t have to be a member of a country or tennis club, either—your local park likely has courts where you can play for free.