Terminology

Discover the essential language and slang that makes tennis unique

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As with any sport, tennis makes use of specific terminology or vocabulary.

If you’re just getting into tennis, the terms on this page will help you become more fluent in the words that players use. From scoring and match play to the court and slang, we have you covered.

Here are the different types of tennis terms that we cover – click any of these links to jump straight to that section.

ScoringSlang
MatchplayCourt
ShotsTournament
TechniqueEquipment

Why learn tennis terms?

There are a variety of reasons why it’s valuable to learn the terminology used in tennis. Here are a few of the top reasons:

You Play Tennis

If you play tennis, then it’s helpful to speak the language other players will use both in match play and off the court. The more familiar you are, the more comfortable you will be in conversation which will, in turn, make it easier to relate to your peers.

You’re Learning Tennis

When you’re learning tennis, your coach is going to use specific terms and phrases when they teach. The more familiar you are with the words they use, the easier it will be to absorb their instruction.

For example, if your coach tells you to stay out of no man’s land or asks you to hold a continental grip you’ll know what they mean if you’re familiar with the terms.

You Enjoy Watching Tennis

If you’re a fan of the sport and love to watch matches on TV or attend tournaments, then it’s incredibly helpful to learn tennis terms. Doing so will help you more easily follow along and in turn, increase your level of enjoyment.

What we cover for each term

For each term, we provide comprehensive details that will help you walk away with a clear understanding. Here’s what you can expect when you click to learn more about each term.

For each term, we provide comprehensive details that will help you walk away with a clear understanding. Here’s what you can expect when you click to learn more about each term.

  • A definition
  • Examples of the term in a sentence
  • Context for its use
  • Common questions and answers about the term

Ready to get started? Keep scrolling to review each section, and its related terms.

Scoring

Matchplay

Shots

Technique

Slang

Court

Tournament

Equipment

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terms or post any questions you have.

Become a Member

Join TennisCompanion to learn more about tennis terms or post any questions you have.