Parts of the Tennis Court


A tennis court has 9 distinct regions, each with a specific role for dictating game play. To the novice tennis spectator, it is not always clear why a ball is called out or how a player faults a serve. Fortunately, with a little studying, it is easy to understand the layout and parts of a tennis court.

The Baseline

  • The baseline forms the very top and bottom boundaries of a tennis court. Players serve from just behind the baseline and can receive serves from on, just in front or behind baseline.

The Doubles Sideline

The Singles Sideline

  • The singles sideline is the line just inside the doubles sideline, and runs parallel the doubles line. If you hit the ball in between the singles and doubles sidelines in singles play, the ball is out of bounds, but in doubles play, the ball is still in. This area between the two lines is called the doubles' tramline.

Baseline Center Mark

  • This line divides each baseline into two sections. When serving, a player will stand just to the right of left of this line, depending on which side of the court he's currently playing.

The Net

  • The net divides the tennis court in half, separating the competitors' sides. The net itself is somewhat lower in the middle than on the outer edges. Players are not allowed to hit the net with the ball while serving.

Service Lines

  • There is one service line on each side of the court. Service lines run parallel to the baselines and are located between the net and baseline. The center service line runs straight down the middle of the court, parallel to the sidelines and in between the two service lines. Served balls must land inside or on the service line and the center service line in the correct service box to be called in.

Service Boxes

  • There are four service boxes on a tennis court. These boxes are formed by the intersections of the net, the service lines, and the center service line. When serving, a player must land the ball in the service box diagonally across from him on the opposite side of the court.

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  • Photo Credit tennis image by photlook from tennis net image by Warren Millar from serve on the way image by jimcox40 from tennis image by MNC from
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