Love – Love

To be an expert at everything. Polish up on your tennis terminology, because everything is better with a little gloss.

ACE
serve that is neither touched nor returned by the receiving player.

ADVANTAGE
(“In” or “Out”) – the first point won by a side, following deuce. When the serving side wins this point it is called advantage-in. If the non-serving side wins the point, it becomes “break point” and the advantage is out.

ALLEY
The lane between the singles and doubles sidelines; out-of-bounds in singles play.

ATP
Association of Tennis Professionals, the men’s professional circuit

BACKHAND
player turns so that the shoulder of the racket-bearing arm faces the net before bringing the racket forward and across the body to meet the ball.

BACKSPIN
undercutting the ball with the racket so that it bounces back toward the net and away from an opponent.

BAGEL
winning a set 6-0. A double bagel is winning 6-0, 6-0.

BALL BOY
a person, male or female, tasked with retrieving tennis balls from the court that have gone out of play

BASELINE
boundary on either end of the court representing the outer limits of the length of the court.

BASELINE PLAY
hitting long ground strokes from the baseline

BREAK POINT
when a non-serving player has the scoring advantage and is one point away from winning the game.

BREAKING SERVE
when the non-serving side wins the game.

CROSSCOURT SHOT

a ball hit diagonally across the tennis court on a baseline ground stroke.

DEUCE
when two competing sides are tied at “40″ in a game. Because a game must be won by two points, play continues from deuce until one player leads by a margin of two points.

DOUBLE FAULT
when both serving attempts fail to land inside the service court the opponent wins the point.

DOWN THE LINE
hitting the ball straight ahead into the opponent’s court.

DROP SHOT
a lightly hit, spinning return that drops softly over the net, forcing the opponent to approach the net.

FAULT
when a serve is illegal or fails to land in the service court.

FOOT FAULT
when the server steps across the baseline prior to hitting the ball.

FORCED ERROR
when a player is out of position and unable to return a well hit ball by an opposing player.

FOREHAND
player pivots the body so that the shoulder of the non racket-bearing arm faces the net. The player then swings the racket forward to meet the ball.

GOLDEN SLAM
winning the Grand Slam and the tennis Olympic gold medal in a calendar year

GRAND SLAM
the four most prestigious tournaments in a year: the Australian Open, the French Open (or Roland Garros), Wimbledon and the U.S. Open.

GROUND STOKE
a forehand or backhand shot that is executed after the ball bounces once on the court

HOLDING SERVE
when a serving player wins his or her own service game.

LET
when a served ball touches the net cord but still lands within the service court.

LOB
a stroke in tennis where the ball is lifted high above the net with the intention of it going over the opposing player in the case of him being close to the net, thus nearly guaranteeing the point.

LOVE
term meaning zero points.

NO MAN’S LAND
the backcourt area between the baseline and the net; difficult for players caught in this area to make successful returns.

OVERHEAD SMASH
a powerful overhand volley shot generally used to return a lob.

PLAYING THE NET
players approach and position themselves at the net in an effort to cut down on the court size and make quick return volleys on the ball.

POACHING
(in doubles) an aggressive move where the player at net moves to volley a shot intended for his/her partner.

PUT AWAY (or Kill)
when the ball his hit hard past an opponent who has no chance to make a return play on the ball. A put away scores a point.

RALLY
when players trade numerous strokes back and forth on a single point.

RECEIVER
player who receives the ball from the server.

SERVE
begins every point of a tennis match. The player who initiates the point.

SERVE AND VOLLEY
after a serve, it is the quick approach to the net by the serving player. The intent is to make a quick volley stroke on the ball against the opposing player’s service return shot.

SERVICE COURT
area of the court between the net, the singles sideline, and the service line into which the ball is served.

SET
grouping of games in a match. Each set is played until one side wins a total of six games by a margin of at least two games. If a set is even at six games apiece, a “tie-break” is played.

SET POINT (and Match Point)
when a player is one point away from winning the set or match. Double and triple set points describe when a player has a two or three point lead in a game that would decide the set or match.

SLICE
similar to backspin in that it is a way of striking the ball so that it doesn’t bounce well for the opponent; used to draw a player out of position.

SLICE SERVE
serving the ball in a way as to cause it to spin away from the receiving player; often used on a player’s second serve.

STRAIGHT SETS
a match victory in which the victor never lost a set.

STROKE
general term describing a player’s motion when hitting the ball either forehand or backhand.

TIE BREAK
if players are tied at six games each in a set, a tie-break decides the winner. Players alternate until one player wins seven points by a margin of at least two points.

TOP SPIN
opposite of back spin. The player brings the racket over the ball when he or she strikes it so that it spins from low to high as it travels forward.

UNFORCED ERROR
when a player loses a point because he or she makes an error on a ball that could easily be returned.

VOLLEY
occurs when a player strikes the ball before it bounces.

WTA
Women’s Tennis Association, the women’s professional circuit

Thanks for the cliff notes Pretty Tough. Love – Love the name!

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