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The quality of your tennis ball is an important factor to consider in order to offer the best possible playing experience. During a training session or a match, the ball will progressively deteriorate until it no longer offers the necessary playing qualities. We propose you to come back on the causes of the wear of a tennis ball and its life span in order to know when to change it.

The wear and lifetime of a tennis ball

As you hit the ball, it will lose its felt and pressure making the bounce less consistent and providing less control on the shots. The wear of the ball can be more or less rapid depending on several criteria.

tennis ball on a court

Your stroke quality

The harder you hit the ball, the more pressure it will lose. Take four players with the same technique who play on two identical tennis courts for 1.5 hours. Players A and B each hit at 120km/h while on the second court, players C and D hit at 80km/h. The pressure of the ball will then be lower for players A and B.

The surface

The surface of the court has a strong impact on the wear of the ball. Depending on whether you are playing on porous concrete, clay, resin, grass or carpet, the surface will not have the same porosity and therefore a different grip. A new resin will strongly grip the ball and therefore reduce its life span while carpet or grass will have a lesser grip with the ball, thus preserving its felt.

Your playing style

A lifter will increase the wear on the felt of the ball, because the felt will rotate the ball a lot, creating additional friction on the strings and on the surface of the tennis court.

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When to change your tennis balls ?

A recreational tennis player will have to change his tennis balls on average every 4 to 6 hours of play while a competitive player will tend to change his balls between 2 and 4 hours of play. On professionnal tour, players change their tennis balls every 7 games. However, as we have seen before, depending on your stroke, style of play and court surface, you may have to change balls more quickly or you may continue to use your ball for a longer period of time.

The differences between pressure and non-pressure balls

Pressure balls have a higher bounce quality than unpressurized balls which are preferred for training. The first ones will tend to lose pressure and wear out faster than the second ones, but they will offer much more comfort and pleasure of play.

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