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Will Chao
01-28-2012, 05:18 PM
I just moved to Australia and there seems to be only clay courts in my region, I'm a beginner and so far I've only played for a month on hard courts and I feel like I can do some decent strokes, but after trying out on clay I'm starting to lose confidence as I find it hard to predict the bounce and such because it is so different.

The question is, are there any benefits on training on clay? As apposed to training on hard (which is quite rare in Melbourne and the only club is extremely expensive). My situation limits myself to clay but I don't particularly enjoy playing on it, I'd still like to play on hard in the future but would doing the training on clay help?

mikeler
01-28-2012, 05:35 PM
You are in an ideal situation. Clay is the best surface to learn tennis on.

papa
01-28-2012, 05:47 PM
Well, I play, teach & coach on both. Most clay courts really aren't clay but are really crushed stone/brick. In the US Har Tru is a very common term for clay courts - actually that's the company name that supplied the materials -- top and base. Generally greeniah in color and the consistency of the grist material found on asphalt shingles but a little smaller (finer ground).

These play slower than hard surfaces but are much easier on your feet. Bounce is higher also and it takes a little time to adjust but you'll learn to like them.

Will Chao
01-28-2012, 05:53 PM
Well, I play, teach & coach on both. Most clay courts really aren't clay but are really crushed stone/brick. In the US Har Tru is a very common term for clay courts - actually that's the company name that supplied the materials -- top and base. Generally greeniah in color and the consistency of the grist material found on asphalt shingles but a little smaller (finer ground).

These play slower than hard surfaces but are much easier on your feet. Bounce is higher also and it takes a little time to adjust but you'll learn to like them.

Here it's called "en tout cas", is that also clay? It doesn't have any green at all

ThoughtCrime
01-28-2012, 05:54 PM
Easier on the joints and teaches you better point construction as the surface is quite a bit slower. Didn't really like them at first, but they grow on you.

TheCanadian
01-28-2012, 06:12 PM
You have to hit a lot of balls to win a point. That's fantastic for one's tennis. Clay is the best surface on all counts.

Limpinhitter
01-28-2012, 06:19 PM
You are in an ideal situation. Clay is the best surface to learn tennis on.

Agreed! When I was in juniors, the kids who played at or were members of clay court clubs won most of the tournaments, both clay and hard. Clay requires more patience and a more tactical, high percentage approach than hard. It requires that you learn to construct points before going for big shots. It also exacts less wear and tear on the feet and legs over time.

PS: You'll also learn to slide into your shots.

Limpinhitter
01-28-2012, 06:34 PM
Here it's called "en tout cas", is that also clay? It doesn't have any green at all

If it's dirt, then it qualifies as clay. Here's an article that more precisely answers your question: http://www.xsports.com/clay.html

Say Chi Sin Lo
01-28-2012, 06:35 PM
Agreed! When I was in juniors, the kids who played at or were members of clay court clubs won most of the tournaments, both clay and hard. Clay requires more patience and a more tactical, high percentage approach than hard. It requires that you learn to construct points before going for big shots. It also exacts less wear and tear on the feet and legs over time.

PS: You'll also learn to slide into your shots.

I wish there are more clay courts where I live. Sliding into the shots sounds more fun actually hitting the shot!

Fuji
01-28-2012, 08:47 PM
I wish I was in your situation, even though clay doesn't benefit my play style at all. Hard courts are just rough on the joints though. I really notice it in my feet, ankles, knees, and hips. I have to take a lot of extra precautions during my year to avoid injury. :)

-Fuji

Ballinbob
01-28-2012, 11:31 PM
I hate clay.... didnt have a good experience with it. Would much rather take the "beating on the joints" on hard courts than on clay.

Nevertheless, its probably better to learn on clay like others have said. I just dont like it and felt the need to rant:)

good luck

Limpinhitter
01-29-2012, 08:41 AM
I hate clay.... didnt have a good experience with it. Would much rather take the "beating on the joints" on hard courts than on clay.

Nevertheless, its probably better to learn on clay like others have said. I just dont like it and felt the need to rant:)

good luck

I mentioned before that I made the transition. Once you learn to play on clay, you will LOVE CLAY! I promise! And you will be a better player on both clay and hard.

papa
01-29-2012, 04:54 PM
Here it's called "en tout cas", is that also clay? It doesn't have any green at all

The material can several colors although I'm told its isn't dyed. One thing that should be mentioned is when you go down on this stuff, you really have to wash whatever scrape/cut you end up because infection will almost always follow if you don't.

papa
01-29-2012, 04:56 PM
Agreed! When I was in juniors, the kids who played at or were members of clay court clubs won most of the tournaments, both clay and hard. Clay requires more patience and a more tactical, high percentage approach than hard. It requires that you learn to construct points before going for big shots. It also exacts less wear and tear on the feet and legs over time.

PS: You'll also learn to slide into your shots.

Absolutely, good post as ususual.