Playing under lights

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by Playtennis, Jul 19, 2013.

  1. Playtennis

    Playtennis New User

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    Have a match tonight under lights ( 9 pm) and I've never played in such am environment. Any advice? Similar to playing in bright sun? Please help. Thx
     
  2. gmatheis

    gmatheis Hall of Fame

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    it will be a little dimmer usually, so you really have to concentrate on watching the ball.

    Overheads and serves can also be tricky depending on what type of lights. Standard outdoor lighting with a dark sky can make it hard to see the ball well when it's up high ... if you are playing indoors this may be less of a problem.

    I've actually played some really good matches under lights ... but only when I really remember to watch the ball above all else.
     
  3. Playtennis

    Playtennis New User

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    It's outside.....
     
  4. tennis tom

    tennis tom Hall of Fame

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    Bring an extension ladder and some spare bulbs in case some are burnt out.
     
  5. Mongolmike

    Mongolmike Professional

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    Not similiar to playing in bright sun at all. Trust me, sunglasses NOT required.

    It is tougher to visually pick up the ball depth, speed, and spin. Best thing is to have played in similiar conditions before. Next best thing is to get there early enough to let your eyes adjust naturally to the changing conditions... ideally, to be able to hit for 20 minutes under the lights before your match... which is probably not an option.

    Gauge your own sense of how you are picking up the ball during warm-up and then play accordingly. If you are having trouble, then you can either play safer until you get used to it, or get up to the net and swing at everything you see including mosquitos. Depending on how well or how poor the lighting conditions are... its generally not that bad.

    I have more trouble at night playing indoors... I sometimes get the halo effect with my contacts indoors depending on what type of lights or how they are oriented (overhead). Outdoors you know the lights are going to be on the sides, not overhead, which for me is helpful in some ways.

    Don't stress out too much... everyone is playing under the same conditions... plus you don't have to worry about the sun in your eyes for serves.
     
  6. dman72

    dman72 Hall of Fame

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    Good points. The halos indoors are an issue for me as well. The big problem outdoors can be lobs that you lose in the lights..I've played some guys who try to exploit this...when in doubt, let it bounce.
     
  7. johndagolfer

    johndagolfer Semi-Pro

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    I think it all depends on how good the lights are. if they are low, like at the park I play at they can be horrible for returning serves. If the lights are yellow and not a good white light they might also make it harder to see the ball clearly.

    I would definitely get there early to get adjusted to it.
     
  8. Playtennis

    Playtennis New User

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    Thanks everyone very appreciated.
     
  9. goran_ace

    goran_ace Hall of Fame

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    I'd agree that return of serve is probably the area where playing under the lights affects me the most. Otherwise in doubles or in net play you might have issues judging if a ball is going out and whether to play the high volley or let it go. Until you get used to the lighting it can feel like you are a half second late on everything, it might take a game or two for your eyes toget used to it.

    9PM is tough because you are playing the entire match under the lights. If you had, for example, a 7:30/8PM start time and they turn the lights on mid-match while there is still some daylight I find it easier to get used to the lights as the daylight slowly fades out. That being said, your opponent has to deal with the same issues and once you're into the match you forget about the lighting anyway.
     
  10. RogueFLIP

    RogueFLIP Semi-Pro

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    You also have to be careful of some shadows or blind spots in case some parts of the court aren't lit up like the rest.

    Courts near me had one or two bulbs out, creating a "void".....so a high topspin shot, you'd see the ball go up, it would disappear into the void, then reappear a split second later, but enough to throw you off a little.

    Oy vey.
     
  11. vandre

    vandre Hall of Fame

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    kinda late but in case you still need it....be prepared to see bugs...lots of bugs...I've seen mosquitos swoop down and snatch the ball out of the air before. the rule about not smiling on a motorcycle is also applicable here. :twisted:
     
  12. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    Wear a hat with a dark brim. It really helps me track the ball at night.
     
  13. stapletonj

    stapletonj Semi-Pro

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    rule of thumb - if the lob goes out of range of the lights, bounce it.

    Don't underestimate the lights coming into play on the service toss, you may need to adjust your position (although not quite as bad as the sun, can be distracting)

    The lights can be a factor also in even picking up groundstrokes, especially if you are on the way in.

    Best Bet if possible, I would go play a practice set or even just hit some with a partner on the same or similarly lit court at the same time of evening before the match.
     
  14. NLBwell

    NLBwell Legend

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    The last match under the lights I played, the opponent made sure he served from such a position that the ball came out of the spotlights from the neighboring apartments. Of course, these were his regular courts, so he knew to do this, as well as hit lobs above the lights. Home field advantage. Be aware of such things.
     

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