Originally Posted by BMC9670
Just "play up" is all of common of an answer but not always a good one. There are mandates for USTA competition and many kids get caught in the middle. My son (and many of his tennis peers) was perfectly capable of playing good tennis with regulation at 9, but was not an "elite" player. All USTA competition in my section was orange ball on a 60' court for 10U. This was going backwards for him. Yes, he could have played 12U, but there is a big difference in 9 and 12 physically, speed, agility, an maturity. Now at 10 we're in a different section and he could not even qualify for the lowest tier 12U until 10 1/2 and guess what, those lower level are all green ball. So at 10, he would have to play the top level 12U tourneys to get regulation.
So, play up works if your kid is an elite player or if they can handle getting creamed every match. Personally, I don't want to pay high tourney fees for one match, either.
There is a lot of truth to this.
To my knowledge green ball/green dot ball is not being used in the 10 and under division at all. My 10 year old played in the southern championships in 2009-2011 and it was always orange ball.