Funny looks for checking the net height?

fleabitten

Semi-Pro
I recently started carrying a little measuring tape to check the net before the match. Some people look at me funny, but so often the nets are too high. I rarely find them too low. I'd say that about 40% of the time the net is not 36". I don't bother adjusting the height if it is only 1/4" off, but over that I do. Does anyone else do this?
 

dlk

Hall of Fame
I like to check out the nets wherever I play; I don't make a big deal about it, but I like to keep mental note (i.e., such-n-such courts usually run high, etc..).
 

Totai

Professional
I just show up and play. If the nets are high, they are high for both players, or low for both players. No one gains an advantage.

2 guys I know that do check the height of the nets with measuring tape before they play, and they are terrible players. I wonder if they do that for intimidation purposes, because it doesn;t work if they are.
 
Personally, I'm thankful for people like you. I just play, like Totai, figuring it's the same height for all.

However...
I guess if you are a flat hitter with little arc, and your opponents play with more safety over the net, it's to your advantage to make sure they're at 36 inches.

Anyway...guys like you...you make the nets good for guys like me who do not check them.
Now, if I were the guy checking them, I'd make sure I do it long before my oppnents arrive (unless they are friends). That much of a stickler usually can draw some ire from a stranger.

The club where I play has a maintenance guy check them each morning while he tends to the trash and stuff. The park where I play - I see a guy doing them about once a week - always on Saturday mornings when I'm there (so he never gets to my court, hahah).

Well, cheers ... and thanks.
 

Jim A

Professional
If it looks completely out of line I'll give the net a look as I hit fairly flat but for the most part could care less

I make it a point to practice on a court where the net is high, its a public court where the center strap broke...so probably just over the middle area is high

I'd replace the strap, however then I'd have to wait for a court during the season
 

rudester

Professional
If you balls are skimming that close to the net where you are truly concerned about the issue. you could benefit more from developing shots with better depth/net clearance. I have no problem with people checking the net height though, it just does not matter that much personally. If the net is obviously too low this could be an issue that could be exploited by a flat server, but i think most players would recognize this at a glance.
 

fleabitten

Semi-Pro
If the net is obviously too low this could be an issue that could be exploited by a flat server, but i think most players would recognize this at a glance.

The net height is important and does not necessarily affect all players the same. As Slice BH pointed out above, players with loopy topspin are not as affected by a high net, but flatter hitters are adversely affected. Actually for me, I hit a big flat first serve and find that even if the net is 1 or 2" higher, it really takes away this weapon.
 
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Ajtat411

Semi-Pro
Oh man, usually I never check net clearances but during an Away playoff game, the net height was a little high, about 1.5" higher but we didn't figure it out until a good way into the first set. This height difference was at the middle and tapered down toward each end.

We figured it out because both me and my partner's first serves are flat and we had horrible 1st serve percentages. I mean this could be from nerves or just our general game but I felt like my serves were good/normal but it didn't clear the net and alot of them hit the net but dropped in. But we did notice that the net was higher and it's just not a good distraction to have when you're playing a match and having to decide if it's just a bad server/hitting day or if you need to somehow adjust to it.

We felt that even though everyone is hitting over the same net it would be fair, but what if your opponet has played this court already and has adjusted to these higher nets? Then they get the advantage. I'm not saying that they did it on purpose but they didn't care since it was there home courts.

Also in doubles, you want the ball to barley clear the net because that means low volleys for your opponets, hitting looping topspin is not the best option in doubles and are usually poached or put away.

The match was competitive though and they played well and won but little distractions like net clearance was just another thing to think about. I don't like think about stuff like that during a match. But we should have adjusted it during the match but chose not to since the other team insisted that the net was normal. My partner had a tape in his bag and did the measurement after the match.

So before this incident I would have said that is looks funny, but now I wouldn't mind and am looking for net heights that are a little too high. I like to play on regulation courts, that way I can't blame anything other than on the way I played. hehe :)
 
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OrangePower

Legend
Funny thing is, many many years ago it was a habit to check the net height every time. Back then with the small head racquet that had 9 inch wide heads the rule of thumb was that the net should be as high as the length of the racquet plus the width of the head. So it was easy to check without 'specialized' equipment.

These days however, I rarely bother to check, partly because I'd actually have to measure (or else have a piece of pre-measured ribbon or something to use) - and then you look like a dork :)
 

rudester

Professional
The net height is important and does not necessarily affect all players the same. As Slice BH pointed out above, players with loopy topspin are not as affected by a high net, but flatter hitters are adversely affected. Actually for me, I hit a big flat first serve and find that even if the net is 1 or 2" higher, it really takes away this weapon.


Agreed, that is why i pointed out the instance where a difference in net height would benefit or on the other hand if it was too high, be a detriment to the flat server.
 

athiker

Hall of Fame
I've never checked them and never really thought about it but like sbc above am thankful someone is out there doing it.

Actually I did have one guy check it before our match...in a singles Compass Draw...I didn't say anything but might've given a "funny look"! I guess b/c it was at my home court and he didn't say anything to me...just broke out the tape measure and went about his business. I'm sure he didn't see though...plus he beat me in a 3 setter so he had the most "fun" in the end. :)
 

Sherlock

Rookie
When I measure the nets before a tournament (when I run or officiate for them) I'm surprised that they sometimes run 1 or 2 inches high.

I can see why people would think it doesn't matter since it's the same for all players, but it really misses the point. Might as well just play on a court that's 3 feet shorter and 2 feet wider. It shouldn't matter, because it's the same for both players. The point is that the rules of tennis dictate that court dimensions are to be the same so that you don't have to make adjustments to court dimensions and can just focus on playing tennis. We have to adjust to weather and different court surfaces, but court dimensions are not one thing we should have to adjust to.

I probably would never measure the nets for a match that I play myself, but I would appreciate them being reasonably close to the typical height.
 

dlk

Hall of Fame
When I measure the nets before a tournament (when I run or officiate for them) I'm surprised that they sometimes run 1 or 2 inches high.

I can see why people would think it doesn't matter since it's the same for all players, but it really misses the point. Might as well just play on a court that's 3 feet shorter and 2 feet wider. It shouldn't matter, because it's the same for both players. The point is that the rules of tennis dictate that court dimensions are to be the same so that you don't have to make adjustments to court dimensions and can just focus on playing tennis. We have to adjust to weather and different court surfaces, but court dimensions are not one thing we should have to adjust to.

I probably would never measure the nets for a match that I play myself, but I would appreciate them being reasonably close to the typical height.

Good Point.
 
D

Deleted member 72105

Guest
I only check if the net looks off.

Just take whatever racquet you play with and figure out up to what string is 36". You don't ever have to take a tape measure or ribbon or anything. I hit flatter than most so I prefer my nets to be either correct or low (but never high).
 

brad1730

Rookie
Our club keeps yard sticks in the net near the net post. I don't mind people checking the net height, it's just a reall annoyance if they aren't skilled in adjusting the net. They'll fiddle with the strap or with this or that, and I'm thinking "we could be playing tennis already."
 

JRstriker12

Hall of Fame
I recently started carrying a little measuring tape to check the net before the match. Some people look at me funny, but so often the nets are too high. I rarely find them too low. I'd say that about 40% of the time the net is not 36". I don't bother adjusting the height if it is only 1/4" off, but over that I do. Does anyone else do this?

I keep a tape measure in the bag too. I don't automatically check. I usually only check if the net looks off.

But like you said. There are a lot of nets that are too high.
 
I'm a flat hitter and constantly find the public nets low. Perhaps it has something with kids sitting on them. I'll adjust them if they seem off but don't make a big deal out of it.
 

tennytive

Hall of Fame
As an umpire, we had to check them before every match and also measure for singles sticks.

Now I carry that same tape, but only use it if the net is off. We usually can adjust it in a few seconds. No funny looks at all.

But given a choice, I'd rather play with a net too high than too low.
 

dizzlmcwizzl

Hall of Fame
I always carry long zip ties and duct tape in the car. We often have to play on some really crappy courts for league tennis and I have been able to fix almost any problem with zip ties and duct tape.
 

Ronaldo

Bionic Poster
I always carry long zip ties and duct tape in the car. We often have to play on some really crappy courts for league tennis and I have been able to fix almost any problem with zip ties and duct tape.

Hope you never get pulled over for a traffic violation. Keep the zip ties and duct tape in your bag.
 

dlk

Hall of Fame
Hope you never get pulled over for a traffic violation. Keep the zip ties and duct tape in your bag.

LMAO. Yeah, how ya gonna explain that one. "Officer, I'm just fixing my tennis courts' nets, and my balaclava is for when I play in cold weather, cuz I'm into tennis, especially with accurate height nets." Only us here would believe him.
 

Ronaldo

Bionic Poster
Tourna sells a fold-up plastic stick to check the height. They also sell a center strap for about $8.00.

Ty, that strap sure will be easier to explain than the rope I use to make a centre strap and hunting knife used to cut it with the zip ties and duct tape in the backseat, eh?
 

Dags

Hall of Fame
I was given a metal net check a couple of years ago - I think it was one of those 'What can I give him as a gift? Ah, something tennis related' moments. It has a little racquet on one end and a ball at the other. Hook the racquet over the net and the ball is supposed to be just clear of the court.

Functionality-wise, the only advantage over carrying a piece of ribbon or string is that it is easier to use on your own - you can hang it on the middle of the net and watch it whilst you wind rather than having to re-measure. In terms of perception, it seems to get more respect. Turn up with a tape measure, and it suggests you care to the nearest millimetre. Carry something with a little racquet and ball on it, and it's a tennis accessory.
 

JavierLW

Hall of Fame
I have one of those height check devices, but rarely notice the net is off enough to check unless it's obviously way off.

Or maybe I am playing someone who had a definite advantage if the net is too low, like a person that hits everything flat.
 

Ronaldo

Bionic Poster
I have one of those height check devices, but rarely notice the net is off enough to check unless it's obviously way off.

Or maybe I am playing someone who had a definite advantage if the net is too low, like a person that hits everything flat.

Guy had a homemade net checker using a thin chain and an S-hook on the end.
 

JavierLW

Hall of Fame
Guy had a homemade net checker using a thin chain and an S-hook on the end.

The problem I would have with that is part of the whole point of checking the height is to prove it's off to your opponent or whoever.

If it's homemade, then who knows? Unless you have a tape measure handy to measure the device, along with a rulebook, but then you might as well just measure the net directly.
 

jswinf

Professional
Funny thing is, many many years ago it was a habit to check the net height every time. Back then with the small head racquet that had 9 inch wide heads the rule of thumb was that the net should be as high as the length of the racquet plus the width of the head. So it was easy to check without 'specialized' equipment.

These days however, I rarely bother to check, partly because I'd actually have to measure (or else have a piece of pre-measured ribbon or something to use) - and then you look like a dork :)

Me too on this. Back when men were men and rackets were wood you could pretty much bet, especially in doubles, somebody would do the racket height plus width thing, but all things must pass. I remember when some ball manufacturers packed a paper measuring tape in a can of balls, seemed like a good idea but didn't really catch on.

I usually don't worry about it unless the net just looks wacky.
 

fleabitten

Semi-Pro
Agreed, that is why i pointed out the instance where a difference in net height would benefit or on the other hand if it was too high, be a detriment to the flat server.

Yep. I wasn't really addressing you correctly. It was others in this thread that said that net height didn't matter because it affects everyone the same. (Which it doesn't).

But when you said this:
If you balls are skimming that close to the net where you are truly concerned about the issue. you could benefit more from developing shots with better depth/net clearance.
My response is that, first let's get the net right and then see if there are any stroke changes necessary. To take away someone's weapon whether it is flat groundies or serves, just to get used to a new (non-regulation) net height is unfair to that player. (As I mentioned above, for me it is the flat serve.) I understand what you are saying about building in more safety clearance which is a good idea in general, but a tall net can kill a weapon.
 

fleabitten

Semi-Pro
Just take whatever racquet you play with and figure out up to what string is 36". You don't ever have to take a tape measure or ribbon or anything.

Yeah, but you have to hope that your opponent believes you. I like a tailor's tape which you can buy online for $0.99 and since the 36" line is clearly marked, there is no doubting or argument.
 

fleabitten

Semi-Pro
i hit it pretty flat but have never found the need to check the net, cant really be bother more interested in getting my match going :)

Dude, you'd be suprised how often it is 2" high. Seems like most nets with the center strap, creep up. The buckle slides slightly and if they are never checked, it only takes a month or so to be way off. Being a flat hitter, "you'd dig it da most." (Pulp Fiction reference.)
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
Yesterday I got in 3 doubles sets. I hit the tape, ball bouncing up then back at least 10 times, mostly with my backhand slice approach shot. I also got 3 net cord winners, ball hitting tape and dying after creeping over the net. Not to mention at least that many net cord first serves.
I measure the net with one of the opposition. 1.5" too high.
If net had been even standard, the points would have been played out, we'd have more fun, and we'd all get better exercise.
 

Tmano

Hall of Fame
I'm one of those who likes to check the height of the net. I think that playing with the regular height would only benefit your game; instead of hitting with totally random height most of the time lower than 36" which is worse than higher because then you wonder why one day you hit like a pro and the other like a beginner.
 
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FloridaAG

Hall of Fame
Funny thing is, many many years ago it was a habit to check the net height every time. Back then with the small head racquet that had 9 inch wide heads the rule of thumb was that the net should be as high as the length of the racquet plus the width of the head. So it was easy to check without 'specialized' equipment.

These days however, I rarely bother to check, partly because I'd actually have to measure (or else have a piece of pre-measured ribbon or something to use) - and then you look like a dork :)

Indeed, this was the old rule of thumb
 
The net height is important and does not necessarily affect all players the same. As Slice BH pointed out above, players with loopy topspin are not as affected by a high net, but flatter hitters are adversely affected. Actually for me, I hit a big flat first serve and find that even if the net is 1 or 2" higher, it really takes away this weapon.

Same as my problem.
 

struggle

Legend
I would give you a funny look, because you should install singles sticks first, and then measure the net :twisted:

while i get it, i fail to see how the sticks could possibly change the height at center as it is determined by a fixed strap. center height will be the same regardless of post/stick height.
 

JRstriker12

Hall of Fame
while i get it, i fail to see how the sticks could possibly change the height at center as it is determined by a fixed strap. center height will be the same regardless of post/stick height.

If you've been to some of the less well maintained courts/facilities, the net may be loose (there may be some play in the center strap or where the center strap is attached to the court) but the right height (or close enough).

If you put in the sticks, it may well take up a bit of the slack and raise it a bit.
 

nalvarado

Semi-Pro
Funny thing is, many many years ago it was a habit to check the net height every time. Back then with the small head racquet that had 9 inch wide heads the rule of thumb was that the net should be as high as the length of the racquet plus the width of the head. So it was easy to check without 'specialized' equipment.

These days however, I rarely bother to check, partly because I'd actually have to measure (or else have a piece of pre-measured ribbon or something to use) - and then you look like a dork :)

My coach still checks like that. He is indeed a wise man.
 

SteveI

Legend
As a HS coach I always check them before matches. Part of my job to make sure the courts are clear, clean, safe and the nets are up to specs. I also carry stuff to adjust them. Takes like 5 minutes. My players are in most cases, good enough to notice if they are way off.

As far as when I play or practice.

Play.. like the nets to be right.

Practice... don't mind if they are high... Too low.. NO!

Steve
 
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