USTA Noob Questions

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by TokyopunK, Mar 1, 2009.

  1. TokyopunK

    TokyopunK Professional

    Jan 20, 2006
    Chicago Suburb
    I joined the USTA about a month ago and just got my ID card with my number on it yesterday.

    I looked online for some tournaments and I found one in April for Adult Men's Singles (I am 20) that has 3.0, 3.5, 4.0, 4.5 tournaments.

    I went to register and it says my name and then NTRP 0.0

    Can I still register for the tournament or do I have to get rated by someone first?

    And I am not really 100% sure about my rating so which level should I enter?
  2. eeytennis

    eeytennis Semi-Pro

    Nov 12, 2008
    I think that you can enter any level, BUT there is some rule that once you enter a tournament at a certain level you can't play at a lower level, and if you enter in a level that is too low for your level of play, then you have to play Open from then on...not completely sure on that, but I heard it from somewhere...
  3. ChuDat

    ChuDat Professional

    May 21, 2007
    I think you have to play with a usta offical and they will tell you what level your at, I'm not 100% sure though.
  4. Jim A

    Jim A Professional

    Dec 29, 2008
    when you go to register for the tournament it will allow you to register for any of those events since you are 0.0

    what is the level of play you normally play against?

    Did you self-rate on your USTA membership, if so what level?
  5. goober

    goober Legend

    Jun 9, 2004
    No you can play any level until you have an official rating. If you are tournament exclusive you won't get a rating till then end of the year.

    I know somebody who played Opens and got crushed. He then dropped down to 3.5 and dominated. He went to 4.0 and then finally 4.5 by the end of the year
  6. JRstriker12

    JRstriker12 Hall of Fame

    Mar 31, 2006
    Your NTRP is 0.0 because you have not rated yourself or played in any USTA tournaments or leagues.

    IMHO - Most people use the USTA self-rating guidelines to estimate their NTRP (

    Some tennis pros do offer short clinics to provide you with a starting NTRP - but IIRC, I don't think USTA officials do any sort of ratings clinics (at least not in my area).

    One thing to keep in mind is that if you rate yourself too high, you can't play below that level, but you can always play up a level if you rate too low. For example, if you rate 4.5 (which is a fairly advanced level as far as recreational tennis goes), you can't drop to play 3.5 events. Dropping would require appealing your self rating ( Pages/Leagues/23179_Appeal_a_Rating.aspx ).

    To get you started. here are the guidelines: Assets/2006/04/03/doc_13_12277.pdf

    3.0 This player is fairly consistent when hitting medium-paced shots, but is not comfortable with all strokes and lacks execution when trying for directional control, depth, or power. Most common doubles formation is one up, one back.

    3.5 This player has achieved improved stroke dependability with directional
    control on moderate shots, but still lacks depth and variety. This player
    exhibits more aggressive net play, has improved court coverage, and is
    developing teamwork in doubles.

    4.0 This player has dependable strokes, including directional control and depth on both forehand and backhand sides on moderate shots, plus the ability to use lobs, overheads, approach shots, and volleys with some success. This player occasionally forces errors when serving. Rallies may be lost due to impatience. Teamwork in doubles is evident.

    4.5 This player has begun to master the use of power and spins and is beginning to handle pace, has sound footwork, can control depth of shots, and is beginning to vary game plan according to opponents. This player can hit first serves with power and accuracy and place the second serve. This player tends to overhit on difficult shots. Aggressive net play is common in doubles.

    BTW- what's your tennis background? You play high school? college? Juniors? Recently pick up the game?
  7. JRstriker12

    JRstriker12 Hall of Fame

    Mar 31, 2006
    Hmmm.. Interesting. Didn't realize this.
  8. Topaz

    Topaz Legend

    Jun 18, 2005
    Until last year, JR, you actually had a tournament exclusive rating from a few years ago...I saw it when the new ratings were coming out last November.

    Since you finally played adult league, you got a C rating this year.
  9. Topaz

    Topaz Legend

    Jun 18, 2005
    TP, like goober said, you kind of have a 'free pass' until the next round of ratings come out. When that happens, you will end up with a rating based on what tournaments you've played, what level the tournament and your opponents were, and your results.

    You can play opens...anyone can at any level/age...but if you've never played any type of USTA matches/league/tournaments before, you may want to get an idea of your skill level first.

    You can have a pro suggest a rating, but I think the best idea would be to play a match (or at least a few sets) against other players who do have a rating...and then go from there. Do you know any other players like that? Say, hit against a computer rated 3.0, and if you crush him, then try someone who is a 3.5, etc etc....until you find the level where you are competitive (meaning a competitive win or loss).

    If you decide to play for a team in league play, you will have to go through the self-rating process before you register for the team.

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