What to expect from indoor "carpet"?

GrandIllusion

New User
Not sure if this is the right section to post this. I live in a small town with no indoor courts. So my hitting partner and I got in touch with an acquaintance who runs a summer camp in town and asked to use the camp's recreational center to play in this winter. He was fine with it just as long as we didn't turn on any electricity and only use the natural light of day for lighting. (Lots of windows)

This rec center surface consists of very thin carpet laid down over cement. It's not like the rubbery synthetic stuff that I generally envision when thinking of traditional indoor carpet, but like actual carpet. The rec center is usually used for indoor volleyball/basketball and other camp activities during the summer. We're planning on using the volleyball net as our net and duct tape to mark off the lines. The ceiling is quite low, so there won't be much lobbing.

So I guess my question is, are we just begging for ankle injuries playing on this type of surface? Will the surface play super fast? I've played on outdoor hard courts most of my life, will there be that much of a difference in how the surface plays? Anyone else played on indoor "carpet"?
 
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LeeD

Bionic Poster
Watch out for worn or smooth parts, where the ball and your shoes accelerate upon contact.
Try to lay the court where both sides evenly get fresh carpet.
Bounces can be extremely high, while skids go really low. Harder on your legs than you think, carpet over cement is cold and unforgiving to knees and ankles.
Watch for angles of the carpet, as they don't rise straight up from the floor, they angle one way or another. Really kicks up the ball when the fuzz is facing the incoming ball, and skids when it's facing away.;
It can play slow and bouncy on some shots, and really fast and skidded on other's.
Good luck, carpet is not favored for tennis courts currently.
 

GrandIllusion

New User
Thanks Lee, always appreciate your detailed posts. I will definitely take your advice into consideration. Should be pretty interesting to see how it plays out. I think it's probably going to be pretty cold in there without electricity anyways, so we may just brave the elements and play outdoors. We'll see what happens
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
Should be interesting.
First impression I got from playing on carpet was how slow the court could be at times, how high the ball bounced AT TIMES, and how skidded the ball could also bounce. Prepare early.
 

syc23

Professional
Watch out for worn or smooth parts, where the ball and your shoes accelerate upon contact.
Try to lay the court where both sides evenly get fresh carpet.
Bounces can be extremely high, while skids go really low. Harder on your legs than you think, carpet over cement is cold and unforgiving to knees and ankles.
Watch for angles of the carpet, as they don't rise straight up from the floor, they angle one way or another. Really kicks up the ball when the fuzz is facing the incoming ball, and skids when it's facing away.;
It can play slow and bouncy on some shots, and really fast and skidded on other's.
Good luck, carpet is not favored for tennis courts currently.

Everything highlighted above as to why carpet SUCKS as a tennis surface. All IMO off course. Do remember to wear shoes for carpet with a smooth sole as normal HC shoes are too grippy and you will end up injuring your knees.
 

papa

Hall of Fame
I've played on carpet just a couple of times and didn't care for it. However, I remember the odd smell which seemed stronger in some areas more than others.

Is mold a problem with this surface and if not, how do they deal with water (leaks, spills and water breaks) effectively? I haven't seen this used outside and don't think it would be very good.
 
I have played on this type surface in a church rec center. My advice would be to promise each other you will rally casually and not get competitive.

It is a recipe for very sore knees at the minimum....a busted ankle, torn ACL if your shoe catches during an intense match.
 

tennis_balla

Hall of Fame
Not sure what you guys have played on but the indoor carpet courts here in Europe are amazing. Here is Prague its great at a few places but the best one I've played was at a club in Dusseldorf Germany. Such a true bounce, nice and quiet and amazing to play on.
 

GrandIllusion

New User
Yes this type of carpet is very similar to what TennisCoachFLA is talking about, like carpet you would find in a church rec center. Good advice on keeping it casual and wearing proper shoes. I just bought a new pair of Barricades that I wouldn't dare take out there in fear of shattering my ankle. Going to search in the closet for an old pair of shoes...preferably with a smooth, worn-down sole.

I'm sure the proper indoor carpet courts in Europe and America alike are very nice. This type of carpet that I am playing on is not meant for tennis.
 
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sonicare

Hall of Fame
played on indoor carpet for 15 months..never slipped once.

My advice if the carpet is thin

"prepare thy angus"

cos that ball is gonna skid through like a mother****er with medium bounce.

If you have a loopy takeback, then its

"good night sweet prince"

Good luck with your tennis goals OP

and

PLEASE RESPOND.
 

6-2/6-4/6-0

Semi-Pro
Grew up playing indoor 'carpet' in my hometown, but it was the traditional rubber tennis flooring with a low bounce, and a fairly fast surface. I loved it. Playing on actual carpet, I'd be really cautious. So many ways to injure yourself that I really don't want to think about it.

My only comment would be to use the green masking tape for 'hard to stick surfaces' instead of duct tape. At the very least use gaffer's tape. Duct tape will leave horrible residue that may ruin their carpet...
 

Xfimpg

Professional
Just reviving this thread instead of starting a new one... we're playing locally on a red/green outdoor carpet - they sprinkle it will some granules from time to time - and I notice that I can't seem to topspin the ball as I normally would; is that something with the way the ball fuzzes up/or doesn't, or something with the granules on the ball? Anyone else notice this?
 
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