Tennis Industry magazine

 

On the Fence: Good fences make good facilities, and often, the best fence is one that is barely noticed.

Fencing around your tennis court is something that rarely gets attention. After all, it’s not as showy as a surface, and it’s certainly not as interesting as the players.

To a certain extent, having a fence nobody notices is a good thing. Unless something has gone very wrong with the fence, it should just be taken for granted that it’s doing its job: keeping balls in the playing area, keeping excess foot traffic off the surface and (if windscreens are used) helping to provide a windbreak and a heightened sense of privacy.

That’s not to say, though, that fencing should be ignored. Far from it. It’s an amenity that needs upkeep and inspection to remain at its best. It is also a design element that can lend a great deal to the aesthetic of a finished court.

Fencing heights vary according to court location (for example, a rooftop court should have higher fencing, as should a court with a hard surface), player populations (beginners are more likely to hit a ball out of the court and therefore appreciate a higher fence) and design preferences.

Various patterns for fencing are used in tennis court construction. All-around fencing has been a standard in many park and recreational installations, but some players (more often club players) dislike what they refer to as the institutional or “cage” feel and prefer fencing only behind each baseline and partially along the sidelines.

Some courts have all-around fencing that encloses a battery of courts, but have movable netting between each court. Many players like the so-called “California corners,” a layout that cuts off each of the four corners of the court and reduces the number of balls that must be retrieved from deep in the corner.

In addition to the traditional chain-link fence, fencing can be metal, wood, lattice or other ornamental material. The type of material used will depend upon budget, design preference and more.

Fence Management

David LaSota of D.W. LaSota Engineering has created some “best management practices” for those who are interested in upgrading their current fencing, or installing a new system — or just doing upkeep on their existing fence:

Other Housekeeping Notes

 

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