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Tennis is played on many different surfaces including natural grass, which plays fast because of low ball bounce (i.e., coefficient of restitution [COR]) and low ball‐to‐surface friction (coefficient of friction [COF]) that increase the pace (ball speed) of tennis. Effects of various C3 turfgrasses on COF and COR have not been investigated. Our objectives were to evaluate eight cultivars of various species randomized within three official size tennis courts: (a) ‘Keeneland’ Kentucky bluegrass (Poa pratensis L., KB), (b) ‘Rubix’ KB, (c) ‘Villa’ velvet bentgrass (Agrostis canina L., VBG), (d) ‘Puritan’ colonial bentgrass (Agrostis capillaris L., CL), (e) ‘007’ creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera L., CB), (f) fine fescue (Festuca sp., FF) mixture, (g) ‘Karma’ perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L, PR), and (h) ‘Wicked’ PR. Friction was measured using a weighted sled and ball bounce (BB) to derive COR was measured using a vertical drop height of 254 cm. Bounce (i.e., COR) to satisfy the International Tennis Federation (ITF) minimum of 50% BB (COR = 0.70) was not observed on any of the species evaluated. Species such as FF and PR were able to achieve BB to satisfy the ITF 80% BB minimum to that observed on smooth concrete. Linear regression indicated that 170g of surface hardness for FF and PR to as much as 200g on KB and higher on BG may be needed to achieve a COR = 0.70. Hemi‐ and lignocellulose cell wall fractions were correlated with COR and COF but exhibited significant and opposite relationships. Achieving higher COF may be a more practical means to slow court pace of notoriously fast grass courts. Future research will be needed to investigate the effects of cultural practices on COF.

Journal or Book Title

Crop Science








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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.