As tennis returns in some areas, USTA releases safety recommendationsBy Apr 22, 2020
2023 Year in Review
Top 5 Best Quotes of 2023, No. 4: Paula Badosa had a dream…about Stefanos TsitsipasBy Dec 05, 2023
The Top 10 Matches of 2023
No. 10 of '23: At 4:15AM, Andy Murray finishes off Kokkinakis in heroic Australian Open recoveryBy Dec 05, 2023
Facts & Stats
Most titles in 2023: Djokovic leads the men with seven, Swiatek leads the women with sixBy Dec 05, 2023
New Balance expands tennis footprint with Australian Open, United Cup partnershipBy Dec 05, 2023
2023 Year in Review
Top 5 Best Quotes of 2023, No. 5: Elina Svitolina plays for a bigger purpose in winning returnBy Dec 04, 2023
Rafael Nadal is no longer demanding the most out of himselfBy Dec 04, 2023
2023 Year in Review
Novak Djokovic is still hungry, after all these yearsBy Dec 04, 2023
Novak Djokovic finishes at No. 1 in the ATP rankings for a record-extending eighth timeBy Dec 04, 2023
The tennis holiday gift guide: Great racquets from the top brandsBy Dec 04, 2023
As tennis returns in some areas, USTA releases safety recommendations
The organization published two documents that focus on how players and tennis facilities across the U.S. can play properly and operate safely.
Published Apr 22, 2020
On April 3, as the coronavirus pandemic was just beginning to disrupt the social habits of Americans from coast to coast, the United States Tennis Association said in a statement that "it is in the best interest of society to take a collective pause from playing the sport we love."
Nineteen days later, the USTA has issued a new statement, this one about potentially resuming tennis, given the realities that some areas of the country are beginning to re-open.
"The USTA recognizes that the coronavirus has been affecting different parts of the country in different ways and with different timing," read the statement. "We therefore believe it will be possible for people to return to playing tennis safely in some cities and states sooner than others."
The facility and program safety suggestions are broken up into seven categories: assessing the situation; encouraging social distancing; providing a clean environment; tennis balls; equipment, coaching; and organizing activities. Recommendations include:
—Online bookings are recommended, and have participants make payments online. Avoid handling cash.
—All score tenders will be taken off the courts to prevent touching.
—Use every second court where practical.
—Live ball drills and game-based play is recommended over using baskets.
—Try to restrict balls to a particular group, court or day of the week. One idea is to label them with a permanent marker.
—Using a ball machine is a great option for giving lessons, as it avoids having people touch the balls. Using ball tubes and basket pickups to pick up loose balls after a ball machine rotation also limits contact.
For players, some recommendations include:
—Bring a full water bottle to avoid touching a tap or water fountain handle.
—Arrive as close as possible to when you need to be there.
—Stay on your side of court. Avoid changing ends of the court.
—If a ball from another court comes to you, send it back with a kick or with
—After playing, leave the court as soon as reasonably possible.
"In communities where stay-at-home or shelter-in-place orders have been lifted or modified, and where the locality meets the standards in the Federal Guidelines, then tennis, if played properly, can be a great opportunity to relieve stress, socialize with others and provide much-needed exercise," said the USTA.
The organization also noted that it is the responsibility of tennis providers and instructors to closely assess their local environments and restrictions during this time.
"Of primary importance is taking every precaution to help keep all participants safe," said the USTA in its list of recommendations. The facility and program safety measures will remain in place until a universal vaccine or effective treatment for the coronavirus becomes available.
The USTA also stated that these local decisions during the phased opening will not apply to USTA-sanctioned events. All USTA programs will still remain suspended until at least May 31.