From artificial grass to clay: the different types of tennis court surface explained

When it comes to tennis courts nowadays, there are plenty of synthetic playing surfaces on the market. For players, this means gone are the days of grass stains on your white tennis trainers, rallies battled on slippery surfaces, and even better, no more cancelled matches due to rainy weather.  

However, with variety, comes the difficult decision as to which will suit your facility best. Here, we outline some of the key types of artificial surfaces to consider.

Artificial grass

An artificial grass tennis court brings together the benefits of its natural equivalent with none of the shortcomings. First and foremost, unlike natural grass, artificial grass is hailed for its weather resistant qualities, as players can continue the game in wet weather without damaging the surface. Artificial grass can even be made out of a special yarn that doesn’t shine when wet or under floodlights, such as our Advantage Pro.

In terms of maintenance, artificial grass is simple to care for. As long as courts are brushed frequently, they will maintain their good looks without cracking or delaminating and also meet the highest playing standards set by the International Tennis Federation (ITF).

Offering an even surface and uniform bounce, the end-result of an artificial grass tennis court is a premium surface that players of all ages and experience levels can enjoy.

Artificial clay

Generally associated with the French Open, the bounce of the ball tends to be higher and slower on clay than it is on grass. This makes for longer baseline rallies and encourages a more patient game.

However, in the UK, real clay is generally a poor choice. This is because it needs to be left to dry after periods of heavy rain, an element this country is well known for. However, there are plenty of artificial equivalents capable of replicating the same playing characteristics, without the same drainage issues.

Artificial clay surfaces are engineered for use with extra infill, and are designed to replicate the striking appearance and unique characteristics of a natural clay court. For clubs looking to mimic the playing experience of clay, a surface with an International Tennis Federation (ITF) court pace rating of 1: Slow or 2: Medium-Slow, will give players consistent ball bounce and a slower paced game.


Those looking for a versatile solution should consider installing a multi-use games area (MUGA). These are a great way for a facility to maximise playing hours, offer a court or pitch that can be used by a number of different sports, and achieve a rapid return on investment.

Because these surfaces are designed to be adaptable and multipurpose, they are very popular with schools and other community facilities looking to offer a varied sports provision within a limited space. While they may not be best suited to elite tennis, the variety of

MUGA surfaces available means the possibilities are endless and there’s a solution out there for everyone. 

For more advice, why not download our definitive guide to tennis courts installations?