Ultimate Tennis Balls Buying Guide: What Tennis Balls Should I Choose?

Tennis Balls - who knew there was so many to choose between….if you’re new to tennis! So this is where we come in to help you out with working out…..what do tennis players look for when choosing balls?

We’ve put together a key summarised and more detailed list for you to help with your decision. We’ve also detailed aspects that you may not have considered when buying tennis balls that’s right for you and how you can use this guide to find the right product on our site.

Are all tennis balls the same?

At first glance there can appear to be not much difference between tennis balls, but tennis balls can vary hugely from, differences in felt, speed and size for juniors, all to create different characteristics for different levels of play.

What are tennis balls made of?

Tennis balls are made with a rubber core and covered in felt. Most balls are filled with compressed air. Having the right type of tennis ball for the surface and level you’re playing can make a significant difference to what you get out of the playing experience, whether for fun, training or competition.

Key Factors to consider are the following:
  • What type of Tennis Ball you need
  • Your Playing Level / Who or for what occasion you’re playing for 
  • What surface you’re playing on
  • Playing Conditions

Tennis Ball 

1. Type of Tennis Ball you need

So what are the differences between the different types of Tennis Balls?
You can check what “type” of tennis ball we are selling on every product page via the specifications section.

Lets explain…firstly check out our simply broken down chart.

Type of Ball: Suited For:
Regular Pressure Tennis Balls Slower Courts (Clay, Grass)
Extra Duty Tennis Balls Hard Courts (if extra durability is needed)
Pressureless Training
Foam Balls Ages 3-5
Junior Stage 1 Red Balls Ages 6-8
Junior Stage 2 Orange Balls Ages 9-11
Junior Stage 3 Green Dot Balls Ages 12-14

Tennis Balls Pressurised vs Pressureless Tennis Balls
Practically a pressurised tennis ball has added internal air pressure into the the balls, enabling them to bounce easily. There are by far the most commonly used balls and will be seen in all major tennis competitions.

Pressureless balls do not have compressed air in them and are often made of a solid rubber core or other materials. This means that they wont go flat and are perfect for training. They have a very consistent bounce and can be great when used on hard surfaces.

How long does a tennis ball last?

Once a pressurized tennis ball is opened and exposed to air, the internal pressure begins to decrease. As a result, the ball gradually loses its bounce and becomes less responsive over time. Pressurized tennis balls used for professional matches typically lose their optimal playing characteristics after around 1 to 2 hours of play. For practice sessions, pressurized tennis balls may last longer, usually around 4 to 6 hours of play before they start to noticeably lose their bounce and become "dead."

Regular Tennis Balls vs Heavy Duty Tennis Balls
As defined by the name, the major difference is how long the balls will last! How is this done? They’re made with wool rather than nylon on the outside, they’ll feel softer to the touch and will be generally slower on court. For harder courts, heavy duty balls can be particularly popular, whilst for softer surfaces like grass or clay, regular balls are more widely played with.

Championship Tennis Balls vs Professional Tennis Balls vs Entry Level

Playing Level How the Tennis Ball is Made
Championship Natural Wool, and woven felt, feels better for durability & consistency
Professional Less Natural Wool and more synthetic fibers
Standard Entry  Mostly synthetic fibres

Championship level tennis balls we generally recommend for training, and club level playing. The quality is great!

The difference between these balls is subtle, however when playing they can make a big difference at competition level. A professional level ball will typically provide a better “feel” so are typically used more in tournaments. 

Learner & Kids Tennis Balls

You’ll notice we list Stage 1,2 and 3 Tennis Balls in our menus, in addition to Foam Tennis Balls. These are all intended for Children at different stages of their ability.

Stage 1 = Green Felt =  Intended for 9-10 years, and are about 25% slower than a normal ball. They’re also the same size as a normal tennis ball.

Stage 2 = Orange Felt = Intended for 8-9 years, these are 50% slower and are normal size

Stage 3 = Red Felt = Intended for Kids 5-8 years, they’re 75% slower than a normal ball and are larger too.

Extra Duty Tennis Balls
Designed specifically for hard surfaces like concrete, or asphalt. They’re made to be more durable due to their thick outer felt and should have a longer lifetime than standard tennis balls. These balls are popular in use because they balance out the fast speed seen on hard courts due to their extra “felt fluff”. You’ll see most Extra Duty balls referenced in their titles with “XD”.


2. Your Playing Level / Who or for what occasion you’re playing

Much of this has been addressed in the above section on Tennis Balls types. However there’s a small amount below to add to that.

This is subjective but we generally recommend slower tennis balls for lower level or skilled players and faster tennis balls for higher level players.

We have a “Player Level” chart below each Tennis Ball (on our product pages) so you can work out what’s right for you.

Tennis Balls 2


3. What surface you’re playing on

Slower Courts or Clay/Grass Courts = these treat tennis balls well, and won’t wear out so fast

Faster Courts or Hard Courts = are tough on tennis balls, we recommend extra duty balls so they last longer

4. Playing Conditions

Typically this isn’t an issue but in more unusual conditions this is a factor. These include:

- Weather Humidity - Typically Tennis Balls absorb moisture so the ball becomes heavier, so lighter and harder balls generally suit humid conditions better.

- Altitude - Typically balls at sea level go much faster, so pressurised balls at high altitude don’t make much sense. Therefore if you’re playing at altitude we recommend that you use pressureless balls.

Tennis Ball Fun Facts

Q. How big is a tennis ball?

A. A standard tennis ball has a diameter of about 6.7 to 6.9 centimeters (2.6 to 2.7 inches). This size is regulated by the International Tennis Federation

Q. Why are tennis balls fuzzy?

A. The fuzz, or felt, on a tennis ball creates turbulence in the air around the ball as it moves through the air. This helps reduce air resistance, allowing the ball to travel faster and with more control. The fuzz also helps players generate spin on the ball, giving them more control over the direction and trajectory of their shots.

Q. What colour is a tennis ball?

A. A tennis ball is typically yellowish-green

Q. Why are tennis balls yellow?

A. While tennis balls were traditionally white, the shift to yellow began in the 1970s when TV broadcasts started using color. Yellow was chosen because it showed up better on television.


Hopefully this summary guide about Tennis balls will help you in your journey finding the right Tennis Balls for you. Feel free to contact us if you need further help or have any other questions.