When you were watching Wimbledon at some point, haven’t this thought crossed your mind, “why always the tennis players are tall?” Well, then you are not alone, mate, who have wondered about this topic. But there has to be a reason for the tall tennis players, right?
Yes, you thought it correctly. The tennis players are tall because they get some extra benefit from the sport due to their height. The significant advantage they get is harnessing more power when playing the groundstrokes.
Mostly the tennis players are tall because…
In most outdoor sports, except for golf, tallness always gives the players an extra edge in the game. There are precisely two reasons why most tennis players are tall.
When tennis players are tall, they have longer arms according to anatomy. And guess what! Longer arms come pretty useful when they want to play with a ball even though they are at a distance from it. This is simple mathematics.
Let us take an example of a cow grazing a field, and it has a 1-meter belt attached to a pin in the area. Now, the maximum distance the cow can go from the pin is 1m and graze the field. Now suppose the cow owner decides to change the length of the belt, and he increases it to 2 meters. So now, with the new belt, the cow can graze almost double the distance that he was feeding earlier.
From the above example, we hope now it is clear why the tennis players are tall and how the height benefits them in their reach. The distance a tall player would be able to cover would be much less when compared to a shorter player.
Serving in the Game
Serving is a crucial aspect of tennis, and if you can do that well, there is already an extra benefit. So now you might wonder what does serving has to do with whether tennis players are tall or not? Well, there is a direct relation to it. The tall players can serve the tennis balls at such an angle that it flies off and bounces on the opponent’s court much higher.
So when a ball jumps up to a much higher distance, it becomes challenging for a short player to reach the ball if they are short. In this case, if the opponent is not a really good player, it often results in a miss. Not only this, even if the shorter player can reach the ball, due to their height, they cannot resist the ball’s power and speed. All these reasons, like the power, speed, and angle over the net, are an advantage for taller tennis players.
The disadvantages of the taller players
If, after reading till here, you think that all the game benefits are for the tall players, think again! There may be some pretty significant advantages, but there are disadvantages as well.
They are not so fast
Like, come on, this is kiddish physics; a body with a higher mass cannot move faster than a body with a lower mass. Although most tennis players are tall and fit, they are relatively slower compared with the agility of the shorter players. And honestly, this has got nothing to do with their fitness. If you watch tennis championships, you have already seen how perfectly fit those players are playing in those championships. So it is not fitness, but naturally, they cannot move as fast as the shorter players.
The Low Balls
This is quite a cumbersome issue for tall tennis players. A shorter player can reach for the balls that fly low pretty quickly, but it becomes a bit more complicated when it comes to the taller players. Due to their height, it is pretty evident that they are going to take more time to reach the ball as they need to travel a longer distance. And it is also very exhaustive if the balls are continually flying low. This strategy used by the shorter players to defeat them is to tire them out. Bending down to get to the balls time and again is pretty tiring, and this can quickly exhaust a player.
Making the Returns
Tennis is not just about serving the ball at the perfect angle with good power and speed. It also includes returning the ball after the opponent hits it. This, again, is where a shorter player gets an advantage. Yes, if the tennis players are tall, they can cover a more significant distance with their long arms, but that is not just enough. Hitting a ball and hitting it precisely is something very different, and this is where extra hard work is required if the tennis players are tall.
Struggling to endure the game
This is one of the most thoughtful strategies that the shorter players often apply to beat their opponents are taller players. If the tennis players are tall, they are physically weaker when compared to the shorter ones. This is a disadvantage for the taller ones. So the applied strategy is to keep the game very fast-paced and continue a long rally. This often results in tiring out the taller players and gives an edge to the shorter ones to defeat them in the game.
Enduring a long, fast-paced game is one of the weaknesses of tall tennis players, which the shorter players can use to their advantage.
All-Time Top 5 Tallest Tennis Players
Tennis players are tall! True!! But some of them are significantly tall than others. In all of Tennis history, the tallest tennis players are:
|Name of Player
|1. Reilly Opelka
|6 feet 11 inches
|2. Ivo Karlovic
|6 feet 11 inches
|3. John Isner
|6 feet 10 inches
|4. Kevin Anderson
|6 feet 8 inches
|5. Jerzy Janowicz
|6 feet 8 inches
Tall Female Tennis Players
If you think tall tennis players are only men, think again !! In this article, we provide you with a list of female tennis players who are exceptionally tall.
- Eva Hrdinova 191 cm
- Akgul Amanmuradova 190 cm
- Lindsay Davenport 189 cm
- Naomi Broady 189 cm
- Erin Routliffe 188 cm
Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
How tall is Roger Federer?
Roger Federer, the Swiss tennis legend, is a very tall tennis player with 188 centimeters org feet, and 1 inch.
What could be the advantages of tennis?
Tennis equipment can be pretty costly as compared to other sports. Also, it may take a while to learn.
Can playing tennis help in becoming tall?
Unfortunately, playing tennis will not enhance your height. The growth o a person is entirely dependent upon their genetics and proper nutrition, so playing a particular sport will not help much in this aspect.