A tennis field test to objectively measure the hitting accuracy based on an Excel spreadsheet

Practical guidelines and applications

Keywords: tennis, stroke precision, testing, racket sports, software


Stroke accuracy is highly related with tennis performance and has traditionally been quantified using general areas of scoring. Hence there is a need to develop methods that allow accuracy to be measured with higher resolution. The aim of the work is to develop a field test and an Excel spreadsheet associated that allows to evaluate the accuracy of the strokes with a resolution up to centimetres and to study how shots landings are distributed. The test consists of 4 series of 20 groundstrokes performed in the down the line or cross-court direction (this is modifiable). The 2D coordinates of bounce of the ball is recorded with a camera, digitalized using a specialized software and introduced in the Excel spreadsheet. Then it computes a series of parameters that describe the 95% confidence ellipse of the shot landing on the court. A real example of the test outcomes of two advanced players – performing forehands and backhands down the line- is shown. Consistent with previous literature both players obtained a better accuracy in the mediolateral direction than in the longitudinal direction and ellipses were oriented almost parallel to the sideline (ellipse tilts were below 12 degrees in all cases). Ellipse area was considerably greater for the backhand than for the forehand in player two (38.8 vs. 55.5 m2) but not in player one (51.5 vs. 50.8 m2). Finally, the centre location of the ellipse in the longitudinal axis was positive in all cases (near 200 cm) which suggest that both players preferred to make short shots rather than send the ball out of the limits of the baseline. We conclude that this methodology can be used by researchers that want to assess accuracy with high resolution and by coaches that want to evaluate -with high sensibility- the player progression after a training program.

Author Biographies

Gabriel Delgado-García, Universidad de Granada

Department of Physical Education and Sports, Faculty of Physical Activity and Sports Sciences, University of Granada, Spain.
Sport and Health Research Institute (iMUDS), University of Granada, Spain.

Prof. Jos Vanrenterghem, University of Leuven

Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, Faculty of Kinesiology and Rehabilitation Sciences, KU Leuven, University of Leuven, Belgium.

Prof. Javier Courel-Ibáñez, University of Murcia

Department of Physical Activity and Sport, Faculty of Sport Sciences, University of Murcia, San Javier, Murcia, Spain.

Emilio J. Ruiz-Malagón, University of Granada

Department of Physical Education and Sports, Faculty of Physical Activity and Sports Sciences, University of Granada, Spain.
Sport and Health Research Institute (iMUDS), University of Granada, Spain.

Santiago Ruiz-Alias, University of Granada

Department of Physical Education and Sports, Faculty of Physical Activity and Sports Sciences, University of Granada, Spain.
Sport and Health Research Institute (iMUDS), University of Granada, Spain.

Víctor Manuel Soto-Hermoso, University of Granada

Department of Physical Education and Sports, Faculty of Physical Activity and Sports Sciences, University of Granada, Spain.
Sport and Health Research Institute (iMUDS), University of Granada, Spain.


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How to Cite
Delgado-García, G., Vanrenterghem, J., Courel-Ibáñez, J., Ruiz-Malagón, E. J., Ruiz-Alias, S., & Soto-Hermoso, V. M. (2019). A tennis field test to objectively measure the hitting accuracy based on an Excel spreadsheet. International Journal of Racket Sports Science, 1(2), 24-36. https://doi.org/10.30827/Digibug.59705