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Fans chantings, shoutings, booings, and clappings. It’s simple to imagine a big audience and a lot of excitement at a live tennis match. Most sports enthusiasts or players will tell you that it lends value to the action, which cannot be replicated when watching the same game on tv.
Some games seek or encourage that level of spectator interactions, while tennis requires their spectators to remain silent. If you also wonder about this, today’s post on “Why are tennis matches so quiet?” will answer your wonder! Keep on reading.
5 Reasons Why Tennis Matches Are So Quiet
Although there has been no particular rule because spectators should keep quiet in a match, it’s something everybody keeps in mind. And there are actually a few reasons behind this etiquette.
It’s an unwritten agreement
It’s something you’ll notice at any game of this sport. “Please be silent.” Although it is regular for tennis audiences to remain silent, it is not an official requirement.
Tennis has established a collection of unwritten traditions throughout the generations, most of which are not included in the regulation but are accepted widely by a global network of players.
And although not everybody follows these unwritten standards, your understanding and compliance help the sport maintain its pleasant and respectful spirit, which is one of the things that distinguishes tennis from other sports.
It highlights the significance of etiquette and custom
Nobles were the very first people to watch games. Royals and nobility would stand and observe while their kids or cousins gathered the ball for pride and pleasure. It was a noble sport that demanded noble behavior.
This quietness is because everyone observing the game tends to stand in the proximity of the King, whom nobody should talk in front of without his approval.
This custom became entrenched over centuries. As a fan at an amateur or elite tournament, you are mandated to practice these unwritten manners.
Remaining silent is the most popular type of decorum violated by onlookers. Nevertheless, it is different from other sports, and it is reasonable to urge them to engage in the game. However, if you’re speaking or creating a lot of noises, let’s not feel offended if some other audience requests you to stop.
It’s a rooted history
Each sport features different decorum standards, and most of it is established upon history. And tennis, from the start, evolved to become a more elite game.
Tennis was inherited from the nobility to “gentlemen’s” groups, while soccer gained popularity in public education. The initial behavioral rules were formed in this way: loud soccer against polite tennis.
It’s a flashback to the time when tennis was exclusively available at country clubs. Thus, the polite audience would not dare to be boisterous or aggressive in applauding good shot-making.
The introduction of Team Tennis 40 years ago transformed that incentive by encouraging music, multi-colored fields, and audience participation. The arrival of Jimmy Connors, Ilie Nastase, and John McEnroe also aided in this movement.
See the history of tennis: History of Tennis
It helps the players perform better
Another explanation is that on-court competitors need to be able to detect the ball’s sound. Even simply hearing how the ball sounds once struck is a crucial hint as to where it’s heading, and detecting it makes the players’ performance more effective.
According to Andy Murray, tennis professionals utilize their hearing senses and vision to identify the rotation on the ball or how fast it is heading at us. However, if there are many sounds of blaring noises, it is difficult to time the ball or tell how quickly the ball is flying towards you or how it rotates.
If you’re viewing a game, don’t chat or produce any sounds so that neither opponent gets affected and both can concentrate.
It’s the ref’s responsibility to keep a rapt audience in check, do not get startled if you encounter the famous words “Silent, sir” at that moment. The server might even stop for a minute before serving to ask the spectators to remain quiet.
It is a way to respect the players and umpire
It is the game in which a player must focus on a single movement (for instance, tennis serves), and any disruption to that focus can result in adverse consequences.
Thus, it is simple to understand how a surprising yell or spiteful insult from a particular person may disrupt the game, if not a conflict between competitors and fans.
Keeping a cool head and staying silent throughout rounds (whether participating or observing) is a regular expression of respect for the player’s abilities and a wish to watch the greatest game possible.
Could You Ever Congratulate or Clap?
Even though you should stay silent throughout the game, nothing stops you from applauding and chanting for a particular player or a highlight.
Yet, it’s not advisable to do so until the point has been achieved. That is, before you start cheering, make sure there is no possibility a player could retrieve a good ball that has been set in bounds.
Now, you’ve got the answer to the question, “Why are tennis matches so quiet?” While it might appear to be a lot to require, tennis etiquette is really about widely accepted knowledge and basic politeness. Thus, provide the players the quietness they anticipate while playing, and win the experience!