The science behind the serve

Wimbledon is the oldest tennis tournament in the world, but the science and technology behind every move the players make is cutting-edge. Whilst the role of sports science is well known in the strength and conditioning of the players, materials science also has a part to play in the equipment they use.

Researchers in the School of Metallurgy and Materials are studying the dynamics of tennis racket impacts on balls and how these relate to stress-induced conditions such as tennis elbow.

Tennis elbow is a condition that results in pain around the outside of the elbow and whilst not the only cause, the repeated stress on the joint while playing tennis is a common factor.

Adjusting the design of tennis rackets with damping materials to minimise the direct stress on joints and tendons has implications for all players of the game, not only those on Centre Court at Wimbledon.

To find out more about our research, visit the School of Metallurgy and Materials research area or the Sports and Materials Science Joint Honours BSc course.