If you have ever played tennis before or just had the opportunity to play catch with your dog, you may have wondered why is there fuzz on a tennis ball? Some may have wondered if this was just a defective feature of the process behind making tennis balls, but this typically isn’t the case. The “fuzz” or felt on a tennis ball actually serves many purposes that are related to durability and game play.
Purpose. The purpose of the fuzz or felt found on your favorite tennis ball serves many purposes. For instance, the fuzz affects certain aspects of the game of tennis its self. Without the fuzz, the game of tennis would be drastically different. The fuzz on a tennis ball both allows it to travel farther while hindering its speed. The fuzz on a tennis ball also allows the players within a game of tennis to have more control over their tennis ball. Tennis ball fuzz also allows the player’s tennis racket to gain more control over the tennis ball as the felt acts as a sort of “grip” when struck with a tennis racket.
Durability. Besides the ways in which the fuzz on a tennis ball influences its ability to be used in the game of tennis, the fuzz on a tennis ball allows the tennis ball to out-last other types of balls, such as a rubber ball. The fuzz on a tennis ball allows the ball to be able to deflect a large amount of punishment that it would face otherwise without the fuzz. A typical tennis court can be rough on any type of ball, but the fuzz of a tennis ball lengthens the durability of the tennis ball.
Flight. The fuzz on a tennis ball also affects the ways in which the tennis ball reacts when it’s in flight. As the ball moves at slower speeds, the fuzz allows it the ball to travel faster. As the ball reaches higher speeds, the fuzz helps to control the speed of the tennis ball. Think of the fuzz on your typical tennis ball as being initially resistant to speed increases, but as it gains speed, these speed barriers are eliminated, allowing the ball to travel at higher speeds.