Futebol tennis is designed to develop ball handling skills under the stress of competition. Players need to be able to handle the ball using restricted touches and play the ball back with accuracy and tactical reasoning. Players develop touch and enhance decision making skills while trying to execute tactics to successfully out play their opponents.
Futebol tennis is played over a net similar to tennis, volleyball, or badminton. The basic rules of the game are outlined below but should be adjusted to match the skill level of the player i.e. create a success oriented environment where the players can thrive and experience a measure of achievement, yet make the rules challenging enough to keep them on the edge of their ability.
A Net . The net can be created with benches, or two chairs with a 2×4 piece of wood laid across, or make it out of 2×4’s, or PVC. The net can be 1 foot to four feet high. Players travel/gear bags always work in a pinch or just find a tennis court and play inside the service areas on either side of the net. The court should be 5 to 6 yards wide by 6 to 8 yards deep on either side of the net. Ideal net height is 30 to 36 inches inches.
Service: The ball is served from behind the end line. (Beginning players should use their hands; toss ball in front of them and play ball off the bounce: Advanced players use feet only. Chipping is difficult)
Touches: 1v1 – players are allowed 3 touches and one bounce in any combination to return the ball. (alternatives could be 3 or 4 touches and two bounces per side for beginners – two touches and one bounce or 3 touches / no bounce for advanced) 2v2 – players can use the same rules/restrictions, as the 1v1 game but to truly reap benefits both players should have to touch the ball before the ball is returned. Ideal rules for 2v2; 3 touches, 1 bounce in any combination, both players must touch the ball before it can be returned. 3v3 – ideal rules; 2 touches, 1 bounce per player, maximum 2 bounces per side, maximum 6 touches per side, minimum two players must touch the ball before it is returned.
Court sizes: 1v1 = 5 yds wide x 7 yds deep on both sides of the net. 2v2 = 6 yds wide x 8 yds deep 3v3 = 8 yds wide x 8 to 10 yds deep.
Court sizes may vary according to the space available and the net size and height. Use your imagination. We have found basements provide some of the most entertaining environments for this game.
Final thought. Try building a net 30 inches high inside a goal mouth. Run the net from post to post and build grids on either side of the net using dimensions mentioned above. Now you have a height restriction. This will promote a faster paced game, develop a higher level of skill i.e. trapping & passing, and is ideal for shooting/finishing development.
After pummeling its first two opponents by a combined score of 27-0, the U.S. faces Mexico in Olympic qualifying — and a win will mean an easier semifinal opponent