What to Wear for Tennis (Men and Women)

A man and a woman in tennis clothes and shoes, holding their rackets at an outdoor tennis court.

If you’re planning to take up tennis for the first time, apart from learning the fundamental skills, you may also want to look at what are the essential clothing to wear when playing.

Clothing for tennis is similar to high-energy sports. They have to help increase performance and keep the athlete comfortable and allow for extended motion. This is why you have to know the right tennis outfit.

Tennis wear has adapted different technology to make it easier for tennis players to move, make sudden stops, and even change directions easily and effectively.

Related: Tennis vs. Squash – What’s Better?

Tennis Shoes

A tennis shoe will be different depending on the surface you will be playing on. For beginners, understanding the difference between these will be a great start.

There is a wide variety of customization for shoes which can help improve performance on different tennis court surfaces. Different outsoles cater to different surfaces. 

If you will play on a rather hard surface like a hard court, then you will need an outsole with plenty of grips. It should also have plenty of cushioning and a midsole that can provide proper rebound so that you can have better energy transfer and shock absorption with every step. These types of tennis shoes will also have a stiff upper part of shoe that will help support your feet.

Shoes made for clay courts will have an outsole that will provide an even greater grip on the surface and keep dirt from sticking. This helps the player change directions, sprint, and stop faster. Another thing that’s specific for this type of shoe is the strong knit of the shoe, which helps prevent the clay from entering and provides more stability to your footing.

Playing on grass is a little similar to playing on clay. It is more forgiving on your foot, but you want to ensure that your pair of tennis shoes have plenty of grip and support. Instead of zig-zags, a grass-specific tennis shoe will have nubs on the outsole. This will help with traction and comfort when moving around in the court.

Men’s Tennis Shoes

Nike Men's Court Lite 2 Tennis Shoe, Light Smoke Grey/Blue Hero-Off Noir-White, 10 Regular US

adidas mens Ubersonic 2 Clay Court Tennis Shoe, Black/True Orange/White, 11 US

Women’s Tennis Shoes

New Balance Women's 796 V2 Hard Court Tennis Shoe, Uv Glo/Silver, 5 K-Swiss Aero Court Womens Tennis Shoe (White/Highrise/Silver, 5)

Tennis Tops

A tennis shirt can be simple, or it can be something that may very well come from the future. There are a lot of options available for any discerning tennis player.

You have to remember that the main thing that you should look for in a tennis shirt is comfort and breathability. Since tennis is a high-impact activity, you have to be able to move and have good ventilation.

There are different types of tennis shirts. They may have different styles, but they all have the same function. So choosing which type you wear is up to what you prefer to wear or what the weather is for that day.

Tops can range from polo shirts, decorated shirts, long sleeves, sleeveless designs, and tank tops. In some cases, hoodies and tracksuit jackets are allowed to be worn. 

Manufacturers also produce these tops with different materials. Most of the fabrics they use are stretchable, can let out sweat easily, and provide a lot of room to move.

Women can also opt for a tennis dress. These are one-piece clothing that has gained popularity over the years.

Men’s Tennis Tops

Under Armour Men's UA Tech 1/2 Zip 2.0 Style 1328495 001, Solid Black, XXL 2XL HEAD Men's Hypertek Gym Tennis & Workout Muscle Tank - Sleeveless Activewear Top - Score Black Heather, Small

Women’s Tennis Tops

Lacoste Women's Sport Sleeveless Colorblock Tennis Dress, Navy Blue/White-Obscurity-Haiti Blue-Lemon, 2 ASICS Women's Club Tank Top Tennis Clothes, S, Blue Expanse

Tennis Bottoms

Matching pants are also worth considering. These should be made from elastic and allow a good flow of air. There are also varying lengths to tennis pants. The choice, much like choosing a top, is based on your preference and what the weather is like where you’re playing.

Tennis shorts are the most popular choice among men as they provide good mobility and comfort. These are often made from light materials like cotton and fabric that have perforations.

For women tennis players, a tennis skirt or a skort is widely popular. These, like shorts, provide a lot of freedom when running and moving around the court. You will often see these have inner shorts which help support the body. 

Tights become a top choice when the season becomes colder. Some tights integrate compression technology which helps improve the circulation of blood that prevents muscle fatigue and injury.

Men’s Tennis Shorts

Lacoste Mens Sport Tennis Shorts Short, Black, S Fila Men's Tennis Short,Black/White,US S

Women’s Tennis Shorts

RainbowTree Women's Athletic Tennis Skirt with Ball Pocket - Workout Golf Exercise & Running Skort adidas Club Tennis Short, White/Black, XX-Small

Tennis Socks

Since tennis is a high-impact sport, your feet can take a lot of beating. This is why a good pair of socks to go along with the right shoes is important.

The materials of the socks should be soft and not abrasive in any way to keep your feet from getting blisters. It should be well ventilated for comfort.

Most tennis socks are mid to high cut. Some even have ankle support that provides protection to the wearer.

Men’s Tennis Socks

Men's Running Socks HUSO Arch Support Athletic Ankle Walking Socks 2 Pairs (White, Royal Blue, L/XL) ZEALWOOD Merino Wool Mens Womens Cushion Tennis Socks,Winter Warm Wool Moisture Wicking Ankle Athletic Socks Merino Wool Hiking Walking Socks Outdoor Sports Crew Work Boot Socks 3 Pairs Grey M

Women’s Tennis Socks

ASICS Cushion Quarter Sock (Pack of 3), X-Large, White ZEALWOOD 3 Pack Running Merino Wool Socks Ankle No Show Socks Low Cut Performance Ankle Athletic Sports Socks Cushion Moisture Control Socks Tennis Golf Cycling Socks Women's Outdoor Recreation Socks

Tennis Headwear

Since tennis is generally an outdoor sport, you will usually find players wearing some headgear. 

Caps are most common between men and women. These prevent getting too much sun on the face as well as block too much light from the eye. Visors are a common replacement when the player feels too constrained by caps.

Headbands are more for preventing distractions like too much sweat or hair from getting all over your face. These also help keep your head cool and dry during matches

Men’s Headwear

Lacoste Mens Sport Gabardine And Mesh Tennis Cap Cap, Red, One Size

Nike One Size dri-fit Head tie, Game Royal/White, One Size

Women’s Headwear

SAAKA Super Abosorbent Visor for Women. Premium Packaging. Running, Tennis, Golf & All Sports. Lightweight & Adjustable. White 3 Pieces Thin Non-slip Elastic Sport Headbands Mini Headbands for Men Women Slim Basketball Yoga Head Bands for Soccer, Workout, Running, Exercise, Volleyball, Black, White and Gray

Tennis Accessories

Wristbands are commonly used if the player tends to sweat profusely. These are usually made from cottony fabrics and act like mini towels and help in increasing your grip on your tennis racket.

Sometimes, a player will also wear tennis gloves. These are made from breathable materials and have a grip on the palm side which helps secure the tennis racket to your hands.

See also: Top 10 Most Expensive Tennis Rackets in the World

Men’s Tennis Accessories

Tennis Glove-Mens Full, Finger-Medium-Left Under Armour Men's 3-inch Performance Wristband 2-Pack , Black (001)/White , One Size Fits All

Women’s Tennis Accessories

Suddora Wrist Sweatbands Also Available in Neon Colors - Athletic Cotton Terry Cloth Wristband for Sports (Pair) (Neon Pink) Head 2.5 Inch Tennis Wristband 2 Pack White (White)

Tennis Attire Brands

There are many brands to choose from for your tennis apparel. While most of these brands have the same technology to keep a player cool and provides a great range of motion, choosing one is solely based on which brands you identify with the most.


A custom Yonex tennis bag used by an American tennis player at the Australian Open.

This brand also produces equipment for badminton, golf, and running. They specialize in these sports, including tennis, with the precision and ingenuity of Japanese culture. They offer products like rackets, shoes, and apparel. The blue and green stripes are indicative of their brand.


This Italian brand was founded by brothers and made clothing for the Italian Alps. Although it began as an underwear brand, they found success in producing sportswear for tennis which got them a large following. 

New Balance

A New Balance pair of tennis shoes worn by a Canadian tennis player at the Australian Open.

New Balance is one of the favorite proper tennis attire brands. Although they are moderately priced compared to other brands, they can provide the wearer with support and a performance boost.


Ana Ivanovic of Serbia wearing her adidas tennis ensemble at the US Open.

One of the staple sportswear brands that make waves in tennis is Adidas. They are also one of the forerunners of the activewear design that provides players with a cool and comfortable attire.

Nike Tennis

Roger Federer of Switzerland wearing his Nike tennis ensemble at the US Open.

Nike has its own category for tennis players, so you will easily find a whole wardrobe complete with accessories from Nike. Its strength is in its marketing and making people feel they belong to a community. Aside from this, they also have a line of professional athlete endorsers from all types of sports.


Finally, Lacoste is a tennis brand started by a tennis player. René Lacoste pioneered a revolution in tennis attire. Anyone who’s passionate about tennis will have at least one of these classic brands in their closet. This premium brand also looks great even if it is worn outside the tennis court.


Since tennis was conceived to be a game that everybody can play, what to wear when playing is not set in stone. Modern tennis is equipped with cooling features and performance technology that can provide better enjoyment and skills to players. You can mix up what you want to wear as long as you’re comfortable and can move freely to enjoy playing tennis.

A snowboarder riding a red snowboard in the middle of a stunt on a snowy mountain.

28 Different Types of Winter Sports (Team and Individual)

Two female tennis players midgame, with one player about to miss the shot and lose a point due to an unforced error.

Most Unforced Errors in a Tennis Match: Is this Metric Accurate?