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  1. #1
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    3.5, 4.0, 4.5, etc.

    Can someone explain the ranking system to me? I'm a new member of our local tennis association and I see these rankings next to tournament players' names. I don't have a clue how those are reached or what they mean.
    Oh Grigor. You silly man.

  2. #2

    Re: 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kirkus
    Can someone explain the ranking system to me? I'm a new member of our local tennis association and I see these rankings next to tournament players' names. I don't have a clue how those are reached or what they mean.
    loaded question!

    My advice is to have your local teaching pro rate you. Then you'll have a reference point.

    Beyond that, I'm thinkin I noticed t4 lurking about earlier ...
    It ain't what you eat but how you chew it.

  3. #3

    Re: 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, etc.

    Always lurking for this type of post.

    Here is the official rating system: http://www.tennis4you.com/rate-yours...e-yourself.htm

    I agree with Seb, have a local pro rate you. I find when players read the NTRP they rate themselves .5 high, sometimes even 1.0 higher than they should. I read 5.0 and think that is me, but I play 4.5 USTA leagues and that is more than enough for me to handle. 5.0 players around here would make me look silly.
    Good Luck on the Court!!!
    Scott Baker
    Tennis4you.com

  4. #4
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    Re: 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, etc.

    Thank you, t4. I should've checked you site first. Doh!
    Oh Grigor. You silly man.

  5. #5

    Re: 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, etc.



    No problem. I use to get the same question a lot, especially from juniors because that rating system doesn't really apply to them. They are use to rankings in their age division and that is about it. Hell, I did not even know what they were until I was in college and started looking at USTA leagues. Even then I signed up with some guys on a 4.0 league who were closer to 4.5 than 4.0. In 2002 we ended up winning the Columbus title, Southern Ohio title, Ohio Title, Regionals and then went to Nationals where we got thumped on, but it was great, all the way to Arizona. Usually when you get to Nationals you get bumped to the next higher level and now we all play 4.5, which is what we should have been playing anyways. But once we won the Southern Ohio level most everyone we played was 4.5, you do not make it to 4.0 Nationals as a 4.0. Hell, the guys who won Nationals looked like 5.0 to me.
    Good Luck on the Court!!!
    Scott Baker
    Tennis4you.com

  6. #6

    Re: 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by tennis4you


    No problem. I use to get the same question a lot, especially from juniors because that rating system doesn't really apply to them. They are use to rankings in their age division and that is about it. Hell, I did not even know what they were until I was in college and started looking at USTA leagues. Even then I signed up with some guys on a 4.0 league who were closer to 4.5 than 4.0. In 2002 we ended up winning the Columbus title, Southern Ohio title, Ohio Title, Regionals and then went to Nationals where we got thumped on, but it was great, all the way to Arizona. Usually when you get to Nationals you get bumped to the next higher level and now we all play 4.5, which is what we should have been playing anyways. But once we won the Southern Ohio level most everyone we played was 4.5, you do not make it to 4.0 Nationals as a 4.0. Hell, the guys who won Nationals looked like 5.0 to me.
    You just explained why I don't like that rating system t4.

    There are also too many divisions ... here, should be more like this ...

    SUCK BAD
    SUCK
    NOT BAD
    GOOD
    VERY GOOD
    SCARY GOOD
    TENNIS GOD

    Just think what a thrill it would be for somebody to move up from "suck bad" and finally just suck! :P
    It ain't what you eat but how you chew it.

  7. #7

    Re: 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, etc.

    The rating system really does have some flaws. When I was bumped up to 4.5 a 4.0 team asked me to appeal my rating and play a little 4.0, maybe 2 matches per season when they needed help like against the better 4.0 teams. I only need to play 2 matches per season to qualify to play in a post season if they win the Columbus division. Well, I appealed my rating since I was barely into the 4.5 rating. They bumped me down to 3.5. lol... 3.5? 1.0 is a huge difference. I played a little 3.5 the other day (free tennis in the winter, I pass nothing up). I played 3 sets, played very easy, didn't hit any first serves, hit my volleys where they could get them etc. I lost only a few games in 3 sets.

    So anyways, since I was 3.5 I could play 4.0 again. I played two matches on court 1 doubles. I won both matches 6-1, 6-2. I was immediately bumped back to 4.5 and they disqualified both of my wins at 4.0. lol.

    There are guys in our 4.5 league that play for other clubs that are 5.0, but they blow some games on purpose so it looks like their matches are closer and that will keep them in the 4.5 rating. I have even heard they will fudge scores of matches for the same reason. Usually that team wins the Columbus division of 4.5 every year. Today is the last match of the season and our club is scheduled to play their club, and no matter what happens these guys have already won the Columbus division. So they will probably throw some matches. They did last year, we won all 5 courts against guys none of us had beaten before. Cheating the system if you ask me.
    Good Luck on the Court!!!
    Scott Baker
    Tennis4you.com

  8. #8

    Re: 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, etc.

    Alright folks – I am resurrecting this thread. “Rise from your grave”

    My initial question was going to be “what is the best way to be rated”, but after reading this thread I think I have more questions than answers. As such I am going to “data dump” and see if anyone has any thoughts (on this, not the Grammy’s last night )

    My situation is similar to that of Kirkus’ from the OP. I just joined a club that has USTA (NTRP) traveling teams, hosts a NTRP tournament, and has NTRP leagues – in addition to club leagues that are independent of ranking.

    I just joined one of the club leagues and am intrigued by the extra opportunities for play. I received the (seemingly patented) – “just go rate yourself.”

    I went on the USTA website, read the T4Y description of each level, and then found a couple resources that went in to more detail of each level. This seemed to make it worse, because the more detail just seems to put me even more between levels (especially when I read the interesting fact that a 3.49 should beat a 3.01 6-0, 6-0 despite being ranked at the same level). I could make a case for myself at multiple rankings. So, I started asking around for feedback – since I am data driven haha.

    - The people in the doubles league range from 3.0 to 4.0, or so I was told by the tennis pro. There were four courts. I feel like I would end up on the 3rd court.
    - Another pro said to me in passing “you are definitely between a 3.0 and a 3.5” but that is based on watching me hit during 2 sessions of cardio tennis (and not game play). I think I am going to ask this pro for a firm ranking, but based on my experiences so far I am not sure my request will be taken seriously.
    - Of the people I played with last week one said he is (firmly) rated at a 3.5, and that is backed up by 2 years of play. While he does hit a bit harder than me he is also an error machine. I feel like I could beat him, or at least hang with him because I play more completely and cover the court better. (I did manage to take the 2 sets off him, however it was in doubles). But in literally reading the NTRP rankings it doesn’t “allow” much for game play (on the lower levels) factors – it seems to just be “can you hit, can you hit with pace, can you vary shots, etc.” If you watched he and I warm up you would think he would win handily.
    - There is a singles travelling team at 3.5. There is also a 6.5 doubles travelling team that “is in need of 3.0’s as we have a lot of 3.5’s.”

    So – what should I do? I want to be fair about it (sandbagging is for *ssholes), and have the most opportunity for play. But from reading T4Y’s post about his ranking – I am not sure if it is better to initially overrank or underrank (if inbetween levels). If underrank, at least I can still play in anything “up” from my level, but I also don’t want to have shallow victories because of it. I have no problem getting my arse kicked and it will only make me work harder. I just don’t know if the ranking will actually ever get adjusted…

    Thanks for reading, even if it was crazy confusing.
    -Mike

  9. #9

    Re: 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, etc.

    From my experience, everyone who self rates overrates themselves by .5 or more.
    I don't deny myself bread. I have bread every day.

  10. #10

    Re: 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by JTContinental View Post
    From my experience, everyone who self rates overrates themselves by .5 or more.
    Yeah, mine too. I know a guy who rates himself a 4.5 based on the near-useless NTRP descriptions. He's a 3.0 at best (he cannot hit a topspin forehand). I've also heard this fiction from the USTA before about how you shouldn't be losing games to people with lower NTRP ratings. I play 5.0 and I often lose a game or 2 to players 3.5 and up - it kinda depends on the quality of their serve. In short, the guidance on self-rating has always been woefully inadequate.

    I think you should think about what you hope to get from USTA play. If you appreciate a challenge, rate yourself higher. You really do get better from playing higher quality opponents. If you want to just play a ton of different kinds of opponents and see how you do against different levels, maybe underrate.
    Avatar: Munchin's Favorite Matches - #10 - Andre Agassi vs. Pete Sampras - 2000 Australian Open SF

    "If I didn't play tennis, I would probably have to go see a psychiatrist" - Arthur Ashe

  11. #11

    Re: 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, etc.

    '- Of the people I played with last week one said he is (firmly) rated at a 3.5, and that is backed up by 2 years of play. While he does hit a bit harder than me he is also an error machine. I feel like I could beat him, or at least hang with him because I play more completely and cover the court better. '

    Based on this part of your post, I would say that you are probably a 3.5. My recommendation would be to play 3.5 this year, and see what your next your rating comes back as at the end of the year. Since you will get a new rating at the end of the year, this should be the only year where your self-rating should matter.
    You could still play in a 4.0 league with a 3.5 rating, but the 3.5 rating would prevent you from playing in a 3.0 league.
    My opinion.
    My Suicide Draw Pool avatar

  12. #12

    Re: 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, etc.

    Really appreciate everyone's opinion - welcome any and all feedback.

    I did not know that the rating gets revised at the end of the year - I thought it stayed until appealed it. I guess some of this is moot then...

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