Doylestown Tennis Club



NTRP Rating System 

The National Tennis Rating Program (NTRP) is the official system created by the USTA for determining the levels of play in competition for USTA leagues.   Our club is the home of many USTA teams at various NTRP levels.  
(For more information on Doylestown Tennis Club USTA teams and how to participate, see our Interclub Leagues page.)



The primary goal of the program is to help all tennis players enjoy the game by providing a method of classifying skill levels for more compatible matches.  The rating categories are generalizations about skill levels.  Your level may be adjusted as your skills change.


Our Club uses the NTRP ratings to help us place players in groups, activities, and various Club leagues.  


We suggest a visual rating.  A visual rating is an on-court verification session.  It consists of a half hour lesson with one of our pros, who will observe your strokes and provide you with a visual rating. 


The following table provides a general description for each of the NTRP ratings:   




This player is just starting to play tennis.


This player has limited experience and is still working primarily on getting the ball into play.


This player needs on-court experience. This player has obvious stroke weaknesses but is familiar with basic positions for singles and doubles play.


This player is learning to judge where the ball is going, although court coverage is weak. Can sustain a short rally of slow pace with other players of the same ability.


This player is fairly consistent when hitting medium-paced shots, but is not comfortable with all strokes and lacks execution when trying for directional control, depth, or power. Most common doubles formation is one up, one back.


This player has achieved improved stroke dependability with directional control on moderate shots, but still lacks depth and variety. This player exhibits more aggressive net play, has improved court coverage, and is developing teamwork in doubles.


This player has dependable strokes, including directional control and depth on both forehand and backhand sides on moderate shots, plus the ability to use lobs, overheads, approach shots, and volleys with some success. This player occasionally forces errors when serving. Rallies may be lost due to impatience. Teamwork in doubles is evident.


This player has begun to master the use of power and spins and is beginning to handle pace, has sound footwork, can control depth of shots, and is beginning to vary game plan according to opponents. This player can hit first serves with power and accuracy and place the second serve. This player tends to over hit on difficult shots. Aggressive net play is common in doubles.


This player has good shot anticipation and frequently has an outstanding shot or attribute around which a game may be structured. This player can regularly hit winners or force errors off of short balls and can put away volleys, can successfully execute lobs, drop shots, half volleys, overhead smashes, and has good depth and spin on most second serves.


This player has developed power and/or consistency as a major weapon. This player can vary strategies and styles of play in a competitive situation and hits dependable shots in a stress situation.

6.0 to 7.0

The 6.0 player typically has had intensive training for national tournament competition at the junior and collegiate levels and has obtained a sectional and/or national ranking. The 6.5 and 7.0 are world-class players.


This table provides specific characteristics for the NTRP levels for which there is competition at the club level.



Level Forehand Backhand Serve/Return of Serve

Form developing; prepared for moderately paced shots

Grip and preparation problems; often chooses to hit forehand instead of backhand

Attempting a full swing; can get the ball in play at slow pace; inconsistent toss; can return slow-paced serve


Fairly consistent with some directional intent; lacks depth control

Frequently prepared; starting to hit with fair consistency on moderate shots

Developing rhythm; little consistency when trying for power; second serve is often considerably slower than first serve; can return serve with fair consistency


Improved consistency and variety on moderate shots with directional control; developing spin

Hits with directional control on moderate shots; has difficulty on high or hard shots; returns difficult shots defensively

Starting to serve with control and some power; developing spin; can return serve consistently with directional control on moderate shots


Good consistency; hits with depth and control on moderate shots; may try to hit too good a placement on a difficult shot

Directs the ball with consistency and depth on moderate shots; developing spin

Places both first and second serves, often with power on first serve; uses spin; dependable return of serve; can return with depth in singles and mix returns in doubles


Very good consistency; uses speed and spin effectively; controls depth well; tends to overhit on difficult shots; offensive on moderate shots

Can control direction and depth but may break down under pressure; offensive on moderate shots

Aggressive serving with limited double faults; uses power and spin; developing offense; on second serve frequently hits with good depth and placement; frequently hits aggressive service returns; can take pace off with moderate success in doubles


Strong shots with control, depth, and spin; uses forehand to set up offensive situations; has developedgood touch; consistent on passing shots

Can use backhand as an aggressive shot with good consistency; has good direction and depth on most shots; varies spin

Serve is placed effectively with intent of hitting to a weakness or developing an offensive situation; has a variety of serves to rely on; good depth, spin, and placement on most second serves to force weak return or set up next shot; can mix aggressive and off-paced service returns with control, depth, and spin


10 Welden Drive - Doylestown PA 18901
Phone: 215-345-7897   Fax: 215-345-7857