Ask the Rules Guru - Wearing Yellow

What does the rule book say?Dear Rules Guru,

We have a league opponent who swears that it’s illegal to wear a green shirt. There’s someone else who says it’s illegal to wear yellow. Personally, I like the idea of a bright yellow target on the other side of the net, but this fashion thing seems to bring out the claws. Is there a rule about this?

Colorless and Confused

 

Dear Colorless and Confused,

There is not a rule explicitly banning certain colors of clothing. Maybe Fair Isle sweaters didn’t come in disturbing colors so it wasn’t an issue until now.

However, in the interest of good sportsmanship, "The Etiquette of Platform Tennis" states that "As a courtesy, don’t deliberately wear clothing with the intent of making the ball more difficult for opponents to see."

Colorless and ConfusedI also took a look at rules from various leagues. I found that the LIIPTL (women), MIPTL (women) and MAPTA (women) leagues have specific restrictions on yellow and/or yellow/green clothing. Men don’t seem to care (does that surprise anyone?).

Bottom line: read your league rules and avoid color coordinating with the ball. Your interpretation of your intent, and your opponents, might be different.

Thanks for asking,
The Rules Guru

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