Break Point in Tennis – Definition & Strategy

Tennis is one of the most popular sports out there, alongside football and basketball. Although it is extremely popular, it is also quite difficult to understand at first. The rules related to this game are super unique, so if you’re not someone who watches tennis matches often, you’re likely overwhelmed and not know where to start learning.

The good news is that once you start uncovering the rules, it won’t take long for you to figure them out and start playing tennis like a pro! The bad news, however, is that you have to be careful where you search for answers.

The info you find online isn’t always the most reliable, and it can also be badly explained so that you end up even more confused than you were when you started looking. That is why we took it upon ourselves to do the research and present you with the necessary information in a user-friendly way.

We’re here to save you from wasting an eternity trying to find relevant info about break points in tennis. Instead of spending hours going through confusing and unreliable info on your own, look at our summarized explanations below. You’ll learn all there is to know about a break point in tennis in the blink of an eye!

Understanding What a Break Point in Tennis Is

As you know, tennis boasts no shortage of confusing rules, and one of them is a breakpoint. So, what is a breakpoint? Essentially, a player can have the so-called break point if and when he or she is one point away from winning.

That is when the player can call a breakpoint. However, there are no endless break points in tennis. In succession, you can have up to three break points, no more. That’s the number that the tennis scoring system allows and cannot be changed.

To better understand how breakpoints work, we’re going to exemplify them. Let’s say that player A is serving player B, but the second player manages to make the score 30-40 in his favor.

In such instances, player B would be one point away from claiming a victory over the game during which player A is serving, which results in a breakpoint.

Now, if player B provides even better performance and makes the score 15-40, he or she will get a double break point. That means that the player now gets not one but two opportunities to use the breakpoint and win the entire game against player A’s serve.

Reasons Why a Break Point Is Important

You may think that breakpoints aren’t that important and don’t change the outcome of the game as much, but that is not entirely true. There is a couple of reasons why breakpoints are very important and useful, and we’re here to tell you all about them.

The first reason why a breakpoint is relevant is its outcome can change the course of the entire match significantly. There are certain studies that talk about the correlation between calling a break point and winning a match.

If a player converts a break point correctly, he or she will be able to shift the entire game to their favor and end up claiming victory. A number of huge names in tennis managed to do so, including Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal.

The second reason why breakpoints can be helpful is the psychological effect that gives you the advantage during a match. Converting a breakpoint will usually cause your opponent to stress, which can make their performance worsen if they let the nerves get in the way.

Many players rely on their strong serve when it comes to their strategy to get through the match. If you manage to push these opponents to a breakpoint during their service, you will cause them discomfort and gain a psychological advantage that could help you win.

The Difference Between a Break Point and a Game Point

Winning a breakpoint is much more difficult than winning a game point. Firstly, to win a breakpoint, you have to meet certain conditions, including:

  • Being one point away from winning
  • Your opponent is serving

When it comes to winning a game point, it is not a piece of cake exactly, but it is less difficult than winning a breakpoint.

If a competitor gets ahead by one to three points and needs only one point to win the game, that is when the term ‘’game point’’ will be announced. So, in short, four points will win you a game.

If you want to try winning a breakpoint, we provide you with some tips on how to approach this correctly. Take a look at the list below for the details:

  • Don’t try to rush your move. This is especially important if you’re a beginner since most players who are just starting to play tend to get anxious and rush things. Take your time, take a breath, and make your move when you are ready.
  • Be consistent and stick to what you know. To avoid making a bad move and ending up losing because of it, it is best not to try anything risky and keep your play consistent at all times. You can try experimenting during practice to see what works best for you, and then apply what you learned once you step onto the court to play against the opponent.


Tennis rules, including break and game points, can be difficult to understand at first. That is why it’s important to have someone explain these rules to you in layman’s terms, especially if you’re a beginner. Luckily, with our summarized guide to understanding break points in tennis and our tips on how to win one, you’ll be ready to play in no time!


Darinka Aleksic has been writing for Tennis Tips since its launch and has been an integral part of our team. Her role is to cover topics regarding everything tennis-related around the globe. From expert equipment reviews to exercise tips and tricks, she covers all the fields with a lot of attention to detail.

Her goal is to deliver top-notch tennis content and keep you up to date with everything in the modern tennis era while also reminding you about the game’s roots and history. Sports have always been a fundamental part of her life ever since she started playing tennis at the age of seven.

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