Rotation is a venerated tradition and a featured attraction of Lakewood.  The goal of Rotation is to allow players to show up and play a competitive game of tennis at either the Regular or Advanced level.  After the 2017 Annual Meeting, the Lakewood Executive Board established a Rotation Committee to address concerns about the oversubscription of Advanced Rotation, the undersubscription of Regular Rotation and the level of play at both. As a result, the following rules were established.  The goal of these rules is to maintain an open and inclusive community, reiterate existing standards for participation at both Regular and Advanced Rotation, and to provide a mechanism to insure that the standards are met. These rules of rotation play must be strictly observed.


Regular Rotation

To play in regular rotation members must have the following minimum skills:  dependable strokes on both sides under moderate pressure; the strength, ability and willingness to move on the court and chase down shots; the ability to volley at the service line and at the net; and the ability to serve with some strength and reasonable reliability.  


Relaxed Rotation Court

To maintain an inclusive community, members who no longer satisfy the regular rotation standard of play or otherwise prefer a less aggressive game will now play on Court 4, which will become a Relaxed Court for the first hour and one-half of some rotations (see Schedule for exact times).  


If only 1 to 3 members are available for the Relaxed Court, all attendees at Rotation will rotate once to ensure a foursome.  The Relaxed Court must be filled first at the start of the rotation, and players should follow common sense and the Rotation Mixer Rules below for rotating onto the relaxed court while it is in play, until everyone has rotated once onto that court.  The goal is to keep play continuous, always moving new players onto this court, if needed, to make a foursome.


Advanced Rotation

To play in advanced rotation, a participant must meet all of these standards: possess strong fundamental skills, including a strong serve, play with power and consistency, and understand and use basic doubles strategy and teamwork.  Players are expected to run hard, play aggressively, and not restrain their own service or strokes, nor expect other players to do so.


Lakewood Standards Committee

A Standards Committee, currently consisting of four or five members, has been established.  They will give guidance and direct members to the most appropriate rotation for their level of play.  Decisions will be by unanimous vote. Committee members shall be very thoughtful regarding decisions and exercise discretion so that no member is embarrassed.  


Rotation Mixer Rules

The goal of rotation is to play with as many different members as possible during the rotation period.  Combined with common sense, these rules are meant to facilitate that goal.


During all rotation periods, 5-game sets are played (first team to win 5 games).  If there is a bench, no-ad scoring is used (one point deciding the game, with receiving team to choose receiver of service).  


At the start of the rotation period, players draw numbers to determine which court they play on (and whether they play, if more than 16 players are present at the start time).  If there is a Relaxed Court, it must be filled first. At the end of each set, mixing is done as follows:


  1. When there is no bench:
    1. When your group finishes, you call out loudly (and confirm that others have heard). You are now the bench. You may continue playing until the next group finishes.  All other courts now use no-ad scoring.
    2. When the second group finishes, you mix up players with the first group.
    3. Each group independently uses four chits to determine which two players will go to the other court. Two players from Group 1 go to Group 2. Two players from Group 2 go to Group 1.
    4. If a third group is playing, they do the same as group 1: Call out, confirm others have heard and become the bench until the next group finishes. They may continue to play while they are the bench.
  2. When there is a bench with 1-3 players:
  1. At the end of the set, players defer to those waiting.
  2. Players leaving a rotation court will draw numbers to determine which of them will join the new match.
  1. When there is a bench such that the same foursome that already played would rotate onto the court:
    1. Players are encouraged to mix to promote the goal of two new players in each rotation.  Use chits as above to mix.
    2. This is not mandatory, however, since it could result in long wait times on the bench.
    3. Players should be flexible and use their discretion.
  2. Members are expected to play in Rotation in an appropriate order and may not “sit out” a round – unless they are leaving for the day.


Rotation Mixer Scenarios

The following are some scenarios that demonstrate how the rules work:


Scenario 1: 

4 people on the bench. They have not all played together before.   Rule: Go in as a group.


Scenario 2:

4 people on the bench who played together already.  To mix, use chits to pick 2 who will go in. Group coming off court uses chits to pick two to stay. The remaining two on the bench and two coming off the court are the next bench foursome – and go in together.


Scenario 3:

8 people on the bench and first two groups have played together already. To mix, use chits to pick 2 from Group 1 and 2 from Group 2 to be the next to go on the court.  The remainder are the first group on the bench.  The group coming off (Group 3) goes to the end of the bench.


When Group 3 is the first group on the bench, they mix it up with the next four players on the bench (even if those 4 haven’t all played together).


Scenario 4: 

12 people on the bench – follow same procedure as Scenario 3.