Creating opportunities to grow tennis
This is a historic week, as we celebrate tennis and the US Open, in this new reality that we’re all facing.
Earlier this year, as the COVID-19 virus began to shut down businesses and tennis facilities, this industry came together to analyze the needs and concerns of those involved in our sport. The result was the formation of “Tennis Industry United,” with the initial mission to lead the sport through the challenges presented by the pandemic by working with key industry organizations and associations.
The TIU group helped to develop and implement a collaborative action plan to address key segments of the industry, including facilities/clubs, teaching professionals/coaches and recreational players.
The aim has been to advise and assist those in the tennis industry during this crisis, and to ensure that the industry, its businesses, and its people are well-positioned for a successful resurgence once this crisis is behind us. The goal was, and remains, “Relief. Recover. Rebuild.”
One of the first things TIU did was to assemble a list of resources focused on financial assistance and relief, to help make it easier for those in the industry to access potential help. These resources include information on Small Business Disaster Relief, the Cares Act, Employment Resources, Facility Grants and much more, including webinars and podcasts. You can find these resources at TennisIndustryUnited.com.
A new initiative by Tennis Industry United is the start of a weekly Newsletter, which will be emailed to those throughout the tennis industry every Tuesday. The Newsletter is result of conference calls among TIU organizations, who felt it was important to bring accurate, timely and useful information to the entire industry, with united messages designed to help grow this sport and this business.
As more and more tennis businesses open up, Tennis Industry United is shifting its focus to use the strengths and resources of its respective industry organizations to promote and ensure the continual growth of tennis—developing and implementing action plans that drive two core priorities for the sport:
- To mobilize tennis advocates across the country to promote the benefits of tennis, to attract non-players into the game and to re-engage lapsed players.
- To promote greater diversity and inclusion in overall tennis player participation and throughout the industry.
As we enjoy the US Open on TV and digitally, remember that the TIU is working to ensure this sport is well-positioned to bring in and retain new generations of diverse tennis participants, while helping to advise and assist those in this industry in advocating for tennis. Tennis is an ideal sport for these challenging times, and this industry—through Tennis Industry United and many other groups—is working to create opportunities for this sport to grow.
Peter Francesconi is the editor of Racquet Sports Industry magazine.
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