Diadora Women's Speed Shot - Lightweight faux leather upper is perforated, and closes with a mesh tongue for breathability. And it has synthetic overlays and internal inserts offer enhanced support, plus an impact-reducing DA2 outsole.
Diadora Men's Speedzone AX - Synthetic leather upper with mesh insets, a one-piece wrap-around construction, and forefoot flex grooves. Comfortable and breathable with a padded insole.
Diadora Men's Rebound Ace - A match-ready tennis shoe. Lightweight, breathable micro-fiber construction with a special toe overlay to resist and protect your feet from toe drag friction. An anti-bacterial lining coupled with an EVA foam insole and molded EVA foam midsole. Solid shock absorption and stability. A special alloy thread frame outsole offers stability and forefoot flexion that propels your foot forward. Rubber outsole grips turf, clay, and pavement.
Prince has been named the official racquet, string and ball and string of the Nike Junior Tour - a global series of tournaments that showcases tomorrow's stars of the game. Read the release below.
Bordentown, New Jersey and Hilversum, Netherlands - February 29, 2008 - Nike and Prince are proud to announce that Prince has been named the official racquet, tennis ball and string of the prestigious Nike Junior Tour (NJT) - a worldwide series of singles tournaments for boys' and girls' in the Under 12 and 14 age groups. The partnership will further showcase the mutual commitment of both brands to top junior tennis and tomorrow's superstars.
Currently there are more than 60,000 players from 24 countries participating in the program which includes tournaments, training clinics, exhibitions and speaking engagements at a grassroots level. The NJT's marquee program is the International Masters event, which, every year, brings together the most elite Under-12 and Under-14 boys and girls from around the globe to compete, giving them the rare opportunity to make their mark on the international tennis scene. Past International Masters winners include Rafael Nadal (who won the event three times) and Carlos Boluda, the 14 year-old Spanish phenomenon who has also won the event three times.
Prince is already a dominant player in the tennis, squash and racquetball (through Ektelon), so it only stands to reason they would want to expand their reach into another racquet sport, in this case platform tennis. We think they have made an excellent choice in Viking Athletics. We covered Viking racquets back in late December 2007, and still believe they are the best brand and definitely the coolest designs of all the platform tennis racquets out there.
Here is the press release:
Prince Sports, Inc., the racquet sports company leader is set to acquire the elite platform tennis brand, Viking Athletics. The partnership would bring together two like-minded companies committed to providing players of all court sports the best quality products and customer service. In addition, by adding Viking under the Prince Sports, Inc. umbrella, Prince would continue to define itself as the world's clear court sports leader through an extensive portfolio of leading brands in tennis, squash, racquetball and now, paddle sports. While the details of the deal are not yet finalized, both companies are extremely excited and optimistic about what it means for die-hard, passionate paddle sports players around the world.
Prince Sports, Inc., based in New Jersey, is an iconic brand and recognized leader in high-performance racquet sports. Both the Prince and Ektelon brands have revolutionized tennis, squash and racquetball respectively with innovations including "Oversize," "Longbody" and O3 racquet technology. In recent years, Prince has enjoyed a resurgence and now has a strong #2 market share position. The Prince Indoor Court categories of Prince Squash and Ektelon Racquetball have experienced significant growth as well reaching their highest market share levels since 1998. With a new equity partnership with Nautic Partners, formed in July 2007, Prince Sports is focused on broadening its footprint globally, expanding its O Tech platform and building sales momentum in all categories.
Nike continues to merge sports and entertainment. First they developed the iPod shoe. Now, they've introduced a mix of iTunes that included Serena Williams coaching you while you run. There are two, 30 minute, custom-made workouts - Interval Run and Spontaneous Speed.
Interval Run Workout includes following tracks:
1. Whatever U Like (Nicole Scherzinger)
2. The Way I Are (Timbaland)
3. Give It to Me (Timbaland)
4. My Humps (Black Eyed Peas)
5. Makes Me Wonder (Maroon 5)
6. Tambourine (Eve)
7. Impacto (Daddy Yankee)
8. Out of Control (State of Emotion) (Kenna)
9. Glamorous (Fergie)
10. Fergalicious (Fergie)
11. Pump It (Black Eyed Peas)
Spontaneous Speed Workout includes following tracks:
1. Family Affair (Mary J Blige)
2. Just Fine (Mary J Blige)
3. Let It Go (Keyshia Cole)
4. Instigator (Kaci Brown)
5. Baby Love (Nicole Sherzinger)
6. Release (Timbaland/Justin Timberlake)
7. Apologize (Timbaland/OneRepublic)
8. Give It To You (Eve & Sean Paul)
9. Unbelievable (Kaci Brown)
10. Nolia Fairytake (Vanessa Carlton)
11. A Thousand Miles (Vanessa Carlton)
With plastic bottles piling up in recycling centers and harder plastic not able to be recycled, Al Gore is liable to put tennis players in his sights. But seriously, there is a better, more eco-friendly way to carry H2O on to the court? Sigg water bottles of course! They have more than than 100 aluminum bottle designs to choose from, they last 10 to 20 years, AND they are recyclable. Bonus, the inside is both odorless and tasteless, so no weird aftertaste to your water.
Whether you're trying to move better on the court or prevent injury, stretching your hamstring is critical. But its hard to stretch it properly, until now. The Hamstretch helps those lacking ﬂexibility get the stretch they need in their hammies and hips. Easy to use, just lie on your back, put your leg in the cradle, and pull back with your arms.
We're always on the lookout for good deals, and since Spring is in the air, we figured you might need some new kicks. Nike.com and FinishLine.com and both running promotions, and there are clearance sales at both Nike.com and DoItTennis.com. Happy deal hunting!
Bälle de Mätch is making quite an impression in Canada. Just six months after announcing the brand will be represented and sold in the country, the tennis apparel line out of Southern California has become a partner with the Tennis Professionals Association (TPA), part of Tennis Canada, the governing body of tennis in Canada.
"Bälle de Mätch is just now setting up its sales and distribution network in Canada. What better way to give the brand credibility among teaching pros and retailers alike than to be associated with the teaching professionals in Canada," said Bälle de Mätch co-owner and partner John Embree. "Having TPA members wear our product will enhance our brand awareness with consumers, which will help drive sales at retail."
This two-year agreement that began in January 2007 gives the 1,600 members of TPA the opportunity to purchase Bälle de Mätch apparel on a preferred basis. Bälle de Mätch will offer special packages to the members, one of which includes a warm-up designed specifically for the TPA. Bälle de Mätch will display its apparel line at the TPA National Coaches Conference, March 1-2, in Toronto.
Wilson continued to be the #1 racket brand choice in 2007, according to the year end 2007 SMS/TIA survey just released. Based on the strength of the new [K]Factor line of rackets, Wilson's performance racket market share continued to move up in 2007 (vs 2006) to further Wilson's position as the clear #1 racket brand.
Wilson had 5 of the Top 10 "Hot New Rackets" in 2007 with the [K]Six.One 95, [K]Six.One Tour, and [K]Six.One Team rackets earning the #1, #2, and #3 sellers overall on the "Hot New Rackets" survey - which measures the best-selling new rackets that have been launched in the past 12 months. Wilson also had an amazing 8 of the Top 20 best-selling rackets for all of 2007 - regardless of when they were launched.
Wilson's ongoing success in 2007 is already showing momentum in 2008 with their new [K]Blade family of rackets that has begun shipping and used by Novak Djokovic to win the 2008 Australian Open - his first Grand Slam title. Other noteable players that have switched to new [K]Blade models include Australian Open Finalist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga as well as superstars Venus & Serena Williams.
In addition to the many top players upgrading to new [K]Blade models, both world #1 players, Roger Federer & Justine Henin are also playing [K]Factor for 2008.
The market share data above is based on the 2007 Sports Marketing Surveys / TIA tennis specialty retail audit report.
Q. You're calling from Hong Kong, after spending a few days at the Australian Open, where Wilson is the official ball and it appears that Roger Federer will swoop up another title. What's your take on tennis in the region?
Exposure for tennis is growing in the region with the Australian Open TV coverage and local countries looking to showcase more professional events. The governing bodies in Korea, Japan, and China are working to build a stronger infrastructure for growing the sport and I think they are looking at the strong impact the USTA and TIA have had in the U.S. as to how you can build long-term for the health of the sport.
HEAD is stepping into the Tennis Footwear business with the launch of the Performance Tennis Footwear line. The new line incorporates elegance and attractive aesthetics to the new tennis shoe line, while enhancing and improving player performance on any court surface through the introduction of new footwear technology.
The new line incorporates the HEAD CXG™ technology which provides comfort, shock absorption, decreased foot fatigue, stability and motion control. A combination of turned polyethylene, polypropylene, nylon and saran fibres are shaped to form an interlocking coil structure within the sole of the shoe. The coil is then encapsulated within a resilient polyurethane form. When the foot makes contact with the ground, the coil fibres compress and absorb shock. As the foot reaches the end of its stride, the coil structure produces an upward force, much like that of a resilient spring.
HEAD will provide two lines, each with a men's and women's option:
HEAD player, and top tournament seed, Ramy Ashour, returned to the PSA Tour victorious, after a two-month injury, defeating fourth seed James Willstrop in three games at the Bear Stearns Tournament of Champions at Grand Central Terminal in New York.
This most recent victory may mark the beginning of a long reign at the top of the game for the talented 20-year-old from Egypt. Ashour defeated Willstrop 11-7, 11-10 (3-1), 11-9.
"I just decided to be confident tonight - I had to be, because James is an attacking payer and when he plays his game he's brilliant," said Ashour, who plays with the new MicroGel 125.
Ashour and Willstrop traded jabs in the opening game, testing the other's strength and focus. Tied at six all, Ashour took control of the game, surging ahead 10-6 and closing out the game at 11-7. The second game saw the lead change hands several times. Both players were consistently looking for the openings that that would win the point. It was again Ashour who took the game.
Undeterred, Willstrop looked like he might extend the match when he opened up an 8-4 lead. But Ashour stepped up to take seven of the next eight points, winning the match.
One of the most popular racquets ever, HEAD Prestige continuously offers outstanding overall performance. The choice of competitive players everywhere. These racquets offer incredible touch and playability combined with maximum power and control.
Sign up for a chance to win one of 10 brand new HEAD Prestige MicroGel racquets HERE.
Bordentown, New Jersey - February 13, 2008 - When the ATP Tour rolls into Las Vegas, Nevada next month for the Tennis Channel Open (TCO), fans will not only see some of the sport's biggest names take to the courts, but will also notice a new name and look associated with the increasingly popular tour stop. For the first time in the tournament's three year existence, Prince will be the official racquet, tennis ball and string of the TCO, extending its sponsorship presence among ATP and WTA events and continuing its commitment to growing grassroots initiatives.
Taking place March 3-9, with The Vegas Strip and the Nevada mountains as backdrop and playground, the TCO is quickly becoming one of the players' favorite stops on tour, due to the passionate fans, beautiful weather and non-stop Vegas-style action both on court and off.
HEAD has launched a new, updated tour racquet - the MicroGel Prestige. One of the most popular tour racquets, HEAD's legendary Prestige is now available with MicroGel technology.
The Prestige was introduced in 1987 and has won every Grand Slam: Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon & US Open. It has been used by legends such as Henri Leconte, Thomas Muster, Goran Ivanisevic and Gustavo Kuerten, the new MicroGel Prestige is also the favorite of current pros like Marat Safin, Gael Monfils and Donald Young.
And it is my all time favorite as well, I used the Prestige I bought in 1988 and used it through 1997! I love these sticks and can't wait to try them out.
More and more recreational players are starting to try using two different strings in their racquets. This technique, called a hybrid, has been growing in popularity among the pro ranks for some time now. To tap into this new demand, string manufacturers are producing their own prepackaged hybrids, here are some good ones:
"Odds are that the racquet you see Andy Roddick or Maria Sharapova using spent its early life in a cubbyhole in a nonde-script ofﬁ ce in Midtown Manhattan. It sat there for weeks--at that point just a frame, no handle--until Roman Prokes got the call for a resupply. Then he meticulously customized the racquet to the player's demanding speciﬁcations."
Tennis Magazine alerted us to a tidbit of information we did not know but wish we had. I guess it shouldn't be a surprise, but for many years the racquet companies would provide the pros bags that were made with more durable, thicker materials than the retail counterparts you and I would buy. In other words, the bags would look the same but they would not be the same quality.
The good news, there are four bags that break this tradition, providing the regular tennis player the same quality as the pros.
Dunlop Aerogel 6-pack Thermo Bag
- Two zippered main compartments for racquet storage or to keep clothes separate from equipment
- Adjustable backpack straps and padded handle for easy carrying
- Thermo technology to protect contents from heat
- Accessories pocket to hold cell phone, keys, and wallet
- Check out the Dunlop 2007 Aerogel Collection 6-Pack Thermo Tennis Bag
Head Extreme Supercombi Bag
- Holds up to 12 racquets
- Has CCT (Climate Control Technology) which helps protect racquets from heat
- Accessory compartment with mp3 player and cell phone holder, key hook, and head phone outlet
- Double shoulder straps that allows bag to be carried from either side as a backpack
- Extra long shoulder pads and padded carry handle for comfort
- Separate toiletries and shoe bags
- Check out the Head Extreme Supercombi
Prince Team Collection 12 Pack Bag
- Three padded main compartments hold up to 12 racquets
- Ventilated mini compartment for wet storage
- Easily accessible ventilated shoe compartment
- Padded shoulder strap and carry handle
- Padded backpack shoulder straps
- Thermo lining in two compartments to protect racquets
- Exterior accessory pocket for valuables
- Check out the Prince 2005 Team Collection 12-Pack Tennis Bag
Wilson [K] Pro Tour Traveler
- Large luggage style travel bag to take on trips to tournaments
- Heavy-duty trolley system to wheel the bag around
- Multiple compartments for separating clothes and equipment
- Fully zippered mesh dividers make it easy to keep everything in order
- Oversize shoe compartment
- Extra-large, reinforced full wrap straps
- Handle on each end for convenient carry
- Small side accessories compartment
- Oversize main zipper with cover flap
- Check out the Wilson K Pro Tour Traveler Tennis Bag
Whether you're buying a stringing machine for personal or professional use, it is a sizable investment, so you should check out your options. Below are three solid machines, from three great brands, at three price points.
"For anyone who believes that buying a stringing machine is too expensive a proposition, consider this: If you string two racquets per month at a savings of $20 each (a conservative estimate), that's $480 a year. It's an investment serious players can't afford to miss...."
This is a manual machine, meaning it uses a hand crank. So it doesn't need electricity. This not only saves energy and money, it also means you don't have to be near an outlet to use it. If speed is a priority, get the two-point option (there's also a 6-point option). At around $900, this is a solid value. Check it out here.
Prince Neos 1000
This is a workhorse stringing machine. Like the Gamma, it's a manual machine, so you have to pull the tension yourself. Unlike the Gamma, it has a four-point mounting system that allows you to secure the frame with two pulls of the lever. An interesting and unique feature - the string clamps attach to the machine on movable glide bars, making them slightly faster. A great machine that runs about $1100 and has been used by pro stringers for many years. Check it out here.
This is one of the big daddies of the stringing world, and runs $5,000+. But, it will definitely fill the bill for any stringer. It has very sophisticated stringing technology, an adjustable stand, and an optional cabinet for supplies. Its all electric - its all about pushing buttons not twisting and pulling. But check this out, it has a knot-tensioning function. Ever notice that when you tie a knot at the end of a piece of string, there's a section at the very end that doesn't get tension? Well, this puppy has a button that puts extra tension on the last string to compensate for the knot for a more consistent string job. Check it out here.
If you buy your own string but don't want to have to build an addition on your house to put your full reels of string, there is another option - mini-string reels. Wilson and Luxilon both sell these, and they have a chart on the back to keep track of how much string you have left. Pretty convenient and a great alternative to buying a full reel of string.
If you read our post, Paranoia Running Rampant at Lacoste, you know a little about the odd law suit going on between Lacoste and a dental practice. If you didn't, the long and the short of it is that earlier this month, a pair of British dentists deflected a logo-driven lawsuit by Lacoste. The famous gator emblem, seemed to too closely inspire the logo for the medical practice. It's not an exact replica, the court said, so they can keep it.
Well, we finally get to see the logo in question. The dentists won the suit and are able to keep the logo. I think you will agree the correct decision was made - this is not an infringement on the classic gator logo.
Tennis Magazine, the big dog of tennis publications, has put out its best of 2007 list. Here you go:
1. Best Game-Day Shoe: Nike Air Max Breathe Cage. Check off all the important stuff for these kicks -namely stability, cushioning, and support without suffocating your feet.
2. Best Racquet Innovation: Prince Speedport Tuning System - specifically the Prince O3 Speedport Blackand the Prince O3 Speedport Tour.- each comes with string-hole grommets that can be placed in the ports before stringing and give the racquet a stiffer string bed, a traditional feel and enhanced stability.
3. Favorite Shades: Maui Jim Breakwaterand Bolle Score- The Bolles have Competivision lenses which mute all colors except the yellow of the ball, and the Maui Jims have a hingeless frame and lightweight shield for style and comfort while playing.
4. Most Fashionable Attire: Nike Sharapova Day and Evening dresses - simply the right combination of fashion and function - and having a great player to wear them doesn't hurt either.
6. Favorite New Player Frames:Head MicroGel Extreme Proand Dunlop Aerogel 500 Tour- These two racquets look alike and were designed with certain players in mind: aggressive hitters who put a lot of pace and spin on their shots. They'll ﬁnd plenty to like in either of these impressive new sticks.
7. Hottest Trend: Hybrid strings - one type of string for the mains and another for the crosses. Not new for the pros, but new for the average player, especially in how they have been packaged to be easier to put together - like the Pacific PolyGut ATP Blend Hybrid,Wilson Ultimate Duoand Wilson Champions Choice.
8. Most Innovative Shoes:Prince M Series- The M stands for "maximum" and the three shoes in the M Series all have a special emphasis: C for cushioning, V for ventilation, and S for stability (the last in men's only). With tweaks to the construction, each model offers more help in one of those three categories.
9. Best Sleeper Stick: Dunlop Aerogel 700- the Aerogel 700 has a comfortable feel and offers plenty of power without losing control.
10. Best New Accessory: Tourna Grip II- a classic, but this version is a bit more tacky and resilient than the original.
To celebrate their 3rd anniversary, Vantage is offering all of our custom racquets at half price. This provides a great opportunity to try out a custom racquet, but is only available for a short period of time. The sale lasts from this coming Thursday February 7th and ends Friday February 8th.
If you're not familiar with the British company, they enable users to build their own custom racquet using their unique "online configurator." If you think about it, its a smart way to go if you're a serious player and have specific preferences in mind. They allow you to choose frame size, string pattern, stiffness, length, weight & balance, color, grip shape, grip size, grip type and head cover/bag. For example, I've always liked the oval shape of the Head grip, but sometimes liked how Wilson's felt otherwise. This would allow me to mix and match.
These unique sticks don't come cheap, they run about £140 (about US $275). If that's too rich for your blood, they also offer prebuilt models.
Prince has launched two new online Web promotions that will give players and fans the chance to win a host of free products and prizes.
What the hell is an "O Face" you ask? Funny you should ask. Maria Sharapova showed hers many times en route to capturing this year's Australian Open title. John Isner, Jelena Jankovic, Nikolay Davydenko, the Bryan Brothers, all have shown theirs many times. In Prince's words, "As more players around the world are quickly realizing, O3 technology = better shots. Better shots help you win. Winning gets you an O face." Now Prince wants to see what other on court O faces look like by having players send in photos of themselves for a chance to win.
Recoil strings realign after each shot - no more having to straighten the strings between points, and far fewer mishits during a point after the strings have shifted. If you're still not clear about how the string works, or why its so unique and potentially game-changing, Prince has finally put out a video about how it works. Check it out here.
We've been telling you about the highly anticipated Prince Recoil string for some time. Well, it is finally hitting store shelves this week! To promote the string in-store, Prince will be hanging cut-outs from their ceilings to educate players about the product. The signage is in line with its packaging, which uses lenticular motion to demonstrate the product. In other words, but the signage and the packaging show a shifting image as the viewer's point of view changes. The effect is a tennis ball hitting the strings, the strings giving way, then the strings returning to their original position as the ball flies off the string bed.
Top U.S. Juniors Reo Asami and Joseph Di Giulio Switch to Prince O3 Speedport Black Racquet
Bordentown, NJ – February 1, 2008 - Two more top juniors have made the switch to Prince as Reo Asami and Joseph Di Giulio, two of the United States’ most talented young tennis stars, recently decided they needed to play the Prince O3 Speedport Black">O3 Speedport Black after playtesting the racquet extensively. Blown away by the balance, control and additional racquet head speed they could create with the O3 Speedport Black (as well as the stealth black “look”), both Reo and Joseph came to the decision independently within days of one another. In the end, while loyal to a previous racquet company that both had been with since they were very young, the two boys, their families and coaches, could not walk away from a racquet they knew would take their game to the next level.
Players Continue to Convert to Prince and Embrace Popular O3 Technology
Bordentown, NJ – February 1, 2008 - The SMS/TIA fourth quarter 2007 racquet audit revealed more exciting news for Prince Sports, Inc. The report showed that Prince has four of the top ten best selling racquets in the sport (ranked by year-to-date dollars). Further, all four of these racquets are O3 frames, the Company’s revolutionary racquet design and technology. In addition, the brand has more than one-quarter of all top twenty best sellers and the O3 White, which was the best selling racquet for 2006, has ended the year at #2.
“The fact that there are so many O3 racquets in the top ten is simply a testament to the quality of the products we are bringing to market and further validates this beneficial racquet design. What might have once been a product that was in the minority, O3 has spoken for itself and is quickly becoming the must-have technology among all players” said Doug Fonte, President of Prince Americas.
The O3 White, tennis’ best selling racquet for all of 2006 remains in the top five (currently the #2 best selling racquet year-to date) and helped Maria Sharapova capture two Grand Slam titles, including the 2008 Australian Open