Tennis Industry magazine


Our Serve: It’s Our Responsibility

By Peter Francesconi

With Net Generation, the USTA has done the heavy lifting. Now it’s time to do our part and spread the word.

I’ve often said we overcomplicate things in this industry. For tennis providers, success is simple: It’s about the bottom line. How will your business benefit from a new product, a new service — even a new initiative?

As Net Generation rolls out to this industry and to consumers, we need to make sure tennis providers know that supporting this new initiative will be a benefit for their businesses, and in the process, it will be a boon to the overall health of the sport.

Net Generation is designed to connect with players ages 5 to 18 in a variety of ways. The initiative seeks to make the game easy to understand, easy to access and easy for kids to have fun.

One important component of the initiative is, a website parents can access to find courts and programs in their areas. It’s a simple — but critical — step of the process.

As a tennis provider, you need to register at Another simple and critical step, registering will put your business into the searchable database so anyone looking for tennis in your area will find you and your programs.

Another key component of the initiative is the support for in-school and after-school programs. Net Generation includes access to free equipment, curriculum and lesson plans for schools. This not only creates more players, it creates future customers.

To ensure a kid-friendly, safe environment, all Net Generation providers must go through a complimentary Safe Play background check. While this process involves a few steps, the result is an environment that will encourage parents to have their children engaged in this sport. In the end, it will grow your player base. For teaching pros, facilities and organizations, it is well worth the effort to go through these steps — plus, the USTA picks up the cost.

The USTA, and this industry, is looking to Net Generation to inspire the next wave of tennis players and to become a unified youth brand for the sport, much like Little League is for youth baseball, Pop Warner for football and AYSO for soccer. To be sure, this will be a long process, and there will be bumps in the road. But the USTA has said making course corrections will be part of the process.

For at least 10 years, recreational tennis participation has stagnated. Net Generation offers all of us a chance to move the needle. The USTA and its key partners have done the heavy lifting for this key initiative. It’s now time for all providers to get on board.

Peter Francesconi

Editorial Director

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About the Author

Peter Francesconi is editorial director of Tennis Industry magazine.



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