With all the emphasis on group exercise like Pilates classes, a lot of people looking to get fit forget about competitive sports. Although it’s a bit of hassle to join a club and get to every session, competitive sports have a lot of benefits. The fast-paced, vigorous exercise you get from them is fantastic for burning calories. Also, the possibility of winning or losing can add a nice touch of excitement. Tennis is one sport that’s exceedingly fun, and fairly easy to pick up. If you’re looking for a way to get more of your friends into competitive sports, here’s a guide to organising your own tennis tournament.
Before you get stuck into it, why not make your tournament a call to do something meaningful? Picking a cause and fundraising has its own reason, but will also attract more entrants to your tournament. The most popular ones are a project dealing with the local community. Perhaps a youth centre is being built, or a local historical building needs to be renovated. Start asking around and looking at billboards. Even in the smallest of towns, you’re sure to find some local cause to support. Failing this, you might just want to make it a broader, charitable cause. You could even let your participants vote for the cause you support. Design your poll at Pollmaker, and send out a link through social media.
Image from Pixabay
Once you have that out of the way, get down to planning. You’re likely to know a fair amount of health enthusiasts already. This is where you should draw your planning committee from. You should keep this group small, but should include a couple of tennis enthusiasts and a media officer. Obviously the media officer doesn’t have to be a professional. However, I’d recommend finding someone with some knowledge of publicity. Even a large social media following can be a big help. Get together with your team a few times, and start doing some budgeting work. The venue you hire is probably going to be the biggest slice of this. After that, you’ll need to deal with flier printing, refreshments, and anything else you need for the tournament. If you wanted one, trophies can be bought here at Premier Trophies. The budgeting work for any kind of sports event can be a real hassle, but once you get it out of the way everything will start coming together. Here’s some great advice on budgeting.
Now that you’ve got a pretty solid plan, you’ll need to find some participants. If you’re making the tournament a community-orientated event, then you should probably keep the bar low. Try to attract the largest amount of people possible. This may require a little more organisation. Keep your first few rounds open to anyone, from novices to pros. To avoid scaring off too many people, you might want to split the entire competition into two skill brackets. Keeping a group for teenagers and children is a sure-fire way to find entrants. In order to get entrants of any age or skill level, people need to hear about your event. You’ll need a pretty good publicity drive to get the word out. You already have access to some great free publicity in the form of Facebook. Even if you don’t have a ginormous following, there’s probably some community pages which will be happy to advertise your event. Depending on the entrants you’re going for, you may also want to reach out to local tennis clubs. Other things like phoning into a local radio station, posters and fliers can be extremely effective.
The final step is to work out some rules. This is where that tennis nut on your committee comes in. If you’re not too familiar with the sport, then it can be useful to have certain regulations spelled out. You may want to have looser rules for the lower skill brackets and younger groups, and save the nitty-gritty for the final rounds. Most of your participants will just want to have fun or give to a good cause. For serious players though, it’s important to get the rules right! You should also have a plan for dealing with absences and misconduct. You should also record the order of the games and number of rounds you’re aiming for. The ITA has a great free tool for this.
After you’ve gone through these steps, everything will be in place to run a great tennis tournament. Whether your aim is to encourage the sport or raise funds, careful budgeting and good organisation are the keys to success.