Currently Under Development
The ITF is in the process of developing a series of focused programmes specifically targeting the 11-17 year old audience that will fall under the Tennis Play and Stay campaign.
The programme(s) will help to both attract and retain those in tennis at an age when many are leaving sport. Under the Tennis Play and Stay campaign, and under the remit of the ITF Introduction to Tennis Taskforce, the ITF intends to involve expertise from outside the sports industry and involve organisations with an expertise with targeting this audience.
Using research into the interests of the 11-17 year old audience, it is expected that an attractive programme can be developed by 2014.
The 11-17s audience
Some players start to play tennis later than the age of 10, so it is important that encouragement is also given to older starter players. As for all other ages i.e. 10-and-under and adult players, starter players aged 11-17 can be given an enjoyable first experience in tennis by using the slower Red, Orange and Green balls and smaller courts.
Players in this age range may not need to spend as long in each of the Red, Orange and Green stages than some younger players, due to their physical ability, level of coordination and their range of athletic skills. Players aged 11-17 often will be able to able to serve, rally and score on a full court sooner than others and therefore their progression through the Red, Orange and Green stages towards using the Yellow ball on a regular full-size court would be quicker and more suitable.
National development programmes for this age range are less common than the specific 10-and-under programmes, however such programmes and focused development activities for this audience should be considered as an important stage of the tennis development pathway for a player.