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JAL442
09-15-2006, 04:44 PM
I am a former USTA tournament player and currently a Junior in Boston University's School of Management. My team and I have a project over the course of the semester that requires us to develop a new product that is not currently on the market and construct a business plan as if we were actually going to bring the product to market. Being a tennis player, I thought it would be fun to target the tennis industry. So my question is, are there any products (teaching tools, gadgets, etc.) that do not exist that you would like to see on the market? Thank you very much for the input. It is greatly appreciated.

-James

Forehand Forever
09-15-2006, 07:17 PM
Maybe a racquet with strings that would adjust to your style of play, that would be pretty cool but I don't think it could be possible.

dave333
09-15-2006, 07:47 PM
how bout the racquet that totally adjusts to become your holy grail?

dacrymn
09-15-2006, 07:55 PM
heh. Are you sure you're allowed to ask other people for this project? Oh well. Hows about a shock absorber that 1. either goes entirely around the sweetspot or 2. attached to the FRAME and somehow dampens framed shots vibrations.
________
ST1100 (http://www.cyclechaos.com/wiki/Honda_ST1100)

federermcenroeagassi
09-15-2006, 08:15 PM
heh. Are you sure you're allowed to ask other people for this project? Oh well. Hows about a shock absorber that 1. either goes entirely around the sweetspot or 2. attached to the FRAME and somehow dampens framed shots vibrations.

great idea. something like a racket with inbuilt moveable weights so that balance and weight and stuff is customizable would be cool

tangoll
09-15-2006, 08:22 PM
1. I recall seeing an ad about this product once in Tennis magazine, but could never find this product. This product clips onto the tennis racquet frame and when you serve or swing the racquet, it measures the racquet head speed and translates that to mph.

2. A voice recorder that will record whatever the last score is called that we can play back whenever there is a question of what the score was, or is. Not a scoring machine but a small recorder that could remain stationary somewhere on the court, or could even be worn by the server who has to announce the score before each service.

3. Some device that could actually inject air into the tennis ball to increase pressure and/or tennis balls with air valves, like other inflatable balls (basketballs, footballs, volleyballs, etc.). Why can't we have inflatable tennis balls?

4. Irridescent tennis balls that glow in the dark. Balls that emit a beep whenever it touches the base or sidelines.

What a neat project you have! Good luck, and I hope that some of these products actually make it to market.

racingdad23
09-15-2006, 09:35 PM
How about a racquet with a adjustable (semi-floating) throat. A piece of all-thread from the throat all the way through the handle to the buttcap with a dial/knob at the end. A slight twist either to the left or to the right to increase/decrease a few pounds of tension to the mains. Very possible and something that an actual prototype would be fairly easy to construct with simple tools and a workbench/vise.

JAL442
09-16-2006, 12:12 PM
Thank you very much to those of you who have repsonsed with potential ideas. My team and I are very greatful. If anybody gets any more ideas, throw them out there even if they sound silly or ridiculous. Thanks again!

-James

varuscelli
09-16-2006, 11:09 PM
How about a racquet with a adjustable (semi-floating) throat. A piece of all-thread from the throat all the way through the handle to the buttcap with a dial/knob at the end. A slight twist either to the left or to the right to increase/decrease a few pounds of tension to the mains. Very possible and something that an actual prototype would be fairly easy to construct with simple tools and a workbench/vise.

Hasn't something like that already been done with the MacGregor Bergelin Long String Tennis Racquet? Not that it's still in production on anything (at least, I don't think).

kchau
09-16-2006, 11:12 PM
How about a racquet with a adjustable (semi-floating) throat. A piece of all-thread from the throat all the way through the handle to the buttcap with a dial/knob at the end. A slight twist either to the left or to the right to increase/decrease a few pounds of tension to the mains. Very possible and something that an actual prototype would be fairly easy to construct with simple tools and a workbench/vise.

take something like the dnx 1 power arm, but make the power arm adjustable..

overall i dont think this idea is reasonable, and it would most likely be illegal for tournament play.

Freedom
09-17-2006, 12:48 AM
A lead-tape like product with a writable surface so you can draw your own designs on it.

A shortened overgrip for people with one-handed backhands.

Custom racquet bags. (Retro pic of JMac with cool writing "You cannot be serious", Federer looking chill with a trophy, etc.)

pNoyr3D
09-17-2006, 09:04 AM
How about an overgrip despenser! Haha.. When you need a certain length of overgrip you just pull it out and cut it, easy as pie! Haha.. That's pretty lame :(

JAL442
09-17-2006, 09:10 AM
Going back to the idea that one person suggested about an inflatable tennis ball...what does everybody else think of that idea? What characteristics would you want it to have? What potential problems would you see with such a product? Thanks again.

tangoll
09-17-2006, 09:37 AM
I think the concept of an inflatable tennis ball should really be a rethink of the entire concept of a tennis ball. I think a new tennis ball should have the following characteristics:
1. be inflatable to a standard bounce of a new ball (current ball)
2. have durable felt, repels water well, and stays bright
3. the seams glow in low light
4. if the ball touches any part of a sideline or baseline, it emits a beep sound so that it's clear the ball is in. Thus, the lines have some special ingredient to cause the ball to beep when the ball contacts this ingredient.

There should be no need to open a can of 3 balls to play tennis; at most 2 or even just one ball can be used for play without deterioration of the ball.

Pricing? If a single inflatable ball (with above characteristics) is priced at about 1.5 times vs. can of 3 current balls, and can provide optimal play equal to having to use 2 or 3 cans of current balls, I think that would make it an attractive product that could entice players to switch.

Tennis Man
09-17-2006, 11:39 AM
Is there anything like a Pong machine in development? That would be awesome (for those who own courts already). No need to look for a partner and collect the balls. Just keep hitting, hehehe

Hot Sauce
09-17-2006, 11:55 AM
Strings made out of memory foam.

StealthGnome
09-18-2006, 09:20 PM
Balls that will always stay bouncy.

retroceso
09-18-2006, 09:26 PM
Strings made out of memory foam.

speaking of memory foam they shold make grips out of tat foam like from the temper-pedic matress.

retroceso
09-18-2006, 09:28 PM
adjustable lead tape. like you and add and take off easier

tangoll
09-19-2006, 06:11 AM
Actually, I think a bigger market will result if you can develop a system whereby you coat a ball (tennis ball, volleyball, soccer, basketball, etc.) with some ingredient that when it comes into contact with a painted line containing some other ingredient, that when these two ingredients contact each other, a sound is emitted. That way, you know when the ball has touched or creased a line. Hearing the beep removes some of the judgment from calling tennis balls in or out at the service line, sidelines, or baselines. It would also be useful in any other sport where umpires or line judges have to call balls in or out when touching a line; sports like basketball, baseball, soccer, volleyball, badminton, racquet ball, field hockey, etc.

Would a beep be irritating? It might be at first, but then it should be no more irritating than players grunting, and not too different from the sound of a net cord when serving (the net cord electronic system).

There probably should be some electric filament or line embedded within the lines so that the beeper can be turned off when not needed to be used; such as after service and ball is in play, singles lines vs doubles lines, etc.

Tennis Man
09-19-2006, 06:12 AM
a racquetometer (like a cyclometer on a bicycle) showing the string tension, the weight, the head balance, the stiffness, etc

Duzza
09-19-2006, 06:21 AM
a racquetometer (like a cyclometer on a bicycle) showing the string tension, the weight, the head balance, the stiffness, etc
doesn't Babolat RDC do this?

Squall Leonheart
09-19-2006, 01:35 PM
Actually, I think a bigger market will result if you can develop a system whereby you coat a ball (tennis ball, volleyball, soccer, basketball, etc.) with some ingredient that when it comes into contact with a painted line containing some other ingredient, that when these two ingredients contact each other, a sound is emitted. That way, you know when the ball has touched or creased a line. Hearing the beep removes some of the judgment from calling tennis balls in or out at the service line, sidelines, or baselines. It would also be useful in any other sport where umpires or line judges have to call balls in or out when touching a line; sports like basketball, baseball, soccer, volleyball, badminton, racquet ball, field hockey, etc.

Would a beep be irritating? It might be at first, but then it should be no more irritating than players grunting, and not too different from the sound of a net cord when serving (the net cord electronic system).

There probably should be some electric filament or line embedded within the lines so that the beeper can be turned off when not needed to be used; such as after service and ball is in play, singles lines vs doubles lines, etc.
I think this is a good idea, though some people may find it annoying to hear sounds going off very often. Maybe the ball would leave a temporary mark on the court.

austro
09-20-2006, 04:43 AM
Something that keeps count of the score. There used to be something like a wristwatch for sale at some point but it wasn't very attractive. Ideally, it would be on the racquet: two buttons, you press one when you score, the other when the opponent scores. Hold both to reset. Have a little digital display. Or a purely mechanical version where you simply push a dial forward.

varuscelli
09-20-2006, 05:01 AM
Something that keeps count of the score. There used to be something like a wristwatch for sale at some point but it wasn't very attractive. Ideally, it would be on the racquet: two buttons, you press one when you score, the other when the opponent scores. Hold both to reset. Have a little digital display. Or a purely mechanical version where you simply push a dial forward.

http://www.tennisgifts.com/watchdunlop.htm

aidenous
09-21-2006, 06:23 PM
After playing outdoors this summer at the parks courts I am finding the nets are never the right height. I played indoors this week and had trouble getting used to the net being the proper height. It would be nice to have a portable and adjustable stick that would allow you to adjust the net.

drakulie
09-21-2006, 09:23 PM
a lever/slide built into the side of the frame that enables you to adjust the tension.

Dunlop300
09-22-2006, 01:25 PM
How about a piece of string or light fishing line that recoils back into the buttcapp for measuring the net height. All you have to do is pull it out to measure and then it zips back into the handle.

DADYO
09-22-2006, 01:52 PM
The ball-beeping thing would be much too expensive considering tennis balls are disposable and can get lost easily (ie flying over the fence after a mishit) and it would have to have some type of electronic device in it, which would a) make the ball heavier b) the electronic system would gets destroyed after the ball gets hit....

Amone
09-22-2006, 04:32 PM
A little pocket-calculator-like object, where you could put in the stats of the point you just played, and would track match statistics.

For example, you might enter "Opponent's XC FH Winner off DTL BH, 2nd Serve" (depending on formatting and the like) and it would store that point's information. At the end of the match, you just click a 'match summary' button, it spits out the % of points you win/lose, the final score, the serve %, etc.

jmsx521
09-24-2006, 11:01 AM
Tennis balls that re-grow their fuzz overnight, like Chia Pets.

http://www.buying-chia-pets.com/images/buying-chia-pets.jpg

jmsx521
09-24-2006, 11:05 AM
Strings that are so sharp (for ball-bite) that the package would have warning label: Sharp Strings! Do not run fingers through strings; it may result in cut!

mistapooh
09-24-2006, 02:44 PM
You know those self-improvement golf clubs people buy to help them get better? The club have hinges that "breaks" when a shot isn't smooth. How bout you have a racket that does that maybe at the throat to get rid of jerky motions!

tennis_nerd22
09-24-2006, 03:10 PM
here's another idea:

tennis balls with radio sensors in them so that if you lose a ball or have to pick up some, you just press a small button in your pocket and they all come to you. now i'd like that :D

varuscelli
09-26-2006, 01:44 PM
OK, I've got it.

Invent a string dampener that emits a horrific shriek or grunt each time the ball is struck. One version could be the "Sharapova Shrieker."

Sort of like the whoopie cushion of tennis.

Taking it even further, invent a dampener that can be given to someone as a "gag" dampener that they only think emits a horrific shriek, when in fact it emits a very loud, flatulation noise.

Attach all three to a racquet, and you could have a grunting, shrieking fart-fest while running wildly to and fro on the court.

(I'm sorry...can I actually say "fart-fest" on this forum?)

:p

Bagumbawalla
09-26-2006, 01:58 PM
Strings that come on a pre-stretched frame, that pop in and out for fast easy replacement.

A moveable weight that, as you accelerate the racket head moves up to increase head weight. Get racket moving faster but with increased mass when it counts.

A trick ball that screams when you hit it.

A cheap device you could attach to racket head to give ball speed.

DRtenniS1112
09-26-2006, 02:02 PM
As a stringer who sometimes gets sore fingers after doing a few a day I think a great invention would be something that allowed for very easy weaving of the crosses.

Hot Sauce
09-26-2006, 03:45 PM
A racquet with a plank of wood in place of strings.

varuscelli
09-26-2006, 03:53 PM
A racquet with a plank of wood in place of strings.

I think they're already out there as paddle racquets (smaller though, and for a different sport).

Or the similar instruments they use for corporal punishment in schools (spat boards). Well, when I was in school they used spat boards, in any case.

Reminds me of an assistant principal I'd love to run into out on the streets some day. :mad:

sloe_torture
09-26-2006, 04:01 PM
How about an overgrip despenser! Haha.. When you need a certain length of overgrip you just pull it out and cut it, easy as pie! Haha.. That's pretty lame :(

I second that idea. I grip up on the tight end and usually cut off about 6" worth of grip. Would definitely be cost-effective for those with one-handed backhands or those with two-handed backhands that need slightly more than the normal grip length. Tourna Grip, Wilson, please make it so with beveled cut-off points.

tennistim777
09-26-2006, 04:07 PM
How about once you find a racquet that you want to buy, you can order it in any custom colors or designs that you want!! Nike does this some of their shoes. That would pretty cool!! Camouflage or chrome/mirror finish anyone?? Just an idea!! Thanks!!

Tennis Man
09-26-2006, 07:19 PM
How about once you find a racquet that you want to buy, you can order it in any custom colors or designs that you want!! Nike does this some of their shoes. That would pretty cool!! Camouflage or chrome/mirror finish anyone?? Just an idea!! Thanks!!

Well, it's for tennis racquet mfg co to decide :)