Trophies and other hardware as an adult - do you keep and display?

I regularly play tournaments - singles and doubles, open and 35s, USTA sanctioned or not. Sometimes I'm completely overmatched, sometimes I lose very competitive matches, and sometimes I win, not only the match, but the whole tournament (main draw or consolation)!!

But, I don't keep any trophies or hardware (plaques, medals, etc.). It used to be that I never (or incredibly rarely) displayed any trophies or hardware (never saw a compelling reason, I know what I did), but I did keep it - in a closet, in storage. But, when I moved a couple of years ago, I trashed nearly all of the trophies, etc., and have not kept hardware ever since. I thought about it. It's the competition that I enjoy, and the people, and just the overall experience. I could care less about the hardware. I have never, not once, been inclined to go view it again after putting it away.

I love tournaments that offer a more practical prize that I can actually use - a towel with the tournament name and "Winner" stiched in; a gift certificate, a fold out chair with the tournament name, etc.

I have numerous tennis friends and associates who take the same view. In fact, one in particular throws his trophies/hardware away on site, which I find incredibly crass. Or he'll just simply refuse it or leave it.

On the other hand, obviously, many people keep everything, and some display everything. There's a guy who I match up with regularly in 35s where I live who has built a good-sized trophy case, and has it prominently displayed. He started tennis as an adult, and is basically self-taught, and is, naturally, really excited to have things signifying his achievements.

Then, there are players who find some sort of happy medium - some particular achievements are kept and displayed, some are not.

I understand and respect any treatment of the trophy/hardware "issue". Just wondering what different people do.
 
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anubis

Hall of Fame
I keep all my tennis trophies and awards displayed at my office at work. They're conversation starters.
 

Ironwood

Professional
Only ever won two tennis trophies....a company city wide singles tournament years ago (really just a fun event) and a community club year end mens doubles tournament 10 years ago (played with the club pro and quess who made the difference). But I had a box full of trophies from two other racket sports from my younger years that my wife made me throw out when we downsized to a new house a year ago. They weren't displayed, just safekept in the basement. I did salvage the two best and I've kept them.
 

J_R_B

Hall of Fame
I kept all the stuff from last year and have it displayed in one unconspicuous display in our house (little crystal knick-knacks for local league, districts, sectionals, and national runner-up plus the clinching ball from sectionals). That's all I have, though. If I won a lot, I would have to make some decisions because we don't have room for a whole cabinet of trophies.
 

Dberger820

Rookie
I have a shelf in my house where I keep my trophies and plaques on display. I see no harm in being proud of your accomplishments. I have everything from my trophy I received as runner-up in a 14-under tourney to one I got last month. There are only about 10 total and I like how each one is very different.

I'm a very competitive person so I believe that probably goes into why I display them. Plus it reminds me that after all the time and money I have put in over the years, I have something to show for it. Its mainly just for me. Guests don't notice or ever say anything about them.
 
Give to my mom. I have no need for them but my mom likes them. She doesn't display them but just puts them in a box in her storage.

I'm a big fan of practical prizes too. Nice looking shirts without 10000 ads on them, towels, or blankets. I have too many water bottles, so i'm not a big fan of those anymore. I think at my 4.0-4.5 level any usta tournament isn't really that big deal. Its 3-4 rounds big whoop, then a cheap plastic trophy, or plaque at the end.

Honestly i'd really prefer if they'd just cut the cost of the tournament by 5 dollars then not give out anything at the end!
 
I won 5 USTA championships and two runner ups since last March.

I feel really good to see those championships.. since i put a lot of effort to take it to my home.. and i think i am proud of that and can't think about trashing it at all

I put all in my bed room/ used to keep in living room.. but my niece is very naughty.. so she may throw it.. and destroy it.
 
Weirdly, even though I've junked all the stuff I've won as an adult, there is box in my basement with some trophies and plaques from when I was a kid that I have never thrown out. It was at my parents' house for a long time, but then they moved to a smaller place and me to a bigger place, so I took it.
 

ednegroni

Rookie
I only kept my Junior Olympics (AAU) medals for a long time, everything else, even as an adult now I pretty much throw away. I do keep pictures, but I'm not a hoarder.
 

RoddickAce

Hall of Fame
I don't display any of them, but I keep them in a box in my closet. It's kind of nice just to keep something to remember the experiences.

I know someone who, if he got a runner-up medal, would throw it away in a field right after the tournament...
 
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LeeD

Bionic Poster
Some of it depends how stable you are, like in living space.
I've moved about every 5 years all my life, lived in hovels, rooms, houses, and been homeless for lots of years.
By the time I hit 30, I had 70+ motocross trophies, most of which were over 3' high, 5 at least head high. I tried to refuse the trophies for cash, but that wasn't always an option.
I have several friends who keep and treasure, display and clean, every single one of their trophies. Some have over 250 total, and even have a trophy room at his house. He get's his trophies playing down, so he never really has to lose in early rounds.
To each his own.
 

cmartin

New User
Another option is to save the info (generally tags added to the trophy) and donate the trophy to junior development groups. Generally they need assistance with costs and trophies are more important to kids.
 

LuckyR

Legend
Give to my mom. I have no need for them but my mom likes them. She doesn't display them but just puts them in a box in her storage.

I'm a big fan of practical prizes too. Nice looking shirts without 10000 ads on them, towels, or blankets. I have too many water bottles, so i'm not a big fan of those anymore. I think at my 4.0-4.5 level any usta tournament isn't really that big deal. Its 3-4 rounds big whoop, then a cheap plastic trophy, or plaque at the end.

Honestly i'd really prefer if they'd just cut the cost of the tournament by 5 dollars then not give out anything at the end!
What he said...
 

racertempo

Semi-Pro
I have about 15 right now from 3.5 and 4.0 tournaments, and a nice glass one for winning states with a team and there were all displayed at home. Sadly, the wife killed the idea when kids 1 and 2 came along, so they are all gathering dust pushed together on a top shelf. Maybe I would just take them into work.

My doubles partner and I basically just played tournament for the hardware associated, it is fun collecting the different ones. Even pulled lots of double wins with doubles and mixed doubles in the same event, one tournament was 8 matches total to win both in 2.5 days.
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
After turning expert in 125 and open class motocross, I'd often ask for cash instead of the trophy, and half the time, it worked.
Big trophies can cost as much as 200 bucks, so I'd settle for 75.
3' high trophies can cost around 100, so I'd settle for 50 in cash, and save the organizer some money.
If trophies are important to you, then get the trophy, enjoy the memories, and PROUDLY display them.
 

Bdarb

Hall of Fame
playing sports for ever, naturally I had a ton. The only ones I seem to hang on to are ones I am particularly proud of. And even that is at my parents house. I think my dad likes them more than I do. He keeps two different plaques I got in college for tennis above the sink.

I hope I can do the same someday. I could care less about my trophies but it would be neat to be able to display some of my children's finer exploits, just to enjoy them.


I'm with the other guys. I'd much rather get a nice club towel or a pack of string or something.
 
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NadalDramaQueen

Hall of Fame
Yes, I have a room in my house dedicated to all the 4.5 trophies I pick up. I am especially pleased with my mixed doubles trophy that I received when I called anything that was close out.

I am extremely proud to be one of the best worst players in the area where I live. Why wouldn't I show that off? :twisted:
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
Seriously....
I know a guy who has over 200 trophies in his case, and the highest level of at least 190 of them are NOVICE trophies, with about 10 intermediate class, but CMC trophies, not AMA District 36.
But he's the most accomplished cherry picker I know, racing Novice class for over 15 years.
 

Rorsach

Hall of Fame
I've been in competitive sports for about 30 years now and i haven't kept any trophies. Usually it ends up in a bin as i leave the venue.
 

tennytive

Professional
I display mine every time I post here. :)

The rest of the time it's packed away in the garage with all my others. My Varsity letter is in a box in a bookcase. I have awards for 15 different sports, but my favorite is my one and only tennis trophy.

My dad was a great bowler and had a ton of trophies… he kept them on a shelf in the garage. Only a handful left, but I can't bring myself to throw them away.
 

cknobman

Legend
I have a shelf in my home office where I place my trophies.

I don't want them blatantly out in a common area of my house for showing off.

When in my office I do like to look at them sometimes because they bring back good memories.
 

WhiteStripes

Semi-Pro
When I was a junior, I kept and put them up in my room. As an adult, no, I don't particularly care either way and throw them in a box, some of which may have been tossed out over the years. Then again, that's just me. I don't even know where my undergrad and law school diplomas, bar admissions, etc. even are and just toss those in a box for storage as well. But then again, nothing wrong with feeling proud of achievements and displaying them either way. I've had co-workers over the years that have put their trophies prominently on display in their offices. Don't see anything wrong in that.
 

Gemini

Hall of Fame
I still display my trophies in my office but they're pretty much just conversation pieces. I do dust them but only because I'm cleaning the entire office at the time :)
 

Cindysphinx

G.O.A.T.
I have been given a few plaques. I discard them pretty quickly.

I won one tournament, in 2.5 singles when I first started. I keep it because it is pretty large -- a large clear plastic square with engraving. I like it because it is hilarious -- folks don't know what 2.5 level is!

I have a clear plastic flat plaque for winning sectionals that sits in its own stand. It is also large, maybe 10 inches. I keep that because it looks cool.

I have the runner-up trophy from senior nationals. It is crystal, heavy and impressive. That one goes in the middle.

I think they should give handshakes instead of trophies for most events and send the money to Doctors Without Borders or something. I think most tournament players would approve.
 

jonestim

Hall of Fame
In the bottom of my sock drawer are three Masters cycling national champs medals. Not sure where the fourth is. State champs medals are less cared for in a box somewhere. Most others end up disappearing. I have no tennis hardware.
 

TennisCJC

Legend
I have won several team city championships in USTA and ALTA. I had the city medallions made into hood ornaments for my cars and necklace medallions. I like cruising around with an ALTA championship platter on the hood of my car while wearing a silk shirt with another championship platter on the end of a chain around my neck. Just kidding.

Seriously, I have the 2 most recent ALTA city championship trophies on display in my house. They are nice pewter platters. The rest of the city championships and runner up trophies are stuffed away in a closet downstairs.
 

Sakkijarvi

Semi-Pro
My dad runs tennis tournaments down South -- I have run tournaments in two other sports, never tennis. AAU for kids, and fund raisers for adult athletes.

Someone ostentatiously throwing away a trophy they earned at one of my events would not be coming back. Whatever 'statement' he or she was making. Please.

We have a trophy case, kids and adults --- coach of the year me in 2 sports -- not a humble brag, just braggin' -- and continuing in that vein ... a nice 1,000 pt ball, a few championship trophies ... MVPs .. ok, pack champ in pinewood derby --- club singles league champ -- all great memories and the adults and kids that were part of all that are brought up in fond memories going back years. Why not enjoy those memories, which the trophies, plaques, bring to mind? A lot of hard work goes into earning them.
 

anantak2k

Semi-Pro
Give to my mom. I have no need for them but my mom likes them. She doesn't display them but just puts them in a box in her storage.

I'm a big fan of practical prizes too. Nice looking shirts without 10000 ads on them, towels, or blankets. I have too many water bottles, so i'm not a big fan of those anymore. I think at my 4.0-4.5 level any usta tournament isn't really that big deal. Its 3-4 rounds big whoop, then a cheap plastic trophy, or plaque at the end.

Honestly i'd really prefer if they'd just cut the cost of the tournament by 5 dollars then not give out anything at the end!
These USTA tournaments have been getting so expensive... out of hands really... $45-65 on average around my area.
I usually just play regular friendly matches with my trophies on the line :p
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
I think "45-65" get's you a 16" high trophy at best, 20 years ago.
Ever go to a trophy store? The 3' high ones go for about 175, and the head high trophies push into the 400's.
Trophies aren't cheap, take lots of maintainance and store room, aren't easily transferred to another residence, and very old fashioned.
I plaque is the way to go.
 

tenniscan

New User
I display national and international medals and gold, silver and bronze balls. But they aren't in the main living area. I discarded most of my other trophies otherwise when I moved a few years ago, after taking off the engraved piece. I worked hard for those USTA balls (age division, not NTRP) and I'm proud of them...but I have friends who store their gold balls in the garage. I don't know anyone though who tosses gold balls!
 

Sakkijarvi

Semi-Pro
You win your division in AA ball, not going to be so quick to chuck it. Win zip, make light of the effort others put in, sure, alright.
 

Sakkijarvi

Semi-Pro
Work your *** off to come back from a torn ACL to make the starting team ... same point. Be thankful for the gift of health to earn even the *** of a horse statuette for last place in your bowling league.
 

struggle

Legend
Unless its a Tervis tumbler or other cool vessel, I'm not interested and consider it a waste of my money. I'd rather have cheaper tourney fees than take home a hunk of plastic shaped like a tennis player.
 

josephmunger

New User
I would say never refuse to accept or throw away onsite any kind of prize you have won in any competitive tournaments. That is just disrespect towards the competition organizers and other players. You can choose to keep it or not after going home. About choosing to keep it or not, it depends on individuals preferences and space availability at home. You can choose to keep only those which are most important to you or you can keep all of it. I recently read a blog about keeping trophies at home without taking a lot of space. Here it is : http://www.houlthellewell.com/blog/trophies/trophies-and-space-how-to-display-your-awards-without-cluttering-your-home/
 

dlk

Hall of Fame
Have earned/won many A Mental Jewelry in my adult years too; never display anything (it don't go with da décor). I do show my Martial Arts trophies to my son every-once-in-while, to show him still who's boss:shock:

Never won nothing in tennis:cry:
 

Alchemy-Z

Hall of Fame
Tournament I normally play give Towels/Umbrella's and even Beer mugs or it's a Charity Tournament only have 1 Trophy and I put it up at work cause I earned it beating a co worker in the final ...so it's more of a office joke than anything :)
 

norcal

Hall of Fame
I have some nice engraved beer steins I won. And a couple silver plates that I had engraved after I won...regular trophies I don't keep.
 

TobyTopspin

Professional
I don't have anything displayed. I did when I was younger (up to early20's), but not any longer. I had stuff in boxes at my parents house, but I never asked what they did with them or ever looked for them myself. I did have my first monetary winnings (check for $250ish) framed for a few weeks before I decided that I needed the money more than the display.
 

lstewart

Semi-Pro
Wow, when I first started having a little success and winning a couple of trophies in juniors, I really treasured them. Took lots of hard work to get good enough to win a few at that time. Long before NTRP or lower level classes, so you had to be the best in the one division tourney to win. That attitude was ingrained in me for 10 years or so, but the trophies really started to pile up. My wife tolerated them all in bookshelves for several years, but eventually there were too many. I boxed up most of them, and they were in a storage room for years. The last move we made, I threw most of them away. Still had a few small ones, or really important ones. Threw away probably 200. Since then might keep ones from national or big events, but not just your regular tournaments. Now have a son playing college tennis, and he has accumulated a good number in juniors the past few years. I understand them being important to people that really worked hard, or have not won many. Once a person gets used to winning a lot, they generally don't have as much importance. But I still remember that feeling when I only had about 3 over my parent's fireplace mantle. They were really important to me.
 

tennisnj

Professional
I've won about 2-3 tournaments a year for almost 20 years & I used to display them all until I got married & actually downsized from a house to an apt so my computer 'trophy' room bookshelf was the 1st thing to go. They're all in boxes in a crawlspace @ my parents house & now I only keep out the most recent ones, & as I win my next tournament, the previous trophies go into storage. Amazing when you pay $40 for a non-USTA tournament you still only get a $3.95 trophy when you win. (Then again a $65 USTA tournament gives out $8 trophies).
 

Ronaldo

Talk Tennis Guru
Keep everything I've won in the garage boxed. Worked with a basketball player who kept a final four trophy, which is a full-sized basketball, boxed in a basement. That is a trophy!
 
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