As October draws to a close, the pressure of sorting out your gift buying strategy ahead of the Christmas season intensifies. We’re feeling the heat too!
If you have someone with a passion for tennis to buy for but you’re not keen on a new racket or tennis-themed jewellery as options, we think you’ll appreciate our curated list of gift ideas.
Here are the top 10 gifts that different types of tennis addicts will love to receive:
S’well bottles aren’t only stylish and environmentally friendly, they have some impressive USPs. Available in multiple sizes and shapes, they keep drinks hot for 12 hours and cold for 24. The company is also socially conscious and has partnerships with UNICEF USA, American Forests, Drink Up and (RED). An added plus? S’well now offers personalisation of their bottles so you can tailor the gift to fit your exact requirements.
Sports towels are a tennis bag staple. They’re especially vital when playing in hot, humid conditions or whilst grinding away on clay courts. Falling into the practical but nonetheless thoughtful category, a personalized official towel from Wimbledon makes the list because it will surely add a little inspiration to the changeover.
Traditional full-sleeved sweatshirts and hoodies aren’t ideal for playing tennis. They’re often bulky and feel awkwardly restrictive around your wrists. Except for in the coldest conditions, they have you overheating after a couple of rallies. Nike has come up with the ideal option: a sweat-wicking 3/4 sleeve tennis warm up shirt. The cut of this shirt is perfect to play in and balances warmth without adding too much bulk. The men’s equivalent also balances warmth and maneuverability.
Is the person you’re buying for a fan of classic tennis apparel but already has a closet full of Lacoste, Sergio Tacchini and Fila kit? Good news: there are a handful of upstart tennis apparel companies which have launched in recent years and are worth checking out. For instance, Play Brave’s Men's Polo still looks ‘traditional’ but is made from 100% woven polyester and feels much more breathable than a heavy cotton material.
We also like the Luca Dress from Castore which has a very flattering silhouette and is an attractive option for someone that doesn’t want to wear the same Nike tennis dress as everyone else at the club. Hedge - another new apparel company - has a collection of chic country club attire that looks stylish both on and off the court with a bit of a vintage aesthetic. In addition, the performance knitwear from L'Etoile Sport would make a great gift.
If you're aiming for a vintage feel with quality construction, Ellesse is having a renaissance with people sporting pieces as a part of a trendy streetwear ensemble.
In stark contrast to the 'adherence to tradition' direction that some of the new tennis brands have taken, others have a different proposition. Hydrogen - worn by Feliciano Lopez and Fabio Foignini, has funky skull-emblazoned items that look suitable for the LFW runway.
Similarly, Lucy in Love worn by charismatic doubles star Bethany Mattek-Sands, has colorful pieces with prints and funky material in their collections. If you're shopping for someone that wants to grab attention as soon as they step on the court, this could be the answer.
Is the tennis fan in your life always trying to troubleshoot their game and get an edge through improved tactics? They will be surely be captivated by the wealth of data collected by Babolat POP - a fitness wearable made bespoke for tennis.
The sensor located in the wristband connects to the user’s smartphone and collects loads of data including spin, power and impact, and is able to differentiate among strokes. There’s an activity score to gage footwork intensity and a method of challenging friends head-to-head to see who can produce superior metrics. An added bonus: the device is made by Babolat but since it’s worn on your wrist, it can be used with any brand of racket.
If the tennis lover you’re looking to buy for is a fan of design and / or music (aren’t we all?), the HearO tennis ball speaker will hit their sweet spot. Made from upcycled tennis balls, these Bluetooth-enabled speakers are a functional piece of tennis history. Each device is individually constructed in London and the sound quality is excellent. Order one of these speakers for a truly unique present.
2019 has been an incredible year for professional tennis with an extraordinary number of compelling storylines. Watching tennis the old way - via cable packages - has been disrupted by Tennis TV which is a streaming service dedicated to the sport. Up to 2000 matches a year are shown live for just a monthly subscription of £9.99. People that enjoy keeping up with the ATP Tour can now do it on-demand, commercial free and filter matches by player.
Does the tennis playing person in your life juggle work, travel and other active pursuits? The Epirus tennis bag collections were created with this exact lifestyle in mind.
The range covers a wide variety of use cases: the Borderless Backpack has a modern, sleek shape which sets it apart from sportier options on the market and has a gender-neutral feel. The Transition Tote is an obvious choice for someone that is dedicated to both tennis and yoga. The 24 hour bag was designed with the daily commute yet is large enough to elegantly stow tennis essentials without any excess bulk. The Weekend bag comes in 2 sizes and allows for for seamless transition between business, tennis and travel.
All of the bags in the Signature Collection are made with Italian canvas and calf leather and carry at least 2 rackets. The bags are handmade in Europe in small batches, so the gift recipient gets the added cachet of carrying something completely unique.
The tennis fan in your life likely earmarks some time for tennis during beach vacations. If they do that, it’s safe to say they would also find it amusing to mix it up and mess around hitting volleys on the beach.
The problem is that the cheap versions of beach tennis rackets first tear up your hand then dissolve as soon as they land in the sea water. Now there’s a durable, elegant solution: Frescobol Caricoa beach tennis paddles are handmade in Brazil with several layers of wood and covered with a strong resin coating to make them sea and sand-resistant.
If you like the idea of beach tennis equipment for a gift but know your uber competitive friend will instinctively fashion a net and find items to create lines, perhaps this beach tennis kit is the answer.
If you live in a climate where wet winter days make you want to curl up in front a fire and settle into a good book (we're looking at you, London!), here are some options for someone with an affinity towards tennis and sports more generally. Shoe Dog written by Nike Founder Phil Knight recounts the journey of the brand from humble beginnings to juggernaut.
String Theory by David Wallace is the compliation of five essays, which include profiles of Roger Federer and Tracy Austin. The NYT calls Wallace 'the best tennis writer of all time' and the book has received a tremendous number of accolades.
In a similar vein, consider a subscription to Racket Magazine for the friend that loves the sport but gets bored reading banal commentary on topics like 'who is the GOAT this month?' and similar. Launched a couple of years ago, the publication stands out from the crowd of generic tennis magazines and is a publication celebrating the art, ideas, style and culture that surround tennis.
Finally, if you're buying for a Federer fan, this coffee table book published in 2018 is a no-brainer. Federeresque celebrates an unparalelled career with photos taken by the award-winning tennis photographer Antoine Couvercelle. Needless to say, this is going on our wish list!