What kind of towel do you use when you play tennis? -- 2.0

Can one say too much about tennis towels? Probably and I’m just the one to try!

US OPEN tennis towels

True story: One of the ladies I play tennis with is a pro tournament towel magnet. (Judy do you recognize yourself?) I have seen her posts on Facebook from the US Open and BNP Indian Wells to name just two, of her showing off the towels that were handed to her from players. I’m not kidding you; the players just love her! Yes I’m jealous! Granted I haven’t attended nearly the number of tournaments she has, nor have I been in the on court seats that she has so kinda hard to get a towel if I’m not there like she is. I’ve only ever bought the towel from the pro tournament or been given one by a friend that goes and she bought them. (Almost as good as getting one from a player)

Last year I while watching coverage of Wimbledon, Brad Gilbert spoke on how he has a player towel from Wimbledon for every year since he has played there. In fact he’s traded towels to have both the men and women’s towels. He does what it takes to get as many as he can and it’s some fun game he plays with other guys from the tour.

This year while listening to the coverage of Wimbledon this year I heard MaryJo Fernandez say that she uses her Wimbledon towels in her guest bathrooms. (Guessing her guests may include some former Wimbledon Champions!)

Those player towels are awesome towels. Full, plush, and memorable! One year my doubles partner and I were invited to play in the Simply the Best tournament hosted by the Texas USTA Section in Austin. Here is the towel that we all received as ‘players’! It has been stored away so as not to be ruined or lost and will now be used in my continuing effort to stay out of my towel funk!

Simply the Best Masters towel

What is your favorite towel? Is it your favorite because it was a gift? Did you earn it or win it? Is it oversized, hand towel sized? Is it like a loofah or soft and plush? Feel free to comment here on what you think makes for the best tennis towel! And maybe let us know if you think we should make a towel!

A side note or 2 on the 2018 Olympic games

2018 Winter Olympic games

(AP Photo/Morry Gash)

The 2018 Winter Olympics hosted by Pyeongchang, South Korea are in the books. You may or may not be a fan of all of the winter sports but who doesn’t appreciate all the hard work, sweat, and personal sacrifice that it takes to get there?

As it usually is in every Olympics games it was no different this year. There were many favorites who did exactly as predicted and won gold. Then there were those who unexpectedly fell short and did not medal. And then there were a few who seemingly come out of nowhere to win gold? All of that to say the 2018 Winter Olympics were as usual full of surprises.

Congrats to the USA women’s hockey team who broke the spell and beat the Canadian team to win the gold after suffering defeat by Canada for the last 3 Olympics.

How about 17-year old Chloe Kim who became youngest woman to win Olympic snowboarding gold during the Winter Games?

 Russian15 year old Alina Zagitova was most recently a junior skater and relative unknown to all. Zagitova burst onto the Olympic scene and stole the gold medal from the defending world champion Evgenia Medvedeva, also a Russian athlete.

The list of champions and medalists with wonderful stories is as long as Rapunzel’s hair so I cannot share them all. But there is one last person’s tale I’d like to share, Elizabeth Swaney. Her story reminds me of Michael Edwards aka Eddie the Eagle. Swaney was born in the US but because of her maternal grandparents was eligible to compete for Hungary in the women’s ski halfpipe. In order to earn Olympic eligibility Swaney needed to consistently finish in the top 30 at World Cup events so she competed at all the World Cup events where there were only 24, 25, or 28 women for several years.

Elizabeth Swaney

Photograpy by USA today

Some watching fans and media were left bemused by Swaney’s runs, but her competitors were more supportive of her presence at the Olympics. “If you are going to put in the time and effort to be here, then you deserve to be here as much as I do,” said Canada’s Cassie Sharpe, who qualified in first place with the two highest-scoring runs.

Now it’s time to look ahead to 2020 and the Summer Olympic games. Those games will be hosted by Tokyo, Japan. Although most of you reading this have yet to think that far ahead, anyone planning to compete in Tokyo has no doubt been training for quite some time already. I think we can agree to respect the athletes for their commitment to their sport and for the all that they must sacrifice to be called Olympians.

The DON'T List

We say do what you want this year! A free hall pass is granted to everyone! Swing from the chandeliers, scream at the top of your lungs or sing All About that Bass by Meghan Trainor while dressed like a pirate in a public setting.

Bam! A new year is here. Big deal what makes it special and who are we to tell you what to do? Well, we’re NOT telling you what to do, rather we’re using this as a reminder to each of us that with our tenure and age, we all intuitively know what we shouldn’t be doing. This innate knowledge that 'radiates' from the gut is crucial in both sport and life.

Here’s a few DON’T’s we’ll be working hard to be mindful of this year:

  • Don’t sabotage yourself or others
  • Don’t neglect that yearning
  • Don’t stop dreaming or trying to figure out who you are, or aren’t
  • Don’t become stagnate
  • Don’t hold the grudge and swallow bitterness
  • Don’t sit idle
  • Don’t stop moving
  • Don’t stop playing sports
  • Don’t stop sweating…it’s vital to your bodily functions (no we don't hold doctors degrees but yes, we’re bias as a company who crafts fashionable sweat accessories)

See, by reminding ourselves what NOT to do we just DID something in 2015! And that’s a pretty good start…

We may not know you and we may not know if you have, or will, swing from the chandeliers this year (feel free to post a pic of yourself doing this though) but we DO want the absolute best for each of you!

Now, go on…roam…be free and move about as you wish this year.

Cheers

Wristpect Sport wristbands swing from the chandeliers

 ('Diamond' wristband from the Diamond/Courtz wristband collection shown)

Tennis And Your Calorie Burn

Tennis Fixation

I recently read an article online at Tennis Fixation about the calories burned by playing tennis. Have you ever wondered about how many calories you burn when you play?

 I have tracked my tennis calorie burn for several years by wearing a heart rate monitor and so has my best friend and often tennis partner. Many believe tennis is not a big burn. By monitoring mine and hers I have found that it can be a huge calorie burn OR not.

Of course your gender, age, and weight all significantly affect the calorie burn. But these things usually don’t change much from match to match. So why can I sometimes burn 1,300 calories in a 2 hour doubles match and sometimes burn 600 calories in a 2 hour doubles match?

In my opinion the answer lies mostly in these 3 variables:

1)   Temperature. My calorie burn is very much affected by the temperature I play in. If I’m playing in 70 degree temps I burn far fewer calories than if I am playing in 90 degree temps.

It cost the body significantly more energy (calories to cool itself--sweat-- rather than to keep warm)

2)   For real VS for fun. For real matches are the ones that go up in light. (scores posted on the internet) These are USTA league matches and other leagues like ALTA or TCD.

When I am playing competitively, for real, my adrenalin dials me up and keeps my heart rate higher. The higher my heart rate the more calories I burn.

3)   Evenly matched. The more evenly matched my opponent is to me the closer the score, the harder I must play to win.

The closer the score the more significant each point becomes. With this awareness it dials my heart rate up OR I mentally MUST dial it down, which in turns burns more calories.

I almost always track my calorie burn when I play tennis. I don’t write it down anymore I simply note it after the match to adjust my desire for dessert! If you wonder whether the averages you find online are a good quote you really must keep the above 3 variables in mind. If it’s not an extreme temperature, not for the money, or not too closely fought, those online estimates are right on. However, I have found that they are not even close given the right circumstances. For those days, you have to wear a monitor.

 

tennis calorie burn

The Sand Between Your Tennis Toes

Ahhh, the beach! Whenever I arrive at one I switch to relax mode yet try not to worry about my farmer-tennis-tan lines and white feet. Sure, the beach gets a bit messy but the sights, smells and memories out weigh that granular gremlin fondly known as, sand. 

If you too enjoy the beach, like to chase a little yellow ball like a black lab, and travel worldwide then Beach Tennis could be your thing this summer! Not into travel or sand? Fine. You can bring the beach to you by ordering a Beach Tennis set at http://www.beachtennisusa.net and place it in your backyard for your next pool party, tennis party or just-because party.

Who Got this party started?

Beach Tennis was formalized in 2005 by New Yorker Marc Altheim who travelled to Aruba (somebody has to travel to Aruba for the rest of us). While there, Marc watched families, athletes and well, beach bums play tennis in the sand. Marc came back home created a Beach Tennis set and was able to get the likes of The Tennis Channel, ITF (International Tennis Federation), Family Circle Cup and others interested. Now, it's a worldwide sport with key tournaments throughout. 

No Bounce Play

Beach tennis requires little more than a net, some paddles a ball and yes, granular bliss. It can burn more calories than your beach loving mind can count, involves a lot of sweat AND usually ends up in gut splitting laughs with friends over the no bounce rule! Just like volleyball, the depressurized tennis ball is hit out of the air. You'll need to be told this 3-5 times before your tennis muscle memory will respond; so again, hit the ball out of the air! Scoring is the same as tennis: 15, 30 , 40 and no-ad at deuce. 

What's a Beach Tennis ITF G1 Triangle?

Like Buddy the Elf says in the movie 'Elf', "What's a Christmas-gram? I want one!" Simply put, The Beach Tennis Triangle is 2014's Tournament dates:

  • August 21-24th Long Beach, NY
  • August 26-27 Bermuda
  • Ausgust 29-31 Puerto Rico

Let us know if you've ever tried Beach Tennis or seen it played during your travels. And oh, you'll find you can get your feet tan while playing the sport.

 Beach Tennis