Why I Never have to buy Tennis gear at full retail price anymore.Below, I'll share with my advice on where to look to get discounts for tennis gear, events and travel...
Why Tennis is so good for you?
Tennis can be a sport that is both fun and AFFORDABLE at any age. It keeps you fit, lean and active (just think of any tennis pro you've ever seen on TV). Tennis comes packed with lots of cardio and is a full body workout;
Think about it - you're actually getting exercise from having fun and spending time with a buddy outdoors in fresh air this summer - a great change-up from the gym!
Rackets: I like to get rackets that are a generation or two old that have lots of good reviews. Often times the changes for this latest year's models are merely cosmetic and the physical changes may or may not make it better. Do your research first! Also, once a racket becomes "popular", the manufacturers will put a major discount on it...this is when I like to buy a few extra in bulk in case they stop making them next year! http://www.tennis-bargains.com/p/racket-reviews.html
Balls: For renewable tennis items like balls/shoes/string (which you need to replace regularly) - I calculate how to max them out based on time AND cost.
If I can get a $1.50 can of balls that will only play for 1-2 sets vs $3/can that will last 4-5 sets...go with the $3 can. Your elbow and body will also thank you (avoid tennis elbow and other injuries by not hitting flat/dead balls). This rule applies to buying cans that contain 4 balls instead of 3. I have more TennisBargain tips for recommendation on tennis balls too.
Gatorade/Powerade/Water - if you have a local Cost-co near you or grocery store that sells in bulk, I'd recommend stocking up on the flavors you like the most. By bringing your own, you can easily save 50-75% over the price at the club or vending machine.
Also consider bringing along some sport drink powder and simply mix it with water, to save even more and also reuse those plastic bottles!
It depends how often you break them. If you do not play often, then usually you are safe to go with strings in the $8-15 range for one package. For people who need to string at least once or twice every month, I tend to buy strings I know I like in reels and string my own rackets with a classic drop-weight stringer called the "Klippermate" for ~$150 shipped or get a $10 for a refurbished one here.
If you normally spend $30-45 per stringing job, you will instead spend just 1 hour to string (labor) and about $10-15 for the strings (parts). Also, you don't have to pick it up a week later or worry about having your rackets fresh, ready before your next important match.
I tend to go with ones that have 6-month guarantees and good following (my favorite is the Nike Breathe Free 2)...I get them for about $70 and almost always wear them out in 4-5 months so I can return it to Nike and 3 weeks later I get a $110 voucher for another pair (or other Nike tennis clothes) - that's basically 2x($110) shoes for $70 (free shipping)!
Remember - Your shoes are the Most important tennis item you own (not the racket).
I think anything that wicks moisture and doesn't cling to you when wet works. Again, I buy Nike brand that is 1-2 years old (off season) at 50%+ off with coupons stacked that will last me many years. I still have Nike polos/shorts that are in great condition after 4-5 years of wearing them every week!
TennisBargains Tip: try to group your orders together so that you can get free shipping - like on Sports Authority links:
Free Shipping and 15% off entire order
For more great tips on saving money check out my new website for daily deals and coupons: www.Tennis-Bargains.com
Remember, if you know where to look, you'll NEVER pay full retail for tennis - every again!
For questions and inquiries about the tennis gear, books, events that I recommend to my own students, please email me at TennisBargains@gmail.com!