One of the most popular sports in the world, tennis offers a myriad of opportunities to record and use data. Athletes, coaches, managers, sponsors, sports media companies, and other businesses use tennis data to meet professional and personal goals.
Most data comes from official channels like the International Tennis Federation (ITF) and sports media. However, local leagues, coaches, and players generate proprietary data that they use to improve their own sport performance.
In addition to cameras covering performances live from a variety of angles, wearable technologies have also become key sources of performance data. These sensors record player movement at the most minute level that coaches and athletes can use to guide player performance.
Tennis data naturally includes player performance, down to the angle of a forehand stroke in the second quarter of a match. However, since professional athletes can play both singles and doubles (single and mixed gender) this sport offers dimensions of data attributes that other sports do not.
In addition to player performance data, other common data attributes include viewership numbers per match and per tournament.
Coaches and players use most this data to improve performance and prepare for games against rivals. However, fans use a great deal of this data, as well. They discuss player performance, argue whether the “tennis tantrum” is really so unique to the sport, place bets, and even play fantasy leagues. Additionally, fans that want to play like their favorite athletes use available training data and wearable technology to raise their own performance level.
And, of course, companies use viewership and fan demographic data to vie for sponsorships and advertising space during matches.
The best test of a quality dataset is whether it fits its intended purpose. For instance, someone who runs a sports betting website needs a different set—and probably a larger amount—of data than an activewear brand looking to advertise to tennis fans.
The Lawn Tennis Association has received approval from the International Tennis Federation to let British players wear Firstbeat heart rate monitors during ITF matches…
Firstbeat’s heart rate sensors will track physiological data regarding training load, intensity, fitness, performance readiness, stress, and recovery. British players and coaches will be able to view the data on the Firstbeat app.