The Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) has today announced that Highland Spring, the Official Water Supplier to the LTA has extended its partnership with the governing body to become the new sponsor of LTA Mini Tennis.
As part of the collaboration, the LTA Mini Tennis programme has been refreshed and updated and will specifically cater for 3–10 year olds. In addition to the traditional red, orange and green stages, Highland Spring is also supporting the new LTA Mini Tennis Rally Awards scheme and the LTA’s entry level coach education scheme.
The programme will be supported by a national campaign encouraging players to “Earn Their Stripes” and this message will feature across a range of promotional and educational items produced by the LTA to help support clubs and coaches deliver a more engaging Mini Tennis programme.
The unveiling of the new partnership took place at Ravenscraig Regional Sports Centre near Glasgow, with television personalities Gabby and Kenny Logan, AEGON GB Davis Cup players Colin Fleming and Ross Hutchins also with the new family of LTA Mini Tennis characters in attendance.
LTA Head of Competitions and Programmes, Oliver Scadgell said: “With a new sponsor in Highland Spring, we have been able to breathe new life into our Mini Tennis support programme with a new identity and a real focus on making the gateway to the sport more ‘fun’. Whilst Mini Tennis has already been a huge success nationwide, we believe the new enhanced programme will help us to attract and retain more kids into tennis and help us support coaches, clubs and parents more effectively.”
Commenting on the partnership, LTA Head of Commercial, Lawrence Robertson said: “Given their long term support for tennis in Britain, Highland Spring was always our first choice to partner with as we looked to roll out the new programme. Their commitment to promoting the benefits of an active & healthy lifestyle to children and their reach into the homes of millions across the UK always made them the perfect Mini Tennis partner for us”
Claire Wilson, Head of Sponsorship at Highland Spring added: “We are proud to be cementing the great success of our partnership with the LTA. As the LTA pioneered Mini Tennis as a form of the sport, we too pioneered the kids bottled water market. Highland Spring is committed to getting more children to adopt better hydration habits and take part in active sport and we have a terrific opportunity to do this with the new Mini Tennis programme.”
Sports journalist and former international gymnast Gabby Logan said: “Coming from a very sporty and active family both Kenny and I believe sport plays a huge part in children’s lives and I love the idea of the smaller rackets, the shorter courts and the softer balls to help make tennis fun from the very start.”
Husband and former international Rugby player, Kenny, added: “We’ve had a great day picking up a racket ourselves and it’s obvious to see that with the new characters and the new awards programme, that the LTA has given a lot of thought to make sure Mini Tennis is a real fun way to introduce kids to the sport.”
From 2012, the international rules of tennis will change so that all 10&U tennis competitions worldwide will use the red, orange and green balls and court structure. There are currently over 1,000 LTA registered tennis clubs delivering Mini Tennis in Great Britain, catering for around 100,000 children, 25,000 of whom compete regularly.
For more information go to www.LTAminitennis.co.uk.