This is the story of a one young upcoming American junior tennis player. She is ranked very high in her country in the juniors and has been steadily climbing the ranks in ITF juniors. But, as luck would have it, she developed a skin condition that left a visible mark on her body. This visible condition made her very self-aware. She also started traveling to international tournaments months at a time, losing touch with her local friends. The traveling on the road while trying to win in tennis and continue excelling in school put a lot of pressure and social anxiety on her. She felt depressed at times and put undue pressure on herself which affected her performance.
She reached out to coaches and mental counselors. The coaches knew how to help her in tennis and also knew some mental routines for athletes. They did not know how to help a teenage girl with personal mental issues coupled with tennis stress. The counselors knew teen issues but did not get tennis issues.. She tried to google her issues to do self-help. Google has answers but not care plans that she could get in a digestible form with daily to-dos, follow-ups, etc to help keep her on track. She opened up to some of her friends. Her tennis friends were her competitors who were not best sharing buddies. Her non-tennis friends were supportive but could not understand the demands of her lifestyle. She could not find a safe space where she could share and learn from peers.
The story of this person is not unique. Middle & high school students already have enormous societal, academic, family, and sexual pressures. Couple that with additional student-athlete pressures of performance, college scholarships, and loneliness; and you have a very lonely student-athlete in a dark place. 70% of teenage student-athletes drop out of the sport because of mental anxiety.
Tennis Wizard is our attempt to change the narrative by providing a platform where athletes, providers, support teams, vendors can :
- communicate in sync, i.e., omnichannel communication versus multi-channel.
- Use the platform for a common goal, improving athletes’ mental wellness.
- trust the quality-of-care information leverage technology to constantly improve care