Season #24 Episode#:29 Shaun and Bobby talk to RAQTS Founder & Chief Executive Officer Alexander Johansson

Alexander is a tennis technology leader and award winning junior development coach.

From their website: “Play against a wall that interacts with your hits. A dynamic, tangible, fun, and skill building environment is created. Players, coaches, and students now have a new way to have fun and improve. Tennis and other racquet sports can be played /trained

With hundreds of options based on the modes and targets you can customize the experience and enjoy playing, practicing, or testing. Engagement, fun, motivation, cutting edge, inspiring, variation, true feedback, etc are words users associate with the experience.

With tangible Statistics measuring your performance, you know when you are improving. A unique and dedicated team are just getting started and aim to drive the interactive tennis wall experience in to the future with force to maximize it for people like you. Contact us if you are interested in learning more.”

https://www.raqts.com/this-is-raqts

Receive 5% off the purchase price as a GoTennis! Premium Member

Shaun Boyce USPTA: [email protected]

https://tennisforchildren.com/ 🎾

Bobby Schindler USPTA: [email protected]

https://windermerecommunity.net/ 🎾

Geovanna Boyce: [email protected]

https://regeovinate.com/ πŸ’ͺπŸΌπŸ‹οΈ

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Transcript
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Welcome to the Atlanta Tennis Podcast.

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Every episode is titled, "It starts with tennis" and goes from there.

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We talk with coaches, club managers, industry business professionals,

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technology experts, and anyone else we find interesting.

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Hey, hey, this is Shaun with the Atlanta Tennis Podcast, powered by GoTennis!

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Also, click that follow button in your podcast player.

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We promise to make following the show worth your time.

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And with that, let's get into our conversation with Alexander Johansson of RAQTS spelled R-A-Q-T-S,

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which is a magic hitting wall for tennis and pickleball.

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Check it out and let us know what you think.

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[Music]

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Who is Alexander Johansson?

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And I got to ask is it Johansson?

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Is it Joe Hanson?

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Correct me to start.

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Either one.

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Either one is good.

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Either one is fine.

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All right, so Alexander Johansson looks like you've got a lot going on in the tennis world.

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So tell me about you and what you're doing.

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Yeah, well, I am in the core.

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I'm a tennis coach, developmental junior coach.

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Started off playing some college tennis, came over from the golden era in Swedish tennis.

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So, I played some of that, did a little bit of college coaching and I got into junior coaching.

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And then very fairly quickly, I got into productive use of technology in coaching.

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So, while I've been starting academies, now I'm running an academy up in New England.

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While I've been doing that on the side, instead of having friends, I've been working hard on trying

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to use technology productively in coaching and learning our sport.

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Okay, so using technology, I see a couple of different names.

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I see rackets, of course.

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I assume that's pronounced just like rackets, even though it's RAQTS.

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I like that.

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That's unique.

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Yes.

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But there's also tennis techie.

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What's that?

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Yes, so I started off actually creating a skilled building app for the triangle of

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parent, player and coach.

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A long time ago, there was a right one that iPhones came out because I figured I was actually doing

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something in terms of skilled building with little cards with the kids.

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And I figured we can leverage the phones to do that and involve everybody and what have you.

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So, it was actually a very good tool, but I never really commercialized it.

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But because of that, I got into teaching coaches a little bit about usage of tools

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like that, as well as video, specifically technical video initially.

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And then you went to match analysis and I ended up actually working for A&M for a season,

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while there were number three in the nation, which was an experience.

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Sorry, which A&M?

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The Aggies.

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This is more than one.

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There's a lot of them in the States.

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Okay, just make sure it's not Georgia A&M.

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Yes, yes, yes.

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Yeah, no, I was living in Texas for 17 years.

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Okay, Bobby's going to be in Texas.

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I'm sure he'll bring that up.

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Yeah, I'm just saying, I'm hanging up now.

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The whole Aggie thing is already disrupted this conversation.

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I'm sorry.

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I'm done.

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But he's coming out.

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There you go.

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There you go.

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David Rudidi, great guy.

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Yeah, no, so I did some of that, which was a great experience.

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I still have a lot of use of that experience, really.

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And yeah, now I've been doing many different things in technology and

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and educating coaches, speaking a lot on it, because it's basically been flashy tools out there.

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And there's a little bit of a generation gap.

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So people are not looking at them as actual tools,

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like they used to with physical tools or even drills.

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So I've been kind of making my mission to bridge that gap.

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And then about four and a half years ago, I realized that

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the backboard 2.0 was possible.

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So I set out to try to do that medium justice,

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because from what I've seen in terms of smart courts, etc.

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It's been either big companies kind of checking the box that they did technology,

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or it's been a technology company trying in the end somehow to connect with end user versus

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kind of the other way around.

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So I took that one on and that has led to Racket, which is a kind of comprehensive 360 experience with

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interactive world practice and playing.

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So before we dive deep into Racket, there's one more thing called Hoplou, what's that?

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Yeah, so that was that was the skill building.

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Gotcha.

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Great, yes, yes. And there was a long way to get all the way to Tennis Tech, but I just started

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a Facebook group and I was constantly testing different things from like 2008 or so.

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And I was constantly talking to Tennis Technology companies.

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So it just became a little bit of a hub where people could go and look for the

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latest, hopefully productive use of technology. So it kind of took on a life of its own.

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I've again never really commercialized anything, but I wanted to be an evangelist of

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usage of technology in actual coaching.

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And so you would be a positive advocate of video on a tennis court as a coach.

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If I'm a coach to video the player and show them what's going on, it sounds familiar, Bobby,

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because we just talked to Ian Westerman and obviously he's probably working more famous

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positive advocates for video on a tennis court.

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Yes, yeah, absolutely. I mean, it's it's it is amazing. It's taken this long, but I feel like

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well, it's almost skipped the technical. I can kind of get back to that, but I think because of

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the portable versions now, which are not necessarily very accurate yet, but but really good attempts.

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I think they are skipping the coach and the organization and go straight to the end user.

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So for the first time, the end user really, which is the parent in in June of

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the time is have some fear of missing out. So I think I think it's going to to drive it pretty

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quickly. So I think the sum of that is just it's just a positive. It's great. It's absolutely great.

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And I think I think when it comes to the technical part, that one is, wow, it's it's it's a stew at this

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point in my mind, because you have so much content online and and coaches have not utilized it

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very well, I would say, on an average. But now that I'm seeing at least in our area, there is a lot of

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parents that are now looking for these technical videos as evidence of whether or not their child is

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doing the right thing or not. So they find commonalities online and things that maybe, maybe they

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see in some course online. And if the kid is not exactly like that, then there is a problem. So it's

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it's it's a trickiest situation right now. It's it's it's great that that they that they want to use

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video, but to use it the right way is we are going to have a lot of responsibility. I feel more than

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ever now coming up as coaches. It's a Bobby. You want to tell him how right he is in skipping trying

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to monetize the coach with the technology and go straight to the parents and the player. As you say,

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that completely great. Other than with I'm laughing having just been to the doctor this morning with

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a hypochondriac daughter who you know, Googled that that's what I'm laughing about with the parents.

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Now they're going to Google they're going to look, but they're not going to know how to diagnose or

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you know or fix. So yes, as Alexander said, it's going to create a lot of opportunities and a lot

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of interesting circumstances for coaches. But yes, I'm I'm a big fan of the end user. Obviously we

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should be spoken about it. And you know, they're going to come to their coaches and say, why aren't

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you using this or what about this and that's what's going to get the coaches motivated. Yeah, yeah,

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a great 100%. So it is the sum of it I think is good, but we're going to have a lot of responsibility.

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And it's I mean, the other big portion of that is the tangibles you can you can see and common sense

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for parents is basically comparing my eight 10 year old to Alqa'ra says forehand. And it's

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there there is a little bit of time in between there. We need to be doing that occasion on and

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and yeah, and we don't have that much footage on Alqa'ra's at eight and 10. So

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we don't have his brother though. If you've seen his ideas at 20 years, you know, brother is amazing.

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And it's like my gosh, you know, but you're not real. I usually assume those videos, which is somebody

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so I'm sure these guys are amazing. Now I mean, he's amazing. You know, and it's it's making it harder

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because I've always been an advocate of multi sports. And yeah, I'm kind of unfortunately changing my

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perspective a little bit that from a stroke technical perspective at 11 or 12, you have to be pretty

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close. If you want to go even division one, I think at this point is so the kids are so good.

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And they're going to be so good. I think we're going to have more issues about, you know, do they

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size out? Do they get burned out? But the ability, they're going to have to be pretty technically

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sounded at a younger age than I get to admit. Yeah, to continue playing just because

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everything, you know, it's the it's the perfect storm. People are watching people are more engaged.

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The parents have more tools to bring back to the coaches and it's just creating, you know, a better

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tennis player or better structurally tennis player. Yes, yep.

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Now hopefully somebody's going to do the app that says you don't need to hit the ball as hard as you

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can every time. And I would love to see I would hope that next year. Yeah, exactly. It's just to go to

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the analytics side of it. You know, right now, I think we're we're we're we're focusing a lot on

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stroke production. But I really and Novak is really the only one on the professional tour. It was

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the earliest to embrace the analytics. And I think we need to do more of that to see

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even on the junior level where these matches are really breaking down.

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Yeah, and the just coaches starting to play around with it and look at it because

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very few coaches have been looking at it for 15 years now. But the average coach

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has not. And parents are going to start drawing conclusions. So we need we need we need some really

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quick education and also I think kind of self thinking to in a sense police algorithms because otherwise

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you will actually have the company deciding what's good and bad because one one of the things I think

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they definitely will do and are are doing to certain extent already is they they try to

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gamify it in and draw conclusions. And it's nice when you have like just one number like the 400s

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now is 76 instead of a 73. But but what that's based on is based on them, etc. So so yeah, it's

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going to be a super interesting era. And I just come back to as coaches. I just hope we're

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interested enough and and play around with it enough to to be able to truly help then consumer at

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that other day. I like that. No, do you see yourself and I think it's a great point. Do you see the need

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almost for a guy who's who's a coach, quote unquote coach, but who's sitting on the sidelines

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that's processing video. I mean, I think that's always been the the drawback

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not using more video until became handheld. It was just a process. You needed a photographer. You

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needed a camera. So it got easier when we were able to do it on our phones. It's getting easier

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now when you can do stroke analysis on the phone. But that's almost a full-time job. And then to

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really do, and I know there are guys that actually do, you know, you can send them a match and they

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will break it down and do all the analytics for you. And it's getting to be where they can almost do

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it in real time. But you know, that's manpower. That's a whole different hat and a lot of the facilities

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unfortunately just aren't built for that. Yes, yeah. And I'm actually I'm actually surprised

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colleges. I don't know everything about this with NCAA rules and all of that and things have changed.

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I'm slightly surprised they don't have they don't hire coaches in the background to simply

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simply deal with the video. It's it's you can you can easily have an extra coach.

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And now it's the human factor, the delivery, what you're seeking out. That is really the trickiest

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part as I understand talking to friends that work with really high level players and their teams.

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It is they are generally data scientists and and then they're they're having to try to optimize

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the relationship with the coach then ultimately deliver a very simple message. First seek

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seeking out what it is they're looking for and then delivering the message and that that seems

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to be the hardest part not the not the data itself. I guess it's a little it's a little bit like the

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chat GPT you know it's about what question are you asking is not is not what he can do. Ask the right

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question exactly. So my next question I have some excitement and to get to know this backboards you've

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got and I'm trying to picture in my mind the last time I was in a mall which I don't know what

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of malls very often but I assume you know where I'm going with this where the kids running around on

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the floor with the camera at the top and it's a projector and they're and they're hitting the bubbles

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with their feet and they're just having a great time and it's this interactive carpet is basically what

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they told it or what they called it. Excuse me and but it was a magic you know it was a camera at the top

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and a projector at the top. Yep and it videoed essentially is that basically what you're doing you're

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projecting onto a wall and then when I hit to the wall the camera knows where on the wall that hit

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how fast it's going all that cool stuff tell me about rackets and all the magic. Yeah I mean that's

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you and you can so you can think of it as a gigantic iPad on the wall and and essentially we have

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you can create two different sizes and you for the big one you can do tennis and you can do

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pickable and the small one is kind of minitannis/pickable and it's it's just a simple wall and you have

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sensor that detects it and and a projector so that's that's the basics of it. It's really over the

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counter stuff the the thing that we're trying to do is we're trying to create some some structure in

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terms of the games themselves the targets etc and creating a 360 where you get to you get to keep

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and track your scores etc you can do some testing on it which has been very interesting with the

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USDA we've been doing it with the team USA players up here in New England and our our testing modules

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have correlated very well to the UTRs so that's been super interesting more so than I was expecting

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and and yeah it's it's simply a new medium you have you have targets the kind of really lock you in

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I did one test one time on myself was 10 minutes 318 balls focus on every single one my heart rate was

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150 or above 9 out of 10 minutes and I and I changed games three or four times so it's it's it's an

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interesting new medium and like I said we're trying to do it justice and it's uh it's now going to be

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all about getting it out there we we're just just now starting so screaming it from the rooftops

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right I remember Bobby remembers a few summers ago my backhand was broken and I used the wall at his

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facility in the summer I stayed after some lessons and because we're teaching pros as well by trade so

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I just had some extra time and I thought you know what I really need to work on this I fixed my

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own backhand with a wall I wasn't doing anything technical it was just the reps I'm a huge proponent of

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backboards and walls and hitting walls for for any racket sports player but tennis specifically because

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that's mostly what we know I've got one technical question and I know Bobby's got a thousand business

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questions for you but yeah one technical question I'm looking at a wall with some with some sections

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is the wall part of the system or can I do this projecting onto any flat surface yeah

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no so essentially we have we have a certain thing that you can pick up at lows or home depot just to

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just to keep things consistent because we want to be able to when you test if you if you're testing

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in a lanza I want to be able to have the same thing up here so you got that and you got a hard hard

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chord flooring hopefully and then we paint that and that's it so it's just making sure that it's solid

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and it's a certain plywood kind of thing okay that's it so it's really really very simple

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and it's some standard sizes so it is it is not hard to get that fun yeah because I'm trying to

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figure out from a fun testing point of view if I can just plug this in like I have my projector at

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home to watch all the movies and fun stuff can I just plug this in onto an existing hitting wall

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but you're saying right now you want us to go buy something specifically as we test everything out

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yes yeah and there is there is some calibration involved and what have you okay so so this you know

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fairly permanent setup at this point and and it's it's it's it needs it needs to be very accurate

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okay so not not completely plug and play yet correct yeah yeah okay you'll be

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Bobby I'll take that technically technically I get it now so Bobby if you want to find out how

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Alexander plans on getting this into the hands of tennis players very well first as always I

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ask a dopey question I watch the your demo Alexander who has the Andre Agassi forehand that is on

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your minute and eight demo because I was like wow somebody's copy an Agassi who who was that was at

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you that was probably me I've never heard that but I was right out of the eye it all day long

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yeah hair so I was like well it's not Andre but that without technically yeah that was Andre I was

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like wow so that was pretty impressive that's it and believe me I'm a I'm a big stickler that I

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you know Sean and I we go through with our website I don't want the wrong racket the wrong person

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demoing it it's it's got to look the part in yeah well it was me or it was a or it was a a good junior

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I looked at an older person so I'm okay that was me I'm very good well I exist I'm very impressed

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with the forehand so that the past the stiff does right out the bat all right the other part you

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already brought up which I thought was I mean I this could be an ungodly workout tool I mean I'm

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a big fan of the while I was a poor kid and I was jealous store I grew up hitting on my aluminum

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garage door that had a groove about a foot and a half apart so if you hit the groove you're

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affection the ball so you had to be really precise with your targets and I drove my family crazy so

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but I you know I love the wall and I just see that as an unbelievable training tool as well as just

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you get your heart rate up and again just gives purpose to the practice and you know we're in

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Atlanta and you know we always try to bring it back to Atlanta where we have a lot of adults who

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took up the game later in life and their purpose is to get the ball over the net and when we

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try as coaches we try to say you got to pick a target you know we always laugh with adults we

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don't spend as much time with targets as we do with juniors because we're just coaching them

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different trying to get them to a different spot but I think something like this because we're

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seeing the proliferation of ball machines all over you know they're getting easier to transport

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their cheaper so people have their own and so you're seeing people want to get the reps

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this to me just takes it to a whole other place simplicity and going to give you feedback and

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obviously if your correlation and your algorithms are matching pretty close to UTR the technology

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behind it's got to be pretty strong yeah yeah and it's what we've seen I you know personally

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as a complete tennis and development nerd I I love people hitting all out on it and being able

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to get a lot out of that even on a high level but having seen players jump on that are not tennis

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players both kids and adults it's it's been very very encouraging and kind of surprising but I guess

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the fact that you are controlling everything yourself and that there is a target that that kind of

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locks you in is is really helpful because they they pick up very quickly in terms of what what they

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do the first minute versus the third or fourth minute is quite astonishing to be honest well

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and again go back to your video and again kudos to you for doing it but that was one of the things

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I picked up you were predominantly hitting forehands for whatever reason a ball came out low into your

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backhand and you either you had to slice it to get it back over the net in order to hit the target

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and I was like you know if you're going out there trying to blast that ball you're not going to be

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anywhere near that target and that in itself you know again I obviously from your forehand I knew

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you knew what you were doing but that that to me is hopefully the the people who do it but realize

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I can't hit that shot and be able to hit that target the coach can tell you now into his blow of a

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face but when you start seeing it constantly in a short period of time by yourself I think the

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recognition could come a lot faster and again is anybody who takes it up later what you're really

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lacking is the reps this is a great way to catch up your reps yeah yeah and those those intangibles

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was actually one big motivation for me initially because I I have a hunch that the reason

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these older guys have been able to hang on at the very top of the game in the world is the intangibles

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and part of that I think with them was they actually grew up hitting against the wall

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where a lot of a lot of the younger players never did so in terms of understanding the relationship

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between you the opponent the tempo and in a sense even though it's trained completely different

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on a wall understanding angles you you kind of over train it but in a different way right and

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and yes I mean I'm seeing certain players in our academy the first time the jab on it is basically

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the fire of the ball and there's no thinking beyond that right and and and maybe the second time

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they come on it I've seen a shift in that they hit the ball and then they move you know on a very

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you know thinking about it on a very fundamental level but quite a few players these days they play

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the game in terms of okay big-time stroke production but there's there's no dynamic right so this

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this really gives you that in in in overdrive with a lot of reps I feel well and you did again and

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just little nuances as you said your tempo showed you where you had it to stay you know if you're

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gonna prolong and you're gonna sustain this is the tempo you have to be at you have to be on balance

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you have to hit it and you know where your body's under control and again and you're gonna get the

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negative feedback I don't have to tell you you didn't hit the target you know you stored a 40 and

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unfortunately with the kids today they are taught to take tests yeah and they don't learn anymore

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unfortunately in school they learn how to take a test yeah so this is feeding into the way that

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they process information anyway so it's like I said okay so now it's it's on the business side how

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much how much space do you need and when do you see yourself making this available yeah so it's

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it's available right now and and it is it's pre-affordable I would say we're we are we're looking for

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pioneer partners but it's essentially for us to even come over there and install it you look you're

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looking at about three thousand dollars and then you can run over the counter equipment and then we

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and I will charge you monthly depending on what what we decide for unlimited amount of users

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so we could do it a little bit of a revenue split or we could do something that would be very similar

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to like a monthly fee for a for a smart court do you does it have to be inside as a right now

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yes okay that's going to be the hard part with Georgia just because we're so outside dominated yes it

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is it is and then it is it is a drawback and and quite honestly it's it's not it's not about the

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technology we use that much apart from projectors slash screens that is that is affordable because

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that's that's that's a huge part of what we're trying to do is we're trying to make it you know

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affordable so you can actually use it but if I want a pickleball inside pickleball club I can

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bring my kid and here go you know I mean this is a half hour lesson you I mean you wouldn't the

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three thousand dollars if you're thinking about it you should realize you're gonna make that back

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in a very short amount of time I mean it's like putting quarters in a pinball machine the kids will

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be there I want another I want another 10 minutes sign you know here's another 10 dollars that that

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it could be insane it's going to be a matter of where we can put it but multi use facilities I

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mean it doesn't bring up some creative stuff but I you know it's it's fascinating it's really

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fascinating yeah it would be nice to have in a lot of different places and I yeah the kids we just

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got in in a pickleball club up here in in Boston and and it's interesting so some kids

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they don't they don't want to leave yeah yeah and it's it's it's very nice to see and then my final

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question always is it's amazing in the tennis world because our conversations began I just looked

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back six years ago when I was consulting with courts and obviously I gravitated to somebody who

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on LinkedIn said they were a tennis techie and I was like well she that's what we want to speak to

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that you know we talked and laughed about courts we were pen and pencil or paper and pencil

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and then four years later you know there's how many different reserve systems you start doing it

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this is a great idea there's do you have a competitor already who's are you know simultaneously

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doing something similar and it's like how does that work in tennis does everybody just comes

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the same good idea at the same time or yeah not not really because it's it's actually it's a

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little bit tricky because the ball is the ball is small and fast yeah so most companies that try to

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do something similar are not as accurate or they only take bigger bigger balls essentially

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and that's good yes the other company is not tennis specific it's no no that is that is the biggest

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thing we we are we are maximizing absolutely everything we do for um or racket sports fantastic

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and that's that's that's so that that becomes a very different from from a basic floor or

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our interactive wall of display do you do any stroke analysis is you have any software involved

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with that yet or are you thinking about that or do some to purchase it to be running down the road there's

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down the road there's a lot that's yes it's technology's fascinating yes yes but right right now and

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part of what we tried to do really to be honest is simplicity is huge in everything everything

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yes from the visuals so so right right now we got we got the targets it's accurate um

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that we have we have tempo as a as a factor yes that's that's where we're at today

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which is smart because a lot of the companies that we've spoken to that are more

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than they're too complicated and it's always you know they have little thing you're excited and say

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okay but there's you'll still see holes where I think it's starting simple is great and as you said

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do you use my favorite you know tempo and accuracy well that's pretty much you if you don't have

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those two things you don't have balance so you know you're gonna learn what you need to improve on

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just from hitting the wall if the wall doesn't come back you didn't do it right it's real simple so

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great honestly hard to make it simple because there are so many options and so many things you

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could do so yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah

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I could certainly screw it up I could add 10 things in two seconds and say yeah but we're

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missing the point I said to me used all the right words and so the next thing how do we introduce it

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to Atlanta how do we get you know whether you come down and introduce it yeah where are you

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putting it in predominantly now where's been your best customer obviously indoor tennis facility or

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yeah yeah we're we're just starting like I said so it's it's indoor facilities and ideally if there

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is extra space because the medium is not proven on the court yet to keep it simple whereas you know

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if you if you popped in two to four of these on one end court yes a concrete wall I could prove it in

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five minutes but somebody's got to want to do that so so really any any additional space and you

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did ask you did ask about that so it's for the for the full version 15 by 30 feet okay then you need

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about nine feet high ceilings then you can then you can hit all out look at your red I mean you

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can do this multi court and just line up people and it's a you know a modified ball machine court

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yes and and and incorporate it if if you make that part of your younger kids courts where where you

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have more courts courts going across the court to have to have that as one station or two stations in

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the corners I think will function very very well oh my god that that would be unbelievable with the

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kids like you said just run them through stations they're constantly moving they're constantly getting

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a new stimulus they won't be bored they will not and you get you get some tangibles might might

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even help you know letting mommy know why why little Joe is not ready for next group yet

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oh wait I never have it Alexander I can't believe that no we'll find a way

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I'm just picturing like the boot camp workout places where you have to go to each station and going

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around just have kids going through and have a coach in the middle with a hundred kids and ten of

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these it wouldn't be difficult to maximize that's an expensive setup but you can get a lot done

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yes yeah I agree 100% and I mean another simple one for me is you know essentially the miniversion

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at some empty space which can be much much smaller in lobbies or what have you right

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wow that's my real goal yeah and you said they're not portable at all or they're not just they're

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just not designed to be portable they're not designed to be portable yet okay correct okay because

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I'm I'm basically theoretically build build a portable one yes okay yeah because that changes

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things as well down here with options yes yeah they got a lot of coaches mobile and then the tools

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with the basketball basketball goals that get out of the way and come back in the way this is the kind

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of thing kind of swing down and plug in you got all the kids in the elementary school gym just

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play in tennis on these magic walls I love it yeah yeah it's it's really it's the it's the

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projection the the image that's kind of that's kind of be the trickiest yeah when it comes to those

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yeah that makes sense yeah Bobby got anything else or I'm gonna hit him with King of tennis

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hit King of tennis and then extend ask him how we get him down here to show us

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we got an email yeah we can we can talk about that so we'll try to figure out a way

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that email thread has already been started Bobby don't worry so Alexander my favorite question

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we ask and you know this is coming so my favorite question King of tennis if Alexander Johansson

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is King of tennis whether it's for a day however long it takes if it's the world if it's Sweden if

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it's the U.S. anywhere is there anything you would do or change what you got for it yeah well I think

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first of I think playing around a little bit with different with different formats because I

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don't think it's sustainable that our matches are as long as there are so I think I think what they're

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doing will like UTS I believe it's called is that's very interesting and I've heard what that means

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for the players they know how long they're gonna play the audience knows that they're gonna get to see

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the best players etc etc it's kind of a different way of maximizing it so it kind of makes sense to

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me to look into those kinds of things and then I think when it comes to getting players a large number

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of players to play without having another COVID which helped us I think I think truly selling

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the sports to the parents the end user in terms of the character building and the fact that you can

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I mean there are other ways you can do this but tennis is extremely good I think at it is

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you can build up something over a long period of time versus the instant gratification kind of

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thing which I think that is that is a huge thing for any parent if we if we can actually have

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eventually an adult that has gone through that long journey gain all the character traits needed

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to compete on a decent level and then and then on top of that worked on something for such a long time

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that very very very few people I think are going to do moving forward so I think I think

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how we sell it to the end user I think that's something the governing bodies should be should be

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really looking at and then I think the compensation obviously for players and maybe with with different

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formats that can help a little bit I think how coaches are compensated it is it's a system that

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really doesn't work I think for younger generations I think I think it's held up surprisingly well

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with people like ourselves probably but but I think people going into the workforce now

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looking for some some kind of life quality and and seeing some kind of a path I don't I don't think

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it makes sense and I think fundamentally to have people getting paid the same based on the market

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or the club they're at where it differs very little and the only way you can climb the ladder is by

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taking on completely different roles that you might or might not be good at at all and not get

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to keep doing what you're actually great at I think that fundamentally just breaks breaks everything

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because I'm I if I'm if I'm a coach that works really hard I got all the right intentions maybe I'm

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pretty good and then there is somebody else doesn't really care and not very good and again

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and paid almost exactly the same like where where does that go from there so I would like nothing nothing

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more than a way of creating a coach rating oh yeah coach is rating Bobby I don't think we've

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heard that one before well he started and I was like well he's he's done it again he's come up there's

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five different conversations more we can have from the top and closing fascinating love it absolutely

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love what you're saying and the little nuances they go with it but I was like well that's that's

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but I do also think it genius really to look at and it speaks to the problem that the USDA

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USPTA is having getting younger coaches it's a different mindset you know for better or worse as

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you said we might have been dumb because I'm probably the elder statesman of the room who said I love

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something therefore I'm content knowing that I'm probably going to work my entire life where these

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kids don't want to commit to something like that and if they don't see the immediate payback and

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enjoyment they're not gravitating to it and I obviously we're seeing that so even though we know

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the argument that's probably a great place to start the argument how do we make it more attractive

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where people will dunk their toe and with the realization there's a path and of course always the

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there's a big difference between the salesperson and the sales manager why do we if a person is

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great on the court why do we think they're qualified to be a quote-unquote tennis director it's a

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different job different job description and unfortunately like you said in our occupation but

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again and that that that comes screams to the conversation that we always put the blanket or the

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cloud over every conversation the leadership of the sport in promoting our level we're you know

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we're great at promoting the next great player but the nuts and bolts of the industry and the guys

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who are in their 50s who we all complain about and laugh at say okay they have an embrace technology

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but if they're your backbone you know there's a lot of issues going on so yeah that's it's a great

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great you need to be at a USPTA come you know connection you know and I think that needs

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that unfortunately I think it needs to be a third party very similar to outside yeah and that's

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a great thing I always say I completely agree I said you know why do we always if we're looking for

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the next head why don't we always go to somebody that's in tennis that is witnessed it I always

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I laugh about let's go to somebody from NASCAR who markets only left terms or somebody from the WWE

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who markets something that you know is inherently fake yet still fills arenas you know these are the

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guys who got a little more work to do than tennis should be an easy sell right now it's being played

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in an unbelievable level by unbelievable athletes you know the probably the biggest discrepancy between

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the recreational and professional level is today shouldn't be a hard sell and yet you know like you

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said short of COVID what is tennis done over the last 30 years to you know really improve its

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position so yeah I'd say that's pretty good answer King yeah and then you know at the end of that

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people hopefully start using a little bit more technology yes you know the current compensation

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system as well I remember as I was I was looking around it was especially here I think in the states

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everything is is hourly so there's no time allocation to improving processes including use of

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technology and it goes you know you're gonna because tennis is outdoors here you're gonna sit there

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and say you know there's four facilities that we can speak to to get this but there are a lot of

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private baseball academies as pick a ball grows a little bit more say hey look here's a station

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you you're drive over here you're not coming in to get coached you're coming in to get reps you're

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going to get feedback instantly and hopefully you'll be able to share it with your coach when you

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go take that next lesson so just just get the idea that you don't need to be on site to do this we

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can do this someplace else and you're not hurting my feelings because it's helping you become a better

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player and that's what we're trying to do Bobby we drop off the kids and David Busters and we go to

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the hitting wall and the fact they take down the ping where the ping pong room is right and

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they go back there playing ping pong and this wall is in there and as a parent we can go in and

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get some exercise and work on our game in a game place exactly we make it as fun as a family venture

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as ski ball you have the kids playing ski ball and I'm out there hammering away on my four hands

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and back hands they're that's not the option to keep an in an area like this where it's where

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actual tennis is outside yep where where's the facility that's big enough that's doing something

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active that you could bring and set this up as just another state again different station hey I

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have a baseball player is taking a pitching lesson but my tennis player this way I don't have to

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drop I'm not going crazy dropping them in two places and I'm still getting feedback I think that

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to me is the marketing angle down here at least unfortunately and it's not adding pages yeah

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absolutely yeah I like it I get a lot all right Alexander we can go on like this forever so

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let's let's take the rest of that offline because I think what we're going to do is try to figure out

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how to help you get get it get what you're doing down here bobby I like the king of tennis answer

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I think and we can do hitting walls down here you know me I want my hitting walls in Atlanta I've

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been trying to figure out how to do it I hadn't considered it might be a magic hitting wall

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I'm just thinking a hitting wall but Alexander I really appreciate your time and we will follow up

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for sure and figure out how to tell everybody down here that they need to get in their rackets

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hitting wall and we will share all the information in the show notes and everything and make sure

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everybody's got their links and how to communicate with you and you said you're looking for initial

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partners what yeah pioneer partners that want to give it a shot for a year and and go from there

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yeah I am sure we can find something to take you up on that so let's follow up there as well

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quick question I was in haven't spoken anybody down here so we don't make any

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we've had anybody's toes anybody down in the air you already thought too I gotta I gotta

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look at my my docs because it's been it's been it's been a lot lately from from all over the place

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yeah just let us know because that that would yeah I don't want to go to some place where something

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you're smoking it but yeah because again there's only six places right away for the obvious and

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then you got to go a little bit deeper into a Dave and Buster there's nobody has pulled the trigger so

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okay I was in the outside of the whole Aggie thing I've really enjoyed it

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well good deal good deal good deal good stuff pretty good yeah

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all right thanks Alexander Bobby as always we'll do it again we'll talk soon thanks all right

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thank you well there you have it we want to thank rejuvenate.com for use of the studio and be sure to

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hit that follow button for more tennis related content you can go to Atlanta tennispodcast.com

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and while you're there check out our calendar of tennis events the best deals on technophyber

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