By Abby Thompson
September was a huge month for fashion. Notable events like New York, London, Milan, and Paris Fashion Weeks span from Sep. 7 to Oct. 3. This year’s media coverage of New York Fashion Week paled in comparison to the U.S. Open, which happened simultaneously in the Big Apple. Public figures like Kylie Jenner, Timothée Chalamet, Hailey Bieber, and Leonardo DiCaprio were absent from the fashion shows but attended the tennis matches instead. Seeing all of this coverage made me ask, why is everyone all of the sudden watching tennis?
Over the last few years, tennis has resurged in popularity. This rise is due in part to a new generation of influencers known as “Tennis WAG” (Wife and Girlfriend) and the Netflix documentary Break Point. Additionally, the frenzy around pickleball added to the interest in tennis. Despite the differences in rules, there are many similarities between tennis and pickleball. The “Old Guard” of tennis–Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, and Serena & Venus Williams– dominated the sport for years winning a majority of Grand Slams. Recently, breakout stars like 20-year-old Carlos Alcarez and 19-year-old Coco Gauff are dethroning the older generation, bringing new life to tennis.
If you don’t know who Morgan Riddle and Paige Lorenze are, make sure to check them out on Instagram. Riddle and Lorenze drive the social media craze around tennis to new heights by vlogging about their lives dating professional tennis players. Riddle’s partner, Taylor Fritz is currently ranked eighth in the world, and Tommy Paul, Lorenze’s significant other, is currently ranked 13th. Combined, the girls have an Instagram following of over 700K. They’ve used their platforms to launch successful product lines. Riddle teamed up with Lottie NYC to create a tennis jewelry line, while Lorenze launched her famous clothing brand, Dairy Boy.
Finally, who does not love a good Netflix binge? As if the tennis resurgence did not need to accelerate further, the Netflix series Break Point has transported the world of tennis from the racquet club to the couch. The series follows the lives of professional tennis players from across the globe, chronicling the ups and downs of life on the tour. Break Point provides an upfront and personal look at the lives of tennis stars, exposing the public to a different side of the mainstream sports.
Back to the original question, why is everyone watching tennis? Hopefully, the question has been answered. If not, go to Amazon, order your pickleball set, watch Break Point on Netflix, and follow the latest trends on Instagram and Tik Tok. Let me know then if you think tennis is worth the hype!