Trond Kittelsen has been playing tennis all his life. With very little formal training, he found himself questioning the basics of the game. He understood that there was opportunity for insight, such as swing type and stroke, but how to use that data in order to improve his game was something that stumbled him.
As he sat on the plane down to the French Open in 2016, beside him sat one of the top 3 video analyst tennis coaches in the world. As they began talking, a vision started to transpire, and thus the idea for SevenSix tennis was born.
The platform focuses on enhancing player’s technique and overall game while also creating new possibilities for coaches. Trond’s focal point is figuring out how to spend resources wisely. Instead of developing a lot of hardware and technical equipment, he has created an app that simplifies the process of analyzing data in a much more affordable way.
Sevin Six has become the latest technological innovation in the world of tennis and is taking the game to a new and different level. The platform offers coaches an opportunity to connect and boost performance at all levels, while also allowing players to achieve the near perfect playing they are seeking.
WTCA had the opportunity to speak with Trond Kittelsen and get the inside scoop on the SevenSix platform, and the developments that are underway for this groundbreaking technology.
What is the process for using the SevenSix app?
“We have seen a lot of media where the top players reveal their secret sauce. They have human resources, advanced technology and top tennis analyst who can break down the data for them. We want to make this level of technology available to all players and coaches. The process is easy, user’s film what they’re working on, upload their video to the app, and then they receive personal feedback from top coaches. SevenSix users are getting personal feedback via the app that they would normally never have access to.”
Who is SevenSix designed for? What ages/skill levels do you think benefit the most from this technology?
“Well you would have to be 14 to 15 years of age in order to sign into the app through Facebook. Besides that, there is no “perfect person” for the app. User’s don’t need to be tech savvy, but they should be comfortable and adventurous in trying out new tactics for improving their game. We know that both professional and club tennis players work in fragmented training. Right now, there is no place where players can gather all the info and data they need. So, players can be any skill level, they just have to be adventurous and willing to try something new. For coaches, it is up to them how they want to give feedback to the player. Some coaches like to give feedback in video, and then add additional comments in the report. Other coaches prefer to give their reports in writing only. We would love for all coaches to be on the court and film themselves giving feedback to the player, and then add additional comments in the report.”
Some coaches may be skeptical about coaching through an app, what do you think is the biggest motivator/benefit for coaches to use the app?
“The motivator is the platform. They have to be adventurous and willing to collaborate with various people and teams through a digital platform. We want to help them in the transition from pen and paper, or even google drive, to somewhere that they can share their expertise with a wide range of player’s. We are striving to democratize the information and have it be live instruction, while also helping them connect with players on a simple and affordable platform.”
“The SevenSix platform is breaking down the barriers and create a value for coaches from day one. The technology save’s coach’s time and helps them to do reports and analyze a player’s game. I think the main motivation for a coach is being able to provide better service for players and allowing them to give their insight to players from all over. In their down time they are able to do reports for players of all levels. We call it the “Uber of tennis” because it’s a shared business model. The coaches get paid for the work they do and they get most of the money they are making. The app also helps coaches build their network and reach a broader number of player’s.”
Do you feel like players are truly able to make the same connection with a coach through the app as they would be with an in-person mentor?
“We don’t want to be just another tech company; our mission is to focus on the human aspect. Technology in tennis is still in its early days. The sport is currently ranked in 7th place. The reason is because the technology has been underdeveloped and the transition era of going from pen and paper, to a system that will truly connect with and help a player, has a lot of bumps. SevenSix is changing this by combining the best technology in tennis in a much simpler and more affordable way. Players and coaches now have access to the info they need through the app. We are able to give amateur players access to ATP certified coaches who can help them improve their game while not even being on the court with them.”
What do you think the future looks like for SevenSix?
“If you look at the current ecosystem of tennis, the technology is underdeveloped. It’s expensive and takes a lot of resources. I hope that during our collaboration we will plant the flag and help to continue to develop the game of tennis. In order to do this, we need players and coaches to help us develop and pave the way. Aside from just expanding the app, we are going into new partnerships and continuing to develop the program outside of Norway. The original idea and technology for SevenSix was founded on 40 years of experience in tech and working with some of the best coaches in the world. Instead of 7th place, tennis should be in second place because it is such a technical sport. We want to continue to develop it constantly and create new opportunities for both players and coaches all over the world.”
Trond Kittelsen will be at the WTCA New York conference August 23rd – 25th where he will be launching the SevenSix platform in the U.S. We are so excited to hear about the new advancements in this leading technology and see what else SevenSix is doing to improve the game of tennis all over the world!
For more information about SevenSix tennis, visit their website: https://sevensix.no/