One of the biggest misconceptions about the IART training symposium is that all we do is teach people how to string racquets. Nothing could be further from the truth. Oh we’ll make sure that when you leave you’re a much better stringer than when you arrived however, there’s more to it than that. Our training is designed to transform you into a complete technician and a savvy business owner. The conference is designed to give you a full spectrum of training with one goal in mind. We want you to stay in business and we firmly believe that if you receive the proper training your chances of succeeding far outweigh your chances of failure. So let’s take a look at what you might expect when you attend the IART training symposium.
The International Alliance of Racquet Technicians is just that; an International organization that supports racquet technicians. Our focus is to touch on all phases you’re likely to encounter when owning and operating a business within the racquet sports industry. So sure, you’re going to need to know how to string a racquet properly but further to that end, we think you’re chances of success are greatly increased if you can take your technical skills to a much higher level. Everyone has to start somewhere and it’s important to recognize that there are definitely different levels of stringing ability. Whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, advanced intermediate, advanced, or tournament level, we offer something for everyone at the symposium. Our Basics of Stringing class will take the raw beginner through a series of steps that will give them the confidence to string any racquet. You’ll learn a basic understanding of stringing machines, how to properly inspect a racquet and from there, how to properly mount the racquet in preparation for stringing and much much more This is a 2 1/2 hour session that’s intense in the material it covers, yet relaxed in the way the course is delivered. If you’re a beginner to intermediate stringer you’ll appreciate this class.
Installing the string is only one step but ask yourself this question. How do you know what string to install? Why would you pick one string over another, one hybrid combination over another? What strings have better tension maintenance than others and why? What makes strings play differently? Why should you consider the playing style and the players level of play when selecting a string and what about the racquet? Is it always the fault of the string when there’s premature breakage or could it be something else. And last but not least, just what the heck is polyester and what’s all the fuss? Should I recommend the same string the pros use for my clients and if not, why? Understanding strings is one of the most important aspects of being a competent racquet technician. At the IART conference we’ll teach you everything you ever wanted to know about strings and more!
When it’t time to take your skills to a higher level there’s no better way to separate yourself from the competition than being a wizard at customizing racquets. This, more than any single thing, is considered to be the most important skill that transforms you from a racquet stringer into a racquet technician. Our 6 hour customization class is the only one of it’s kind and the most complete customization class anywhere on planet earth! We also offer additional classes from time to time that are more direct to one aspect of customizing a racquet like “Handle Modification”, specific classes on racquet diagnostic equipment like the Babolat RDC or maybe a class on learning about static and dynamic balance and why it’s important to know the difference. Customizing a racquet takes special skills and at the IART conference we give you several opportunities to learn those skills.
Being the best racquet technician in the world will do you no good if you don’t have the necessary skills to run your business. It’s more involved than just a love of racquet sports and deciding that just because you can string a racquet you can run a business. The key is running that business successfully and sustaining that business over a long period of time. IART is in the business of training people for success and no matter how you choose to set up your business, your most important mission is keeping your door open and cultivating a strong core of repeat customers. This requires a general knowledge of the business structure. For instance, are you a sole proprietor, corporation or a LLC for example? But this is just the tip of the iceberg. Technological advancements in the 21st century have changed the way businesses operate and to be competitive, you need to stay in the forefront of those advancements and be on the cutting edge in many different aspects of your business. Therefore, our seminars in business management cover a variety of topics that every business person needs to know in order to sustain their business over a long period of time. It might be perfecting your social media skills, acquiring the skills to computerize your business and knowing what software best suits your needs or perhaps learning to sharpen your skills when it comes to ordering and inventory control. So you see, the IART conference is much much more. It’s not just about stringing a racquet!
Tour Stringing and the Wilson Speed Stringing Contest
Many of our past attendees have come to us with the goal of becoming a professional tournament stringer and without a doubt, the IART conference is one of the very few places you’ll be able to put yourself in front of the right people to achieve your goal of stringing for the ATP/WTA tours. Our Speed stringing contest is sponsored by Wilson Sporting Goods and conducted by Ron Rocchi, team leader of the Wilson Tour Services Stringing Team. This team is the official stringing service to the U.S. Open, the Australian Open and the Sony Ericcson Open. The team has become the premier team in the world and in 2014, our two finalists in the speed stringing contest will receive a personal evaluation from Mr Rocchi to assess their skills and perhaps see if they have what it takes to become a member of the Wilson team.
FUN FUN FUN!!!
Ok all this sounds so intense and you’re probably wondering if we have any fun at all at this conference. Well, the answer is most definitely YES! We start off on Saturday with a fun round robin for our meet and greet and end the day with our fantastic gift bag giveaways. We’ll have plenty of time to get you on court for various presentations, time for you to DEMO racquets for all of our sponsors as well as just leisure time in the evenings to grab a partner and head to the courts. After all, Saddlebrook is a premier tennis destination with over 40 tennis courts including all 4 Grand Slam surfaces. The IART symposium is the most complete and FUN conference any racquet technician can attend. Not only will you enjoy yourself immensely, you’ll go home with a new set of skills that will amaze your local clients and change the way you run your business!
Check out the 2014 schedule HERE and we’ll see you in Tampa in September!