Sport

Published: June 13, 2022 | Updated: June 14, 2022

Game, set, match: Business hoping to serve up a winner with its tennis skills and fitness game

Ruben Bray, Elliot Coles – son of Gemma Coles, Shuffle Up Games CEO – and James Price.
By Andrew Diprose, editor

A Dorset business is hoping to serve up a winner with its tennis skills and fitness game.

With Wimbledon just a fortnight away, Shuffle Up is expecting a surge of interest following the game’s initial launch eight months ago.

Shuffle Up Tennis Skills & Fitness encourages young tennis players to get moving in a fun and exciting way.

Simultaneously it teaches key principles of strength and conditioning, often overlooked.

Shuffle Up Games was founded by Bournemouth-based Gemma Coles, a gymnastics coach with more than 20 years’ experience in the industry.

Following on from the successful launch of the game’s gymnastics edition, the company has since diversified to offer games in football, rugby and now tennis.

The game consists of 70-plus cards which include full-colour photographs that demonstrate correct technique, along with step-by-step guidelines for rep ranges and difficulty levels.

The cards come together to form 14 different games, which can be adjusted to suit all skill levels.

Each card is colour co-ordinated to provide guidance on skill level:

  • Green cards – The simplest activities with no prior experience needed.
  • Amber cards – More challenging activities.
  • Red cards – The most complex activities to slowly work towards.

Shuffle Up can be used as a coaching tool for both tennis coaches and PE teachers looking to implement skill development and strength and conditioning work into sessions.

It can also be used by families, as well as by the players themselves.

Gemma, CEO of Shuffle Up Games, lives in Bournemouth with her husband and three children.

She also runs a successful recreational gymnastics club, Head Over Heels Gymnastics, in Poole.

Gemma, pictured, said: “Often children switch off at the idea of doing traditional strength and conditioning work, so it was important to keep that fun element alive with Shuffle Up.

“We are hoping to inspire more children to get into tennis.”

The company’s growing success is reflected in previous games selling out across Amazon on multiple occasions.

Each game is created with the help of sporting experts in their respective fields.

The tennis game was launched with help from ex-tennis pro, Marcus Willis.

The 31-year-old made his tour debut at the 2016 Wimbledon Championships after qualifying for the main draw.

He shot to fame after playing against Roger Federer in the second round on Centre Court.

Marcus, pictured left, was defeated by Federer 6–0, 6–3, 6–4 but received a standing ovation nonetheless.

The BBC later held a vote for the best shot made of the tournament with a lob over Federer earning Marcus the win.

Commenting on the Shuffle Up game, Marcus, pictured left, who retired from tennis last year, said: “I love how the game has elements that are competitive.

“As a child I was very competitive, and I know plenty of other children are too.

“The games are designed in a clever way, they challenge you to beat your own scores whilst also instilling good technique at the same time.

“We factored in playing ability to this game’s design to ensure it is inclusive in nature.

“You don’t have to have experience to be able to play.

“Equally, as an ex-pro player I find the hardest cards challenging, so I know we have something to offer everyone with this.”

The Tennis Skills and Fitness card game is available to purchase via Amazon or directly from the Shuffle Up website.

The age recommendation of the game is four years-plus with help and eight years-plus independently.