Tennis Ball Size
The International Tennis Federation defines a tennis ball as 6.54–6.86 cm in diameter with a weight in the range 56.0–59.4 g. For promotional purposes stay with this weight and size – it is possible to get different weights but it adds significantly to the cost.
The only colours acceptable for match play are yellow or white. The most common fluorescent yellow is sometimes referred to as ‘optic yellow’. However, promotional balls can be produced in a range of colours, black, light blue, dark blue, fluorescent green, bottle green, orange and pink are not uncommon but there is also a range of different pastel colours. If you want to pantone match a colour of a ball you need to be thinking of quantities in excess of 10,000 balls.
Branding of Promotional Balls
The branding area of a tennis ball is 45mm x 25mm and potentially two positions. Please bear in mind that a tennis ball is not a smooth surface. Sounds obvious, but the detail that can be successfully printed is limited – we have been requested in the past, to include things like a small © or ® (copyright or registered trade mark symbol) in a logo and it simply does not look right. The definition that can be achieved is limited. But simple bold designs look very effective.
Printing on a Tennis Ball
Tennis balls are either transfer printed or pad printed. Transfer printed will give a slightly better definition of the logo but unless a specialist durable transfer is requested the transfer tends to wear quickly if used in play. Pad printing means spot colours only but even transfer printing really needs to be kept to 1 or 2 colours for maximum effect.
Canisters and Pressure
All tennis balls are pressurised on the inside – it’s what makes them bounce. If balls are to be used in match play they must also be stored in a pressurised container and, at the top level, under strict temperature control, in order to retain a precise pressure and bounce. However, using a pressurised container is a rare expense for the promotional branded tennis ball giveaway.
Having said that, the balls can be presented in a canister – usually 3 or 4 balls per canister with a label or insert, printed up to four colours. This is a great way to present branding and messages which cannot be printed directly to the ball.
If you need advice on design then give us a call and we will talk you through what can and cannot be achieved.
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