Why has tennis lost its popularity from the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s?

What has happened to make professional tennis less popular than it was in the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s? First responded to on August 4, 2015 The original version of this query can be found on Quora: The best response to any query. Pose a query and obtain a superb response. Gain access to exclusive knowledge and learn from professionals. Quora may be followed on Google+, Facebook, and Twitter. Response provided by Laurence Shanet, a USRSA Certified Stringer, tennis coach, and former college and satellite tennis playerResponse provided by Laurence Shanet, a USRSA Certified Stringer, tennis coach, and former college and satellite tennis player Tennis had a “boom” in the 1970s and continued to be very popular until the mid-1980s, but by the late 1980s, its popularity in the United States had somewhat declined and its numbers had begun to decline. However, since the mid-1990s, they have remained comparatively stable. Actually, the sport’s peak popularity was in the 1970s and early 1980s; in fact, events in the late 1980s and early 1990s may have had a role in the sport’s downfall in the United States.

Regarding the reasons for the first tennis boom in the 1970s and early 1980s, there was a confluence of elements at work in the game that hasn’t been matched since and probably never will be. In fact, we must go back to 1968 to comprehend the emergence of professional tennis, since two significant events there drastically altered the game’s landscape both domestically and internationally:

The first is that the “Open Era” began in 1968. Professional athletes were not permitted to participate in Davis Cup matches or any of the four Grand Slam competitions prior to that. This meant that, in contrast to other professional sports, not all of the best players in tennis competed for the highest titles. With the advent of the Open Era, tennis became a viable career option for players and saw an increase in professionalism and enthusiasm beyond previous levels. Tennis had only a specialized following and was a closed-off, rich man’s country club sport up until that point.

But like other major sports had been for decades, it was made possible to become a legitimate professional sport during the Open Era. Even though Grand Slam titles had been fought for over a century by then, many of the world’s finest players weren’t participating as the pros were “barnstorming” in exhibitions.

Now that we have discussed the tennis boom and the two significant events that sparked it, we need take into account a number of additional elements that also played a role in the sport’s enormous popularity and eventual downfall.

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