Slinger is an up-and-coming tennis equipment brand founded in 2020. Their flagship product is the Slinger Launcher (previously called the Slinger Bag), which is an innovative new tennis ball machine that doubles as an equipment bag.
True to their vision of “making tennis more enjoyable and accessible to players of all ages and abilities,” Slinger has created a tennis ball machine that’s both inexpensive and convenient. Here’s the rundown with our Slinger Bag review.
A Tennis Ball Machine That Doubles as an Equipment Bag
If you weren’t familiar with the Slinger Launcher (or Slinger Bag) tennis ball machine and saw someone bringing it to the tennis court, you’d probably think it’s just a roller bag for holding tennis equipment–until you find out it is the equipment.
The Slinger Launcher (also referred to as the T-One Launcher or just Slinger Bag) is a multipurpose tennis ball machine that comes with storage space to function as a handy bag to store your tennis equipment and personal stuff. The ball machine can be filled with up to 144 balls, perfect for you to practice your serves and receives.
- High-quality durable plastic and textile build
- Doubles as a bag to hold racquets and personal stuff
- Relatively short charge time compared to other ball machines
- Has a USB port to charge phones and personal devices
- No programmed drills
- Oscillator platform is a detachable accessory that might be a hassle to bring
Review of the Slinger Launcher
For just under $800, the Slinger Launcher (previously just called the Slinger Bag) is a great basic tool for individual practice for beginners and intermediate-level players. One of its best features is the portable, handy multipurpose bag where you can store your playing equipment and personal stuff, so you won’t have to lug around multiple bags when you practice.
Size & Quality
At just 33 lbs, and with its adequately-sized design, it can fit in the trunk of most cars. Its heavy-duty wheels also make it easier to move the machine around on any ground surface and it will really just feel like you’re carrying some light luggage.
Made with durable, high-quality materials, rest assured that this piece of tennis equipment won’t disappoint in being a staple in the practice court and can serve you a long time on any court surface even on the outdoors.
The battery can be charged to full in about 4 hours (significantly less than other mid-range tennis ball machines with around the same playing time), so keep this in mind when you need to be using the machine. Slinger claims that the machine can last up to 5 hours on a full charge, more than enough time for a full practice session.
The Slinger Launcher, while it lacks some advanced programmable drills for variation, has settings that suit the practice needs of beginners and intermediate players. The ball machine can feed you balls at about 45 mph top spin every 2-10 seconds, which can be set manually on the control panel of the machine. An adjustable knob can manually set the angle of elevation of the ball from 10º to 40º.
The machine itself isn’t able to move left and right so this is where the oscillator plate comes in handy. Simply place the entire machine on the plate, turn it on along with the machine with the remote and you’re ready to practice receiving balls on both sides of the court.
It also comes with a special phone holder that can be attached to the handle if you want to record your practice sessions and monitor your form. It also has a USB type-a port where you can turn the ball machine as a power bank to charge your phone, provided that the ball machine has enough power stored.
How To Use
The Slinger Launcher tennis ball machine is actually very fairly easy to use. Here’s an instructional video from Slinger illustrating how to use it.
Place it where you want it on the court, typically on either side of the court or on the middle depending on whether you’re practicing your backhands, forehands, or overhead receives. Open the top ball compartment and fill it up with regular or extra duty balls. Open up the bottom compartment where the control panel is hidden and you can turn and adjust the knobs to your desired practice levels and elevation angles.
If you want to practice receiving balls on either side of the court, you can put the Slinger Launcher ball machine on the provided oscillator plate and hook it up to the machine. Turn on the machine and the plate with the remote and you can practice your receives with its oscillating settings.
You can also use the machine to feed you balls for when you need to practice your service. Simply place the machine on your side of the court, adjust the elevation knob to a level that you can easily catch the ball and set it to feed you balls every few seconds or so and serve.
When you’re done or when the machine has fed you all the balls in its compartment, the Slinger Slam Pack comes with a handy ball tube so it’s easy to pick loose balls on the court and replace them in the ball compartment of the machine to continue your session or when it’s time to pack up.
While the Slinger Launcher has proven to be a great tennis companion, it does come with a few drawbacks. One of its biggest cons is the lack of variation and programmable automatic drills. The machine can only ever feed you the balls at its set 45 mph top spin.
More serious players might look for ball machines that can provide them with more programmable variations in their drills. Check out our list of the best tennis ball machines.
Where to Buy (The Slinger Grand Slam Pack)
The most popular product bundle Slinger offers is the Slinger Grand Slam Pack (or just Slinger Slam Pack) comes with the following right out of the box:
- Slinger Launcher – the ball launcher machine itself
- Remote to control machine and oscillator
- Oscillator plate- helps the entire machine oscillate to adjust angles
- Ball tube for easy loose ball pick-up
- Phone holder
You can purchase it directly from their website, or from OnCourtOffCourt, which is a reputable online tennis retailer with lots of good reviews.
Overall, the Slinger Launcher (or Slinger Bag) is a great tennis practice companion for beginners and intermediate players, especially for its price tag. It’s multipurpose, high-quality durable build is sure to last you a long time. This no-frills, very straightforward piece of equipment is a testament that tennis equipment doesn’t need to be complicated for it to serve its good purpose of improving your game and not making tennis practice a hassle.
We recommend getting the Slinger Launcher as part of the Slinger Grand Slam Pack, which is the most popular Slinger product on the market.
Post last updated on March 15, 2022