Björn Borg's Garage Door - Atlas Obscura

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Björn Borg's Garage Door

Södertälje, Sweden

The tennis legend became the best in the world (partly) thanks to practicing his strokes against this garage door as a kid. 


Björn Borg is a Swedish former tennis player who became a global household name in the mid-1970s. Back then, Borg held the No. 1 ranking for an outstanding 109 weeks as well as won 11 Grand Slam titles—including five consecutive Wimbledon championships. The tennis prodigy’s powerful two-handed backhand, topspin, and exceptional footwork made him a formidable opponent to fellow top players like John McEnroe and Jimmy Connors.

Borg grew up in the industrial city of Södertälje, a 30-minute drive southwest of Stockholm. The garage door of his childhood home played a significant role in his tennis development. As a young boy, Borg would spend hours hitting tennis balls against the garage door, imagining himself playing important matches while using the garage door as a makeshift opponent. This became the training ground where he honed his skills and developed his famous baseline game.

In 1995, long after the Borg family had moved, the property was renovated and the garage door was left in a storage room. There it gathered dust until 2013, when it was featured in an episode of the Swedish version of Antiques Roadshow. In the TV show, the mundane object was valued at about €13,000 thanks to its connection to Borg. One year later, the garage door was acquired by the Municipality of Södertälje in order to exhibit it as Björn Borg memorabilia.

It is now permanently displayed at the Torekällberget Open-Air Museum, a short walk from Borg’s childhood home, as a symbol of the tennis legend’s humble background, but also as a reminder that greatness can be cultivated anywhere, even in a simple setting like a garage.

Know Before You Go

Björn Borg's garage door is located in the basement of the green wooden building called Handelsboden (The Provision Store) at the Torekällberget Open-Air Museum. Entrance is free and the current opening hours can be found on the museum website.

If arriving by car, there is a parking lot just outside the entrance. It's also possible to get there by catching bus No. 751 from the Södertälje Centrum station (where the suburban train from Stockholm arrives and departs).

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