Last month we offered some figures on pickleball’s growth trajectory relative to that of tennis. If you didn’t get the chance, you can read the full issue here. Here’s a quick recap of the numbers:
Pickleball Players in the United States (2018) 3.1m
Annual Growth Rate: 10%
Tennis Players in the United States (2018) 17.84m
Annual Growth Rate: 0.9%
Let’s assume these growth rates won’t fluctuate. At this rate, pickleball with eclipse tennis in popularity by 2038.
Welp, I think it is safe to say our projections ruffled some feathers. But it also sparked some great conversation. Here’s what you had to say:
“Depends on how you measure it. I know a lot of “tennis players” who play once every few months. I know a lot of PB players who play multiple times a week.” – Jeff L.
“PB is already ahead of tennis on paddles vs racquets sales in US. Still, tennis has much more exposure in US per capita, not sure for how long though.” ? – Mark N.
From a former pro in both sports, Rick Witsken:
“I’ve played both professionally, currently coach both. I strongly agree that these sports go well together in any business model. That said, I look at the growth in the form of adults vs kids. I believe the growth at the adult level of PB is astronomically faster for kids at the moment. I would like to see kids play organized PB within their schools. At the adult level, along with ease of learning, there seems to be an intimacy/social bond that’s easier to develop on the court due to sheer spatial proximity. I feel fortunate to have embraced both.”
I guess we’ll see, but we’ve said it once and we’ll say it again – it seems like everyone is playing these days.