Pickleball: The Fastest Growing Sport In America
With an average annual growth rate of about 11.5% in the past five years, there's no doubt that Pickleball is one of the fastest-growing sports in America. In fact, the 2022 Sports & Fitness Industry Association reported that Pickleball grew at a rate of about 39.5% in the past couple of years alone! That brings us to an approximate 4.8 million players nationwide!
With Pickleball, there are no signs of slowing down, at least not anytime soon. So, why did this seemingly "old school" game suddenly explode onto the scene?
If you'd like to learn more, then read on! Today, we'll look at some of the most recent stats and the reasons behind pickleball’s success and popularity.
Pickleball Growth Stats by Age and Demographics
In case you're wondering how many people are into the sport today, we have some exciting stats taken from USA Pickleball, the National Governing Body for the sport in the USA.
But before we get started with the details, let us first define the two types of players based on their participation level in the sport:
- Casual or those who play seven times a year at most;
- Core or those players who play at least eight times a year;
According to the most recent statistics shared by USA Pickleball, out of the 4.8 million players in the USA, about 1.4 million are considered Core Players. Currently, the average age of Core players is around 47.9 years, while those in the Casual category are lower by 13.6 years. In fact, over 50% of the Core Players are at least 55 years old. On the other hand, over 75% of those in the Casual category belong to the 54 or younger age group.
And while Pickleball is played by around 60% of male players, women are catching up with a faster growth rate.
As for the total number of participants per region, topping the list is the South Atlantic region, where it has been estimated that there are about 1 million players! This is followed by the East North Central Region (800,000), Pacific Region (780,000), and Mid-Atlantic Region. Combined, these regions account for a total of 69% of players in the U.S.
Now that you know all the numbers let's take a closer look at some of the reasons why Pickleball is growing so fast.
Top 3 Reasons Why Pickleball is the Fastest Growing Sport in America
There are several significant factors contributing to the phenomenal growth of pickleball, but here are the top three.
Pickleball is Fun for All Ages
One of the biggest reasons why Pickleball has become such a popular sport is because it can be enjoyed by everyone regardless of age, gender, or fitness level. In fact, statistics state that kids aged 6 to 17 account for 21% of the total number of pickleball players. On the other hand, players who fall under the 65+ category make up 17%.
The reason behind this is simple: pickleball is easy and does not require special equipment. Above all, it can be enjoyed by anyone. It doesn't matter if you've never picked up a paddle before or if you're already an avid racket player. You don't need any special skills to enjoy playing pickleball. Simply put, it could be a fun activity for everyone!
Pickleball is a Family-Friendly Sport
Another major reason why Pickleball is becoming increasingly popular is that it is family-friendly. Unlike tennis, badminton, or table tennis, pickleball doesn't require expensive equipment. So even if your budget is tight, you can still pick up an inexpensive set of paddles, balls, or all kinds of pickleball supplies without sacrificing your game. And since it is a noncontact game, it is safe for children and adults.
In addition, Pickleball is not physically demanding compared to other racket sports. It is a low-impact sport that players can enjoy at any pace without feeling tired or sore after each session. It is perfect for families who want to enjoy a healthy lifestyle together.
Pickleball is Easy to Learn, and Play
Lastly, one of the main reasons why Pickleball continues to grow is due to its simplicity. Compared to other racket sports, Pickleball requires less skill and coordination.
As long as the players can move and hit a ball with a paddle, they can play pickleball and learn the game as they go along.
With pickleball, there are no complicated rules or techniques involved. This makes it easier for beginners to learn how to play pickleball. Once you master those basics, you'll be ready to start challenging yourself and see what else you can achieve on the court.
If you're looking for a quick guide on how to get started with pickleball, you might want to check this out.
Getting Started with Pickleball: How to Find the Place to Play
If you're new to pickleball, one of the first things you should do is find a place to play. But don’t worry. Pickleball courts are all over the country. And if you’re looking for a court near you, we suggest you start here.
All you need to do is to input your location, and the database will return results based on your criteria. Currently, the database has about 8,000 recorded pickleball court locations, and more are added monthly. Once you find a suitable spot, you can decide whether you'd like to join a community for further information on pickleball.
Lastly, if you need supplies to help get you started with pickleball, we recommend checking out our store. We offer everything from beginner's sets to advanced ones, so you can always find something that suits your needs.
As you can see, there are plenty of reasons why Pickleball is growing in popularity. If you haven't tried it yet, don’t miss out on this great opportunity. With pickleball, you don't need to worry about spending lots of money on expensive equipment or joining a club. Instead, you can buy a pair of paddles (and maybe a pickleball ball) and get started!
And the best part? It's great for you, your family and your friends!
So what are you waiting for? Get going now and discover all the fun that Pickleball has to offer!