Tennis ‘Economy,’ Sees Improvement in Latest Industry Report | Sports Destination Management

Tennis ‘Economy,’ Sees Improvement in Latest Industry Report

Jul 14, 2013

Tennis in the U.S. is a $5.57 billion business, according to figures released recently by the Tennis Industry Association (TIA). That represents a 3% increase in the total tennis economy.

As professional tennis takes center stage this summer—culminating in the US Open Aug. 26-Sept. 9—the TIA has released its 2013 edition of the “State of the Industry” report on tennis, which covers all segments of the sport, from instruction and court usage to equipment sales and the professional game.

Important for the sport is the 10 percent growth in the number of "frequent" tennis players, those who play at least 21 times a year, to 5.31 million. Frequent players account for more than 70 percent of all expenditures in tennis, including buying equipment, paying for lessons and court time, playing league tennis and more.

The third edition of the State of the Industry report compiles data from 2012 that the TIA collects and analyzes through its more than 70 annual surveys and research studies to tell a comprehensive "story of the tennis industry," says TIA Executive Director Jolyn de Boer.

Other tennis industry research highlights from this year’s State of the Industry report include:

  • A 4 percent increase in overall tennis participation, to 28 million players, and the highest participation level since 2009. “This increased interest in the sport may be a reflection of the awareness that tennis has many great health and fitness benefits,” de Boer says.
  • Positive growth in youth tennis equipment wholesale in 2012, with 38 percent growth in lower compression balls that are used for beginning and youth tennis players, and 5 percent growth in shipments of youth racquets, which are shorter, lighter and easier for young players to maneuver.
  • An increase in the TIA's "Tennis Equipment Index," which was up 3 points over the 2011 valuation. The index is derived from taking the wholesale dollar value of racquets, balls, and strings shipped into the U.S. tennis market.
  • 2 percent growth in racquet unit sales for pro/specialty tennis retailers.
  • Increased business for both teaching pros and court contractors in 2012.
  • 13 percent growth in total hours of tennis TV coverage and 14 percent growth in unique TV viewers of tennis in 2012, driven by viewership of the 2012 London Olympics.

"The tennis industry moved in a positive direction in 2012," says TIA President Greg Mason. "Like many other industries, we still have challenges, but the TIA, together with our industry partners and the U.S. Tennis Association, is focused on strengthening this industry and tennis overall.”

The 16-page State of the Industry report also details the growth in youth tennis participation; tells the reasons why people played more or less tennis in 2012; presents dealer, teaching pro, and court builder expectations; and more. Contact the TIA at or 866-686-3036.

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