For the second straight year, the sport of tennis saw significant growth in participation and equipment sales in the U.S. in 2021.
After recreational players took to the sport in record numbers at the start of the pandemic, the groundswell continued last year as more players hit the courts throught the country.
According to the Physical Activity Council’s (PAC) participation report produced by Sports Marketing Surveys, which monitors more than 120 different sports and activities, more than 22.6 million people took to the courts in 2021, up approximately 1 million players and 4.5% from 2020.
In addition, data from the Tennis Industry Association shows that racquet sales have increased in numerous areas, with an uptick of 22.7% in total units (3.4 million units) and 46.2% in total dollars ($122.9 million) last year.
On the results, Craig Morris, Chief Executive, Community Tennis, USTA, said: "Many individuals turned to tennis during the pandemic and it is incredibly encouraging to see that the sport was able to capitalize on this momentum and continued to see growth in 2021."
He continued: "The entire tennis industry worked together to make this a possibility, and the continued efforts of all those involved, including the manufacturers, USTA national and section staff and volunteers, and the providers at the local level, have put us in a position to continue to move the sport forward in 2022 and beyond."
Other key metrics in tennis growth include:
- The 3.4 million wholesale racquet units in 2021 represents the largest year-end racquet unit total since 2010.
- The $122.9 million in racquet dollar shipments in 2021 is the largest year-end total on record.
- In 2020, racquets priced below $50 and increased by 51.7% from 2019; while in 2021, racquets priced $50 and above increased by 49.2% from 2020.