As an investor since 1995 and an avid pickleball player since the pandemic, let me share how you can make money, invest, and profit from pickleball. If you want to make money, there is a fortune to be made from pickleball.
Pickleball is the fastest growing sport in America. If you haven't learned how to play yet, I highly recommend that you do. It's much easier to pick up than tennis, where I was a USTA 5.0 rated player for five years. More clubs and public parks around the country are creating pickleball courts to make playing more accessible.
A good paddle only costs about $60. And you can get a can of three balls for $8. Once you've got some stable sports shoes, all you need to do is find a place to play.
Not only is pickleball fun, it is also great exercise and a way to meet other people. In just one year of playing, I've gotten to know well over sixty new people.
Everybody should play pickleball!
How To Invest And Make Money In Pickleball
Pickleball is a great money-making opportunity. Already, luminaries such as Kevin Durant, Lebron James, Eva Longoria, Michael Phelps, Heidi Klum, Tom Ricketts, and Mark Cuban have invested in pickleball teams. I'm sure there will be more big investors to come.
To make money, it's important to invest in long-term trends. And pickleball is one of the most promising long-term growth trends today.
Here are eight ways to make money from pickleball.
1) Coaching and instruction
If you have expertise and skill in pickleball, you can offer coaching services to individuals or groups. Many people are interested in learning the sport or improving their skills, and they may be willing to pay for professional guidance.
Coaches can easily make $50 an hour or more. Here in San Francisco, a friend of mine who is at a similar level to me makes $140 an hour teaching a group of up to four.
Teaching is the easiest way to make money from pickleball. You just need to be able to reserve courts, know the rules, be at least a 4.0 player (intermediate), and have a reasonable amount of emotional intelligence.
2) Organizing tournaments and events
You can organize and host pickleball tournaments or events in your area. These events can attract participants and spectators, and you can generate revenue through entry fees, sponsorships, concessions, or merchandise sales.
3) Selling equipment and gear
Another option is to start a business selling pickleball equipment and gear. This can include paddles, balls, apparel, court accessories, and more. You can establish an online store, participate in trade shows, or partner with local sports retailers.
Pickleball paddle technology is still new. At this moment, you will have an easier time inventing a new technology than ever before. You can also introduce new designs and shapes.
4) Own a pickleball facility or club
If you have the resources and market demand in your area, you could consider opening a pickleball facility or club. This could include indoor or outdoor courts, amenities, memberships, lessons, and leagues. Revenue can come from membership fees, court rentals, events, and concessions.
Given the cost of opening up a new facility, it may be best to become a limited partner. You can also invest in publicly-traded companies that are creating pickleball facilities, such as Lifetime Fitness (LTH).
5) Online content and courses
You can create a blog, YouTube channel, or podcast to create content about pickleball. From there, you can sell ads, become an affiliate, sponsorships, paid subscriptions, or sell your own instructional videos or online courses.
I've run this site since 2009 and it makes a healthy amount of income through advertisements, sponsorships, and my own books. Here's how to start your own profitable blog.
Creating online content about pickleball is my favorite way to monetize the trend. Unlike coaching, making money online is highly scalable.
6) Pickleball apparel and merchandise
Design and sell pickleball-themed apparel, accessories, or merchandise. This could include branded clothing, accessories like hats or bags, or novelty items that pickleball enthusiasts might enjoy.
It's easy to design t-shirts on Etsy or a whole host of other stores today.
7) Sponsorships and partnerships
As you establish a presence and reputation in the pickleball community, you may have opportunities for sponsorships or partnerships with pickleball brands, equipment manufacturers, or related businesses. This can provide financial support or free products in exchange for promoting their brand.
One guy I know is sponsored by Picklefuel, a sports drink. Another guy I know is sponsored by Selkirk, a pickleball paddle. As the sport grows, so will the profits and the sponsorships from pickleball product manufacturers.
8) Become a professional pickleball player
Finally, if you become so good at pickleball, you should consider becoming a professional pickleball player. The minimum rating you should have is a 5.0 or higher.
There are players like Ben Johns, the #1 male pickleball player, who is sponsored by Joola paddles, who easily makes multiple-six figures a year. The same goes for Anna Leigh Waters, the women's current #1 player in the Professional Pickleball Association (PPA).
You just have to play in a lot of tournaments to get your ranking up and win. For most people, making enough as a professional player is unlikely. However, you can make side hustle income on top of your day job with pickleball.
Become A Pickleball Authority To Make Big Bucks
The key to making money in pickleball is becoming an authority. You can be an authority by your level of high play and/or your knowledge. The sooner you build your brand, the better as gaining authority takes time. As your authority grows, so will your earnings power.
Success in making money in pickleball will depend on factors such as your skills, market demand, competition, marketing strategies, and the effort you put into building your business or brand. Conduct thorough research, develop a solid business plan, and adapt to the needs and preferences of your target audience.
Start investing in pickleball today. In ten years, you'll be glad you did!
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