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The Cost of Playing Pickleball: A Comprehensive Guide


Like any other hobby, pickleball can be an investment. Whether you’re a casual player or a serious competitor, understanding the costs involved can help you budget effectively and make informed decisions. While it’s possible to get started with minimal expense, advancing to tournament play or acquiring high-end gear can add up. Here’s a detailed breakdown of what you can expect when it comes to the cost of playing pickleball.

Paddles: The Essential Gear

Entry-Level Paddles

For beginners, wooden paddles are a cost-effective option. These paddles can be found for as low as $15, making them an excellent choice for those just starting out or playing casually.

Mid-Range Paddles

As you become more serious about the game, you might consider upgrading to composite paddles. These typically range from $50 to $100 and offer better performance and durability compared to wooden paddles.

High-End Paddles

For the dedicated player, high-end graphite or carbon fiber paddles can cost upwards of $150. These paddles provide superior control, power, and lightweight design, making them ideal for competitive play.

Shoes: Comfort and Performance

Tennis or Racquetball Shoes

Pickleball-specific shoes are rare, so most players opt for tennis or racquetball shoes. If you already own a pair, you’re in luck. However, if you need to purchase new ones, expect to spend between $50 and $150, depending on the brand, style, and quality.

Features to Consider

When selecting shoes, look for features such as non-marking soles, good lateral support, and cushioning to ensure comfort and prevent injuries during play.

Clothing: Look the Part

Basic Gym Clothes

Any comfortable gym clothes will suffice for pickleball. However, if you want to look the part and feel more professional, consider updating your wardrobe.

Specialized Pickleball Apparel

Each item of specialized pickleball clothing, such as shirts, shorts, and hats, can range from $20 to $60. A complete outfit could cost between $60 and $180, depending on your preferences.

Balls: Essential for Play

Shared Balls

If you play at a club or with a group, you might not need to purchase your own balls, as they are often shared among players.

Buying Your Own

If you prefer to have your own set, pickleballs are generally inexpensive. A 12-pack typically costs around $12, or $1 per ball. Buying in larger quantities can reduce the cost per ball to about $0.50.

Court Rental: Finding the Right Space

Public Courts

Many public courts are free to use, but they can be busy or not meet your standards for play.

Private Court Rental

Renting a private court can cost between $10 and $15 per hour. Depending on how long you play, this could amount to $10 to $45 for 1-3 hours of game time.

Tournament Fees: Competing at Different Levels

Small Community Tournaments

Entry fees for small, local tournaments are typically around $15, making them accessible for most players.

Larger, Established Tournaments

More prestigious tournaments may have entry fees of $50 or more, reflecting their higher level of organization and competition.


The cost of playing pickleball varies widely depending on your level of commitment and the quality of gear you choose. Casual play with friends can be inexpensive, while serious competition and high-end equipment can add up. There’s no “right” way to play pickleball; set your intentions, know your budget, and enjoy the game!


1. What is the cost range for pickleball paddles?

Pickleball paddles range from $15 for basic wooden paddles to over $150 for high-end graphite or carbon fiber paddles.

2. Are there specific shoes for pickleball?

While there are no specific pickleball shoes, tennis or racquetball shoes are commonly used. These can cost between $50 and $150.

3. How much does pickleball clothing cost?

Specialized pickleball clothing items range from $20 to $60 each, with a complete outfit costing between $60 and $180.

4. Do I need to buy my own pickleballs?

If you play at a club or with a group, you might not need to buy your own balls. However, a 12-pack of pickleballs typically costs around $12.

5. What are the costs associated with renting a pickleball court?

Private court rentals usually cost between $10 and $15 per hour, depending on the location and quality of the court.

What do you think?

Written by Billy Pickles

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