Universal Tennis Enters Pickleball World

Universal Tennis Enters Pickleball World

The pickleball surge is here to stay, and UTR Sports (formerly Universal Tennis) is taking notice as UTR enters pickleball. The demand for better-organized play is so high that starting in early 2023, UTR Sports will add pickleball to its existing event management software and introduce a new pickleball rating.

Pickleball Takes World by Storm

A week barely goes by without a new announcement from the pickleball world about celebrity athletes buying professional teams or investors looking to impact the game. The recreational player is benefiting the most thanks to the growth in players, events, and courts.

Along with tennis, pickleball has been one of the fastest-growing sports in the U.S. (according to USA Pickleball). Pickleball participation grew to 4.8 million players in 2021, a 14.8% increase from 2020 (tennis saw a growth of 4.5% from 2020 to 2021, reaching 22.6 million players). Pickleball is played on a 20’ x 44’ court and is easy to learn (though difficult to master). Players of all ages are embracing the social, inclusive game that is a blend of tennis, ping-pong, and badminton.

UTR Sports Provides Solutions

Soon, UTR Sports is going to elevate the user experience for everyone and every pickleball player (read the press release here). The goal is what every racquet sports player wants to hear: to offer league, tournament play and event solutions for players in all stages of life to access higher quality, level based play and unlock a more fun, accessible, and flexible experience on the court. As the creator of the gold-standard UTR Rating, UTR Sports is uniquely equipped to offer player rating solutions for pickleball and will launch the UTR Pickleball Rating (UTR-P).

Players and providers are eager for a new pickleball rating system. The UTR-P rating system will evaluate singles, doubles, verified, and unverified match results. Just like tennis players have the UTR Rating (the most accurate rating in the world), pickleball players will have the UTR-P Rating to serve as a tool for level based play.

Universal Tennis users will have the ability to choose tennis only, pickleball only, or both sports.
UTR Sports users will have the ability to choose tennis only, pickleball only, or both sports.
Starting in 2023, players and providers will have one home for all their pickleball and tennis needs, including tournaments, matchplay, draws, results, schedules, statistics, player profiles, ratings, and more.

UTR Sports users will have the ability to choose tennis only, pickleball only, or both sports. User profiles can either display a player's tennis rating, pickleball rating, or both. Players will be able to scout an opponent and register for a pickleball event just like they have been doing for tennis.

On any court, players want to enjoy level based play, understand their skill level, access pickleball tournament registration, track their progress, and connect with players in their communities. UTR Sports has already proven those outcomes in tennis and will now offer innovative events and league pickleball play just like it does with tennis.

Over the past few years, UTR Sport has launched a fully featured app and initiatives to engage every level of player in all corners of the globe. Some offerings include the Junior National Pathway, Junior Circuits, College Camps, College Circuits, Flex Leagues, and the UTR Pro Tennis Tour. The extension of UTR Sports tools and technology to a second racquet sport will further maximize the potential of the UTR Sports application and ratings expertise while satisfying the strong demand from providers and players.

Providers Eager to Organize Pickleball

Pickleball, a social, inclusive racquet sport, is being played all over the U.S.
The social, inclusive racquet sport is being played all over the U.S.
Case in point, The Tennis and Pickleball Club at Newport Beach has hosted countless UTR Sport events, from junior matchplay to the UTR Pro Tennis Tour. Newport Beach club owner Sean Bollettieri Abdali first put down permanent pickleball courts in 2018.

The club now has 28 pickleball courts. Bollettieri Abdali will soon host pickleball events, manage membership, and make more players happier on the same platform hes already using for tennis but as a pickleball club.
Like many providers, Bollettieri has already expanded his club to include pickleball.
Like many providers, Bollettieri has already expanded his club to include both types of courts.
Like many providers, Bollettieri has already expanded his club to include both types of courts.

The technology, rating, and tools UTR Sport offers are unparalleled and have changed the game of tennis for both players and providers, Bollettieri said. Expanding to pickleball maximizes the innovative solutions UTR Sports offers by reaching more players, enabling more play, and equipping providers with the ability to use the proven software for another racquet sport. "

Event providers like Bollettieri are looking to host singles and doubles pickleball events on the same platform they already know to be the best in the world, and players are eager to get on the pickleball court. This new chapter will allow UTR Sports providers (10,000+ communities) to access the new pickleball rating and event management software at no additional cost.

To get started with the UTR Pickleball rating, click here. Check out the official press release here, and learn more here.

Join the Universal Tennis mailing list

Back to blog