Life Time Is Biggest Operator of Pickleball Courts in the Country

Life Time, Chanhassen, Minnesota, now has more than 350 permanent pickleball courts in the United States with plans to have 600 open by the end of 2023, the company said on Oct. 25.

“Life Time operates more dedicated pickleball courts than any other brand in the United States. We don't see anyone who comes close," said Max Ade, founder of Pickleheads, a directory of pickleball courts that lists more than 10,000 courts in 4,392 cities.

Since August 2021, Life Time has built indoor and outdoor pickleball courts at a rate of five new permanent courts each week from coast to coast, many with viewing areas, stadium seating, social lounges and more, the company shared.

"If you had told me a year ago that I would be spending so much time playing, thinking about, and talking about this sport, I would have cheerfully challenged you. But now I'm obsessed," Life Time Founder, Chairman and CEO Bahram Akradi said. "With the existing footprint of our athletic country clubs and incredible coaches and pros, we saw the opportunity to lead this sport and we took it. We will be not just the biggest provider of pickleball but also the best." 

Nearly 5 million Americans now call themselves pickleball players, according to the Sports & Fitness Industry Association. That's almost double the number compared to just five years ago.

To meet the growing demand for court space, Life Time offers pickleball classes, instruction, open court time, leagues, mixers and tournaments for every age and every level.

"Within our healthy way of life ecosystem, we consider pickleball another amazing growth opportunity," Akradi said. "We've seen total monthly participation at our clubs grow from approximately 16,000 to more than 70,000 in just the past nine months. Someday soon I believe that pickleball will be the sport that gets the largest number of people moving for fun, connection, competition, and the simple love of the game."

In addition to pickleball, Life Time is also the largest operator of indoor tennis courts with nearly 300 indoor and outdoor tennis courts, and dozens of squash courts.