How To Go Pro In Pickleball? A Guide For Professional Player

Every young pickleball enthusiast dreams of becoming a professional player and pursuing a career in the sport. Pickleball players are analyzed by their rating level. To achieve pro status, you must get your rating to at least 5.0 or higher. Once you get to that, you will be in the top 5% of the game. 

How To Go Pro In Pickleball A Guide For Professional Player

How to go pro in pickleball? To become a professional player, you must engage in public events and tournaments. Once you start participating in these, your rating will automatically improve, and your reputation will rise. Then, you can make a career out of your professional pickleball skills.

In addition, you should know what you are getting yourself into, and once you start, you have to make sure you don’t turn back. In this guide, I will walk you through everything there is to know about going pro in pickleball and how you should move forward with your dream. Let’s get started.

What Does It Take to Become a Pickleball Pro?

Before you set out on your adventure to earn pro status in pickleball, you should know the hardships that come with it. You should know that playing pickleball professionally is a huge task. But don’t worry; it’s not impossible, especially if you’re ready to put in the effort.

First, you must understand that pickleball is not a casual game. It’s outstandingly competitive, with seriously skilled players. You need to get to their level if you ever want to be able to compete with them. The only way to do that is by practicing.

Becoming a pickleball pro isn’t just about hitting the ball hard or fast. It’s about your approach and strategy, too. That means knowing when to go for a powerful shot and when to play it safe. It’s like a mental chess game on a court with a paddle and a ball.

Every little detail matters in pickleball. So, in case you’re critical about going pro, you’ve got to be ready to work hard and study every game you play and each opponent you play against.

Sure, it won’t be easy. If it were easy, every player would’ve gone pro by now. With the right amount of willpower and perseverance, you can chase your dream of becoming a professional pickleball player and make it a reality.

What Does It Take to Become a Pickleball Pro

How To Become A Professional Pickleball Player

Once you are ready to take on whatever this journey puts you on, you may begin with the first big step: plan it out. Follow a roadmap, and don’t deviate from it. Here is a guide for you to follow that many pros have followed on their road to professionalism:

1. Set Clear Goals

If you’re serious about becoming a pro pickleball player, the journey begins with setting proper targets. These must be specific and doable. They should help you stay focused and motivated. 

Figure out what type of competitions you want to take part in. Start from the very first stage. You will not be placed in the PPA directly for participating in challenges. You must start playing in medium-level matches and reach the top to get recognition. 

Time control is prime. Identify and cast off any activities that waste your time. By prioritizing pickleball pursuits, you can maximize your practice sessions and training.

2. Building Skills and Experience

You’ll have to achieve player rankings to compete at a professional level. These scores display your skill level and are vital for entering professional tournaments. Keep striving to improve your rating by participating in events.

Joining pickleball clubs offers a remarkable opportunity to showcase your talents. You’ll play with skilled players, learn new tricks and strategies, and receive valuable advice to improve your game.

Another excellent way to develop your skills is through coaching clinics. Learning from skilled coaches will help you enhance your approach and expand your game knowledge. Plus, attending tournaments presents valuable insights and opens your eyes to different playing styles.

3. Learn from Professionals

Study professional matches to learn from the best. Pay attention to their tactical methods and shot selections. By adopting their techniques, you can improve your game and overall court performance.

Professional gamers demonstrate mental toughness and adaptability, especially in high-pressure situations. See how they deal with the pressure and stay focused under challenging circumstances. Learning from their mindset lets you expand your mental game and perform better in competitive settings.

4. Leveraging Competitive Opportunities

A key way to measure your skill development is to play in local tournaments and pickleball ladder leagues. These opportunities allow you to test your abilities against others and identify areas for improvement.

Seek coaching to address your weaknesses and refine your skills. Dedicated exercise periods that focus on specific elements of your game assist you in coming out on top of demanding situations and becoming a more well-rounded player.

This is a rough outline of how to make your way up to the top of pickleball. The roadmap is subjective, and everyone must do things their way. 

Whatever you do, remember one thing: the moment you start getting lazy about your plans and don’t stay on track, your dream will start fading away, and you won’t be able to get to the top. Consistency and motivation will get you where you want to go.

Overcoming Hurdles in Your Pickleball Pro Journey

Becoming a pro pickleball player will come with its own set of challenges. However, with the right approach, they can be overcome.

One big challenge is money. Going pro means spending on training, gear, and tournament costs. It’s wise to plan out your spending correctly and look for sponsors to help cover expenses. Tournaments can be pricey, too, with fees, travel, and places to stay all adding up. You should budget for those costs and share travel costs with other players to save money.

But even with challenges, you can still be successful. It’s about staying strong when things get hard, putting in the work, and always looking to improve. Also, check the Clean Pickleball Paddle.

When you face setbacks, do not give up. Instead, see them as chances to learn and develop. Use them to inspire yourself to get higher. Getting better at pickleball is an ongoing journey. Keep practicing, listen to advice from coaches and friends, and don’t be afraid to try new things.

What are Professional Pickleball Associations?

When working on professional pickleball, you must know about particular associations, such as the APP and PPA. Each has its very own function and significance in the world of pickleball tournaments.

The APP, which stands for the Association of Pickleball Professionals, and the PPA, or Professional Pickleball Association, are two major sports organizations. They arrange tournaments where expert players compete against each other.

These associations play a significant part in the pickleball world because they offer opportunities for players to exhibit their skills professionally. Tournaments prepared by these associations attract top players worldwide, making them important events in the pickleball calendar. Also, check the Pickleball Singles Rules.

Membership in these associations can have a significant impact on aspiring professionals. For example, some tournaments will require players to be members of a specific association to take part. Players should know the prerequisites and advantages of joining each affiliation to increase their chances of competing in tournaments.

Moreover, the prizes of tournaments prepared by those associations are of enormous value. Prize money, prestige, and exposure vary among tournaments, so players know that all the effort they put in for professional status will get them both the money and the respect that comes with it.

Inspiration from Professional Pickleball Players

Let’s hear it from the pros themselves! Here are some inspiring words from top pickleball players to keep you going on your journey:

  • Catherine Parenteau: “Play as many tournaments as possible. Gain experience and get better quicker.”
  • Irina Tereschenko: “Be a student of the game, define your style, and select a tournament schedule that fits your goals and budget.”
  • Zane Navratil: “Drill, drill, drill. Nobody became a pro without practice.”
  • Frank Davis: “Find positivity even in tough times.”
  • Jocelyn Devilliers: “Believe in your dream and do everything to accomplish it.”

These pros know what it takes to succeed in pickleball. Their words remind us to stay dedicated, keep learning, and stay positive. So, remember their advice next time you’re on the court and give it your all!


What do I need to become a pro pickleball player?

To become a professional in pickleball, you need excellent skills, strategic understanding, and tournament experience. Obtaining a high player rating through official tournaments is important to get a good enough reputation to play professionally.

How long does it take to go pro in pickleball?

It varies, but it takes 5 to 10 years of committed practice, coaching, and aggressive play for players in their early stages. You may require less time if you have experience in similar sports like tennis.

Can you make a living playing pickleball professionally?

Some top players earn $50,000 to $200,000 yearly from sponsorships, tournament winnings, coaching, and endorsements. However, many pros balance full-time jobs with weekend competitions once they have attained a good reputation in the game.

What is the difference between APP and PPA in pickleball?

The APP and PPA are pro pickleball associations with different membership requirements, tournament systems, and prize distributions. This is where you will meet the most professional pickleball players from all around the world.


Pursuing a career in professional pickleball comes with its own hardships, but it is viable with the right amount of effort and determination. Young players can successfully navigate the journey by setting clear goals, honing their skills through training and tournaments, and seeking inspiration from top gamers. 

Despite demanding situations like monetary issues and tournament costs, resilience and non-stop improvement are key. 

By making your way to professional organizations like the APP and PPA and actively participating in competitive possibilities, you can further enhance your route to professionalism. So, lace up your shoes, grab your paddle, and embark on the exciting journey of becoming a pro-pickleball player!

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