Life Time Doubles Down on Pickleball as NYC Complex Opens

As its 7-court complex opens in the Big Apple, Life Time has partnered with pickleball pros to release training videos for its members

Life Time, already deeply invested in the pickleball craze to satisfy rising demand, has partnered with Ben and Collin Johns, two pickleball pros, to produce a series of 70 instructional videos centering on the popular court-based sport.

The partnership comes as Life Time officially opened its massive indoor pickleball space at New York City’s PENN 1 earlier this week, which features seven street-level courts and a group training area.

The luxury athletic club operator began its pickleball push in 2021, establishing over 635 permanent pickleball courts nationwide, which has come in handy, considering Life Time reported a 51% growth of pickleball players on its courts in 2023.

The videos are now available on the Life Time app and include demonstrations led by the Johns that introduce pickleball and its rules, warm-ups and practice drills, singles and doubles dynamics, key play movements and advanced Pickleball techniques.

“We’re thrilled to team up with Ben and Collin as we serve our growing membership engaging in this incredible sport,” said RJ Singh, Life Time’s chief digital officer and leader of Life Time Racquet Sports. “In keeping with our member point of view commitment, these videos will help everyone, including those who’ve never picked up a paddle, to advanced players looking to improve their tournament play and grow to the elite level.”

Betting Big on Pickleball

The video content series comes at a perfect time, with the opening of Penn 1, a development that has earned Life Time the title of having the most pickleball courts in NYC. The new courts and training area join Life Time’s class collection at PENN 1 and its functional training floor, recovery, relaxation and stretching areas.


Life Time PENN 1 (credit: Life Time)

Bahram Akradi, Life Time’s founder and CEO, is a devoted pickleball player and has expressed his excitement for the net sport in recent years, commenting that it’s the most unifying sport he’s seen in over forty years.

“It is the sport that we have to provide for our members,” Akradi has said.

By all accounts, pickleball is anything but a passing trend. Last year, roughly 13.58 million people played pickball in the U.S., an increase of over 51%. 

Members Love Life Time

Life Time’s focus on the member experience has paid off for the luxury athletic club operator. Over 20 clubs have membership waitlists and the brand reported impressive revenue and member engagement numbers in February.

“We expect to realize the highest retention rates in the history of Life Time in 2024,” Akradi told investors on February’s earnings call. 

Life Time is expected to release its next earnings report on May 7.

The post Life Time Doubles Down on Pickleball as NYC Complex Opens appeared first on Athletech News.


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