With both the 2018 PGA Championship and US Open Tennis Championship coming up, the golf and tennis equipment markets have something to celebrate. U.S. retail sales for both categories have made a comeback in the 12 months ending June 2018, with golf and tennis/racquet sports experiencing respective dollar sales increases of 8% and 7% across the combined athletic specialty/sporting goods, national chain, mass, and e-commerce channels, according to global information company The NPD Group.
For golf and tennis equipment sales to grow further down the road, the sports inevitably must attract Millennials and Gen Z.
Golf sales reached $2.5 billion in the 12 months ending June 2018, after a 6% sales decline experienced the prior year. It was also the category to contribute the most dollars gained to the overall team sports equipment industry. Golf products for all users grew, including women’s sales increasing by 7% and juniors being the smallest yet growing the fastest, +31%.
With tennis products making up the bulk of the category, racquet sports equipment sales grew to $294.8 million, bouncing back after a 3% decline in sales the previous year. Tennis racquets and balls generated a combined $211.2 million, a 4% increase over the same time period a year ago.
“About 10,000 Baby Boomers reach retirement age every day, and as more retire, both the golf and tennis businesses are benefiting primarily from the many individuals who now have more recreational time on their hands. The quickly growing retiree community is seeking ways to stay busy and fit,” says Matt Powell, VP and senior industry advisor, Sports, The NPD Group.
For golf and tennis equipment sales to grow further down the road, the sports inevitably must attract Millennials and Gen Z, and to do so they will have to better align with the values of these generations, he adds.