Tennis Ball Machines can be a great tool to help you improve your game as you practice drills and routines without the need for a partner.
However, many are put off by the cost of purchasing one as even the most basic ball machine can cost you hundreds of dollars to buy.
This article will look at some of the reasons why machines are so expensive and at whether they are worth buying at all.
Why are Ball Machines so Pricey?
The main reasons machines are so pricey are because of economies of scale, the technology involved, and the limited number of suppliers.
1. Economies of Scale
One of the main reasons machines are dear to buy is that they aren’t sold in bulk and they are a pretty niche product to buy.
Because of this, they don’t really benefit from economies of scale in the way that rackets and balls do.
2. Technology involved
A surprising amount of technology is required in even the most basic machines.
Some more advanced machines can oscillate, hit balls at different heights, and spins.
All of this requires technology to work and adds to the cost of the machine.
3. Limited Number of Suppliers
Another reason why machines are so pricey is that there are a relatively low number of producers.
For example, if you searched Amazon for tennis ball machines then there is a limited number of products to choose from.
When there are a limited number of suppliers for any product, this usually causes the cost of the product to increase.
Practice without a Hitting Partner
Sometimes, it can be quite difficult to find a hitting partner who wants to practice as much as you do.
Even when you have found a hitting partner, they might not be keen on doing the drills you want to practice or they may want to just play points rather than improving one specific shot using drills.
By having your own ball machine, you avoid all these issues as you can program the machine to hit balls for whatever drill you want.
Helps with your Shot Consistency
Unlike a hitting partner, the ball machine is always going to send a ball right back to you, so it is a great way to work on your shot consistency so that you can stay in rallies for longer.
Helps you focus on improving rather than winning points
When playing with a hitting partner, it can be hard to focus purely on technique as it is only natural that you want to do your best to win every point.
However, the problem with this is that you aren’t focusing on improving your technique and it is quite easy to revert to hitting the ball using your old technique.
By using a ball machine, you completely remove the competitive aspect from your hitting and you can focus purely on improving your technique.
It can be super expensive
As mentioned previously one of the biggest problems with buying a ball machine is that it can be very expensive.
Although you can buy a cheap machine for maybe a few hundred dollars, it is not likely to be good enough if you take your tennis seriously.
A good ball machine will probably set you back around $1,000+ and you will also have the cost of buying enough balls for the machine.
You need somewhere to store it
Most machines aren’t that lightweight and you will need somewhere to store them securely.
You will waste time picking up balls
If you have an hour booked at your local club, a good portion of this time is going to involve you picking up your tennis balls after each round of using the machine.
You can’t replicate a real point
In my opinion, it is always better to find a hitting partner that is willing to do drills with you as you can never replicate what happens when hitting with someone else when using a ball machine.
Although ball machines can be a good way to practice, my own personal opinion is that you are far better off finding a hitting partner instead of spending money on buying a machine.