The main reason why most people buy a tennis ball machine is to get consistent practice and to improve their game. They think of a tennis ball machine as a silent partner who is always ready to play, and who can throw out consistent balls that are perfect for drilling practice. Some of the more advanced machines can easily match advanced and professional players in terms of both variation spin and stroke type.
In order to help you purchase the right tennis ball machine for your needs and tennis standard we set out a series of tips below:
1. Weight and maneuverability
Some of the top range tennis ball machines while providing tremendous stroke variation can be quite cumbersome to maneuver. If you need to it carry your tennis ball machine to the tennis court, rather than using it on your home court make sure it can fit in the trunk of your car and that you’re able to lift it and carry it from the car to the court.
2. Shot variation
Decide what you want to get out of your tennis ball machine. If you just want to have a drilling practice that focuses on your weak spots then you may not need a machine with a great deal of random shot variation. Even entry-level machines with an affordable price tag are able to send drill shots over and over again to the same part of the court. On the other hand if you want a full tennis workout and the opportunity to play against a challenging partner then a tennis ball machine that can alternate between ground-strokes and lobs, that can send balls to different parts of the court on a random basis, and which can spin and slice the ball may be what you’re after.
3. Ball capacity and battery charge
some tennis ball machines can hold over 200 balls in the hopper and can run for up to six hours on a single battery charge. On the other hand the more affordable tennis ball machines have a smaller capacity in charge. Which model is right for you will depend very much on how often you plan to use the tennis ball machine and the way you intend to use it?
How to Pick the Best Tennis Ball Machine for You
You must ask the following questions of yourself and of the salesman to get to the bottom of the best tennis ball machine:
1. How are the balls shot?
You want to be able to choose and control the speed, spin and feed rate of the ball machine so that the desired shots can be perfected. For speed control, the range is from 15 to 100 miles per hour while the spin control can be made to deliver either a top or backspin to the tennis ball. The feed rate determines how often the balls are shot.
2. Where are the balls shot?
You have to look at the elevation, lob height and oscillator features of the tennis ball machine for sale. You may opt for the program oscillator that can be pre-programmed to control the direction of the shots – left, right, forecourt and backcourt.
3. What are the features that contribute to convenience?
Keep in mind that more features do not necessarily make for the best tennis ball machine. You want to look at features like a remote control to change settings even from the other side of the court as well as portability features, when possible.
4. How long do you intend to practice with the machine?
Take note that most tennis ball machines are battery-powered and, thus, have limited operating times. Most models only have a 2-hour limit while more expensive ones can last for 5 hours. Others can be plugged into the main grid.
5. How much are you willing to pay?
As can be expected, the best tennis ball machine is often on the expensive side because of the additional features. Be prepared to pay from $500 to upwards of $2000 for the machine.
Depending on the machine, you can set it to slow, consistent and fixed speed, spin and feed if you are a beginner. As your skills become better, you can then increase these factors while also varying their intensity. In this way, your mind and body will be challenged every step of the way.
Indeed, the best tennis ball machine is always the one that provides the best practice for your level and yet still be relevant once you grow out of it and move on to the advanced levels.
Check out the 6 Best Tennis Ball Machines on the market right now:
1. Spinshot-Player Tennis Ball Machine with Phone Remote Supported
Spinshot-Player is the most advanced battery operated portable tennis ball machine in the world. Revolutionary design can customize your drills and program height, direction, spin, speed for each of 6 sequential shot and then save that into your personalized drill. Easy programming, you can make 2-line drill at any width and any height. You can make vertical oscillation with combined horizontal oscillation, or whatever oscillation mode you want to play with. All these can be made on your phone and saved into the machine. Next time when using the machine, just press the drill-x button, you can start your game.The Player Model was developed to be incredibly user-friendly and can be operated by even the youngest of players. Size of machine is 50CM(H), 45CM(L), 30CM(W) and weighs 19kg. It is lighter and more compact than any other ball machine with similar features. Towing wheels inc. SPINSHOT PLAYER machine is now supporting the iPhone Remote Control for free. The user can even download free iPhone app from the apple store and try the app before order the machine.
2. Lobster Sports Elite Grand Iv Portable Tennis Ball Machine
The Elite Grand IV is the most advanced battery operated portable tennis ball machine in the world. The Grand IV offers unrivaled full random oscillation. This revolutionary design allows the machine to throw balls throughout the entire spectrum of the court mixing up speed, spin, trajectory and oscillation. Furthermore, the Grand IV is governed by the machine’s sophisticated computerized software which has been programmed to determine all possible combinations of speed, trajectory, and spin. This fully random technological advancement allows for the Grand IV to realistically simulate true match play, a feature that is unsurpassed by any portable tennis ball machine on the market. The Grand IV is also equipped with three pre-programmed six shot drills that simulate the most popular styles of play: grinder, all courter, and power baseliner. These incredible drills mix up speed, trajectory, and spin to prepare you to play against the world’s elite! With the press of a button, you can now practice against the playing style of your choice. In addition, the Grand IV is equipped with the most extensive 3-Line function found today. With its three versatile positional settings; Narrow, Medium, and Wide, you can groove your forehand and backhand ground strokes or use it as a great way to warm up your shots. The Grand IV is also equipped with the most revolutionary control panel and optional wireless remote control found today. The “Lexan” control panel utilizes “touch-buttons” instead of dials, knobs, and switches. It also has a digital LCD screen which allows you to view all menu selections and settings. For those players who consider themselves “technologically challenged”, do not fear. The Grand IV was developed to be incredibly user friendly and can be operated by even the youngest of players.
3. Webetop Sports Elite Freedom Portable Tennis Ball Machine
Full-function remote control,remote control distance greater than 100 meters, easy to use. You can be arbitrarily set and change the different speeds, frequency, spin for training. Built-in direction control of the machine, it is difficult to judge the emission direction of the machine, humanized design. Serve machine launch placement point: placement to half or full court. Capacity:120 balls. Best for tennis learning and training.
4. SPINSHOT-PLUS TENNIS BALL MACHINE with Phone Remote Supported
The SPINSHOT-Plus is lighter and more compact than any other ball machine with similar features. Towing wheels included. Before using the Spinshot Player, all settings can be quickly setup on the control panel and shown on the LCD screen. The ball speed goes from 10km/h to 120km/h. The feed rate goes from a 2 second to the 10-second interval. Height and Spin levels are in digital numbers. OSCILLATION MODES: tennis machine has five different oscillation modes as listed below. Settings are through the control panel, and offering you full versatility for your favorite workouts or drills. The machine will allow you to program different oscillation parameters to customize your court drills. h1-h2 will be used to change the vertical oscillation, and w1-w2 will be used to change the 2-line oscillation width. The user can program the spin, speed, and shots in different oscillation modes. POWER INPUT The SPINSHOT-Plus battery can support 2-3 hours of play. PORTABILITY ball machine is 50CM(H), 45CM(L), 30CM(W) weighs 19kg for the AC model and 21kg for the battery version.
5. Lobster Sports Elite Liberty Tennis Ball Machine
The Elite Liberty will product ball speeds from 20 mph up to 80 mph challenging players of all skill levels. The Elite Liberty also offers unequalled spin control for a machine at this price point. The ball spin can be adjusted for both topspin and backspin and at different levels. The large ball capacity and battery size allow extended play on the court. The Liberty’s oversized wheels and extended handle provides unequalled portability for players who are on the move. Enjoy playing against such advanced features such as full corner-to-corner random oscillation and up to 50-degree lobs to practice your overheads. If you want additional oscillation features, find out how the Elite One and Elite Two models may better fit your playing needs.
6. Match Mate Rookie by Match Mate Tennis Ball Machine
The Rookie is a compact ball machine that is great for beginners. It is the only unique single wheel that works well for the quickstart program. The machine is for beginners and youth. Top speed is 30 and distance approx. 50 ft. Plus it is fun and can be used on the courts or at home! Ball speeds range from a soft 10-foot toss to a 28-mph. Depending on which court and ball, the Quickstart Rookie adjusts as well. On the 36′ court with the stage 3 felt ball – the Quickstart Rookie shoots it out at a top speed of 18-20 mph from baseline to baseline. If you desire to delivery the ball from baseline to serviceline, just notch the ball speed down and the little future pros will have a ball! Weighing just 22 lbs, the Rookie is the lightest ball machine available. The rechargeable battery allows for up to five hours of continuous play time. With an aluminum outer shell and urethane pitching wheel, the Rookie is ready for years of use. All internal components are made from high-grade aluminum or steel. Manufactured and Assembled in the USA. Using the Rookie requires nothing more than positioning the machine on the tennis court, setting the ball speed and feed, and turning it on. The Rookie will kindly wait ten seconds before it starts throwing balls, allowing the user to get in position. The heavy-duty battery ensures that the user will wear out long before the ball machine does.