Playing tennis is a sport that requires consistent practice and commitment. Acquiring that perfect stroke will see you swing that racquet a good number of times a day. One of the main challenges encountered by tennis enthusiasts is finding a partner that will throw you the tennis balls without getting tired fast. Even when you find a patient person, the chances that they will throw you that ball at the perfect speed and trajectory are quite low.
Investing in a tennis ball machine will be a step in the right direction. The machine will give you the freedom to practice at your own desired time, and it will never complain of being tired. You will also enjoy consistent speed and the perfect trajectory.
We reviewed a couple of these machines and compiled a list of the best tennis ball machines in the market.
A brief summary of the Best Tennis Ball Machines
Spin Shot Player
19 - 68 mph
Match Mate Machine-Rookie
10 - 27 mph
Variable depending on speed
Lobster -Sports Elite 1 Ball Machine (Portable)
10 – 80 mph
2 – 12 seconds
Lobster -Sports Elite 2 (Portable) Ball Machine
10 – 80 mph
2 – 12 seconds
Spin Shot Plus
19 – 68 mph
2 – 10 seconds
Bestselling Tennis Ball Machines on Amazon:
A review of the Best Tennis Ball Machines
Spin Shot Player – Fully customisable to suit your needs
This machine is a favourite of many tennis players. It is mainly designed for intermediate and professional players, but it also provides beginners with a good experience. It boasts a great design that allows it to carry up to 120 balls. It is a fully customisable device, and you can be able to adjust the speed and rate at which it throws the balls.
- 120 ball capacity
- Has 12 pre-installed drills
- Has horizontal and vertical oscillation
- Has an installable phone app
You can also use drills that enable the balls to spin as they move. With a frequency of
2 – 10 seconds, you can be able to practice using fast paced throws or go a bit slower to suit your liking. This machine also has a customisable horizontal and vertical oscillation. It comes with up to 12 drills that you can also fully customize.
The most interesting thing about this tennis ball machine is that you can access and control it virtually using your phone. It comes with an app that you install into your phone. It allows you to customise the drills so that you can focus on the areas that you feel need more attention, and you can tennis your days away.
This device has a battery that allows you to practice for 2 – 3 hours. You can also upgrade it with a power model that enables you to connect it to an AC power outlet.
- It is fully customisable to suit your needs
- You can carry many balls at a go
- It can be upgraded to enable it to get power from an AC outlet
- The battery life is quite short
Whether beginner, intermediate or pro, this machine will give you value for your money. It will give you good practice runs with its customizable features.
Match Mate Machine- Rookie – Ideal for kids and juniors
Just as the name suggests, this machine is ideal for beginners and young kids. It throws the balls at a slow rate, and the rate can be adjusted to fit the player’s pace. It is also lightweight and you will have no issues carrying it from point to point.
- It has a 70 ball capacity
- It has an adjustable rate
- Has a rechargeable batter
This machine has a ball capacity of 70, which is a bit small as compared to other brands. A commendable thing about it is that it can throw balls at low speeds and different heights.
It has a rechargeable battery that will last you up to 5 hours.
- It is quite affordable. You will spend money equivalent to 9 practice lessons on this machine
- It is customisable to fit your kids and teens needs
- It has a good battery life
- It is lightweight for easy portability
- It cannot be used by intermediate and professional players
- It does not come with a remote control feature
- The machine is a bit basic, there are no advanced features for users
This lightweight tennis ball machine is ideal for your children and teenagers. If they have an interest in learning this sport, you do not have to pay for private lessons. This machine will cost you an equivalent of 9 lessons, but you will get to use it for a long time.
Lobster – Sports Elite 1 Ball Machine (Portable) – Ideal for beginners and intermediates
This machine is a great choice for people who are just beginning, or whose aim is to get seasoned in the game. With a ball capacity of 150 balls, you will enjoy quite a run without interruptions.
- Has a ball capacity of 150
- Horizontal and vertical oscillations
- Adjustable speed and rate
It has great adjustable features such as a wide range of speed. You can set it to anything between 10 to 80 miles per hour and intervals of between 2 and 12 seconds between balls. Other features that you can adjust to your liking include elevations and horizontal oscillations.
The Lobster Sports Elite 1 is also lightweight, so you can load it up into your track and carry it to your desired place of practice. It has a rechargeable battery that will last a good 4 – 8 hours.
Unfortunately, this machine does not come with adjustable features, and its remote control feature is only available when purchased separately.
- It has adjustable parameters such as speed and ball rate
- It has long battery life
- It is light, making it convenient to carry around
- It comes with a higher ball capacity than other beginner tennis balls machines
- It does not have pre-loaded drills
- The remote control feature is sold separately
This machine is a good fit for beginners and intermediates who want to enhance their tennis skills. Much as it does not have pre-loaded drills, it offers considerably more than other beginner and intermediate level machines.
Lobster – Sports Elite 2 (Portable) Ball Machine – Suitable for beginners, intermediate and professional level players
This tennis ball machine offers a combination of great features and adjustable parameters at a competitive price for pro tennis players. It has a considerably high ball capacity of 150 balls.
- It has a ball capacity of 150 balls
- Adjustable rate and speed
- Triple oscillations
The speed can be adjusted from 10 mph to 80 mph, which is a conveniently wide range. This means that even beginners and intermediates can comfortably use this device. The ball rate can also be selected from 2 – 12 second intervals between balls.
For a player that is looking to expand their knowledge on different tennis techniques, you can add random oscillations and spins to the balls.
Just like the Lobster Sport Elite 1, this machine does not have pre-loaded drills. This is quite a draw-back, since professional tennis players prefer machines that have drills they can customise to suit their practice needs. It, however, offers effective practice for players who wish to work on the footwork, back and front hand.
The battery will last you from 4 – 8 hours
- It has triple oscillation
- It has a wide speed and rate range
- Allows you to practice on footwork, front and backhands
- Long battery life
- It does not have pre-installed drills
- The remote control is sold separately
This machine is good for beginners, intermediate and professional players. However, it is a bit of a let-down for pros since it does not have pre-installed drills that offer customizable features for players.
Spin Shot Plus – Ideal for pro players
This tennis ball machine is a favourite of many professional tennis players due to its ability to effectively mimic an actual game. It has a sturdy aluminium build that will last you quite a bit of time.
- Has a ball capacity of 120 balls
- Its speed and range can be adjusted
- It has pre-set drills that are customisable
It is a fully adjustable machine and you can customise all the features to suit your personal developmental needs. It has a recommended ball capacity of 120 balls, but there is room for several more. It has a speed range of between 19 – 68 mph and a rate of 2- 10 seconds between balls.
It also comes with a downloadable app that allows you to control it remotely from your phone. It has a set of pre-set drills that allow you a wide range of customisable features to choose from.
The unfortunate bit is that it comes with a short life battery of 2 – 3 hours, but the good thing is that you can upgrade your machine to be able to connect it to an AC power outlet. This will enable you to play for hours on end without worrying about the battery life.
- It is ideal for professionals but can also be used by a beginner
- It has a wide range of customisable features
- It can be remotely controlled from your phone
- It can be upgraded so that you can charge it from an AC power source
- It has a really low battery life
This machine is an impressive tool that will help you work on your skills. You can customise it to fit any specification you like, and even with its short battery life, an upgrade is available. This will enable you to power it from an AC outlet and tennis the hours away.
What to look out for to find the best tennis ball machine?
There are many tennis ball machines in the market, and many of them have similar features. When selecting one that is suitable for you, consider its price. You do not want to purchase an expensive machine that will give you the exact features of a cheaper one.
If you will be carrying your machine to use away from home, it would be recommendable to get one that will give you a good length of battery life. Some machines, like the Spin Shot Plus, can be upgraded to allow you to connect it to an AC outlet.
Some tennis ball machines come with the option to customise as you desire. Parameters such as oscillations, speed and rate vary from person to person. Choose a machine that you will be able to adjust to fit your personal practice needs.
It is quite unlikely that you will be using your tennis ball machine from inside your home. Carrying it from point to point may prove to be a daunting task. If you will be moving it constantly, choose a machine that will be easy for you to carry.
These machines differ in the number of balls you can feed at each time. Some have a high ball capacity, while others have significantly lower capacity. You do not want to keep filling the machine every now and then. Select a machine that will give you a good run before you have to refill the balls.
When purchasing any item, people tend to give more consideration to its price. While it actually matters, it is not a guarantee that you will get quality in return. A good tennis ball machine is one that will allow you to practice consistently so that you can be able to develop your skill and grow in prowess.
Different machines will give you different features, some of which are adjustable and customisable. Allow your choice to be guided by your own personal needs, and avoid focusing on aspects that may be irrelevant to you.
It is a good thing that the market is not short of choices you can pick from. Do an in-depth research before purchase. After all, it is not a machine you are going to get rid of in a day.
Last update on 2020-06-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API