6 Best Tennis Ball Basket Hoppers
During practice, it’s a pain having to pick up all the tennis balls spread all over the court. If you’re practicing serving and going through a few buckets of balls, then you really don’t want to spend ages picking them all up.
After making the right decision to invest into a ball basket / hopper (whether you’re a player or an instructor), how do you know what is the correct hopper for you?
With a tennis ball hopper you can do this tiresome task of picking the balls easily. It will also save you a lot of time that could be spent on your practice. However, tennis ball hoppers are way more than traditional baskets.
Read on to find out how tennis ball hoppers work, and why you should definitely invest in one.
It is also essential to know what makes the best hoppers before you go and spend your money.
We have made it easy for you with our selection of the 6 best tennis ball hoppers to choose from.
Tennis ball hopper: A fantastic invention
A tennis ball basket is one of the most convenient bits of equipment on court. It saves you a lot of time and effort.
It becomes more effective when you are on the court for the sole purpose of picking and throwing balls as a coach or a friend.
Jake Stap, the founder of these hoppers, was a coach who was tired of picking up the balls all the time. He modified a waste paper basket to take in the tennis balls. Over time the idea was modified to make it to the ball hoppers we use today.
The working of a tennis ball hopper is pretty simple. The portable basket can be carried around with the legs or wheels.
Take it directly over the ball to be picked and push it down through the handles. This squeezes the ball directly inside the wired basket.
You do not have to run after the ball after every hit, bend down to pick it up, and lots all around the court.
If you play a lot of tennis then a ball hopper should be one of the first items you should invest in.
A tennis ball basket picks up balls in no time, especially when compared to doing it by hand. Plus, it saves your back.
Buying Guide for the Best Tennis Ball Basket
1- Build quality
The build quality is the most important factor to consider. The hopper will be subject to intense, rough use.
What else can you expect on a tennis court?
The tennis ball basket needs to be moved from one place to another constantly. Usually, they are made from wires, but you can also find some made from polypropylene.
Look for a ball hopper constructed from thick, durable steel wires.
Low-quality wires will result in the deformation of the basket, ruining the shape. A deformed hopper is of no use since the ball will not easily go in should the wire get damaged.
Of course, rough use in the court will result in some wear and tear. However, good quality baskets can survive such use without any major problems.
2- Tennis Ball Capacity
The capacity and size of a tennis ball picker is a personal preference.
You can find a ball hopper with a capacity of 40 to 140 balls.
The ideal capacity if you are a single player is 70 to 80 balls.
If you are a coach or someone who runs a tennis club you will need the larger ones with 100 or more capacity.
However, the increasing size also adds to the weight of the basket.
You cannot ignore the fact that the more balls a hopper can hold, the heavier it will be.
A tennis ball hopper with a capacity of 100 balls will weigh about 5 to 6 kilograms. If you have children helping, keep the size smaller.
3- How Much Do Ball Hoppers Cost?
If you are a professional tennis player, the price might not be an issue for you. However, for hobby players, the budget needs to be considered.
You can find all sorts of options, ranging from cheap to high-end ones. What matters is you get what you spend.
You can find good quality ones for under $50 – but you’ll need to take more care of them since they are often aren’t as well-built. But work fine for occasional use.
With thick, sturdy wires, large capacity hoppers will cost you more than the smaller ones.
Moreover, the additional features like lids and wheels also add to the cost. These features are unnecessary, so you can easily skip them if you are on a budget.
4- Handle and legs
The primary use of a tennis ball picker is efficient transport of the balls. Hence, it needs to have a smooth stand or handle. Most hoppers come with a handle that can be pushed down to make them into legs. This two-in-one feature is a brilliant addition to productivity. Stands are also an important feature to have in a hopper. It makes the hopper multipurpose that acts both as a picker and a feeder.
The handle-turned legs also increase the height, making it easier for taller players. It might not seem much, but the legs make all the difference between squatting for a single ball to rapidly picking them all up. If you are a club with a load of tennis balls, a simple stand would also suit you. However, features like lids and wheels contribute to handy and efficient equipment.
The weight of a tennis ball hopper depends on its size and capacity.
The more balls it can contain, the larger the size will be. If you have children helping out, you should look into lighter options that are easier to move around.
Generally, the hoppers range between 2 kilograms to 8 kilograms.
Keep in mind the additional weight of the balls too.
Plastic hoppers made from polypropylene are an excellent choice for lightweight baskets.
Although steel hoppers are the most durable, plastic hoppers also provide good value.
6 Best tennis ball hoppers
Tourna Ballport Tennis Ball Hopper
Tourna undoubtedly produces the best tennis equipment. This tennis ball hopper is the mass’s favorite for its ideal dimensions and efficient features.
The 80 ball capacity gives you ample storage for several matches. Furthermore, it serves as a two-in-one picker and basket. The locking handles and sliding bars make it worth every penny.
For added efficiency, you can also look into its modified version that goes by Tourna Bellport Deluxe Tennis Ball Hopper.
The deluxe model comes with smooth wheelers, making your task even more straightforward. You would expect it to be heavier; instead, it is lighter than the regular hoppers. The lightweight and smooth wheels make ball picking easy.
If you are an academy or a coach with a few players to train, you will need a much larger capacity.
For you, we recommend the OncourtOffcourt Tennis Ball Hopper
It comes with a huge 250 balls capacity, enough to cater to 10 players at a time.
You can also use it as a feeder with a double basket structure. The large size and additional features come at a price, but that is nothing in front of the ease it provides.
Gamma Hi-Rise 75 Sports Tennis Ball Hopper- Best budget option
Gamma Hi-Rise is the perfect addition to your tennis kit, which is affordable as well as practical.
It might not be a popular brand, but the design and build quality say a lot about its premium build material and durability.
The 75 ball capacity makes for perfect for a single player. This also ensures the basket never gets too heavy, since 75 balls are easy to carry.
What makes this one of the best tennis ball hoppers is the carbon steel wire that helps give it a long life. The sturdy wired basket is coated with a special Gamma diamond-clad weather-resistant coating, giving you rust-free use for years.
You will not find this premium feature in any other budget hopper that we are aware of.
The price ranges around $55, which is a steal, given all the features it exhibits. The wheels and 75 ball capacity is something you will not find in this price range with any other brand.
With its large range of features, it takes convenience to new levels. Modified wheels, adjustable handles, and a smart lid are just some of the many features.
You can now transport and pick the balls from anywhere around the court in half the time and double the speed.
Keep the lid closed when not needed to avoid any spillage. This is a crucial feature for coaches and people who keep their hoppers in the cars for the go.
Remove the lid and the rollers if you do not want to use them. This choice of option provides ease of use for people with different preferences.
- Sturdy built
- Smart lid
- Weather-resistant coating
- Capacity is only 75 balls
OncourtOffcourt Tennis Ball Hopper - Best for Clubs and Coaches
If you have an academy or a large team to coach, you will not find a better option than the OncourtOffcourt Tennis Ball mower.
This pro tennis ball hopper has a massive capacity of 250 balls that none other brands provide.
You can use this full-size cart to pick up all the balls in one go efficiently. It serves as a picker as well as a feeder.
This huge hopper comes with two baskets, one on top of the other. Roll the cart over the ball to squeeze it in the lower basket, then transfer the balls in the upper one to use it as a feeder.
It’s easy to transport. The 54 inches folded should fit in most car boots.
The baskets are highly durable with a vinyl heavy coating gauge.
The sealed ball bearings in the wheels give a smooth movement on the field.
No matter how rough your use is, OncourtOffcourt Tennis Ball Hopper will give you a long, rust-free working life.
An ideal case scenario would be to have a permanent place to store it; however, it is not hard to move it to.
The price tag is no surprise. For a cart that carries 250 tennis balls, $229 is not that big of a deal.
It is best suited to large academies and coaching camps, making the cost even less of an issue.
You can easily use it for 10 pupils at a time.
It provides maximum portability making your life more accessible than ever. You can focus on your training more than you have to focus on keeping the place in one place.
- Two in one hopper and feeder
- Huge capacity
- Best for large clubs and academies
- Expensive compared to other options
Wilson Tennis Ball Pick Up Hopper- Best mid-range option
Wilson has a prominent name in the tennis industry. They are one of the most trusted brands with their high quality and durable build.
However, we believe this design is well-made but basic.
You get a steel basket and handle; however, the plated steel used in manufacturing makes it stand out from competitors. Even with intense court use, it will last for years. Wear and tear may occur; however, the sturdy build makes it last longer.
It can hold a standard 75 balls which is perfect for individual players.
You can convert the handles into legs whenever you please.
The robust lid adds to its efficiency by preventing spilling. The affordability makes it easier to replace it after years of service.
This tennis ball hopper weighs 2 kilograms.
Even with the added weight of 75 balls, it is easy to carry around, making it portable.
If you compare it with the Tourna hopper you will find it heavier, but it is still lighter than many others.
Wilson is famous for its affordable products.
The affordable mid-range price point makes this ball hopper a cost-efficient option, perfect for professional and hobby players.
You can easily get it for around $31, making it a pocket-friendly option.
- Easy setup
- No spill lid
- Sturdy built
- Heavier than the Tourna picker
Tourna Ballport Tennis Ball Hopper
Tourna ballporttennis ball hopper is an excellent option in terms of durability and lightness.
None other tennis ball basket comes with an 80 ball capacity, weighing 2 kilograms. It’s all thanks to the polypropylene basket. Unlike the traditional steel wire baskets, it comes with a high-quality plastic one, that do the job exceptionally well.
The sturdy plastic body means there is no risk of rust or breaking welds, meaning you can use it almost indefinitely.
All the brilliant features with a bonus of affordability bring it to the list of our top choices.
The handles and legs are both secured with locks.
Whether you use it in the up or down position or as handles or legs; there will be no spilling.
Plastic tennis ball pickers are generally cheaper than metal ones.
Tourna Ballport Tennis Ball Hopper is also a cost-efficient choice making it a worthy competitor in the market.
It retails for around $40 which is excellent for a hopper with such a capacity and durability.
Furthermore, the top can be sealed with sliding bars giving you maximum protection when traveling.
Take it anywhere in the car with you without the fear of the tennis balls falling out.
The 29.5-inch height is the perfect dimension to fit it in your car trunk. The sliding bars at the top are not as impressive as the smart lid; nevertheless, they work well.
The same model also has an upgraded version with wheels.
Of course, this comes at an additional cost. For a budget-friendly, innovative hopper; this Tourna ballport hopper is a brilliant choice. It is easy to use and can be used by both kids and adults.
- Polypropylene body
- Locking handles and legs
- This may be low for some people
Gamma Sports Hoppette 50 Ball Hoppers
Another excellent tennis ball hopper in terms of durability and convenience is the Gamma Sports Hoppette ball hopper.
With a sleek, sturdy outlook, this hopper can pick and carry 50 balls at a time.
The size is perfect for single players, giving good storage for your matches.
As with all other Gamma products, this comes with high-quality manufacturing made from carbon steel wire, the body is highly durable.
The robust body is made even more durable with the Gamma premium diamond-clad weather-resistant coating.
This prevents your tennis ball picker from rust and other weariness, in turn extending its life.
The versatile design provides maximum productivity.
It comes with removable handles adding to the feasibility. You can remove the handles at your convenience and increase the storage.
The only downside would be the lack of a stand. You cannot use the handle as legs like the other versions.
However, this fact is made for with a smart lid provision. This keeps your tennis balls from spilling around and adds a classy touch to your hopper.
Overall, the Gamma Sports Hoppette is an inexpensive option with excellent performance.
You can find it easily for $30+. This low price hopper is great for replacements when your old one gets too weary.
- Removable handles
- Sturdy carbon steel wire body
- No stand
Tourna Pickleball Tennis Hopper
Tourna Pickleball Tennis Hopper is a fantastic choice for both kids and adults.
The added wheels make it extremely easy to run around the court with it.
While regular baskets without wheels are convenient, this one with wheels drastically reduces your pickup time.
It is lightweight and handy, which is exactly how a tennis ball basket should be. The balls will increase the weight, hence, the lighter the hopper itself, the better it is.
You can easily fit in 45 balls, depending on the size.
The lightweight body is due to the polypropylene structure. The plastic body, though light in weight, is sturdy.
One of the highlights of this hopper is the patented locking system. It secures the handles and legs so you don’t have to worry about spilled tennis balls.
The robust handle and legs keep the basket intact for protected storage. With a height of 33.5 inches, you can easily transport it anywhere in your car.
It comes with rolling bars at the bottom and sliding bars at the top.
The sliding bars are common with other Tourna models providing a modified smart lid.
However, the bottom rolling bars are unique. The bars help take in the tennis balls even when the hopper is full. This gives extra storage, adding to its worth.
The price is around $40, making it a great budget-friendly option. This tennis ball basket provides great value money for the height and weight.
- Can pick up two balls a time
- Great storage
- Unclear setting instructions
If you spend a few hours on the court each week, a ball hopper will come in useful. You just need to decide which of the 6 ball hoppers above suit you the best.
We covered the smaller lightweight hoppers, which are perfect for individual players or small groups. And the larger hoppers for clubs and coaches.
All of the baskets we recommend here should easily last you for many years of use.