Monday, January 2, 2017

Happy New Year! USTA League player distribution by level - More interesting tennis league stats

Happy New Year!  I hope everyone rang in the new year safely, and at least in my area, we are starting our 2017 40+ league right away, my team's first match is this coming weekend.  But before we look forward to 2017, here is another post looking back at 2016.

Specifically, this is taking a look at how many computer rated players ended 2016 at each level and comparing it with the same numbers from 2015.

Note, in doing the comparisons, I show there were about 2,000 fewer players that were computer rated at the end of 2016 than 2015, so that is partly the reason why some levels may have fewer players this year.  This decline continues what we've seen the past few years interestingly enough.

First the women:

First, we can see that the more women are 3.5s than 3.0s or 4.0s by a pretty wide margin.  But looking at trends from 2015 to 2016, we can see that the 2.5s and 3.0s went up a bit, but the number of players that ended 2016 as 3.5s, 4.0s, and 4.5s all dropped slightly.

Next the men:

For the men, the 3.5s and 4.0s are neck and neck with the 4.0s staying just ahead of the 3.5s last year.  We also see more 2.5s and 3.0s, but fewer players at 3.5, 4.0, and 4.5 like we did for the women.

Given that there were more players bumped up than down in ever section, it is a bit surprising to see the decline at higher levels and would seem to indicate that some players at higher levels did not play enough matches to get a year-end rating.  It would also support the notion that most new players join at the 2.5 and 3.0 levels as that is where the growth was despite the overall loss of players.

What do you think?  In your area, are there fewer players playing and is the loss at the higher levels?

I'll probably look at the same data by section or state and will do the most requested first, so let me know where you are from!