Check out the differences between The Association of Pickleball Players APP, Major League Pickleball, and PPA Tour.

Explore the in-depth review and comparison of Pickleball Pro Leagues APP Pickleball, PPA tour, and MLP in the world of pickleball. Learn about their unique approaches, technologies, accessibility, and entertainment elements to choose the right one for your pickleball experience.

Pickleball, the sport that has captured America’s attention and gained popularity worldwide, combines elements of tennis, badminton, and ping pong. As pickleball enthusiasts want to showcase their skills and compete at a higher level, three leading tours have emerged: App Pickleball, PPA tour, and Major League Pickleball (MLP).

These tours attract the best players from all around the world for their thrilling competitions. Which one fits you the best? To help you decide where to direct your pickleball passion, we’ve thoroughly reviewed each tour’s format, benefits, and drawbacks in this blog post.

History of App vs. PPA vs. MLP

PPA Tour ( The Pro Tour of Pickleball) was founded in 2017-18 by Connor Pardoe. It is the largest professional pickleball tour in the world, with over 3,000 players and over $5 million in prize money awarded in 2022. PPA tour hosts tournaments throughout the United States, and its matches are broadcast live on CBS Sports Network, Pickleball TV, and ESPN+.

APP Pickleball (Association of Pickleball Players) was founded in 2019 by Ken Herrmann, a former professional tennis player and coach. Herrmann wanted to create a pickleball tour open to all skill levels, from beginners to professionals. He also wanted to make a tour that would help to grow the sport of pickleball. The App Pickleball has been successful in both of these goals. It has grown rapidly in popularity and now hosts tournaments throughout the United States. The app pickleball has also helped to bring new players to the sport.

MLP (Major League Pickleball) was founded in 2021 by Steve Kuhn, Tom Dundon, and Jeff Zucker in Dripping Springs, Texas. MLP is a highly competitive pickleball league showcasing the world’s best professional players. Each team has one male and one female competitor, making up its four players. The teams compete in a round-robin method, with the winner taking home a $1 million prize.

Association of Pickleball Players | Powered By Players

Association of Pickleball Players (APP Pickleball) started in June 2019 and welcomes beginners and professionals to participate in competitive matches. It hosts singles, doubles, and mixed doubles tournaments. Players can earn prize money and ranking points at APP Pickleball tournaments across the US. APP Pickleball tour welcomes everyone whether you’re new to the game or an experienced player. This allows everyone to compete and enjoy it. Another unique aspect of App Tour is its use of technology.

Technology is a key differentiator for the APP Pickleball. They provide

  • Real-time scoring updates.
  • Player statistics.
  • Even live-streaming options exist for fans who can’t attend the tournament venue.
  • This enhances the viewing experience and helps players analyze their performance and track their progress.

The success of APP Pickleball lies in its ability to bring together pickleball enthusiasts from different backgrounds and skill levels. It has revolutionized how players and fans organize and enjoy pickleball tournaments. It creates a sense of community within the sport by providing opportunities for players to connect with like-minded individuals who share their passion.

PPA Tour | The Pro Tour of Pickleball

The Carvana Professional Pickleball Association, usually known as PPA Tour, is one of the most famous professional tours for the sport of pickleball in the United States. It was founded at the end of 2018 but did not hold an event until 2019; it has quickly gained popularity among professional pickleball players and fans.

Top players compete in stunning competitions on the PPA tour to show off their talents and stamina. Competence and high-quality production value make PPA tournaments engaging for players and fans.

What sets PPA Tour apart from other tours is its commitment to growing the sport at all levels. The organization hosts professional tournaments and offers clinics, coaching programs, and grassroots initiatives to introduce more people to pickleball. This dedication to development ensures a sustainable future for pickleball.

PPA Tour focuses on developing players and understands the significance of involving fans through media coverage and promotions. By live streaming matches, sharing match highlights, and providing behind-the-scenes content, fans can stay connected with their favourite players and teams even if they cannot attend live events.

Major League Pickleball (MLP)

Major League Pickleball (MLP) is the newest pickleball tour in the pickleball tournament circuit, bringing a fresh and exciting twist to this rapidly growing sport. Created by professional athletes who have fallen in love with pickleball, MLP aims to showcase the highest level of competition.

MLP focuses on top players from multiple sports, distinguishing it from other tours. These athletes bring unique skills and styles to pickleball from tennis, basketball, and football. Seeing familiar faces from other sports competing in a different setting adds an extra layer of excitement for fans.

In addition to featuring star athletes, MLP also emphasizes entertainment value. The tournaments are designed as competitive events and spectacles where fans can enjoy live music performances, celebrity appearances, and engaging daily activities. This blend of high-level athleticism and entertainment creates an immersive experience for players and spectators alike.

The popularity of Major League Pickleball has been steadily increasing since its inception. Its innovative approach has attracted attention within the pickleball community and among mainstream media outlets. As more people become aware of this dynamic tour, it will likely continue to drive interest and participation in pickleball at all levels.

While some argue that traditional tournaments or local leagues offer a more grassroots experience for players looking to improve their skills or connect with fellow enthusiasts, Major League Pickleball brings new excitement and exposure to this beloved sport.

Prize Money

The prize money for the App Tour, PPA Pickleball, and Major League Pickleball (MLP) varies depending on the tournament. However, MLP generally offers the highest prize money, followed by PPA Pickleball and the App Tour.


The winning team in each MLP event receives a $1 million reward. The overall prize money for the MLP season exceeds $5 million.  

PPA Pickleball

The total prize money for the season is over $5 million. The prize money for each tournament varies according to the event’s size and popularity. For example, the PPA World Championships prize money is $1 million.

App Tour

The App Tour season has nearly $2 million in prizes. The level and status of each tournament determine its prize money. App Tour Majors winners receive $100,000.


Which professional pickleball tour suits you depends on your aims and preferences. App Tours are suitable for high-competition tours with substantial prize pools. You should choose the PPA Tour if you want an innovative tournament structure and fan interaction. You should choose the MLP Tour for its unique team-based format.