Did you know that pickleball is one of America’s fastest-growing sports?
Participation in pickleball rose by more than 20 percent in 2020.
If you’re not a pickleball player you may be wondering what all the fuss is about.
Read on as we present this beginner’s guide to pickleball.
What is Pickleball?
Is it tennis? Is it badminton? Is it table tennis? Well, it’s a little of all three.
It’s played on the same size court as badminton. It uses the same net as tennis, and the rackets are the same as those used in ping pong. It’s a low-impact sport designed to be accessible to everyone, including seniors and kids. Not only that, but different age groups can even play against one another.
How to Play Pickleball
Pickleball rules are fairly straightforward. Here is how you play.
Each point starts with a serve.
Serving starts from the right-hand court and then alternates. The server must keep both feet behind the line and hit the ball with an underhand swing below the waist. The serve must land in the diagonally opposite court.
Only one serve is allowed. If you fault in singles, the serve passes to your opponent. In doubles, the serve then passes to your partner unless they served prior to you.
Once the ball is served into the court, the rallying begins. The receiver must let the ball bounce before returning it, and the serving team must also let the ball bounce before their first rallying shot. Once it has bounced once for both teams, you can choose to let the ball bounce before playing a shot, or volley it before it hits the ground.
The exception to this is that you cannot volley if you are in the ‘kitchen’ which is the 7-foot area on either side of the net. In fact, you can only enter the kitchen if the ball has bounced in the kitchen, and once you hit the ball, you must leave the kitchen again.
You continue to play until the ball goes into the net or out of play. If the server wins the point, they move to the other side and serve again. If they lose, the serve passes to the opponent or to their partner in doubles if they haven’t yet served.
The score is called out by the server before their serve and consists of three numbers: the serving team’s score, the opponent’s score, and the server number (for doubles).
Since the first team to serve is only allowed one player to serve before play passes to the opponents, the first score called in doubles will always be 0-0-2. If the receiving team wins the point, the new server would call 1-0-1, and so on. The first to 11 by two clear points is the winner.
These are the basics. Once you’ve got them down you’ll be ready to learn some pickleball strategies!
Are You Ready to Try Pickleball?
If this article has got you all in a pickle to try playing pickleball then we say go for it!
Pickleball is a fun and sociable game that can be played by almost anyone. It’s also a great way to get out there and get moving, exercise such as pickleball has been shown to be highly beneficial for your health.
All you need to do is find a court, some people to play with, and you’re ready to go! We wish you the best of luck with your pickleball play.
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