PickleBall 101: Everything You Need to Know

what is pickleball

Ready to learn more about the sport that is taking the country by storm? Say hello to pickleball!

This sport can be played by both the young and also old. In fact, it is quickly becoming an extremely popular sport for the retired and those looking to stay active.

But what exactly is pickleball? How do you play it? Why is it becoming so incredibly popular? 

Let’s dive in!

What Is Pickleball?

This is an emerging sport that is similar to tennis and ping pong and can be played both indoor and outdoor. Although, there are some significant differences and some very fun and unique aspects.

What Are the Rules of Pickleball?

The objective is similar to tennis where the goal is to volley the ball over the net tactfully so that your opponents can’t return it.

Each side takes turns with each player serving.

After serving the ball, the serving side must let the returning ball bounce once in their court before hitting it back. After that, the gameplay is really similar to a fast-paced tennis or ping pong game.

Points can only be scored by the serving team, and each game generally goes to 11, win by 2. Tournaments can go up to 15 or 21 point games.

There are some basic rules you’ll need to follow while playing:

  1. The ball needs to stay inbounds.
  2. Each side is only allowed 1 bounce
  3. You need to serve at the baseline
  4. The serve can’t land in the “kitchen,” or no-volley zone.

What Is the Average Age of Players?

Pickleball is the perfect way to get active and moving for any age. But is it just for a younger audience? 

The answer to that is NO! It’s not uncommon to hit the court and see a range of ages playing together.

According to some websites, the average age is around 40 years old.

How do you serve?

Unlike tennis where you serve in overhand, to serve the ball properly in pickleball, you need to serve it underhanded.

More specifically, you’re supposed to serve the ball below your navel.

How Many People Can Play In A Game?

In pickleball, you can play singles or doubles.

But guess what?

There are even variations in pick-up games where 3 people can play with 3/4ths of the court.

What Are Pickleball Courts Like?

While the goal is to volley the ball over the net like tennis, pickleball courts are smaller. Additionally, there are horizontal lines on each side of the net. Those zones are commonly referred to as “the kitchen.” 

The great news is pickleball courts are starting to pop up with more frequency all across the country. 

And guess what? A luxury pickleball complex just opened up 15 minutes away from Woodland Hills.

What Kind of a Ball Do You Play With?

You use a ball that resembles a wiffle ball. Although, it is a different type of material that gives it more of a bounce than a wiffle ball.

There are specific balls made for the game!

You can find both indoor and outdoor pickleball balls to play with, depending on the surface you are playing on.

What Is a Pickleball Paddle Like?

Unlike tennis rackets, there are no strings on pickleball paddles.

Pickleball paddles look more like a pingpong paddle than a tennis racket, but there are some major differences.

Pickleball paddles are made out of 3 main materials: graphite, composite, or wood.

If you are just starting out, wood paddles tend to be the least expensive of the 3 materials.

Can You Play With A Tennis Court Net?

The pickleball net looks very much like a tennis net, but there is one major difference: the pickleball net is actually slightly lower.

A pickleball net is 36 inches on the sides and 34 inches in the middle. Whereas tennis nets are 3 feet across the net.

What Do You Need to Play?

All you need is a pickleball, a paddle, access to a court, and some friends! You can even buy a net and set up a court in your backyard if you have enough space! 

If you decide to do the latter, you should know that pickleball court dimensions are 20′ x 44′.

Where Can You Play?

Pickleball courts seem like they are sprouting up all over the country, including here in Utah county.

So where can you play? First, it depends on if you want to play outdoors or indoor. 

That said, a luxury indoor pickleball court and a community has just opened up 15 minutes away from luxury residential community Summit Creek called Sun Pro Club

Find Your New Favorite Hobby!

Whether you’re looking to transition from tennis, racquetball, or another sport, or if you’re just looking for a way to stay active, work on coordination, and have some friendly competition, pickleball is where it’s at.

You won’t have any trouble finding a place to play here in Utah County, from outdoor to indoor courts, especially with the new Sun Pro Club opening just 15 minutes from Summit Creek!

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