What is Pickleball?
Pickleball is a paddle sport (similar to a racquet sport) that combines elements of badminton, tennis, and table tennis. Two or four players use solid paddles made of wood or composite materials to hit a perforated polymer ball, similar to a Wiffle Ball , over a net. The sport shares features of other racquet sports, the dimensions and layout of a badminton court, and a net and rules somewhat similar to tennis, with several modifications. Pickle-ball was invented in the mid-1960s as a children’s backyard pastime but has become one of America’s most popular growing sports among all ages.
Pickleball courts are being more popular at RV Parks. Many RV parks are starting to construct pickleball courts due to its popularity and momentum. Many pickleball courts are available at the RV Parks in the Palm Springs, CA area due to it large active population. The activity provides great cardio benefits without the stress and physical movement of tennis.
The History of Pickleball
How Pickleball Came To Be
Pickle-ball is a game for the whole family. So it’s only fitting that it was invented by a family, too. The game got its start back in 1965, in Bainbridge Island, just a short ferry ride away from Seattle, WA.
When Congressmen Joel Pritchard, William Bell and Barney McCallum came home from a game of golf one day to find their kids bored and restless, they set out to create a game that would engage them through the lazy days of summer.
They wanted to create a game that would be challenging, but still accessible. They handed the kids table tennis paddles and a wiffle ball, and lowered the net on their badminton court. In the coming days both kids and adults alike fell in love with the game, and as they played the rules evolved (to include the non-volley zone, for instance) and solidified to their present incarnation.
The Early Years of Pickleball
Pickle-ball caught on fast with friends and neighbors. People began making their own Pickle-ball paddles, which were more suited to the game than table tennis paddles, using a wood jigsaws and marine plywood. Those who had access to badminton courts simply lowered the net. Others set up courts in their driveways and backyards, drawing lines with chalk. News of the fun new game spread by word-of-mouth.
Evolution of PickleBall
Pickle-ball continued to gain in popularity over the years for players of all ages, and in 1972, Pickle-ball Inc. was officially incorporated to give the game a proper hub and keep up with the demand for paddles, balls, nets and other gear.
Today Pickle-ball is played all over the world—through community groups, PE classes, YMCA, retirement communities and more. According to a recent article there are more than 2,000,000 people playing Pickle-ball in the US alone, and the game is growing exponentially.
How the game is played
Image: court dimensions
The pickleball court is similar to a doubles badminton court. The actual size of the court is 20×44 feet for both doubles and singles. The net is hung at 36 inches on the ends, and 34 inches at center. The court is striped like a tennis court, with no alleys; but the outer courts, and not the inner courts, are divided in half by service lines. The inner courts are non-volley zones and extend 7 feet from the net on either side.
The ball is served with an underhand stroke so that contact with the ball is made below waist level (waist is defined as the navel level) in an upward arc. The server hits from behind the baseline on one side of the center line and aims diagonally to the opponent’s service zone (as in the figure on the right).
Only the serving side may score a point. Play ends for a point when one side commits a fault. Faults include:
- not hitting the serve into the opponent’s diagonal service zone
- not hitting the ball beyond the net
- hitting the ball or not hitting after the 2nd bounce on one side of the net
- hitting the ball out of bounds
- volleying the ball on the service return
- volleying the ball on the first return by the serving side
- Stepping into the non-volley zone (the first seven feet from the net, also known as the ‘kitchen’) in the act of volleying the ball.
A player may enter the non-volley zone to play a ball that bounces and may stay there to play balls that bounce. The player must exit the non-volley zone before playing a volley.
The first side scoring 11 points leading by at least two points wins the game. If the two sides are tied at 10 points apiece, the side that goes ahead by two points wins the game.
Tournament games may be played to 15 or 21 points with players rotating sides at 8 or 11 total points respectively.
The server or server and partner usually stay at the baseline until the first return has been hit back and bounced once.
At the beginning of a doubles game before any serving, the score is 0-0. Then the side serving first gets only one fault before their side is out, meaning that their opponents serve next. After the first fault each side gets 2 faults (one for each team member serving) before their side is “out”.
In singles play, each side gets only one fault before a side out and the opponent then serves. The server’s score will always be even (0, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10…) when serving from the right side and odd (1, 3, 5, 7, 9…) when serving from the left side (singles play only).
Rules for those in wheelchairs are similar to the standing rules with minor alternatives. The player’s wheelchair is considered to be part of the player’s body and all applicable rules that usually apply to the body will also apply to the player’s wheelchair. A pickleball player in a wheelchair is allowed two bounces instead of the one a standup player would receive. When a player in a wheelchair is serving the ball, they must be in a stationary position. They are then allowed one push before striking the ball for service. When the player strikes the ball, the wheels of the wheel chair shall not touch any baselines, sidelines, center lines or the extended center or sidelines. When there is a mixed game of those in wheelchairs and those standing, the applicable rules apply for those players respectively. Standing players will adhere to the standing pickleball rules and the wheelchair players will adhere to the wheelchair pickleball rules.
Watch the link below. This video will give you a clear conception about how to play Pickle-Ball,
Looks fun, doesn’t it?
To get started, click on the below affiliate links and check out the available pickleball rackets and balls from Amazon. Starter sets for doubles play.