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What is pickleball?

What is pickleball?

- Categories : adidas Padel

Pickleball is a sport that has been growing in popularity in recent years because of its appeal to players of all ages, but has actually been around for a long time. Around the world, millions of people play, with estimates suggesting 5 million people play on a regular basis in the US alone.

The sport takes elements from badminton, tennis, and table tennis, and is played on a modified tennis court, called a pickleball court.

Are you new to the sport though? Do you know the origins of pickleball or how to play? In this post, we’ll give you a deep dive into all you need to know about pickleball. And perhaps some day soon you will pick up a pickleball bat and give it a go yourself.

What is the origin of pickleball?

While it may seem relatively new, pickleball can trace its origins back to Seattle, Washington, in 1965. U.S. Congressman Joel Pritchard and his friends William Bell and Barney McCallum were looking for activities to do with their children and wanted to play badminton. Short of enough rackets, however, they use a mish mash of equipment, including table tennis bats, a wiffle ball - perforated plastic ball, and a badminton net, lowered slightly to make the game easier.

What seemed to be a fun, holiday activity turned out to be the invention of a new sport. Two years later, the first pickleball court was built and in 1984, the US Amateur Pickleball Association was formed, which still goes strong today.

How do you play pickleball?

Similar to tennis, padel, or badminton, pickleball can be played either as a singles or a double match. Pickleball involves hitting the ball over the net to score points with each game being until the first player or pair reach 11 points, with a difference of at least two.

While there are elements of different sports, as mentioned, pickleball has its own set of rules. Some of the key ones to highlight are the following:

  • The serve is underhand, hitting diagonally to the opposite corner of the court. A dropped ball or a bounced ball are both valid as a serve.
  • The ball must bounce on the opposite side of the court before it is returned to the serving side. The return hit must also bounce before the serving side hits it back. This is known as the double-bounce rule.
  • Following the two-bounce rule, shots can be returned after one bounce or as a volley. However, the volley can only take place from beyond the no-volley zone - at least 7 feet behind the net.
  • In singles, the serve stays with one player until they commit a fault, whereas in doubles play, the serve passes from the server to their teammate until they make a fault, when it then passes to the other pair.
  • There are a number of ways to commit a fault, including: touching the net, hitting the ball out of bounds, a volley from inside the no-volley area, a foul serve, failure to hit the ball back over the net.

What are the dimensions of a pickleball court?

The pickleball court is the same size as a badminton court (20 feet wide by 44 feet long). The net is similar to a tennis one at 36 inches high. In addition, there are lines marked highlighting the no-volley area.

What do you need to play pickleball?

The two most essential pieces of equipment are the paddle and ball. The paddle is smaller than a tennis racket and larger than a table tennis bat. When it first emerged as a sport, the paddle was made of wood but over time it has evolved and is today made from more lightweight materials.

The ball is similar to a wiffle ball - one which has holes through it - although it is more durable. While players have individual preferences of the exact type of ball, there are certain standards specified by the International Federation of Pickleball (IFP).

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