Although not common you can play Singles in Pickleball.
Here are a few reasons why Singles is not as common as Doubles: (1) As Pickleball gets more and more popular there is increasingly not enough court space for Singles play; (2) Unlike tennis Pickleball is usually not arranged. Oftentimes it is open play and structured play. This leaves little to no time or space for Singles play. Singles is often played at the beginning of open play before the crowds arrive or at the very end when the crowds have dwindled; and (3) Most importantly Doubles is more fun and more interesting than Singles
Singles is more like tennis. In Singles you are at the base line and driving the ball into the back court. This is very different from Doubles which often involves much more of an intricate “short” or “kitchen” game. (Particularly at the higher levels of play.)
In Singles the rules are the same except that there is Number 1 and Number 2 concept on the serve. You serve and score a point or it is an immediate side out. Also, Singles is played on the entire court – there are no alleys for Singles vs. Doubles as there are in tennis.
Pickleball is often played by people who don’t want or need as much exercise. This is particularly true of those who are older and may have “retired” from tennis and transition to Pickleball as a more desirable alternative.
Singles is also by definition less social. Obviously the interaction with other people is cut in half. Also, the idea of a “team” is not in place which is an intricate part of Doubles play.
If given the chance to play Singles, give it a try however most players gravitate to Doubles for the reasons mentioned above.
A final note about Doubles: The name of our company Dink Dink Slam is based on the most common strategy in Doubles which is for the players to dink the ball back and forth within the No Volley Zone (The Kitchen) looking for an opportunity to slam the ball from behind the kitchen line to score a winning point.