One of the many appeals of Pickleball is the friendly environment and the tolerance that advanced players have for beginners. There are exceptions of course when good players understandably prefer to play with others at their same ability level. For newcomers it is important to “learn the ropes’ at any given Pickleball venue they choose. A typical arrangement is to designate certain courts for level 4 or level 5 players and reserve other courts for people who play at lower levels. A scenario which tends to sort players out is to have challenge courts where the winning team holds the court until they lose a game. Like any other sport the best way to improve your game is to play with some one above (but not too far above) your level. Most players are very happy to “coach” others and get satisfaction from helping them raise their level of play.
The founders of Pickleball over 50 years ago established the basic rules of the game with much foresight. They realized that due to the fact that the court was both much smaller and had a lower net than tennis it would be possible that a tall player could dominate the game by standing at the net and engaging in overhand smashes ending many rallies prematurely. To mitigate this possibility they included the concept of the No Volley Zone (AKA the Kitchen) and the two bounce rule. A detailed discussion of the Kitchen rules is discussed in a separate Article. The two-bounce rule does not mean the ball can bounce twice on either side of the court but rather that both the receiving team and the serving team have to let the ball bounce once before they first make their return shot. This give players time to get up to the Kitchen line to start a dink strategy which they hope will lead to an opportunity to make a winning shot when volleying becomes “legal” under the rules.
Even though the demographics of Pickleball players is shifting to include younger people the sport is still “Top of Mind” for folks who are seeking an active and healthy retirement and just plain fun. The inclusion of Pickleball courts in existing communities is sometimes gradual. First existing tennis courts are converted to two Pickleball courts by laying down tape for the Pickleball boundary lines and later due to demand dedicated courts are added. As to newly developed communities the inclusion of courts is a must. Here is a website that is reflective of this growing trend:https://tinyurl.com/y8pvcd8x
Ever wonder what would happen if you traveled and thought you would not be able to play Pickleball while away? Well, think again. As you know Pickleball is one of the fastest growing sports in North America and some would even say the world.
You have probably noticed that when you play at your local venue you often meet people from out of my area. Where were they coming from and why? Well, it turns out that many of them are on Pickleball vacations. What they do is load up their RV and drive all over the country and play Pickleball wherever they are. As recently as a few years ago there was virtually no Pickleball in some areas of the country. This is clearly no longer the case as it is now well documented that there is Pickleball in all 50 states.
Another aspect of this are people who live “seasonally” - for example many people live in Canada in the summer and then live in the San Diego area in the winter. While not so much in the past, today there are clearly many places for people to play in both areas. People get to live in great weather year-round and play Pickleball almost every day. Must be nice!
In addition, our North American friends in Mexico have not been left out of the picture. Most resort areas of Mexico now have Pickleball including for example Cancun.
Many cruise ships now offer Pickleball. This is a win-win for both the customer and the cruise ship. This is a win for the customer because they are able to play the game they love while still enjoying other activities on their cruise. In addition to this it is a win for the cruise lines because a Pickleball court is half the size of a tennis court, Pickleball is easier to learn and more social than tennis. Some people play Pickleball for the first time while on a cruise. Playing on cruise ships can challenging due to the high winds sometimes encountered.
Whether you are traveling for business or pleasure you no longer have to leave your Pickleball Paddle at home!