What is pickleball?

Pickleball is a fun and exciting sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton, and table tennis. It is played on a badminton-sized court with a net that is set at 34 inches at the centre, and is played with a plastic ball and paddles. The objective of the game is to hit the ball back and forth over the net, with the opponent unable to return it. It’s not only fun, but also a great workout!

One of the best things about pickleball is that it is a sport that can be enjoyed by people of all ages and skill levels. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned pro, pickleball is a great way to get active, stay in shape, and have fun with friends and family.

Pickleball is also the world’s fastest-growing sport! Its popularity has been increasing rapidly over the years and it’s easy to see why. With its easy-to-learn rules, its fun and fast-paced gameplay, and its ability to be enjoyed by people of all ages and skill levels, it’s no wonder that pickleball is quickly becoming one of the most popular sports around the world!

Quick explainer video of pickleball made by Pickleball Australia Association

What are the rules?

Here’s an overview of some basic pickleball rules:

  1. Pickleball can be played with either two (singles) or four players (doubles).
  2. The objective is to score points by hitting the ball over the net and into the opponent’s court.
  3. The serve must be made underhand and diagonally across the court. The ball must bounce once on the receiver’s side before being hit, and then once on the server’s side before they can hit it back.
  4. After the serve and initial return, both teams can hit the ball back and forth until one team fails to return the ball, hits it out of bounds, or commits a fault.
  5. A fault occurs when the ball is hit out of bounds, doesn’t clear the net, or is volleyed from the non-volley zone (the area within seven feet of the net, commonly known as “The Kitchen”).
  6. Points are scored when the opposing team fails to return the ball or commits a fault. The first team to reach 11 points (with a two-point lead) wins the game.
Quick video tutorial on how to play pickleball.

Where did “pickleball” come from?

Pickleball was invented in 1965 on Bainbridge Island, a small island in Washington state, USA. The game was created by three friends: Joel Pritchard, Bill Bell, and Barney McCallum, who wanted to create a new game to keep their families entertained. They combined elements from tennis, badminton, and table tennis to create a game that could be played on a smaller court with slower balls and paddles.

The game was originally named “pickleball” after the Pritchard family’s dog, Pickles, who would chase the ball and run off with it during games. However, some have also suggested that the name “pickleball” may have come from the term “pickle boat,” which refers to a boat that is made up of leftover oarsmen from other boats.

After its invention, pickleball quickly became popular on Bainbridge Island, and its popularity spread throughout the United States and eventually around the world. Today, pickleball is played in over 40 countries and is one of the fastest-growing sports in the world.

One Nation, Under Pickleball | SC Featured by ESPN