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Improving communities through sport

Pickleball

Guest post written by Cameron Connelly, Content Marketing Intern, The Sports Facilities Companies. 

Pickleball. I have to assume you have heard of it by now. Although it was created in 1965, pickleball gained popularity back in 2013 and slowly started taking over a few tennis courts around the country. But in 2021, pickleball started growing to new heights. With an even greater surge of new players interested in playing pickleball, facilities started converting even more of their tennis courts to accommodate for the increase in demand for pickleball courts. The growing popularity of the sport even sparked the development of dedicated pickleball facilities and pickleball-themed restaurants with several courts attached. There is no stopping pickleball’s growth now, so it may be time to implement a court at your sports complex or recreation center.

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Pickleball is Fun ‘n’ Easy

Pickleball combines the ball from wiffle ball, the paddles from ping pong, the court and net of tennis, and the rules of badminton to form a completely new sport. And although it plays completely different than those sports, it still feels as though any experience with those sports makes it easier to transition into pickleball. And like all the sports that it borrows from, it can be played at varying intensities so that some games may require more running around while others may be played with less movement. Pickleball is accessible because the rules and pace of play are simple enough to quickly become proficient but also complicated enough to offer a challenge. An experienced player who invites their friend to play for the first time might expect to crush them in every game, but in reality they could be competitive with each other after just a single game.

Pickleball is Accessible

When listening to someone explain the rules for the first time it will likely sound a little complicated but when you are playing it quickly becomes clearer. Pickleball is like an enigma in that it is both simple and complicated, easy and challenging, and demanding but also relaxing. If you were to watch some of the games being played at the highest level, you would see that it can go from a slow and patient volley to a fast and chaotic series of spikes in an instant. It is a game that can easily be adapted to the person playing it so that someone of any skill or fitness level can quickly pick it up and have a great time.

Pickleball Court Requirements

A pickleball court is about half the size of a tennis court and if you are repurposing a tennis court into a pickleball court you should be able to put four pickleball courts per tennis court. Each court measures 44 feet long and 20 feet wide with a 7 foot zone on each side of the net called the “kitchen”. The net that runs across the middle of the court has a height of 36 inches and lines the ground much like a tennis court’s net. Many of the courts are outdoor either on top of or near the current tennis courts. However, pickleball can also be played indoors. Just last month our very own Hoover Met Complex hosted an indoor pickleball tournament with over 700 players. With so many new people trying out pickleball each week, it is becoming more and more important to offer pickleball at your sports facility or recreation center. People are eager to try something new, or continue to dominate in something that they have found a passion for, and they are willing to travel to do so.

If you are thinking about converting some of your tennis or basketball courts to accommodate pickleball then now is the time to do it. And if you are thinking about building a new facility and incorporating a dedicated pickleball area and you have any questions then feel free to contact us at 727-474-3845.

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