It’s true. There are only 5 pretty simple things you have to do to get started playing pickleball. Everything else?
These five steps assume that your community does not simply offer pickleball lessons through their Parks and Recreation District or through some other entity. Contact them first. If you can get lessons, the lesson-givers usually provide equipment for first-time users, like paddles and balls, and have already secured a place to play. That will take care of most of the list right there!
However, if the above isn’t possible, do these things. We assume here you have a group of maybe four willing to participate, but two will do.
First, use this site. All content that we own is free to use for non-commercial purposes. Or if you want to involve yourself further, sign up for free newsletters and other cools stuff. No worries, we never give out our list, it only takes a few seconds, so let’s get step #1 done now, shall we?
Second, log in and spend a little time here familiarizing yourself with basic rules and with watching a video or two on the game. Go here to do that. It’s easy to get carried away and check out the top players and some excellent finals matches in the big tournaments, but for right now stay with the basics, OK? Although the basics could include watching Alan Christensen’s Beginner Strategy video….
Third, find a place to play. You can check out the USAPA’s places to play section to see if there’s a place to play in your community. If you cannot find a place to play, you can create one. Go here for the necessary info, including info on how to create a temporary court.
Fourth, get the equipment you need. The big-box sporting-goods stores nearby generally have beginner-ish pickleball stuff, but it wouldn’t hurt to call your local tennis shop and ask them – these days they often either have pickleball stuff themselves or know where you can get it. The equipment consists of the correct shoes (almost any running or court shoe will do), paddles and a few balls…three will suffice.
Fifth, get out there and hit a few balls. Start at the Non-Volley Zone doing what is called “dinking” to warm up and get a feel for the ball. Then move back and hit from about mid-court to each other. Then go to the baseline (the furthest point back) and hit longer shots to each other. Look into the “drills” sections for advice as to how to do these things. Then play a game. If there are only two of you, divide the court into halves and play diagonally to each other (not straight across). In this case all balls must stay in the diagonal box of your opponent when you hit and same for them. Don’t worry too much about how to score. or any rules except two. Serve underhand and read up on the “two-bounce” rule and follow those two. Otherwise just get a feel for it.
Sounds too easy? It is easy, and you can’t really make a mistake. It’s only pickelball, after all!
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