July 26, 2023

Pickleball: The Rules in a Nutshell

Pickleball is a fast-paced and increasingly popular sport that features a unique combination of tennis, badminton, and ping-pong. Offering a thrilling and enjoyable experience, the sport is ideal for people of all ages and skill levels. Whether you’re a beginner trying to familiarize yourself with the game or a seasoned athlete looking for a new challenge, pickleball provides an excellent opportunity to stay active and have fun. 


What is Pickleball?


Invented by Joel Pritchard, Bill Bell, and Barney McCallum in the mid-1960s, pickleball originally started as a casual backyard game. Over the years, it has evolved into a competitive sport with people around the world playing and enjoying the game. Typically played on a court similar to a badminton court, the sport can be enjoyed both indoors and outdoors.


The equipment used in pickleball includes a perforated plastic ball that resembles a whiffle ball and a paddle with a size larger than a ping-pong paddle but smaller than a tennis racket. The game can be played in singles or doubles.

Player Eligibility


Anyone can play pickleball, which is why it has become a popular sport among people of all ages and abilities throughout the world. The huge court size gives new players enough room to move around and explore, while the lightweight paddles make it easy for children to play the game without exerting so much effort.


Pickleball Rules


The rules of pickleball are pretty straightforward. If you are trying to learn the sport, here are the basic concepts you need to be familiar with.


1. Serving


The game starts with an underhand serve, and the server must stand behind the baseline. The ball must bounce once on the serving side and then once on the receiving side before players can volley (hit the ball in the air) or play it off the bounce. Both teams get two serves each, with the first server serving from the right-hand court.


2. Double Bounce Rule


After the serve, each team must allow the ball to bounce once on their side before volleying it back to the opponents. Once both sides have played the ball off the bounce, the rest of the rally can be played with volleys or groundstrokes.


3. Non-Volley Zone


Also known as the “Kitchen,” this area is a seven-foot zone on both sides of the net. Players are not allowed to volley the ball while standing inside this zone. However, they can step into the zone after the ball has bounced on their side.


4. Faults


Common faults include stepping into the Non-Volley Zone during a volley, hitting the ball out of bounds, and failing to clear the net during a serve. A fault results in a point for the opposing team.

Scoring and Winning the Game


Pickleball games are typically played to 11 points, and a player or team must reach 11 points with a two-point advantage in order to win. In some cases, pickleball matches are played in a best-of-three games format, where the player or team to win two out of three games is declared the winner.


Whether you are a beginner or an experienced player, pickleball is a fun and exciting game to play with friends or strangers. By familiarizing yourself with the key concepts and rules discussed above, you can be ready to win a game! So grab your paddle, head to the court, and enjoy the thrilling experience that is pickleball.

YELLO Athletic Clubs!

Coming to Austin and Houston in 2024, we created Yello for people who like their fitness with a healthy dose of fun.  Whether that means working up a sweat under a barbell, rallying on a reservable indoor pickleball court, sipping a postworkout coffee or cocktail with friends, or all of the above, Yello is here for it.

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by Bobby J Davidson

I love our companies  and we love what we do.  For more information on the Davidson Family of Companies, visit www.bobbydavidson.com/about.