Pickleball Rules: A Beginner's Guide to the Fast-Growing Sport

Pickleball Rules: A Beginner's Guide to the Fast-Growing Sport

Introduction to Pickleball

Pickleball is a fun and exciting racket sport that can be played both indoors and outdoors on a court about the size of a badminton court. It is played with a paddle and a plastic ball with holes, similar to a wiffle ball, making it accessible to players of all ages and abilities.

Court and Equipment

A standard pickleball court measures 20 feet wide by 44 feet long and is divided into halves by a net. The court includes a non-volley zone, or "kitchen," located 7 feet from the net on either side, where players are not allowed to volley the ball.

Players use solid paddles made of wood, graphite, or composite materials to hit the ball over the net. The ball must have a diameter of 2.87 to 2.97 inches and weigh between 0.78 and 0.935 ounces.

Scoring and Gameplay

Pickleball is typically played as doubles, with two players on each side of the net, although singles play is also common. The game begins with one side serving the ball diagonally to the opponent's court, with the serve alternating between teams after each point.

Points are scored only by the serving team, and games are typically played to 11 points, with the winning team needing to win by at least two points. The serving team must continue to serve until they commit a fault, such as hitting the ball out of bounds or into the net.

Rules and Etiquette

Players must abide by certain rules and etiquette to ensure fair play and sportsmanship. For example, players must allow the ball to bounce once on each side before volleying it in the non-volley zone, known as the "two-bounce rule."

Other rules govern service, faults, and out-of-bounds shots. Additionally, players are expected to adhere to good sportsmanship, respect their opponents, and maintain a positive attitude throughout the game.