Noise Suppression for Pickleball Courts

As the game of pickleball grows in popularity, one of the issues that frequently comes up is the issue of the noise from the paddles hitting the balls.

Some communities require quiet paddles and balls.  Sun City Grand has developed a list of pickleball paddles that are approved based on the “noise” factor. Paddles in the “red zone” are not allowed.

Some communities put up noise-reducing fencing.

Acoustifence

Acoustifence

In San Tan Valley, Arizona, a developer has made a remarkable plan to mitigate the noise from the game of pickleball.  First the court will be set 8 feet into the ground. Second, there will be 2 levels of walls tilted outward, so that all bounce sounds deflect straight up from the court.  Third, there will be up to a six foot mound of dirt on top of the walls, and bushes will be planted on top of the mound!  This seems like the perfect plan to allow for pickleball to be played without the noise problem for homeowners nearby.

Sunken pickleball court

Court with walls for noise abatement

The pickleball community members in San Tan Valley are delighted that their 8 brand new courts will be designed and built with the whole community in mind.  Unfortunately, lighting will not be provided for these beautiful, sound-proofed courts.  That means the pickleball folks won’t be able to play during peak playing hours in the early evening.

These folks are asking for suggestions on how to make their request for lighting more “desirable” to the developer.  If you have any suggestions, I’d love to pass them on.

Let us know if noise has been an issue and how you found solutions in your community.

I look forward to hearing from you!

2 thoughts on “Noise Suppression for Pickleball Courts

  1. Look. You don’t do major surgery for a simple fix. Unless cost is no issue. In Pickleball, noise emanates from two sources.
    One is the equipment and the other is the people so engaged in playing it. The equipment you can do something about but the people, there’s not much apart from teaching them etiquette, hopefully.
    The serious competitive ones tend not to generate undue amounts of laughter and paddle clicks every single time, like the casual recreational ones. People generally need to learn not to be intrusive while having fun. That is a definite turnoff by being uncouth.
    As far as the equipment goes, if you think about it there are hundreds of different paddles by numerous brands. Yet there is only one ball of various grades and colors, not nearly as numerous. What would you modify? All those paddles or the one ball. I air on the side of the ball.
    It’s cost effective and easily accomplished.
    Now you don’t generate that intrusive sound of pit a pat and maybe some players will then learn to be quieter. It’s just plain being civilized, to live and let live. All you have to do is try.

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  2. Having worked in collegiate recreation for over 40 years, I recommend Musco lighting (based in Iowa with regional representatives) who can direct lighting directly on the courts with no spillover. This is the company that does the NASCAR tracks and much of the temporary lighting for college football stadiums. Highly recommended.

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