All I Need to Know About Life I learned from Pickleball…

There’s a reason pickleball is sweeping the nation. It’s fun, friendly, and great exercise… and there are a ton of lessons you can take from it for use in life. Pickleball Life Rules

Aim Carefully – you hit what you aim for so be careful where you point your paddle… and your life.

Know the Rules and Obey – no matter what the game, no one likes a cheat. Ignore the rules and you’ll run out of partners to play with.

Assume the best – in line calls and life, be generous of spirit and give others the benefit of the doubt. 

Help others – remember where you came from. When you see a less experienced player, offer to play them. We all start at the same level and get better with the help of those around us.

Be a good sport – it’s not whether you win or lose but how you play the game. Shake hands, say good game, and hope for better luck next time.

Practice, practice, practice. Repeat. It’s the only way you get better at anything.

Play the hand you’re given – if you’re paired with someone with less skill, take it as an opportunity to teach, practice, and learn. If you’re paired with someone who can clobber you, take the lesson in humility. The only way you won’t learn something is if you don’t play cuz’ you don’t like the cards.

Slow and steady wins the race – until you’re proficient enough to have a 90% success rate with trick shots or spin stick to basics, keep it simple, keep it consistent. Basics are hard enough to master, and 75% of points are won through other players’ errors.

Announce the score loud and clear – in pickleball, and life, it’s always good to make sure everyone’s on the same page.

Poach at your own risk – unless you have a good reason and your partner’s permission, it’s easier on everyone (including you) if you just worry about yourself.

Be ready – always assume the ball (or insert life event here) is going to come to you next.

Communicate – as in relationships, doubles players can’t win without communication.

Give 100% effort 100% of the time – if you’re trying your best, you don’t need to apologize.

Smile and laugh often – humor makes life, and pickleball, a lot more fun.

Make friends.

Arrive on time.

Remember to breathe. 

Stretch.

Setting Up Pickleball is as Easy as 1-2-3

Pickleball mania is spreading! How do we know? PickleballCentral was recently contacted by a group in Dublin, Ireland who wanted to know what they needed in order to get started playing. That made us think there may be others out there who want to get started with this addictingly fun sport and need a rundown on the basics too. So, here’s what we told our friends across the Atlantic:Basket of pickleball paddles

Here’s the basic equipment you need for pickleball: net, paddles, balls, a place to play, and a desire to have the most fun you’ve had in years!

You can play indoor or outdoor, on a flat surface that’s at least 20’ x 44’. That’s the official court size, but we recommend a little extra space all around the playing area for player movement.

Pickleball courts are the same size as badminton courts, so if you have access to badminton courts you’re in luck. Tennis courts can also easily be temporarily converted, and the USAPA has an easy-to-read article on how to do that here.

If you’re converting badminton or tennis courts for your game, you don’t need to worry about nets. If you’re setting up a new court from scratch then you will want to invest in portable net systems. They cost $160-170 and can be set up and taken in down in about 5 minutes and come with a carrying bag for transport/storage.

Paddles start at about $15 per paddle for wood paddles up to $100 per paddle for top-of-the-line graphite paddles. For kids and adults new to the game and only interested in casual play, wood paddles can suffice. Adults who want to play on a regular basis generally prefer composite or graphite paddles. Composite paddles start at about $50 and graphite paddles at about $60. Generally you would want a minimum of four paddles per court.

Pickleballs for indoor use start at $12.99 per dozen.  Outdoor balls are $24.99 per dozen.

So, a low-cost set of equipment with wood paddles to get you going would cost in the range of $250.  Not too bad to get started in the fastest growing sport in the U.S., now spreading like wildfire around the rest of the world!