Pickleball is taking the U.S. by storm. It is a fun, social, and friendly sport that is easy to learn with simple rules. It can be quick, fast-paced, and competitive for experienced players. The aging Baby Boomer generation is finding pickleball to be “just right” in terms of the action and play of the game, not to mention the social aspect. At North State Resurfacing, we are experts at creating pickleball courts. Read further to learn more about the history and details of the pickleball sport.
The History of Pickleball
Pickleball has been around since the mid-1960s when it was invented on Bainbridge Island near Seattle, Washington. Joel Pritchard, Bill Bell, and Barney McCallum were three dads whose children were bored with their usual summertime activities. They are attributed to creating the sport.
The game of pickleball integrates elements of tennis, badminton, and ping-pong. It can be played both indoors and outdoors on a court the size of the court used in badminton with a modified tennis net. The gameplay is conducted following 5 key rules and played with a paddle made out of either wood or composite materials and a plastic ball with holes similar to a Wiffle ball. You can play the game either in doubles or singles. And, it can be played by all ages and skill levels.
The Popularity Of The Sport
The sport is the fastest-growing in the U.S. As of 2020, pickleball has 4.2 million players in the U.S. according to the Sports & Fitness Industry Association in their 2021 Topline Participation Report. The known places to play totaled 8,735 at the end of 2020, and the number is increasing. It is played in elementary schools, community recreation centers, and country clubs. Many cities are building pickleball courts in city parks.
So, why is pickleball so popular? To sum it up, it is an easy-to-learn paddle sport that is appropriate for players of all ages and skill levels. Plus, it is easy on the joints! You can enjoy playing the sport whether you are a beginner or more experienced.
The Pickleball Court
A pickleball court is the same size as a doubles badminton court and measures 20 x 44 feet. The same court is used for both singles and doubles play. The net height is 36 inches at the sidelines and 34 inches in the middle. The court is striped similar to a tennis court with right and left service courts and a 7-foot non-volley zone in front of the net called the “kitchen.” Courts can be constructed specifically for pickleball or converted using existing tennis or badminton courts.
Great Reasons to Play Pickleball
There are many reasons for playing pickleball. Here are just a few.
It is Healthy
Pickleball is a great exercise that uses both your mind and your body. It provides opportunities to work on balance, agility, reflexes, and hand-eye coordination, but it doesn’t put excessive strain on your body and joints. If you are over 50 and have played tennis previously and now have physical limitations, this is a great sport for you!
Easy to Learn
The rules for pickleball are simple. The paddles are large so it is fairly easy to hit the ball with a little practice. Because the court is less than half the size of a tennis court, your serves and returns don’t have to be long or precise.
It is a Social Game
The majority of pickleball players cite the sociability of the game as the reason they play. It’s easy to converse while playing because the courts are small and there isn’t as much running around as in tennis. There are a lot of opportunities to interact with the players. The game lends itself well to picking up games with strangers so you can develop or strengthen friendships on the court.
Courts Don’t Require A Lot of Space
Due to the pickleball court being just 20 feet by 40 feet, more players can enjoy the games in smaller areas than that required for a tennis court. It’s easy to have two games being played at the same time on one tennis court. The smaller size of the court also means there is less running for the players, though it is still a good cardio workout.
It is Affordable
Pickleball is fairly inexpensive. You can buy paddles at a wide range of price points. For a beginner, you can find a paddle for less than $30 and a six-pack of balls for less than $10. And, that’s all you need! Public courts are free while courts at a for-profit club aren’t.
It is for All Ages and Skill Levels
Pickleball is for everyone! All ages can take up the game from children to older adults after retirement, making it a popular family activity. Just make sure your doctor says it is OK as an exercise for you.
All skill levels can play. It’s easy to learn, especially if you have ever played ping-pong, badminton, or tennis. So, you can find a wide range of players with different skill levels on any pickleball court. Some players will be better than others, but everyone has fun. Pickleball offers something for everyone.
Contact North State Resurfacing
Contact North State Resurfacing if you are considering creating a pickleball court out of a tennis court or from scratch. We are the experts you need to advise you on your best options, give us a call at (919) 877-6821!