Pickleball is an up and coming sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton, and ping pong. It is played both indoors and outdoors on a badminton-sized court using a slightly modified tennis net. It is played using a paddle and a plastic ball.
This game came about when Congressman Joel Pritchard and some of his friends found their families bored one Sunday afternoon in 1965 and they could not locate the correct materials to play badminton so they improvised. The naming of the sport has two different stories; it could have been because Mrs.Pritchard was reminded of the pickle boat in Crew that was made up of leftover oarsmen or because of the Pritchard’s dog, Pickles, who would chase the ball and run off with it.
General Information about the Program: Equipment: There is a specific Pickleball paddle needed for the purpose of this game (smaller than a tennis racket and larger than a ping pong paddle) and a waffle ball is used as well. All of these materials will be provided by the Recreation Department. Apparel: Tennis styled clothing is typically worn for this sport, however, any athletic apparel is appropriate. Players may also wear hats, visors, safety glasses, sweatbands, light jackets or sweatshirts. Games: This program will begin June 21st from 7-9 and continue for a six week period. Games will be played in doubles and teams will be formed based on the attendance on that specific day.
Courts: The Pickleball court is a 20 by 44 foot court. Each side of the 36 inch net is 15 feet cut in half by a 7 foot “non-volley” zone in front of the net. On each side of the court there is a non-volley line, baseline, centerline, and sideline. The centerline cuts the court in half with two 10 foot areas on each side, the left service area and the right service area. For this program we will be constructing courts out of the new Franklin High School tennis courts.
Overview of the rules (All rules can be found on the USAPA official website)
Pickleball is played either as doubles (two players per team) or singles; for of this program doubles will be played. The same size playing area and rules are used for both doubles and singles.
- The serve must be made underhand.
- Paddle contact with the ball must be below the servers waist level
- The serve is initiated with at least one foot behind the baseline; neither foot may come in contact with the baseline or court until after the ball is struck.
- The serve is made diagonally crosscourt and must land within the confines of the opposite diagonal court.
- Only one serve attempt is allowed, except in the event of a let (the ball touches the net on the serve and lands on the proper service court; let serves are replayed).
- Both players on the serving doubles team have the opportunity to serve and score points until they commit a fault *(except for the first service sequence of a new game)
- The first serve of each side-out is made from the right hand court.
- If a point is scored the server switches sides and the server initiates the next serve from the left-hand court.
- As subsequent points are scored, the server continues switching back and forth until a fault is committed and the first server loses the serve.
- When the first server loses the serve the partner then serves from their correct side of the court *(expect for the first service sequence of the game).
- The second server continues serving until their team commits a fault and loses the serve to the opposing team.
- Once the service goes to the opposition (at side out), the first serve is from right-hand court and both players on that team have the opportunity to serve and score points until their team commits two faults.
*At the beginning of each new game only one partner on the serving team has the opportunity to serve before faulting, after which the service passes to the receiving team.
- Points are scored only by the serving team.
- Games are normally played to 11 points, win by 2.
- Tournament games may be to 15 or 21, win by 2.
- When the serving team’s score is even (0,2,4,6,8,10) the player who was the first server in the game for that team will be in the right-side court when serving or receiving; when odd (1,3,5,7,9) that player will be on the left-side court when serving or receiving.
- Scores will be kept track of and games will be refereed by employees of the Franklin Recreation Department.
- When the ball is served, the receiving team must let it bounce before returning, and then the serving team must let it bounce before returning; thus two bounces.
- After the ball has bounced once in each team’s court, both teams may either volley the ball (hit the ball before it bounces) or play it off a bounce (ground stroke).
- The double bounce rule eliminates the serve and volley advantage and extends the rallies.
- The non-volley zone in the court is the 7 feet on either side of the net.
- Volleying is prohibited within the non-volley zone preventing players from executing smashes from a position within the zone.
- It is a fault if, when volleying a ball, the player steps on the non-volley zone, including the line and/or when the players momentum causes them or anything they are wearing or carrying to touch the non-volley zone, including the associated lines.
- It is a fault if, after volleying, a player is carried by momentum into or touches the non-volley zone, even if the volleyed ball is declared dead before this happens.
- A player may legally be in the non-volley zone any time other then when the ball is being volleyed.
- The non-volley zone is commonly referred to as “the kitchen”.
- A ball contacting any line, except the non-volley zone line on a serve, is considered “in”.
- A serve contacting the non-volley zone line is both short and a fault.
- A fault is any action that stops play because of a rule violation.
- A fault by the receiving team results in a point for the serving team.
- A fault by the serving team results in the server’s loss of serve or side out.
- A fault occurs when:
- A serve does not land within the confines of the receiving court.
- The ball is hit into the net on the serve or any return.
- The ball is volleyed before a bounce has occurred on each side.
- The ball is hit out of bounds.
- A ball is volleyed from the non-volley zone.
- A ball bounces twice before being struck by the receiver.
- A player, player’s clothing, or any part of a player’s paddle touches the net or the net post when the ball is in play.
- There is a violation of a service rule.
- A ball in play strikes a player or anything the player is wearing or carrying.
- A ball in play strikes any permanent object before bouncing on the court.
- A serve does not land within the confines of the receiving court.
Determining the Serving Team:
Players use a coin toss to determine who will serve first. The winner of the coin toss will have the option to choose side or to serve or receive.