|Highest governing body||World Pickleball Federation|
|Nickname(s)||Pickle"s Ball. Later changed to Pickleball|
|First played||1965, Bainbridge Island, Washington|
|Team members||Singles or doubles|
|Categorization||racquet sport - Paddle Sport|
|Country or region||United States, Canada, India|
The sport is played on a court with the same dimensions as a doubles badminton court. The net is similar to a tennis net, but is mounted two inches lower. The game is played with a hard paddle and a polymer smaller version of a wiffle ball.
Pickleball is similar to tennis, but with differences. A pickleball ball typically moves at one-third of the average speed of a tennis ball and the court is just under one-third of the total area of a tennis court.
Originally invented as a backyard pastime, pickleball is now an organized sport represented by national and international governing bodies. The United States Pickleball Association estimates there are more than 100,000 active pickleball players in that country. In Canada, where the game is still relatively new, there are more than 5,000 players in four provinces: British Columbia, Alberta, Quebec, and Ontario. Meanwhile organizations like the Singapore Pickleball Association and the All India Pickleball Association are bringing the game to Asia.
The game started during the summer of 1965 on Bainbridge Island, Washington at the home of then State Representative Joel Pritchard (who, in 1970, was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives for the State of Washington). He and two of his friends, Bill Bell and Barney McCallum, returned from golf and found their families bored one Saturday afternoon. They attempted to set up badminton but no one could find the shuttlecock. They improvised with a whiffle ball, lowered the badminton net, and fabricated paddles of plywood from a nearby shed.
The unusual name of the game originated with Joan Pritchard, who said it reminded her of the "Pickle Boat in crew where oarsmen were chosen from the leftovers of other boats." The popular story told today is that it was named after the family dog. Joan corrected this story in interviews but the story persists. As the story is told, the whiffle ball belonged to the dog. Whenever an errant shot happened, Pickles would run and try to get the ball and hide it. They named the game for their dog’s ball, “Pickles’ Ball”, then it became Pickleball. The truth is the Pritchard family didn't get the dog until 1967, so actually, the dog was named after the sport.
The pickleball court is similar to a doubles badminton court. The actual size of the court is 20×44 feet for both doubles and singles. The net is hung at 36 inches on the ends, and 34 inches in the middle. The court is striped like a tennis court, with no alleys; but the outer courts, and not the inner courts, are divided in half by service lines. The inner courts are non-volley zones and extend 7 feet from the net on either side.:11
The ball is served underhand from behind the baseline, diagonally to the opponent’s service zone.
Points are scored by the serving side only and occur when the opponent faults (fails to return the ball, hits ball out of bounds, steps into the 'kitchen' area [the first seven feet from the net, also known as the non-volley zone] in the act of volleying the ball, etc.). A player may enter the non-volley zone to play a ball that bounces, and may stay there to play balls that bounce.:A-22 The player must exit the non-volley zone before playing a volley. The first side scoring 11 points and leading by at least two points wins.
The return of service must be allowed to bounce by the server (the server and partner in doubles play); i.e. cannot be volleyed. Consequently, the server or server and partner usually stay at the baseline until the first return has been hit back and bounced once.
In doubles play, at the start of the game, the serving side gets only one fault before their side is out, and the opponents begin their serve. After this, each side gets 2 faults (one with each team member serving) before their serve is finished. Thus, each side is always one serve ahead or behind, or tied.
In singles play, each side gets only one fault before a side out and the opponent then serves. The server's score will always be even (0, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10...) when serving from the right side, and odd (1, 3, 5, 7, 9...) when serving from the left side (singles play only).:A-15
|This section needs additional citations for verification. (October 2009)|
- Baseline — The line at the back of the pickleball court (22 feet from the net).:A-4
- Centerline — The line bisecting the service courts that extends from the non-volley line to the baseline.:A-4
- Crosscourt — The opponent's court diagonally opposite yours.
- Dink — A dink is a soft shot, made with the paddle face open, and hit so that it just clears the net and drops into the non-volley zone.:52
- Fault — An infringement of the rules that ends the rally.:xxii
- Foot fault — Stepping on or into the non-volley zone while volleying a ball, or, while serving, failure to keep both feet behind the baseline with at least one foot in contact with the ground or floor when the paddle contacts the ball.:xxii,61,A-11
- Half-volley - A type of hit where the player hits the ball immediately after it has bounced in an almost scoop-like fashion.
- Let serve — A serve that touches the top of the net and lands in the proper service court (it is replayed without penalty).
- Non-volley zone — A seven-foot area adjacent to the net within which you may not volley the ball. The non-volley zone includes all lines around it.:A-4 Also called the "kitchen"
- Poach — In doubles, to cross over into your partner's area to play a ball.
- Rally — Hitting the ball back and forth between opposite teams.
- Serve (Service) — An underhand lob or drive stroke used to put a ball into play at the beginning of a point.
- Server number — When playing doubles, either “1” or “2,” depending on whether you are the first or second server for your side. This number is appended to the score when it is called. As in, the score is now 4 - 2 - second server.
- Sideline — The line at the side of the court denoting in- and out-of-bounds.:A-4
- Volley — To hit the ball before it bounces.
- Players - 2 or 4
- Pritchard, Joan: Origins of Pickleball, http://www.newsandsentinel.com/page/content.detail/id/507610.html?nav=5055
- Baurick, Tristan: The Doggone Lies About Pickleball, http://pugetsoundblogs.com/bainbridge-conversation/2009/01/16/the-doggone-lies-about-pickleball/
- Leach, Gale H.: The Art of Pickleball, Second Edition, Acacia Publishing, 2008.
- History of Pickleball
- Quick Definition of Pickleball includes Video
- Pickleball International
- World Pickleball Federation
- USA Pickleball Association
- Pickleball Canada
- Canadian Pickleball Federation
- Fédération québécoise de pickleball
- Spanish Pickleball Association
- All India Pickleball Association
- PoachPB - Pickleball Tips, Strategies, Videos, and More