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All Star Tennis Supply

What is Pickleball? A Brief History of This Incredibly Popular Game and its Rules

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racquet cartPickleball is often referred to as a cross between tennis, badminton, and ping pong. It is a very fast-paced sport that anyone of any age can play. Although it is a very competitive game, it is relatively easy to learn and to play. 

History of pickleball

Pickleball was invented by a former Washington Congressman, Joel Pritchard, and two of his friends, Barney McCallum and Bill Bell. In the summer of 1965, the three men went back to Pritchard's home after a round of golf. His family had nothing to do, so he suggested a game of badminton. After he was unable to find the proper equipment, the family pulled table tennis racquets from their racquet cart and some wiffle balls.

The family had so much fun that Pritchard, Bell, and McCallum started drawing up the rules the very next day. They decided to call the game "Pickleball" because Pritchard's dog was named Pickles. The dog would chase after the balls and steal them, so they started calling it "Pickle's Ball." The name was finally shortened to pickleball shortly after.

Basic rules of pickleball

Pickleball is played on a very similar court to a tennis court, just a little bit smaller. Unlike tennis, though, both singles and doubles matches are played on the same size court. The net is very similar to tennis court nets in terms of size and strong netting qualities, and the racquets you grab from the racquet cart are similar to ping pong paddles. The game can be played indoors or outdoors, so either your indoor or outdoor benches will work!

In terms of basic rules, you play on a flat surface, hit the ball over the net with the paddle, and make sure it gets to the other side on one bounce for both sides. It then gets returned to you, much like many other racquet sports. When your opponent can't return the ball, you get a point. You must score 11 points to win, but you have to win by a margin of two points.

As previously stated, pickleball was invented in 1965, making 2016 the 51st anniversary of the game. Now, more than 53 years later, more and more people are participating in the sport. Since it's so easy to learn, you can go out and try pickleball for the first time today!