How to Play Pickleball – America’s Fastest Growing Sport

how to play pickleball

Join over 4.8 million participants nationwide and learn how to play pickleball. It’s easy to learn and play, helps improve and maintain physical fitness and best of all, it’s a fun way to socialize! With a growth rate of almost 40% between 2019 and 2021, The Sports & Fitness Industry Association named it the fastest growing American sport in 2022.

Why Pickleball Is So Popular

Pickleball has been described as a combination of tennis, badminton and ping-pong. The court is smaller than a tennis court so pickleball can be played indoors or outdoors. It was invented in 1965 in Washington state, by three middle-aged fathers whose children were bored with their usual summertime activities.

The increasing popularity of pickleball is understandable as it’s one of the few sports that can be picked up fairly quickly and enjoyed by the whole family. According to USA Pickleball, “52% of core players are 55 or older while 79% of casual players are 54 or younger”. From children 6 and over to seniors over 65, almost anyone can learn to play and enjoy pickleball. Because of the smaller court and slower pace, playing pickleball is a positive social experience for most people and keeps them coming back to play again and again.

How to Play Pickleball

Pickleball can be played as doubles or singles. The same rules apply either way.

  • The ball is served underhanded, and the paddle cannot contact the ball above the waist during the serve. The serve goes diagonally to the opponent’s side of the court
  • The serve cannot land in the no-volley zone or hit the kitchen line, or it is considered a fault
  • If a serve hits the net but lands properly on your opponent’s side of the court beyond the no-volley zone line, it is a live ball and played off the net without stopping play.
  • Points are only scored by the serving side and occur when the opponent fails to return the ball in bounds to the server’s side of the court
  • The serve and return of service must be allowed to bounce on the court before being returned
  • You can only volley when standing beyond the no-volley zone or kitchen line after the serve and service return have been completed
  • The game is played to 11 but must be won by at least two points

pickleball court layout

See the complete list of pickleball rules and the 2021 “let” rule change.

There are also adaptive/wheelchair rules for pickleball.

Where to Play Pickleball

There are over 10,000 places to play pickleball in the U.S. as of early 2022 but with the explosion in interest, that number is growing by over 100 new locations each month.

If you are looking for a pickleball court location nearby, a simple internet search will probably find at least one. If you have any trouble locating a court, you can use the USA Pickleball Places 2 Play website to find one by city, state, zip code or location name.

Epcon Communities

Imagine being able to play pickleball with your friends and neighbors in your own community. Epcon Communities builds in locations around the country and some of our communities include amenities such as tennis and pickleball courts. Our low-maintenance lifestyle frees up time for you to enjoy the activities and people that make your life more complete.

Our luxury ranch homes offer single-level living with floorplans from 1,300 to over 3,000 square feet with 2-4 bedrooms. Most of our communities include resort-style amenities, so you’re sure to find plenty of ways to stay in shape, socialize with friends and enjoy life!

If you’re planning on buying a new home in a 55+ community and are ready to make your lifestyle dreams come true, contact Epcon Communities. We’ll help you find the perfect home and community for your lifestyle!

Epcon Communities Clubhouse Pickleball Court