"You played WHAT today?"
"Oh yeah, my parents love Pickleball"
It's one of those two responses when I tell my friends I play Pickleball. I explain to them it's a combination of tennis, badminton and racquetball. Most of the players are over 50 years old. It's named after a dog or a boat, not sure though.
About 15 years ago, a couple friends and I played racquetball at the apartment complex one of them lived in. We played pickup games with the other players. They were 20 years older than us, so we thought we'd run circles around them.
We signed up for a tournament there and quickly realized we were running circles around them, but not scoring points. We were sweating through our shirts and they were hitting the balls to every corner in the place with smiles on their faces.
They understood strategy and technique, we didn't. We liked hitting the ball hard and going for the putaway. None of us lasted long in the tournament, but it left a mark that reminds me of The Tortoise and the Hare. Slow and steady wins the race.
Sure, it's fun to hit the slam in Pickleball, but for me the drop shot, and dink is what the winners hit.
Do you hit a dink or go for the slam? Why?
© Quick Pickle 2017
Last week, the USAPA rolled out their new player rating system. The UTPR (USAPA Tournament Player Ratings) was established to have a more accurate assessment of all players.
With the previous or legacy system, the ratings were based on tournament directors and each player’s own ratings. (Surely no one would play down a level, would they?)
With tournaments getting bigger and more players entering the sport, it became difficult to track everyone correctly.
The UTPR is comprised using up to 3 years of tournament history from pickleballtournaments.com. It’s based on past performance and will help in seeding future tournaments.
I was playing doubles recently and had a match against a couple former tennis players new to Pickleball. I’ve shared some stats about the Tennis to Pickleball migration on our Instagram account and how great it is to see firsthand.
Our opponents as former tennis players were used to driving the ball but didn’t have much experience with the soft game.
“Dinking? What is that?”
Not being one to give unsolicited advice, I let them play using their banger or slammer techniques.
What do you do when playing against a banger?
There’s a debate going on in Pickleball whether we should change from Side Out scoring to Rally Scoring. Not sure what the difference is?
Rally Scoring is a scoring method where points can be won by the serving or receiving team
Side Out Scoring is a format of scoring where points can be won only by the serving team