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Pickleball Rules

Medha Godbole Mar 12, 2019
Pickleball is a new entrant to the league of games like badminton, tennis, and table tennis. Here's more on this game, and its rules.
The name pickleball might 'sound' spicy and true to its name, but the sport is interesting and full of zing.
It is a relatively new addition to the games involving a racquet, ball, and a net. This game, in fact, has evolved as a result of combining different aspects of the earlier mentioned games.
Pickleball is a racquet sport, and is played on a court having the same dimensions as a badminton court.
In fact, some other aspects of badminton too have been incorporated into this game. It is played using a hard paddle and a wiffle ball.
In addition to that, the net is lower than most other racquet sports, which facilitates faster play. The size of the court is 20 x 44 feet, almost akin to badminton, for both doubles and singles.

Vertical and Horizontal

These are the lines on the pickleball court. To begin with, the baseline is at the back of the court, and if any ball bounces past this line, it is considered to be out.
A player has to stand behind this line for a serve to be held as valid. The baselines and sidelines should be painted to make the dimension of the court visible, and to easily recognize if the ball falls outside the line.

Non-volley Zone

This is one basic rule which distinguishes pickleball from other racquet sports. This refers to a line at a distance of 7 feet from the net. Hitting the ball before it bounces if your foot is on or between this line and the net, or stumbling into this zone after hitting the ball, is not permitted.

A Handful of Serves

The player on the right has to serve first. The ball has to touch the paddle below the waist by an underhand motion. Further, the ball has to land in the court area diagonally, past the non-volley line.
The server has to hit the ball without bouncing it first. For being just to the players, only the first player can serve during the first service of the game.

Give it Back to Them

The team or a single player receiving the serve has to let the ball bounce before the serve is returned.
To move on, the team or player serving has to let the ball bounce before they hit it back. This implies that there has to be 2 bounces during the first 2 hits of the rally, called the double bounce rule.

What is the Score?

A team scores when it wins a rally which it served. After a team or a single player wins a point, the players switch sides. Then, the serve comes from the other court. The team scoring 11 points first wins.
To add to all this, there is a norm that if the server has an even number score, he or she will serve from the right side of the court, and from the left side of the court if the score is odd.