What is Pickleball?Pickleball is a paddle sport played with a whiffle ball on a badminton-sized court and a tennis-style net. A non-volley zone (or kitchen) prevents volleys close to the net, and the serving team cannot volley the return of serve. These unique rules favor players with less mobility and allow senior players to compete successfully with younger competitors.
The History of Pickleball
Pickleball was created during the summer of 1965 on Bainbridge Island - a short ferry ride from Seattle, WA. The original purpose of the game was to provide a sport for the entire family, according to co-inventors U.S. Congressman Joel Pritchard, William Bell, and Barney McCallum.
Pickles was the family dog that would chase after the errant balls and then hide in the bushes, thus Pickle's ball which was later shortened to the namesake of Pickleball. Initially, families played Pickleball in their backyards on a hard surface, on driveways, and on residential dead-end streets. Since the mid-1970's, Pickleball has grown and expanded from a family activity game to a paddle court sport with formalized rules. Now, over 20 years later, Pickleball is played in thousands of school P.E. programs, parks and recreation centers, correctional facilities, camps, YMCAs and retirement communities. This sport is becoming very popular among active senior adults at community centers and is growing in popularity on high school and college campuses.
Find Additional information at - USA Pickleball Association.
The Pickleball Ball
A pickleball is similar to a whiffle ball but it is more durable. Common whiffle balls will split apart during a game of pickleball.
There are currently no rules governing what type of pickleball is played indoors or outdoors or the color of the ball. In our experience most people prefer playing outside with the small-holed, hard plastic Dura, TOP, or ONIX ball and so we've come to calling these balls "outdoor" balls.
Similarly, most people prefer playing indoors with the large holed Jugs or Big Hole Dura Ball, so we've come to calling these balls "indoor balls".
Ball choice is a matter of preference. Pickleball communities develop a preference for a particular brand and color of ball. Be warned, people feel strongly about their balls. Make sure and check what ball your community uses so you don't show up with the "wrong ball".
To learn more than you ever wanted to know about pickleball balls read our Ball Selection Guide.
The paddle is similar to a ping pong paddle in that it is solid and easily maneuverable with a turn of the wrist. When game was invented, wooden paddles were used and are still used at many institutions due to lower cost. The best quality paddles are made of lightweight fiberglass due to their lower weight and higher durability. Our champion fiberglass paddles come in a variety of bright colors.
Two of our most popular items are the Champion PolyPro 2-paddle Bundle and the Rally PX Graphite 2-paddle Bundle. Both bundles include two paddles, 4 balls, and a bag to carry it all.
The game itself is played on a court that is the same size as a badminton court (20 feet wide by 44 feet long). The net is set at 36 inches high on the edges and 34 inches in the middle.
Pickleball's small court allows younger players or those with varying degrees of mobility to participate in a way that the larger court of tennis sometimes prohibits. Additionally, a rule prohibiting volleying (hitting the ball in the air) in the non-volley zone (the space 7 feet from the net) helps to equalize play and reduce overpowering smashes at the net.
Pickleball has become a common high school sport in gym classes and has gained popularity with teenagers as well as seniors. Schools often host tournaments. In New York State alone, it is estimated that over 500 schools include Pickleball in their curricula.
We offer several type of complete pickleball sets. The prices vary depending on the type of paddles included in the set. Wood paddles are the least expensive. Graphite are the most expensive. With a complete pickleball set you have everything you need to set up a pickleball court and play anywhere there's a hard surface, like a driveway, gym, cul-de-sac, parking lot or school yard.
Here's some of our most popular sets:
Rally Meister Set include:
- a portable net system with carrying bag
- four Rally Meister wood paddles
- four pickleballs
Rally Flare Graphite Set includes:
- a portable net with carrying bag,
- four Rally Flare graphite paddles,
- four pickleballs,
- pickleball duffel bag,
- the Official Rule Book!