How to Start Playing Pickleball and Pickleball Etiquette

How to Start Playing Pickleball

You’ve read the hype and are ready to start playing pickleball. The problem? You’re not 100% certain about what you need to do next. So relax. Pickleball Rookie has you covered with everything you need to step onto the pickleball court this week. There are no silly questions, and we’ll keep it super basic with this Pickleball 101 lesson.

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Setting Pickleball Goals for the Remainder of the Year

pickleball goals

Pickleball is more than a recreational sport to me. I aspire to make it part of my profession; how I make money.

And I am a realist.

I am not going to be a professional pickleball player. I’m not going to make money from playing in tournaments. And, as of today, I don’t have the money to open up my dream pickleball hall that serves up draft beers, dim sum, live music, and features state-of-the-art courts.

Hey, a guy can dream.

pickleball goals

However, there has to be a way to tap into my entrepreneurial spirit and connect pickleball to my career. The seeds are this very blog that you are reading. Pickleball Rookie is my attempt to take what I know–creating content that people and search engines enjoy–and leverage the site to build relationships and uncover opportunities that help spread love for the sport. Filling my heart with joy would be nice, too.

As I approach the six-month anniversary of playing pickleball for the first time, it is time to set several goals for the remainder of the year. So here they are, laid out in public glory for all to see. That’s my brand of accountability!

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How to Keep Score in Pickleball Doubles

How to Keep Score in Pickleball

The very first time I picked up a pickleball paddle and drove down to my local tennis center to take a group lesson, the instructors warned, “you will all leave knowing how to play the game, but learning to keep score will take you months.”

Perhaps a bit of an overstatement, but I did wonder at the time if the scoring system was devised to filter out a segment of people unwilling to learn something new.

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Can You Play Pickleball on Grass?

can you play pickleball on grass

I recently chatted with a neighbor looking to add a makeshift pickleball court to his property on a limited budget. With minimal asphalt to work with, he asked me, “can you play pickleball on grass?”

My answer was abrupt, “hell no!”

But after taking a beat, I started to wonder…if the grass is short enough and the pickleball ball was swapped out for something with a bit more bounce, could it work?


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How to Increase Hand Speed to Improve Your Pickleball Game

how to increase hand speed pickleball

Are you wondering how to increase hand speed to level up your pickleball game and dominate your opponents? Or at least give yourself a fighting chance to win some points against higher-level players?

If so, you’re in luck! This blog post will explore some exercises and training advice that can help increase your hand speed. Hand speed is essential for playing well in pickleball – if you can’t hit the ball quickly, you’ll be at a disadvantage against more skilled players.

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How To Practice Pickleball Alone: Meet My Pickleball Machine

pickleball alone

When I first embarked on my pickleball journey, one of the first questions I needed to answer was how to practice pickleball alone.

Even though I come from a  recreational tennis background, the thought of showing up to the court never having held a pickleball paddle was a frightening proposition. My first step was to develop several pickleball drills to do by yourself. I started by hitting the ball against a wall in my house using nothing but some painter’s tape at the 3-foot mark to indicate the height of the net (a pickleball net is actually 34 inches high in the middle).

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How to Master the Pickleball Lob and Improve Your Game

pickleball lob

The pickleball lob shot can be the key to victory–or the reason why you aren’t invited back to play! The lob is one of the most frustrating pickleball shots for many players to defend against. This post will examine when to lob, when to avoid it, and how to execute it to perfection.

This post is about winning points and matches, not necessarily “playing nice.” While many players find the lob the “easy way out,” it can be a fantastic tactic if you pick and choose your moments. 

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Pickleball Terms and Slang for Beginners

pickleball terms

Pickleball terms and terminology don’t differ all that much from tennis and other sports. Well, except for the occasional ‘dink’ or ‘Erne!’ 🙂

The sport known as “ping pong on steroids” brings a vernacular as unique as the game itself. Here is a running list of pickleball terms to help keep you in the know.

Please let us know if we missed one of your favorite pickleball vocabulary words.

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Will a New Pickleball League Change My Game?

pickleball league

After a couple of months of attending open plays at two local facilities, I wanted to add more regularity to my pickleball play–and get a bit more competitive, so I entered my first mixed doubles pickleball league.

Even though the program is a 30-minute drive from home and runs until 10:30pm (past my usual bedtime!), it was well worth it. I’ve met some good people, had some great matches, and am learning more about America’s fastest-growing sport with each passing day.

The league kicked off with a random pairing of players. Each week, five players are grouped, and the people you play with rotate based on your standings. As the weeks unfold, you get matched with pickleballers who are closest to your skill level, determined by wins, losses, points for and points against.

Here’s a breakdown of my pickleball league experience.

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