Full guide to the rules and where to play

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If you haven’t heard of pickleball, you might be one of the few.

Considered one of fastest growing sports in the countrypickleball is taking over the sports complexes of metro Phoenix and sites dedicated to the game are opening up all over the valley.

A mix of badminton, table tennis and tennis, pickleball is played with a paddle and a lightweight plastic ball and can be played indoors or outdoors. You can play just for fun or participate in competitive leagues.

Whether you’re looking to learn a new sport, get some exercise, or have a good time with friends, here’s the ultimate guide to pickleball in Phoenix.

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Dimensions of the pickleball court

The pickleball courts are 44 feet long and 20 feet wide for singles and doubles play. The net measures 36 inches high at the posts and 34 inches in the center.

By comparison, tennis courts are 78 feet long and 27 feet wide for singles play. For doubles play, the court is 36 feet wide. The tennis courts are 42 inches at the post and 36 inches at the center.

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How to Choose the Best Pickleball Paddle

A box of pickleball equipment inspired Burkhart to play and involve others in the game.

Next, you will need a pickleball racket.

The racket is smaller than a tennis racket but larger than a table tennis racket. These solid surface paddles are 15-17 inches long and 7-8 inches wide.

You will also need lightweight perforated balls, similar to wiffle balls.

Depending on your skill level and how much you want to spend, you can select paddles that give you control over your speed, feel, and power. Paddles and balls can be purchased online or at sporting goods stores.

A quick check of Amazon showed two-paddle sets with balls for $31-$70 and four-paddle sets with balls for $39-$89. At Dick’s Sporting Goods, you can find sets at similar prices; individual paddles cost between $59 and $179. At Walmart.com, you can get a set of two paddles with balls for $22.

What are the basic rules of pickleball?

Pickleball is played in doubles or singles. The same rules apply for both. Here is a summary of the pickleball rules according to PickleballExperts.com:

  1. You must stand behind the baseline of the correct service court to start a game. Once you start playing, you must alternate the service court behind which you stand to serve.
  2. When you serve the ball, you must serve below and diagonally towards the opponent’s service court without bouncing it off the court.
  3. You can only score a point by serving and when your opponent hits the ball out of bounds or touches the net. You can continue to serve until you foul.
  4. Once the serve is hit, wait for the serve to bounce off your court before returning it. It may bounce once before you can put it back on your paddle.
  5. The first side scoring 11 points and leading by at least 2 points wins. You must win by 2 points.
  6. After the serve, each side must make at least one groundstroke before flying the ball (hitting it before it bounces).

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Telephone Pioneer Park in Phoenix has outdoor pickleball courts.

Pickleball lessons in the Phoenix metro

Here are three places where you can take pickleball lessons and join leagues. Many cities have courts, courts, and leagues; check with your city’s recreation department.

temple: The city offers beginner and intermediate courses at $35 for four sessions. Learn more about https://www.tempe.gov.

Scottsdale: The city offers courses from beginner to advanced level. You can also see all public courts at https://www.scottsdaleaz.gov.

Seidwinder Pickleball: Private lessons for young people and adults are offered at the Phoenician station. You don’t need to be a resort guest to join. Learn more about https://www.dinkpositive.com.

Pickleball courts in the Phoenix metro area

Phoenix operates 23 indoor and 38 outdoor public pickleball courts. A recreational member pass is required for use of the indoor gymnasium. The outdoor courts are free.

An adult day pass is $2 and a youth pass is $1. Annual passes are available for Phoenix residents: $20 for adults, $5 for youth. For non-residents, the fees are $40 and $10.

Information: https://www.phoenix.gov/parks/classes-and-programs.

Here is a sample of places to play:

Encanto Sports Complex

  • 2121 N. 15th Ave.
  • 602-261-8443.
  • Three. courts.
  • 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.

Paradise Valley Community Center

  • 17402 N. 40th St.
  • 602-495-3777.
  • Four gymnastic courts.
  • 9.30am-1.30pm on Mondays and Wednesdays; 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

Pecos Community Center

  • 17010 S. 48th St.
  • 602-495-5500.
  • Three gymnastic fields.
  • 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays.

Deer Valley Community Center

  • 2001 W. Wahalla Lane.
  • 602-495-3735.
  • Four gymnastic courts.
  • 12pm-3.30pm on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays; 2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. every other Saturday.

America’s Telephone Pioneer Park

  • 1946 W. Morningside Drive.
  • 602-495-3735.
  • 5:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.

Herberger Park GR

  • 5802 E. Indian School Road.
  • 602-262-6696.
  • Four courts.
  • 5:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.

For more information on Phoenix Pickleball, visit https://www.phoenix.gov. For other towns in the valley, call the recreation department or check their website.

Private companies and organizations also offer pickleball. Here are two; you can find more online.

pickleball kingdom

  • 4950 W. Ray Road, Chandler.
  • 15 courts.
  • 6am-midnight daily.
  • $15 per person per hour. There are also times when you can play three hours for $15. Details: https://pickleballkingdom.com.

FLC-Fitness

  • 5757 N. Central Ave., Phoenix.
  • 6 courts.
  • 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
  • Membership required. Details: https://flcfit.com.

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Coming soon: Electric Pickle, Chicken N Pickle

These entertainment venues are expected to open in late 2022 or 2023.

Electric pickles: There will be nine pickleball courts, a cornhole and a bocce ball. Plans include a two-story restaurant and three bars, including a rooftop bar and balcony, with seating for 600 people. Live music and gatherings can take place on the lawn outside. It will be at Jewel Street and Emerald Drive, just north of Warner Road in South Tempe.

Chicken and pickle: This entertainment complex coming from the Westgate Entertainment District in Glendale will have indoor and outdoor pickleball courts, garden games, a restaurant and a sports bar. There will be multiple dining areas, including on a rooftop, with enough space to host events.

Chicken and pickle:What to expect when this popular pickleball venue comes to the Phoenix metro area

Pickleball lessons online

Want video tutorials on how to play and strategies to help you win? There are many pickleball resources online and on YouTube.

start to United StatesPickleball.orgthe sport’s national governing body, which provides instructional videos and extensive information on rules, tournaments and standings.

You can connect with Arizona Republic culture and outside reporter Shanti Lerner via email at [email protected] or you can also follow her on Twitter.

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