Pickler Pickleball

Dink Games to Elevate Your Precision and Control on the Pickleball Court 🙌

Published 3 months ago • 8 min read

Happy Wednesday! 🎉

Get ready for an epic reunion at the 2024 US Open Pickleball Championships! 👏 Leigh and Anna Leigh Waters are teaming up again to take on the competition in Naples, Florida. Don't miss out on seeing this iconic duo and other pickleball pros at The Biggest Pickleball Party in the World™! 🥳

So, let's dive straight into your pickleball tips, strategies, stories, news, and more... 👏

Click here to access the online version of this newsletter


By Greg Hansen

Whether it's an offensive shot or a defensive shot, the goal of the dink is to hit a shot that is unattackable by your opponents. These dink games will challenge your strategic approach, build concentration, and increase accuracy on the court. 👏


The Biggest Pickleball Party in the World™—the US Open Pickleball Championships—begins on Saturday, April 13th, 2024 in Naples, Florida. 🎉 As we enter the final countdown to The Open, here are seven things to know for all those Picklers competing there (or in any other pickleball tournament). 🏆

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Barstool Pickleball Open - Pickle Haus

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Get ready for the second of Bartsool's one-of-a-kind tournaments in Chicago, Illinois on June 1st. Register now for an experience you won't want to miss!

Learn more about the other dates of the Barstool Pickleball Open.

Get your paddles ready for the The BODYARMOR State Games Summer Tournament! The four-day pickleball tournament takes place June 20-23, 2024 in Charlotte, North Carolina.

The event features women's, men's and mixed doubles, men's and women's singles, and a newly added open advanced doubles event.


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Do you count pickleballs instead of sheep? 🐑 We here at Murmurs from the Losers’ Bracket have been studying the phenomenon of pickleball addiction and we have concluded that it’s a progression that unfolds in 20 phases. When you start having pickleball dreams there’s no further step to take. You’ve reached the final phase in your journey. 😴


The countdown is on for the 2024 US Open Pickleball Championships! People come to The Open from all 50 states and American Samoa. They come from 29 countries around the world — Armenia to Zimbabwe. 🌎 They range in age from 8 to 88. The Open is open to everyone! Be sure to mark your calendar for The Biggest Pickleball Party in the World™ April 13th-April 20th, 2024 in beautiful Naples, Florida! 🎉


Unattackable dinks force your opponents to let the ball bounce rather than being able to volley the pickleball. The goal is to keep your dinks low so that your opponents have to hit up on the pickleball to get the pickleball back to your side of the net. Improve your dinking strategy with these 11 steps to hit the perfect dink on the court. 🙌


Episode 15: Pickleball Dreammaker: Transforming Communities One Court at a Time

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Dan Maclellan is a true community champion. Facing steep costs for professional renovation, Dan took matters into his own hands to revitalize old tennis courts into vibrant pickleball courts. Against the odds, Dan succeeded, attracting over 800 registered players to the newly renovated courts. He transformed a neglected space and also created a thriving hub for community engagement and activity.

Episode 16: Pickleball Channel: Trailblazing the Media Landscape

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Since 2014, Pickleball Channel has been at the forefront of how we experience this rapidly growing sport, capturing the excitement of professional matches, introducing innovative camera angles, and preserving the stories of pickleball's founding figures. The founders share their vision, innovation, and dedication to showcasing the essence of pickleball, setting the stage for its widespread popularity today.


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Once you are on the court, it is time to play aggressively. This does not mean that you have to bang and drive the pickleball (unless that is your style of play). Rather, this means to aggressively play your style of play. Play loose. Don’t play tentative or tight, or overthink your shots, as this will only result in unforced errors and poor touch of the pickleball with your paddle. For instance, a tight grip on your pickleball paddle will cause the pickleball to bounce off like a backboard, which will result in high shots by you and easy put away shots for your opponents. Rather, play loose and relaxed and play your game—but play your game aggressively! 💪

Get more tips to play better pickleball with The Pickler’s video series, My Pro Pickleball Coach!


By Mark Peifer, USA Pickleball Certified Referee; Past Chairman, USA Pickleball Rules Committee

QUESTION: We play pickleball at a local recreation center open play and have an individual whose volley serve violates the ‘upward motion’ as it is totally horizontal, it is above the waist and paddle head is above the wrist. He hits this with great velocity and is extremely tough for any 3.0 or less player to return. We have pointed this out to him numerous times and he attempts the correct serve for a little while, but returns to the illegal serve. Since it is non-officiated play, according to the rule book there is no recourse for the receiving team. Is this true? Short of refusing to play with this individual, is there any recourse?

ANSWER: Yes, it is true; you indeed have no recourse for faults by your opponent, including this one. The rule that governs this is 13.D.1.d; “For non-officiated matches, if a player believes an opponent has committed any type of fault other than a service or non-volley zone foot fault as noted in Section 7 – Fault Rules, they may mention the specific fault to the opponent(s) but they have no authority to enforce the fault. The final decision on fault resolution belongs to the player that allegedly committed the fault.”

Having said that, however, USA Pickleball has received countless videos over the years from players with examples of thought-to-be illegal serves that are, upon review, not illegal. That is also why the Rulebook has no stipulation for these cases; chaos would ensue as players start calling faults in retaliation for an opponent calling a serve illegal that really isn’t. All is not lost, however. There is a recourse that many players use in this case. But, one has to be certain a serve is illegal before implementing the following course of action, otherwise, just play on:

Once the serve is made, catch the ball and throw it back to the server, telling them why it was illegal. Yes, it’s a fault on you for stopping play, but the server has no more authority to enforce a fault on you for stopping play than you do for enforcing an illegal serve on them. Do that as many times as needed to ‘send the message’. In effect, you are stalemated – a situation not covered by the Rulebook. What now? The outcome, in this case, is found in the fourth bullet on page 1 of the USA Pickleball Official Rulebook, under the heading of The Players; “Players strive to cooperate when confronted with a situation not covered by the Rulebook. Possible outcomes can be a replay, allowing a rally to stand, or in extreme cases, asking for a referee to resolve a dispute.”

Because this is ‘open’ recreational play, the most likely outcome would be a replay. I recommend you have a copy of Rule 13.D.1.d and the aforementioned item on page one ready the next time you play against this player.


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Check out the latest headlines to stay in the know on all things pickleball 📢

  • American Idol judge Katy Perry showed off her pickleball skills. Check out Katy and her mother challenging fellow judges Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie on the pickleball court. 🎶
  • Pickleball is the latest commodity to convince buyers to say yes to the address! 🏠 With pickleball mentions up 64% compared with last year, at-home courts or proximity to pickleball courts is a huge selling point when putting your house on the market.
  • Do you have a favorite pickleball-inspired playlist to listen to while out on the court? 🎧 Searches for pickleball playlists had a whopping 1,600% increase on Spotify.


Have a laugh and learn some great tips to take to the pickleball court with longtime humor writer Frank Cerabino's book I Dink, Therefore I Am: Coming to Grips with My Pickleball Addiction! Plus, this book makes a great gift for your favorite player or partner! 📚


The PPA Tour faced some wild weather at the Austin Open in Texas that seemed to welcome some 🌪️ whirlwind shakeups for the event. Anna Leigh Waters withdrew from the women’s singles event making way for Judit Castillo to earn the gold medal and her first ever PPA singles win. Andrei Daescu and Anna Bright earned the “double double” 🥇🥇 at the event with gold medals in mixed doubles and gender doubles. Daescu and Bright defeated top duo Anna Leigh Waters and Ben Johns. Bright and her partner Rachel Rohrabacher gave Waters and Catherine Parenteau their first loss as a pair in women’s doubles.

The APP headed to Florida for the Miami Open. This event also had a “double double” winner with Dylan Frazer earning the gold 🥇 in mixed with Hurricane Tyra Black and men’s doubles with JW Johnson. After a triple crown 👑 in California, Jorja Johnson earned another gold medal with women’s doubles partner Milan Rane. Another (unrelated) Johnson took the men’s singles title with Hunter Johnson defeating Grayson Goldin.

For a full recap on these events, check out the following:

Don’t forget to mark your calendars for more pro pickleball action in April! 📆


Up your game by grabbing 10% off a new paddle, shoes, and more pickleball necessities from Fromuth Pickleball (some exclusions apply) with the code 10PICKLER! 💸


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