Happy Monday! With the summer solstice ☀️ behind us, we have less daylight to spare, so let's get right to it...
#1. WIN MORE DINK BATTLES - WHEN TO VOLLEY & WHEN TO BOUNCE
One of the hardest decisions when playing pickleball at the Kitchen line is when to take shots (i.e., dinks) out of the air versus when to let the pickleball bounce. Click here to learn tips to help you make this difficult decision—when to volley or when to bounce those dinks—and win more dink battles on the court. 💪
#2. MURMURS FROM THE LOSERS' BRACKET: TUNES ON THE COURT
We here at Murmurs from the Losers’ Bracket (MFTLB) have noticed with increasing alarm the number of players who bring some kind of portable speaker along to play music at the pickleball courts. As a result, MFTLB has compiled its own top-10 playlist of acceptable pickleball songs and an explanation of how each fits into the sport. 🎶
Click here to learn MFTLB's top musical picks and have a laugh with Pickler writer, Frank Cerabino (*for those new to MFTLB, this is a humorous tongue-in-cheek opinion piece - don't take us too seriously).
#3. HOW TO HOLD A PICKLEBALL PADDLE LIKE A PRO
Given the lack of time to react to a fast-flying pickleball when at the Non-Volley Zone line, it is important to be as efficient as possible in your movements. One way to be efficient is to start from the best ready position (i.e., paddle height and angle), so that you eliminate any wasted movement from your starting point to your point of contact with the pickleball.
Click here to learn how to hold your pickleball paddle like a pro 🏓 and win more hands battles on the pickleball court.
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#4. IT'S BUSINESS TIME FOR PICKLEBALL: UNMET DEMAND FOR COURTS LURES ENTREPRENEURS
It is no surprise that the interest in pickleball has widely outpaced the supply of courts. As a result, business-minded entrepreneurs have tried to step in and meet this unmet court demand with a variety of concepts, like pickleball-themed restaurants and others.
Click here to learn about these entrepreneurs in pickleball trying to find a business model that works. 📈
#5. WHAT IS THE SCORPION & HOW TO USE IT TO WIN MORE POINTS
With pickleball being an “unsolved sport,” there are new shots being developed as the game evolves. One of these relatively new shots on the pickleball court is the "Scorpion." 🦂
Click here to learn what the Scorpion is in pickleball and how to use this shot to win more points.
#6. QUICK TIP - ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS BE READY
It is exciting to speed up the pickleball at your opponents in an effort to win the rally. However, the speed-up shot is rarely a winner. Rather, the speed-up shot is a set-up shot. The speed-up shot is designed to catch your opponents off guard and induce a pop-up, which is then sets you up for the winning shot.
So, when you are on the pickleball court and ready to speed up the pickleball, don’t stop at the speed-up. Always be ready for the next shot. Always expect your opponents to get the pickleball back and counter your speed-up.
Remember that the goal is not for your speed-up to be the winner. Rather, your goal is for your speed-up is to set you and your partner up for a winner. So, always be ready for that next shot. 🥊
#7. ASK PICKLER - HOW OFTEN SHOULD I DRILL?
Question: How often should I drill, compared to playing games?
Answer: The short answer is, it depends. The arguable #1 pickleball player in the world, Ben Johns, has admitted that he only drills and does not play recreational games. He only plays games in tournament play. So, if you want to improve your game, you probably want to drill more than you play. Drilling allows you to work on specific skills and commit mechanics to muscle memory by hitting ball after ball.
However, many players are not playing for their livelihood and are out on the pickleball court to have a good time. So, it depends on your goals and finding the right balance for you. If you want to improve quickly, drill more than you play. If you want to have a good time and don't like to drill, just go play. If you want to improve and have a good time, try drilling as much as you play.
And, if you are looking for some ideas for drills on the court, check out our article, Pickleball Drills to Improve Your Pickleball Game.
Do you have a pickleball question? Ask Pickler. Reach out to email@example.com. Plus, your question may be featured in the next newsletter.
Are you looking for comprehensive, organized, step-by-step lessons to improve your pickleball game? Then, Pickler's My Pro Pickleball Coach pickleball video collection may be for you! This video collection features Coach Steve Kennedy in over 140 organized video lessons (or over 7 hours of lessons!), as well as a corresponding e-book, that break down every aspect of the sport of pickleball, including pickleball mechanics, fundamentals, strategy, advanced concepts, and drills. But don't take our word for it, check out our latest review below...
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#8. HEADLINES FROM THE COURT
Pickleball news continues with familiar themes, which include growth, good news, and a sprinkle of tension... 🗞
- Starting with growth, pickleball's growth is accelerating around the world, as countries like Guam, South Africa, India, and Australia's island, Tasmania, all see upticks. Pickleball is also accelerating amongst different generations, as NBC Nightly News Kids Edition highlights that the sport is "not just for grown-ups" and "it does not matter your age, even if you're really old or really young."
- To exemplify the growth of pickleball, look no further than Central Park in New York City. What started as a group of 4 pickleball players has now grown into a club of more than 1,000 players. The Central Park players exude community and show why pickleball is more than just a sport, as one of its members, Harriet Dorosin, says, "It's a place to be where you are accepted, where you have connectedness.... Come and play. We'll move over for you!"
- As discussed above in the article, It's Business Time for Pickleball, entrepreneurs and brands alike are trying to "cash in" on the sport. According to experts, big sports are typically saturated with competition, but emerging sports are underserved markets, and entrepreneurs and brands are looking to gain a foothold.
- These businesses are even fueling the growth of pickleball. For instance, Life Time Fitness is going to invest $50-75 million in additional pickleball courts to serve its members, as its members' demand for pickleball has increased by 1,100% this year!
- Are you considering putting a pickleball court on your property? Certain sport court experts believe that a pickleball court "might offer some ROI and is often a better bet than putting in a pool, which is very high maintenance." What do you think?
- Good news! You may not have realized it, but pickleball actually can help you lose weight. We know pickleball is so much fun, but it is actually exercise, too! And, studies show that pickleball is actually more difficult (and more enjoyable) than a walking workout.
- During an indoor pickleball tournament in Palm Desert, California, one player fell to the floor and started to turn blue. Thanks to a few other players that were highly trained and acted quickly, that player survived the incident. The tournament organizer, Mary Barsaleau, recounts the incident and provides some lessons to takeaway from the scary moment, which includes encouraging others to learn CPR.
- The World Tennis Magazine took a stab at pickleball with the headline, "Tennis Participation Numbers Leave Pickleball in the Dust." But, pickleball is on the rise and is not slowing down any time soon! 🚀
- Despite all of the benefits of pickleball, the sport is still facing backlash from tennis players and from those that cannot stand the noise. One San Diego community is even looking for national help on how to solve the battle between pickleball and these two groups. Anyone have any ideas to resolve the tension? If so, please share with us by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
#9. ON THE TOUR: NEW FACES SHINE THROUGH
While the PPA Tour is taking a summer break 😎, the APP Tour carried us through the last couple of weeks with their back-to-back events in California. Click below to get the complete rundown 📰 on each event:
- First-Time Pro Pickleball Medalists Everywhere at the APP So Cal Classic
- APP LA Open Feels Like Pickleball Déjà Vu
However, the PPA Tour did make some waves the past couple of weeks by throwing some shade to the APP Tour via social media. After a suggestion of a PPA versus APP event, the PPA Tour took to the interwebs to say that they may be up for the idea and they'd "be willing to give little bro a chance." 🤭The pot has been stirred...
Don't forget to mark your calendars 🗓 for more pro pickleball in July!
#10. RULES REFRESH - WHOSE CALL IS IT ANYWAY? 📞
In the video below, featuring DJ Young-Mario Barrientos versus Gabriel Tardio-Rob Cassidy, there is a line call dispute, where Young makes a late line call against Cassidy’s shot. Tardio-Cassidy disputed saying the pickleball was in, which led to brief confusion with the referee (who admittedly did not see the ball land). So, whose line call stands?
Line calls in pickleball are made by the players on the court. Specifically, players make the line calls on their respective side of the court. That line call will generally stand unless there is a referee to appeal to. A referee will only overrule a line call if the referee clearly sees the pickleball land in/out. Also, to note, pickleball players should not question their opponents’ line calls. Their only source of appeal is to the referee (at any time prior to the next serve).
In the video above, Young called the ball out (even though it was a late call). Young’s call stands, despite any disagreement from Tardio and Cassidy. However, Tardio-Cassidy could appeal to the referee, which they did. As noted above, the referee did not see the pickleball, so Young’s call stands again, despite the appeal.
For more on line calls, check out Pickleball Line Call Rules – How to Make the Right Call. And, for a deeper breakdown on all of the rules of pickleball, check out Pickler's Ultimate Guide to the Rules of Pickleball.
Have you had an interesting rules issue on the pickleball court? Send it to us at email@example.com, so we can share with the rest of the pickleball community in a future newsletter.
#11. NUDE PICKLEBALL GOES VIRAL
Since we last hit your inbox, one of our stories went viral, reaching almost 15 million people, which is three times the pickleball population in the United States. Can you guess which one?
Wildly enough, it was Pickler writer, Frank Cerabino's article, Nude Pickleball Is Taking Off, that, well, took off. The article made its rounds on social media before being picked up by iHeart Radio, Access Hollywood's show Access Daily, Axios, and others. Tune in to Frank's interview with Rizzo and Jeff from Radio 95.1, Rochester, NY (starting at the 53:23 mark).
NEED A LAUGH? OR, A GREAT GIFT?
Did you know that Pickler writer Frank Cerabino is a long-time columnist for the Palm Beach Post in Florida, a pickleball addict like the rest of us, and a published author? Check out Frank's released book, I Dink, Therefore I Am: Coming to Grips with My Pickleball Addiction (available on Amazon and a great read (or gift!) for any pickleball player), for pickleball tips and laughs! 📚
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BALL'S IN YOUR COURT...