Tips for Starting Pickleball

The minimum recommended size of a pickleball court is 30′x60′. The standard size of the pad for a tennis court is 60′x120′. That just happens to be exactly big enough to divide into 4 pickleball courts. A larger size is recommended if you have the room, but 30′x60′ is adequate if you have space or cost constraints. Our original 8 courts were put into the same space that was intended for 2 tennis courts. The additional 4 courts were made by converting an existing tennis court. Click here for diagrams and information for tennis court conversion.

If you have an indoor gymnasium, that can easily be converted to pickleball courts with portable net stands or removable net stands that are set into the floor. The dimensions of the perimeter lines of the court are 20′x44′. That is the same size as a doubles badminton court. Indoor courts are often set up for dual use of pickleball and badminton.

The secret to making the sport grow is to give free introductory lessons. If you just put the courts there, people will be shy about knowing how to get started. It is important to find someone that is capable and willing to fulfill that role of getting people started and organizing the program.

The other thing that helps it grow is to set aside a special time for what we call drop-in. That is a time when everyone knows that others will be there to play. We call it drop-in because people just drop-in, without a reservation, and play others that drop in. The players just rotate freely in and out of the courts and tend to play others of similar skill level. That concept greatly increases the social aspect of the sport.

As the number of players increases, it is important to have a good way to communicate with the players and to provide information for prospective players. Create a website or blog to help keep the players informed of schedule changes, leagues, and other activities.