Pickleball: Review, Repeat, Reward – The Dink

The cast of a Broadway show involved in a long-run hit is called together on a routine basis, perhaps twice a month or more, to walk through the script repeating their lines and discussing issues that might have arisen since the last review. One might ask why, after performing so many shows over the course of weeks, would they need to go over the script in a rehearsal mode.

The answer is rather simple. Over time, words in a script get dropped or modified and over time, a sentence may take on a meaning that was not intended by the author. This type of review is not unusual, but standard operating procedure.

What does this have to do with pickleball?

I think the answer is relatively simple. From what I have read and witnessed, most pickleballers are not tournament players. They like recreational pickleball and enjoy the fun and benefits of social, competition and exercise.

When we learn to play pickleball, many of us are taught certain skills such as the proper dink technique and unless you are a serious competitive or tournament player, the odds are you don’t “practice” much and that’s OK. Many of us just enjoy playing and don’t enjoy (or desire to) practice.

Although I prefer to play more than practice, I am interested in improving and doing better and therein lies the rub. Every once in a while, I like to review how to execute certain skills such as dinking, the overhead smash, serving, etc. That doesn’t mean I am going to spend hours practicing. What it does mean is that I will pay more attention to how I execute certain shots and focus on proper technique when I do play. Hopefully I will pick up a tip or two (or just a reminder) that will help me improve my current skill set so that I can perform better.

With that in mind, I am including two videos for those who want a refresher on dinking skills. This is an important, yet often overlooked part of the game that tends to favor the more dramatic power shot.

 

Best Pickleball Dink Technique

When you are at the net and receive a low ball, you must be careful not to pop up something high and attackable. A dink (yes, that’s what it is called) is a great response to a low ball since it makes it hard for the other team to pounce. In this video from Third Shot Sports, coach Mark Renneson breaks down some key elements to a great dink.

Pay attention to the following:

* Point of contact
* Short stroke on the shot
* Stiff (stable) wrist (and arm)
* Maintain proper balance

 

Dinking Strategy – 3 Steps to Dominate with Dinks & the #1 dink you must avoid

Jordan Briones of Primetime Pickleball explains some of the more modern strategies behind the dinking game. Learn what a dead dink is and how to avoid them.

I hope you have found this review useful and that it helps you enjoy your play even more!

**********

 

More Pickleball Videos and Information

To See additional Pickleball Videos & Information Click Here (primarily for beginners and less experienced players)

Check out Additional Pickleball Information and Videos! (for all players including average to more experienced players)


**********

 

All original content on this blog is copyrighted by Jeffrey B. Ross with ALL Rights Reserved. While reference links back to JBRish.com are appreciated and encouraged, please acquire approval for any reproduction of original content from this website.

©Jeffrey B. Ross 2014 – 2019 – JBRish.com



Pickleball: Kitchen (NVZ) Help

After a pickleballer plays their first several games, they soon understand that the Non-Volley Zone (see diagram below) is often referred to as the Kitchen.


NVZ or Kitchen in Pickleball
Picture Courtesy of School Specialty – Modified for this post.

It is interesting to me that I will often be approached by a pickleballer who asks me: “Do I have to wait until the ball bounces to go into the kitchen?” or “When can I go into the kitchen?” At times, these are people who have been playing for years. Somehow a number of players are under the impression that it is a fault just to step into the kitchen; anytime.

As always, let’s check to see what the rulebook tells us about this situation. SECTION 9 of the 2019 USAPA & IFP Official Tournament Rulebook (pp. 36-37) goes into detail about the non-volley zone rules.

It seems to me there are four important subsections regarding this discussion.

9.A. All volleys must be initiated outside of the non-volley zone.

It is a fault if a person volleys the ball (hits it in the air. i.e without a bounce) while standing inside the NVZ. NOTE: It would also be a fault if a player volleys a ball and their foot is touching any part of the NVZ line even if the rest of their body is not in the kitchen.

9.E. A player may enter the non-volley zone at any time except when that player is volleying the ball.

It is not a fault to enter the NVZ at any time as long as that player does not volley the ball. A player can remain the NVZ the entire game if they wish. Of course this is not a good strategy and would be a rather absurd behavior, but there is no rule against it.

9.F. A player may enter the non-volley zone before or after returning any ball that bounces.

A pickleballer is allowed to enter the NVZ to return a ball that bounces. They may enter either before or after the ball bounces to return a ball that has bounced in the NVZ.

9.G. A player may stay inside the non-volley zone to return a ball that has bounced. There is no violation if a player does not exit the non-volley zone after hitting a ball that bounces.

A player may remain inside the NVZ after a bounced ball is returned. They do not have to exit the NVZ at any specified time interval.


NVZ Best Practice in General

Most accomplished players remain very close to, but not in, the NVZ during much of the game. If a ball falls into the NVZ and bounces, they quickly go after the ball, return it and then step back out of the NVZ. This enables the player to volley a ball that comes their way because they have vacated the NVZ.

I would be remiss if I didn’t point out another important, and often misunderstood nuance about the NVZ highlighted below in section 9C.

9. C. – It is a fault if the player’s momentum causes the player to contact anything that is touching the non-volley zone, including the player’s partner.

9.C.1. It is a fault even if the ball is declared dead before the player contacts the non-volley zone.

A player’s momentum cannot carry them into the NVZ after a volley or it is a fault. Even if the ball is dead at the time, their momentum cannot cause them to step into the NVZ after a volley. A player may not touch their paddle down in the NVZ or drop anything into the NVZ or that too is a fault if it is done in the act of volleying.

NOTE – These are not the ONLY rules regarding the NVZ. I only selected those sections that help to answer the underlying basic question of when a player can enter the NVZ without creating a fault.

I believe any serious pickleball player can learn quite a bit by reading the USAPA & IFP Official Tournament Rulebook. You can order your copy HERE! You can also download a free PDF HERE.

If you have questions, leave them in the comment section and I will do my best to answer them.

**********

 

More Pickleball Videos and Information

To See additional Pickleball Videos & Information Click Here (primarily for beginners and less experienced players)

Check out Additional Pickleball Information and Videos! (for all players including average to more experienced players)


**********

 

All original content on this blog is copyrighted by Jeffrey B. Ross with ALL Rights Reserved. While reference links back to JBRish.com are appreciated and encouraged, please acquire approval for any reproduction of original content from this website.

©Jeffrey B. Ross 2014 – 2019 – JBRish.com



Pickleball News – 20190116 – Archived Version


January 16, 2019

 

Archived Version of a Previous Newsletter

This is an archived version of a previously issued pickleball newsletter. The most current N. Phoenix Newsletter is available by clicking HERE!


January 16, 2019

 
Hello Phoenix Area Players:

I just want to touch base with those on the email list about a few items.

**Community Centers Closed on 1/21/19 – Martin Luther King Day **

Normal schedule will resume on Tuesday, 1/22!

 

********** Meeting w/USAPA SW Regional Director **********

Larry Lite, USAPA Southwest Regional Director, will be meeting with the North Central Arizona Ambassadors on February 1, 2019, to provide an update on the various programs being offered by the USAPA. He will go over his goals for the region, an update on the Ambassador program and a discussion about issues and concerns amongst our ambassadors. There will be opportunities for ambassadors to share their questions and ideas as well.

I will keep you posted regarding pertinent information!

 

********** Calling the Ball In or Out **********

Over the last several weeks I have heard some players make line calls by saying: “I think the ball was out!” We can probably all agree that on some courts the lines are difficult to read and calling balls correctly may be a bit tricky at times, but let’s examine the sentence above.

It seems to imply that there is some doubt as to whether the ball was “in” or “out!” In such an instance, we can look to the official rulebook to learn how to deal with this situation.

Here is what the rulebook states:

“6.D.3. The opponent gets the benefit of the doubt on line calls made. Any ball that cannot be called “out” will be considered “in.” A player cannot claim a “let” because the ball was not seen or there is uncertainty. A player may appeal to the referee to make the call if he or she did not clearly see the ball land. If the referee is unable to make the call, the ball is “in.” [ USAPA & IFP Official Tournament Rulebook, p. 31 ]

The remedy to “thinking” the ball was out, in my opinion, lies in the first sentence, i.e. the benefit of the doubt goes to the opponent. Secondly, “Any ball that cannot be called ‘out’ will be considered ‘in’.” Careful reading of that sentence seems to imply that if the ball cannot definitively be called “out” it is considered to be “in.”

When playing recreational pickleball, we should always be in a position to give the opponents the benefit of the doubt. After all, isn’t that what sportsmanship is?

 

********** Balls Coming on the Court **********

In a recent post on my website, Pickleball – Let’s Talk Etiquette, I included the above section and I also addressed the issue of pickleballs from other games coming on to the court. This can be dangerous at worst and often frustrating at best! If you are interested in that subject, you can read the post [if you read the item above, skip to the second part at the link below]:

Let’s Talk Etiquette

 

********** For Those Who Have Read This Far **********

So, you think you have had some long rallies? How about a 68 shot rally at the Las Vegas Pickleball Open.

 

 

********** Archived Versions of Previous Newsletters **********

 

Previous newsletters that may have pickleball hints, videos, rules changes, etc. are now archived at the following link. You can check out previous newsletters there.
Archived N. Phoenix PB Previous Newsletters


********** Winter Session Pickleball Lessons at PVCC **********

 

The next round of Introductory and Beginner Pickleball Lessons at Paradise Valley Community Center are now online and they are filling up fast. If you know someone who would like to learn about our sport, they can check out the offerings HERE.


********** Support your Sport – Join the USAPA $20 for 1 Year **********

 

 
Join the USAPA – Click HERE for More Information

 

Join the USAPA

Picture Courtesy of Pickleball Magazine and the USAPA

 


********** That’s All for Now **********

 
I hope to see you on the courts!


Regards,

Jeff Ross



Pickleball: Six Rules for the Fast Game


Pickleball Strategy 301 – Six Rules of the Fast Game

NOTE – I have introduced Jim Baker’s excellent videos in a number of my blog posts and this one is especially for average plus players because you need a good level of at-the-net skills such as dinking and volleying. There are, however, some hints for players at every level.

The term “fast game” is used in this video to denote a rally at the net that involves a quick interchange of volleys at the net which shortly results in one team winning the point.

This is what Joe Baker states:

“…If you start the fast game and you fail to defeat your opponent’s reaction time with your first shot, your chance of winning the rally is only about one in three.”

The above statement is especially true if you “poach” a shot and step into your partner’s zone leaving a big gap. If your shot does not win outright, you are most likely to leave a wide gap in the area you left to attempt that poach and your team will most likely lose the point. If you are going to poach, be sure (or at least mostly sure) that you are going to hit a winner.

If you are a 3.0 or higher rated player, this video might be of interest to you.

Did you catch Jim Baker’s “Old Rule of Thumb?” Well, if you missed it, here it is:

“If you have to hit up on the ball, hit softly, aiming to keep the ball in or near the kitchen area. If you can hit down on the ball, you may hit hard. Unless you are an advanced player, I suggest sticking to this rule.”

Another thing Jim suggests in his video is that the best players are apt to lose these fast rallies about 30% of the time. To use a baseball analogy, you would still be batting .700 So don’t be discouraged to try to implement these strategies if you have the skills!

**********

 

More Pickleball Videos and Information

To See additional Pickleball Videos & Information Click Here (primarily for beginners and less experienced players)

Check out Additional Pickleball Information and Videos! (for all players including average to more experienced players)


**********

 

All original content on this blog is copyrighted by Jeffrey B. Ross with ALL Rights Reserved. While reference links back to JBRish.com are appreciated and encouraged, please acquire approval for any reproduction of original content from this website.

©Jeffrey B. Ross 2014 – 2019 – JBRish.com



Pickleball: Explained Q & D Video

As a USAPA Pickleball Ambassador and enthusiast, I am often asked to answer the question: What is pickleball? Luckily for me, most people asking the question have heard something about the sport and have a vague idea of how it is played.

It is a difficult answer to give in a quick and concise manner. It was originally developed as a family sport and because of that it has some interesting, others might suggest strange, rules! Let me just say that it is a lot of fun! Most people who try pickleball continue to play and many become “hooked.”


Pickleball-It's Like Tennis, only Better!
Picture Courtesy of Third Shot Sports

Mark Renneson of Third Shot Sports – Pickleball, who is a tournament player, coach and commentator, has created a relatively short and concise video that gives a quick explanation of the sport of pickleball. Keep in mind that this is just an introduction and viewers may have a number of questions. If you would like more information, leave a comment or question below and I will do my best to provide an answer.

If you want to get a good idea of what pickleball is, watch the video below:

NOTE – If you like the shirt pictured above and would like to purchase one, visit Mark’s website: Pickleball-It’s Like Tennis, only Better!

**********

 

More Pickleball Videos and Information

To See additional Pickleball Videos & Information Click Here (primarily for beginners and less experienced players)

Check out Additional Pickleball Information and Videos! (for all players including average to more experienced players)


**********

 

All original content on this blog is copyrighted by Jeffrey B. Ross with ALL Rights Reserved. While reference links back to JBRish.com are appreciated and encouraged, please acquire approval for any reproduction of original content from this website.

©Jeffrey B. Ross 2014 – 2019 – JBRish.com



Pickleball News – 20181227– Archived Version


December 27, 2018

 

Archived Version of a Previous Newsletter

This is an archived version of a previously issued pickleball newsletter. The most current N. Phoenix Newsletter is available by clicking HERE!

Hello Phoenix Area Players:

I hope everyone had a joyous holiday celebration and that you are looking forward to more of the same to begin the new year. I didn’t want our players to miss out on an opportunity so I am passing along this interesting information. I just received this information so if it is a bit late, I apologize!




********** 2019 World Team Pickleball Championships **********

You may remember that a while back I wrote about the World Team Championships coming to our general area. Well, it is happening. They are hosting three days of tournament play in Surprise, AZ at the Surprise Pickleball Courts, W. Tierra Buena Lane, Surprise, AZ 85374.

According to the information I received, “NO TEAM IS EVER ELIMINATED! Teams will accumulate court wins, game wins, and total points to determine the overall winner!”

Here are the Details

Event & Divisions:

Mixed Team Event: 2 Men & 2 Women

Skill Levels: 3.0, 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, 5.0

*Players must all play at the level of the highest skilled player on the team.

Age Brackets: 18+, 50+, 60+, 70+

*Brackets may be combined to complete the division.

Tournament Ball: Dura Fast 40


TEAM FORMAT:

Each team will consist of 4 players (2 men and 2 women).

Each team may carry 2 more players for substitutions* each round of play.

6 players maximum for each team.

Day 1 = Mixed Doubles (2 courts of mixed doubles played at the same time/Round)

Day 2 = Men’s Doubles and Women’s Doubles (played at the same time/Round)

Day 3 = Mixed Doubles (2 courts of mixed doubles played at the same time/Round)

FORMAT OF PLAY:

Round Robin or Pool Play will be determined by the number of teams entered in your division.

Every team is guaranteed a minimum of 9 matches over the weekend!

*Player Substitutions: Each Round a Team Captain may substitute 1 player during a match.

For example: Kimi and Peter are playing Mixed Doubles against Orlie and Ashley. Kimi is not playing well or gets a cramp (yikes). Team Captain Carol can substitute Donna in for Kimi, but no other substitutions can be made for any of Carol’s players during that remainder of that Round.

WTP Championship Registration:

The 2019 World Team Pickleball Championships is scheduled for February 1-3, 2019 in Surprise, Arizona on the Surprise Pickleball Courts.

Registration Fee: $85.00 per player for all 3 days

No refunds after December 31, 2018

Every player will receive a WTP Swag Bag at registration!

Registration Process: All players will register on R2Sports.

Click the registration button at the top of this page.*** [ See link below! – Jeff]

Team Captains should register first, as the rest of the team will select the captain or team name to register under.

Registration closes January 25, 2019

Last date to cancel is December 31, 2018

QUESTIONS? Contact Kim Waddell at WorldTeamPickleball@gmail.com

Register at this link: https://www.worldteampickleball.com/register-wtp-events/2019/1/4/wtp-sectional-tournament-arizona-tbd

NOTE – I am still in need of a couple of previously owned, but still usable paddles for beginner classes at the community centers. Kindly keep that in mind as well! – Jeff

 

********** For Those Who Have Read This Far **********

 

This is related to the idea I mentioned in a previous newsletter, i.e. having a plan. When you return the ball, do you try to return it to a particular spot. Better players are able to hit a target spot whether it be the opponent’s forehand or down the middle.

The video below gives some good pointers, especially about the return of serve. This one tip may help you improve your game even if you need to make adjustments in the course of a game.

Improve Your Accuracy – Something Most Players Don’t Do<>/strong>

 

********** Archived Versions of Previous Newsletters **********

 

Previous newsletters that may have pickleball hints, videos, rules changes, etc. are now archived at the following link. You can check out previous newsletters there.
Archived N. Phoenix PB Previous Newsletters


********** Winter Session Pickleball Lessons at PVCC **********

 

The next round of Introductory and Beginner Pickleball Lessons at Paradise Valley Community Center are now online and they are filling up fast. If you know someone who would like to learn about our sport, they can check out the offerings HERE.


********** Support your Sport – Join the USAPA $20 for 1 Year **********

 

 
Join the USAPA – Click HERE for More Information

 

Join the USAPA

Picture Courtesy of Pickleball Magazine and the USAPA

 


********** That’s All for Now **********

 
Stay well and I hope to see you on the courts!


Regards,

Jeff Ross



Pickleball – Let’s Talk Etiquette

Line Calls

Over the last several weeks at our community center’s recreational pickleball program, I have heard some players make line calls by saying: “I think the ball was out!” We can probably all agree that on some courts the lines are difficult to read and calling balls correctly may be a bit tricky at times, but let’s examine the sentence above.

It seems to imply that there is some doubt as to whether the ball was “in” or “out!” In such an instance, we can look to the official rulebook to learn how to deal with this situation.

Here is what the rulebook states:

“6.D.3. The opponent gets the benefit of the doubt on line calls made. Any ball that cannot be called “out” will be considered “in.” A player cannot claim a “let” because the ball was not seen or there is uncertainty. A player may appeal to the referee to make the call if he or she did not clearly see the ball land. If the referee is unable to make the call, the ball is “in.” [ USAPA & IFP Official Tournament Rulebook (2018), p. 31 – Emphasis added by me]

The remedy to “thinking” the ball was out, in my opinion, lies in the first sentence, i.e. the benefit of the doubt goes to the opponent. Secondly, “Any ball that cannot be called ‘out’ will be considered ‘in’.” Careful reading of that sentence suggests that if the ball cannot definitively be called “out” it is considered to be “in.”

When playing recreational pickleball, we should always be in a position to give the opponents the benefit of the doubt. After all, isn’t that what sportsmanship is?

***************


Balls Coming on to the Court

At the community centers or churches where I play pickleball there is an attempt to share the fun of pickleball with as many people as possible. To accommodate a large number of pickleballers, these facilities generally squeeze in as many courts as feasible; within reason. There are times, of course, when balls come rolling or flying onto a court of play from a nearby game.

At that point someone yells “ball” or “pickle” and then play stops. The reason for this procedure is to avoid someone stepping on the ball and getting hurt by twisting an ankle or falling.

At the time the words “stop” or “pickle” are shouted, all play should stop and the point should be replayed from the beginning with the same server initiating the point as before. I often call the score and use the word “over” (2-2-1, over) to review that this is a replay of the previous point.

Naturally there will be times when the stoppage of play is called and you may be just short of making a great shot and your opportunity is removed because of the stoppage. This can be frustrating, but over the long haul those kinds of breaks seem to even out and the other team may likewise lose opportunities for a winner. [On a side note here – there really is no thing as a sure winner. If you have ever hit an easy ball into the net, you know what I mean!]

There will be times when the call for the stoppage of play will be close to a swing at the ball or during a swing. It would seem to me that if a player indicates that hearing the call caused them to react in such a way that they did not play the ball effectively because of it, I offer to play the point over. Once again, I offer the opponent the benefit of the doubt. Even if the ball is not on the court on which I am playing, if the shout affects play, let’s start the point again.

If the play is just over when the call is made, then the play stands because it “was over.” If we are going to offer each other the benefit of the doubt in the cases above, then we need to be as consistent and honest as we can be. Few people will want to play with someone they cannot trust to reciprocate in giving the benefit of the doubt.

I have tried my best to lay out my thoughts about the scenarios above. I think they make sense!

What are your thoughts?

UPDATE – 1/17/19 – Frank asks a good questions which leads to some more thoughts for consideration. Read the comments below and chime in if you so choose!

**********

 

More Pickleball Videos and Information

To See additional Pickleball Videos & Information Click Here (primarily for beginners and less experienced players)

Check out Additional Pickleball Information and Videos! (for all players including average to more experienced players)


**********

 

All original content on this blog is copyrighted by Jeffrey B. Ross with ALL Rights Reserved. While reference links back to JBRish.com are appreciated and encouraged, please acquire approval for any reproduction of original content from this website.

©Jeffrey B. Ross 2014 – 2019 – JBRish.com



Pickleball News – 20181203– Archived Version


Archived Phoenix Pickleball News
December 3, 2018

 

Archived Version of a Previous Newsletter

This is an archived version of a previously issued pickleball newsletter. The most current N. Phoenix Newsletter is available by clicking HERE!

Hello Phoenix Area Players:

********** Battle of the Paddle IV At Pecos Park **********

If you would like to see how a pickleball tournament is conducted or just have fun watching the competition, here is your chance. The following message was sent by Steve Manolis via the Phoenix Area Pickleball mailing list.

This Thursday through Saturday come on out to Pecos Park as we start our first full scale local tournament. All levels are signed up to play. We will have a food truck, vendors, raffle items and practice courts open.

We are also accepting paddle donations for schools and students.

Sunday, December 9th is kids day, we will have prizes, coaching, contest and games for kids and adults…free to attend, no registration to play on Sunday.

Try paddles from various vendors.

All registration fees and donations go back to the schools and community.

To see more please come or visit us at PhoenixPickleball.com

Pecos Park is located at 17010 S 48th Street, just west of I-10 and south of Chandler Blvd.

See you there.

Steve Manolis, Pickleball Teaching Pro

www.PhoenixPickleball.com

NOTE – I am still in need of a couple of previously owned, but still useable paddles for beginner classes at the community centers. Kindly keep that in mind as well! – Jeff

 

********** Avoid Long Waits Between Games **********

 

The indoor pickleball venues are crowded this time of the year. One way to avoid long waiting times between games is to arrive a bit later during the scheduled day. I understand that this is not possible for everyone, but you may have noticed that towards the end of the session, the crowds thin out. Last week a group was playing almost nonstop during the last hour at one of the community centers.


********** From Intermediate To Advanced **********

How to Move from 3.5-4.0
By Mark Renneson

What does it take to move from being an intermediate player to an advanced one? Well, there isn’t a magic bullet but there are a few things that I’ve noticed have made the difference. Here’s a short list of what I think separates the two levels.

Be More Consistent. Higher level players don’t really hit fundamentally different shots than their less-skilled counterparts. But what they do is hit quality shots more often. While a 3.5 might be able to hit a deep return 5 out of ten times, the 4.0 can do it 7. The difference is often not much more than having a clear intention.

On a related note, if you miss many “easy balls” you’re going to have a tough time advancing a level. Standard volleys, dinks, serves and returns should be near 100% success. Missing them should be a surprise.

Finish Points. Strong players are good at ending points when they have the chance. Whether it is identifying angles, finding a gap or using speed effectively, strong players capitalize on opportunities.

Have a Plan. Intermediate players often look (and feel) like they are just ‘trying to survive’ on the court. Advanced players have clear plans. When you are under fire pinned at the baseline, for example, a good plan would be to calmly play a drop that forces an upward hit from the other team. 4.0s try to do this. Most 3.5s just hit the ball back hard (or lob).

The above article is courtesy of Third Shot Sports

 

********** For Those Who Have Read This Far **********

 

Hitting a Worthy Groundstroke

When I teach pickleball to beginners, I emphasize the ideal groundstroke position, i.e. shoulders perpendicular to the net when possible. Of course if you are running hither and yon trying to get to an angled shot, etc. all bets are off.

Here is a video explaining a technique for the groundstroke.

 

********** Archived Versions of Previous Newsletters **********

 

Mary Travis, USAPA Ambassador at Large, suggested that the “old” or previous newsletters be made available in some form now that they are web-based so that they can be reviewed in the future for pertinent content.

That is a good idea (Thank you Mary!) since there are often pickleball hints, videos, rules changes, etc. From this point on, you can review previous web-based emails at this link:

Archived N. Phoenix PB Previous Newsletters


********** Winter Session Pickleball Lessons at PVCC **********

 

The next round of Introductory and Beginner Pickleball Lessons at Paradise Valley Community Center are now online and they are filling up fast. If you know someone who would like to learn about our sport, they can check out the offerings HERE.


********** Support your Sport – Join the USAPA $20 for 1 Year **********

 

 
Join the USAPA – Click HERE for More Information

 

Join the USAPA

Picture Courtesy of Pickleball Magazine and the USAPA

 


********** That’s All for Now **********

 
Stay well and I hope to see you on the courts!


Regards,

Jeff Ross



Pickleball – When All Else Fails

There I was playing a game of doubles the other day. My partner and I were matched against a team that I thought was somewhat more skilled than we were. I knew we would have our work cut out for us if we were to win.

I am not that confident in my third shot drop shot or any drop shot for that matter. I can generally hit a successful drop shot about 70% of the time. I really need to work on this and get it up to 90% plus, but then again that would take practice; ugh!

So there we were playing against two people who were very good at the net. My usual attempt to use a third shot drive or other hard drives to get the ball by them was not working consistently. They were either whacking the ball back hard or dropping it short and making us really work hard to move forward and hit a shot.

We were behind, but not by that much so I decided to start using drop shots into the kitchen area. My dink game is pretty good and I don’t lose too many dink points. I thought, “After all, what have I got to lose if other shots aren’t working.?”

Much to my surprise, this became an effective strategy. I was aiming primarily for the backhands of the opponents and every once in a while, down the middle. Sprinkle in my partner’s effective lob every now and then and the game was very close.

Lucky for us we were able to win although barely.

Here’s the point:

This was recreation play and not a tournament. Winning or losing didn’t mean as much to me as did making a good show. The one strategy I generally like to use, i.e. hitting hard drives, was not working.

Changing strategies to the softer game via drop shots turned out to be a better choice. Let’s say that we continued to lose points and ended up losing. It still would have been a good chance for me to get experience with the softer part of the game.

Keeping the ball low in pickleball is the key to winning points. A low ball is hard to attack and often results in a weak return. Of course, we need to be good at the soft game as well to take advantage of this situation.

Don’t be afraid to change strategies if what you are doing is not working.

A FINAL NOTE – I often talk to my partner during the game to share ideas, strategies, etc. This keeps everyone on the same page.

What are your thoughts?

**********

 

More Pickleball Videos and Information

To See additional Pickleball Videos & Information Click Here (primarily for beginners and less experienced players)

Check out Additional Pickleball Information and Videos! (for all players including average to more experienced players)


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All original content on this blog is copyrighted by Jeffrey B. Ross with ALL Rights Reserved. While reference links back to JBRish.com are appreciated and encouraged, please acquire approval for any reproduction of original content from this website.

©Jeffrey B. Ross 2014 – 2018 – JBRish.com



Pickleball – What I Noticed by Watching Others Play

A number of players…

#1 – have questionable serves.

The Serve

  • The serve must be made underhand.
  • Paddle contact with the ball must be below the server’s waist (navel level).
  • The serve is initiated with at least one foot behind the baseline; neither foot may contact the baseline or court until after the ball is struck.
  • The serve is made diagonally crosscourt and must land within the confines of the opposite diagonal court.
  • Only one serve attempt is allowed, except in the event of a let (the ball touches the net on the serve and lands on the proper service court; let serves are replayed).
  •  
    USAPA Rules Summary – The Serve

NOTE – The server’s swing must be in an upward arc as shown in the drawing below (p. 18 – USAPA & IFP Official Tournament Rulebook)


Upward air serve

 
Pickleball 101: The Basics of a Pickleball Serve

Additional information:

The Ultimate Guide To Serving In Pickleball

 
#2 – take step forward after serving and sometimes they are caught moving backwards trying to hit the return of serve. It is more difficult to hit the ball forward while you are moving backward. Taking a step backward while hitting the ball will result only in an arm shot which is difficult to hit precisely and usually will not have much power. Stay back waiting for the return of serve, but be ready to move forward if the return is short!

 
#3– are facing the net, i.e. parallel when hitting a groundstroke even if they have time to set up. This is known as an open stance; not generally good for a ground stroke. A groundstroke, either forehand or backhand, has more power when you can set up with your shoulder perpendicular to the net.

 
#4– when not receiving the serve, partners are waiting near the kitchen line and they do not watch the ball as it is served to the receiver. I have noticed some facing completely forward without ever turning around, but just waiting to see the ball hit the opponent’s side of the court. The non-receiving partner should watch the ball as it is served to the receiver.

a – The ball may be out and the receiver may not have called it. You then call it.

b – If the receiver hits a bad shot, you have time to react if you are watching the ball. If it is a pop-up and it will be coming back hard, take a few steps back to gain more time to respond.

c- Watching the receiver hit the ball may enable the non-receiving partner to determine where the ball is headed and prepare for the return by facing in that direction with the paddle up.

 
I hope beginning pickleballers and perhaps others find some of these observations and associated links helpful.

Have fun on the courts!

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More Pickleball Videos and Information

To See additional Pickleball Videos & Information Click Here (primarily for beginners and less experienced players)

Check out Additional Pickleball Information and Videos! (for all players including average to more experienced players)


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All original content on this blog is copyrighted by Jeffrey B. Ross with ALL Rights Reserved. While reference links back to JBRish.com are appreciated and encouraged, please acquire approval for any reproduction of original content from this website.

©Jeffrey B. Ross 2014 – 2018 – JBRish.com