Pickleball: Is this serve “legal”? – VIDEO

I can’t tell you how many times I see people using illegal serves during recreational play. A serve has several key elements:

  • The serve has to be done with an upward path (underhand)
  • The head of the paddle needs to be below the wrist when the ball is struck
  • Contact with the ball must be made below waist level


This is what it looks like in pictures

pickleball serve in pictures
[ From p.17 of USAPA & IFP Official Tournament Rulebook ]

Of course the server’s feet have to be appropriately within bounds and behind the baseline until after the ball is struck.

There are those who have always used a serve that would not meet all of these requirements, but others may have “drifted” away from a legal serve through bad habits or poor practice.

My serve was questioned recently and I went back to the drawing board to make sure that I was complying with all elements. I wanted to be “obviously” correct. As you can see in the video below, it isn’t always easy to tell if a serve is completely legal.

Watch Mark Renneson of Third Shot Pickleball as he demonstrates a variety of serves and discusses the differences between them and whether or not they might be considered illegal, i.e. a fault!

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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 – 2019 – JBRish.com



Pickleball News – 20191010 – Archived Version


Pickleball News – 20191010 – Archived Version


October 10, 2019

 
Hello N. Phoenix Pickleball Players:


Phoenix City Community Centers Are Open on Columbus Day
********** Monday, October 14, 2019 **********

 

********** NEW-ish Outdoor Pickleball Courts **********
at Moon Valley Country Club

PB at Moon Valley CC

  • When: Every Monday-Saturday 8:00AM – 11:00AM
  • Where: Moon Valley Country Club Tennis Courts, 151 W. Moon Valley Drive, Phoenix
  • Fee: $5.00 per day

* No Reservations Required!
* Balls will be provided. Please bring your own paddle.
* (Limited paddles available to borrow)

NOTE – It is my understanding that currently there are four courts with more to be added in the future.


—————————–

Coordinated by Bill and Nedra Marshall.
Please email billmarshall1010@yahoo.com with any questions.

 

********** Family Life Center **********
New Fee and Schedule Change

The Family Life Center has recently upgraded their pickleball nets and now all courts have prime nets to assure regulation height for the games.

The new yearly fee for pickleball will be $60. Players can elect to pay $35 for a six-month membership.

ALSO … Friday play from 1:00-3:00PM is now included as part of the pickleball membership.

Thanks to all those who contributed toward the new nets, Stefano for helping to acquire them, and Jackie Switzer who has fostered an excellent pickleball program for N. Phoenix players!

 


********** A Myth Related to the 3rd Shot Drop **********
OR Stop trying to make the third shot drop “too good!”

Many players have been led to believe that a good drop shot is the premiere shot in pickleball and indeed it is a very effective play. A following thought is often that the drop should land as close to the opponent’s side of the net as possible. Mark Renneson of Third Shot Sports (coincidental name vis-à-vis this video) demonstrates how this belief is not accurate and he provides empirical proof.

Perhaps trying to make that drop shot “too good” is causing you to hit the ball into the net more often.

Watch the video to see what makes a drop shot effective.

 

 

********** 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


********** 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: Don’t Win the Point, Just Don’t Lose the Point!

“If you’re an amateur your focus should be on avoiding stupidity, not seeking brilliance.” – Charlie Munger

While Pickleball is NOT Tennis, there may be some lessons we can draw from Tennis and apply them to pickleball.

The quotes below discuss elements from the book Extraordinary Tennis for the Ordinary Tennis Player by Simon Ramo, but are not necessarily directly from the book. The quotes were copied from the article linked below.

It has been my experience that the word pickleball can just as likely be replaced with pickleball!

“Although players in both games [ amateur and professional tennis ] use the same equipment, dress, rules and scoring, and conform to the same etiquette and customs, the basic natures of their two games are almost entirely different. After extensive scientific and statistical analysis, Dr. Ramo summed it up this way: Professionals win points, amateurs lose points. Professional tennis players stroke the ball with strong, well aimed shots, through long and often exciting rallies, until one player is able to drive the ball just beyond the reach of his opponent. Errors are seldom made by these splendid players.”**

“The amateur duffer seldom beats his opponent, but he beats himself all the time. The victor in this game of tennis gets a higher score than the opponent, but he gets that higher score because his opponent is losing even more points.”**

“In expert tennis, about 80 per cent of the points are won; in amateur tennis, about 80 per cent of the points are lost. In other words, professional tennis is a Winner’s Game – the final outcome is determined by the activities of the winner – and amateur tennis is a Loser’s Game – the final outcome is determined by the activities of the loser.”**

**Avoiding Stupidity is easier than Seeking Brilliance


In Summary

According to the above, amateur pickleballers (and of course I include myself in that group) win their games not necessarily because they make the best shots and have the best skills. They simply make less errors than their opponents. If this is not new and it is “good enough” for you, no need to read further.

For some, this might be a different way of looking at things and an inspiration to “win” the points rather than have your opponent lose them.

When I introduce people to pickleball, I often encourage them to avoid trying for the “perfect” shots within inches of the lines or those that just clear the net. Instead, I advise them to make solid shots and force the opponent to return the ball.

There will be times when their amateur opponent will miss a simple overhead, easy dink or block-volley simply because they take their eye of the ball.

Remember, we aren’t relegated to this scenario for ever. As we gain experience and improve our skills, we can seek levels of pickleball brilliance!

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How to Improve so You Can Avoid “Pickleball Stupidity”


Joe Baker has provided excellent videos for aspiring pickleballers. Watching or re-watching them will help avoid many pickleball errors.

 

Doubles Pickleball Strategy 101-How to Play Smart Pickleball, Ten Tips


 


Doubles Pickleball Strategy 102 – Smart Pickleball Vol. 2, Power


 

Doubles Pickleball Strategy 103: Don’t Hit Out Balls, Six Easy Rules


 

We can start with the videos above and hopefully play a “smarter” amateur’s game!

 

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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)


**********

 

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 Video: Fix the hole in your paddle – watch the ball!

Perhaps you have heard the phrases…

“You can’t hit it, if you can’t see it.” or “Hit it? I can’t even see it!”

This highlights a major problem in pickleball (and many other sports). We are all told that we need to watch the ball until it makes contact with the paddle. Well, that seems pretty easy and in warm-ups it can easily be done.

Once a game begins however, many players lose concentration and become so interested in seeing the results of their “hit” that they look up at the last minute and thus often do not hit the ball in the paddle’s sweet spot where it is easy to direct the ball and control the speed.

How many times has this happened to you (and me)…You think you have an easy shot and you are ready for it and when the ball comes you swing for what you think is going to be a good shot or a winner and you whiff; miss the ball completely.

Some players then look at the paddle as though there is a hole in it which the ball just happened to pass through. Most of the time this is caused because, at the last moment, the player took their eye off of the ball.

The two pictures below show highly skilled pickleball players hitting the ball. Notice where their eyes are focusing:



picture courtesy of the USAPA


picture courtesy of YouTube video: Blocking with Sarah Ansboury
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FQa0N5TtSW0&feature=youtu.be

These players are focused on watching the ball until the paddle makes contact!

Looking up just before hitting the ball can often cause the ball to hit the edge of the paddle, the handle or somewhere on the paddle face that does not enable the ball to be properly stroked to acquire the appropriate direction and/or speed.

Practicing watching the ball is important. Start with the serve because at that point, you are not anticipating a quick shot coming right back to you. Watch the ball hit the paddle. This will give you a sense and feel of what it is like. Develop this routine and go on to watching the ball on your ground stroke, backhand, lob and dink.

In the video below, pickleball coach Matty Klein discusses the importance of keeping your eyes on the ball and demonstrates how it is done to achieve the proper effect.

Tennis has been closely compared to pickleball because of some of the similarities so let’s consider a study addressed in an article Watch The Ball? How Elite Tennis Players Focus On The Contact Point by By Damien Lafont, PhD and Certified Tennis Coach, France (First published in the ITF Coaching and Sport Science Review, Dec. 2007)

“Additionally, what contrasts with previous studies is that Federer and Nadal (tennis champions of distinction [ed)] not only keep their eye on the ball up to the moment of impact, but after impact their head remains still and in the direction of the contact zone.

This ‘fixation’ of the contact zone is the trademark of elite players.

The most noteworthy finding was that elite players were able to maintain a fairly consistent control; a consistency also illustrated on the women’s tour by Steffi Graf who kept her eyes on the ball on every shot with significant fixation stage after impact.”

Source – https://www.tennismindgame.com/how-pros-watch-the-ball.html

To quote Tennis Professional Michael Emmett: “…none of these techniques are relevant – if you’re NOT watching the ball!”

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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)


**********

 

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



The Mental Side of Pickleball

It is interesting that today I received two articles about the mental side of pickleball. Both are somewhat related and might be of interest to those who count themselves more competitive than the casual “lets go out and get some exercise” players. Of course there is nothing wrong with just wanting to play to have fun and get exercise. That is one of the wonders of pickleball…it can be enjoyed on many levels!

Sarah Ansboury’s post, Being Present addresses a situation that I have been in at one time or another, but thankfully not that often. What I am talking about is letting something that happened on a previous point affect future play. It doesn’t make a difference if it is in the same game, the last game, the game last week or several months ago.

As Sarah points out, successful athletes have the ability to compartmentalize situations and focus on the here and now. Here is a quote from her article:

That point is over. Whatever happened, happened. That moment in time cannot affect the future unless we choose to let it. If a player focuses on a bad shot, the fact that their last serve did not go in, or what they consider a bad line call they cannot focus on the task at hand, i.e. the current point. To focus all your energy on the current point you must learn to turn off the thoughts that don’t contribute to the moment at hand.

I have played in games when after the game a player focuses on some of his or her mistakes disregarding the very good plays they made. I think that is part of the human condition. At the end of her article Sarah Ansboury says: “There is always something you did well. Focus on that, and forget the rest.” It may be hard to do at first, but its a skill that needs to be developed.

Read the entire article Being Present

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On a related topic, In2Pickle.com talks about the Dreaded 9. If you have been playying pickleball for a significant amount of time, you may have been in this situation on one side or the other.

A team is winning by a fair amount, let’s say 9 to 5. Realizing that you only need two points to win, you begin to become more aggressive and end up losing. Tony, of In2Pickle.com, explains the strategy he would use to avoid losing in this situation. I have been on both sides of this scenario and I have noticed the momentum shift.

This too is part of the mental mindset behind winning pickleball. Read Tony’s article, The Dreaded 9!

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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)


**********

 

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 – 2019 Minto US Open Videos

Pickleball is a very popular sport and it is growing and growing. Although pickleball has been evolving for more than fifty years, it hasn’t reached full maturity. It is still finding its way in the sports and entertainment arenas.

The recent 2019 Minto US Pickleball Open, for example, had some of the best competition and numerous people would have like to watch many of the medal matches including bronze and gold contests in a variety of categories. Sadly, many of these were not broadcast live. Certain categories have not been placed on YouTube or Facebook, even though the championship was months ago.

To their credit, CBS Sports did televise some of the exciting gold medal matches (Thank You CBS Sports!). The unfortunate aspect of this scenario, as far s I can discern, is that this was not widely communicated in the pickleball world.

For those who might have missed the action and would like to view it, here (below) are as many videos as I could find online. Please bear in mind that the quality of the videos varies. I also want to point out that I tried to find matches in all age groups, i.e. women, men, young, senior etc. What I found was a limited sample of players represented in the current available videos. You can search on your own periodically as some of the videos may be released at a later date.

NOTE – Some of the Facebook pages have more videos listed and linked on the sidebar (right-hand side). You can watch those as well!

When weather or other obligations keep you from playing pickleball, you can watch exciting matches to see what the Pros do!

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Doubles

MEN’S DOUBLES 19+ Gold Medal match from the 2019 Minto US Open Pickleball Championships NOTE – Action doesn’t start until the 8:28 (+/-) mark so feel free to move ahead to avoid the “advertisements” and intros.

Kyle Yates and Brian Ashworth vs. Marcin Rozpedski and Aspen Kern

CBS Sports Broadcast – PRO Men’s Doubles Gold – Minto US Open Pickleball Championships

Kyle Yates and Matt Wright go head-to-head with Dave Weinbach and Marcin Rozpedski

FULL VERSION! PRO Women’s Doubles GOLD – Minto US Open Pickleball Championships

Now you can enjoy the ENTIRE Pro Women’s Doubles GOLD match including the missing points that didn’t air on CBS Sports Network. This exciting match goes to 3 games and features the top women’s pickleball players in the world. Lucy Kovalova and Irina Tereschenko square up against Simone Jardim and Corrine Carr for an intense battle for the gold medal.

2019 US Open Pickleball Championships – Pro Senior Women’s Doubles GOLD

Jennifer Dawson and Cammy MacGregor take on Kris Anderson and Lisa Naumu

2019 US Open Pickleball Championships – Pro Men’s Senior Doubles GOLD

Dave Weinbach and Barry Waddell take on Scott Burr and Brian Staub

MIXED DOUBLES 25+ Gold Medal match from the 2019 Minto US Open Pickleball Championships powered by Margaritaville with Catherine Parenteauand Joey Farias vs. Christine McGrath – Morgan Evans

Singles

2019 US Open Pickleball Championships – Men’s Singles PRO Gold Match

Tyson McGuffin and Ben Johns

2019 US Open Pickleball Championships – Pro Senior Men’s Singles GOLD

Scott Moore and Paul Olin

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Here is a link to all of the winners in each of the categories of the 2019 US Open!

2019 Minto US Open Pickleball Championships Winners

 

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



A Sports Legacy for North Phoenix


Legacy Sports Arena Opening Sign

New ground has recently been broken in North Phoenix, both figuratively and literally. Just a short distance from the intersection of I-17 and Route 303, construction of the Legacy Sports Arena has begun as part of the Gateway Community.


Legacy groundbreaking ceremony

Cave Creek resident Robert Eaton and his team are working hard to complete an ambitious and profoundly different sports facility with an anticipated opening scheduled for the Fall of 2020. The plans call for two NHL-sized hockey rinks with the latest LED technology employed via glass flooring that can provide lighted boundary lines for basketball courts, dodgeball, soccer, lacrosse and for the fastest growing sport in the United States and Canada…a dozen pickleball courts!


Construction starting at the Legacy Sports Complex

As Rob pointed out during the groundbreaking ceremony, the name Legacy is a tribute to families and family traditions. The name also acknowledges the contributions of active and veteran military members and first-responders and the playing surfaces will be named to honor them.


Rob Eaton detailing the Sports Arena at the groundbreaking

The design was developed to bring the best experiences to both players and sports fans via open space viewing throughout the facility. The arena will incorporate some of the latest developments in green energy with both passive and active low-energy designs part of which will include rooftop solar panels generating electricity year round.

The Legacy Sports Arena portends to be one of the nicest sports facilities in the area and perhaps nation-wide with a restaurant, gymnasium, concession venue, artificial ice rink and other sports resources upstairs.


Drawing of the Legacy Sports Complex

The Legacy sports building would be innovative as a stand alone project, but Rob Eaton and the designers had more than that in mind when they created a vision for a destination facility. Hoping to attract tournament play, conventions, family vacationers and special events, in addition to the 170,000+ square foot sports arena, there will also be a hotel conceived specifically for players and spectators.


Drawing of the Legacy Hotel and Sports Arena

The lodging will incorporate larger team rooms and special amenities via available suites for team members as well as rooms for sports oriented families and guests.

Everyone who enjoys watching or playing sports should be excited about the future of the Legacy Sports Project. Congratulations to everyone involved for creating such a strong vision that will provide wonderful opportunities for the Phoenix metropolitan area.

Best wishes for much success!

 


Follow the News and Development of Legacy Sports Arena

Legacy News and Updates

View the Sports and Target Age Groups

Legacy Sports Arena Logo

 

Read more miscellaneous stories on JBRish HERE


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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 – 2019 – JBRish.com



Pickleball News – 20190423 – Archived Version


April 23, 2019

 
Hello Phoenix Area Players:

 
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!

********** City of Phoenix Parks and Recreation **********
Summer Pickleball Schedule

The City of Phoenix Parks and Recreation has published their summer pickleball schedule.



Current Schedule – Above

To download a color PDF copy of the 2019 Summer, Phoenix Community Center Pickleball Schedule, click HERE!

I want to thank the City of Phoenix Parks and Recreation Department for giving us a timely copy. ALSO…please keep in mind that “things happen” and adjustments may be made to the schedule. I know we all appreciate the summer accommodations considering that the youngsters need to have time at our Community Centers.

 

*** 2019 Minto US OPEN Pickleball Championships ***



2018 WOMEN’S PRO SINGLES Champion – Simone Jardim

Naples, Florida is hosting the Minto US Pickleball Open Championship this year from April 27-May 4, 2019 with singles, doubles and mixed doubles contests.

Information from the website linked below tells us:

  • Pickleball grew from 3.1 million players last year to 3.3 million this year.
  • Players will be coming from 48 states and 16 countries.
  • Players range from age 11 through age 86.
  • National television: The event will be covered by CBS Sports Network and live streamed on CBS Sports Live from May 1 – May 4 on their app. CBS Sports Network will broadcast the finals at a later date.”

I believe our good friend Mark Renneson from Third Shot Sports will be one of the commentators which is good for us. Mark is often able to gather additional videos to share with his followers and I will link to them on my websites via pikcleball posts when they become available. You can look for them by following this link:

JBRish.com Pickleball

For those who use a two-handed backhand, watch to see how well upcoming pickleballer Lindsey Newman, recently highlighted by Selkirk Sports, does.



Selkirk Athlete, Lindsey Newman

To read more about the 2019 Minto US OPEN Pickleball Championships from the organizers, click HERE.

 

********** Don’t Play Pickleball Like a Tree, Move **********

The ultimate goal of both players on a team to work their way up to the NVZ and hold that position can, at times, be carried to an extreme especially when a dink game ensues. In the video below, Jordan Briones, – Prime Time Pickleball Coach – details when it is advisable to back up and move away from the NVZ line as a smart strategy.

 

********** Partner Communication **********

Wherever and whenever we play pickleball, it is always a good idea to develop some method of communicating with our partners. I have probably shared this video before, but it deserves to be repeated.

Did you ever notice how much better your “team” does when you play several games with the same partner? Generally speaking, that is because some “communication” has evolved.

Thanks to Mark Renneson from Third Shot Sports for explaining why!

 

********** 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


*** 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: 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