Pickleball: How to Play

January 14, 2022

Looking to play Pickleball, but don't know how? Here are 14 easy steps to teach you how to play Pickleball.

  1. Get all the required materials (Pickleball, Pickleball Paddles), preferably the Baden Pickleball set 😉 and head to a Pickleball court, tennis court or even just a local neighborhood and get ready to have fun.
  2. You can play in doubles (2 vs 2) or singles (1 vs 1), how you play in each is very similar so this will focus on doubles and nearly all the steps are the same for singles.
  3. Note, at the start of each new game, the 1st serving team is allowed only one fault before giving up the ball to the opponents. Thereafter both members of each team will serve and fault before the ball is turned over to the opposing team
  4. Either team may start the serve first, however the person on the right side of the court should be the person doing the first serve for your team.
  5. Before serving call out the score of the game, in this case it would be 0-0-2 (If you have questions on calling out score, look in the “How to Keep Score” Blog). Confused on scoring, don’t be! Scoring is probably the most confusing part of Pickleball, so allow us to help.
  6. At this point serve just outside of the service line on your side of the court, keeping your feet behind the service line. 
  7. The serve must be underhand, and you cannot bounce the ball and then hit it. You must hit it straight out of the air.
  8. The serve must land in the opposing teams square that is diagonal to the person serving. This is when the double bounce rule takes effect, if you have questions look at the “Pickleball Dictionary” Blog.
  9. Continue rallying back and forth until someone makes a fault or messes up. It’s okay we all make mistakes 😉. (faults can be located in the how to keep score blog).
  1. If the serving team makes a fault, then the serve goes to the other team and the score would be 0-0-1 because the serving team did not score a point and the first server is up for the other team.
  2. If the returning team makes a fault, then the score is 1-0-2, and the serving team players switch places on the court. The same server who made the first serve does the next one in this case.
  3. After the initial serving team faults, the serve goes to the other team and the person on the right goes first. Continuing to serve until her/his team faults. Then the other player on that team gets a chance to serve.
  4. Once his/her team faults the serve goes back to the other team.
  5. Continue following this pattern until a team reaches 11 and that team has won by at least 2 points. The score can go higher than 11 so that a team can win by 2. For example, if the score is 11-10, you keep playing until someone has won by 2.

                                                  Figure 1

Congrats you now a Pickleball Pro. If your still confused, Don't Stress! After a couple of sets, the game is easy to get the hang of. Don't be afraid to look at our other Pickleball Blogs as well for more information.

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