Basic Rules

Basic Rules of Pickleball

The lines: The baseline is the end of the court. Any balls bouncing past this line are considered out. Serves must be made while standing behind this line. Sidelines and the baseline should be positioned so that any ball bouncing on the line is good. On the serve, a ball striking the non-volley zone line is considered a fault.

The non-volley zone: Seven feet from the net, a line marks a non-volley zone. Players cannot hit the ball without letting it bounce first if a foot is between line and net, or if steps into the zone after hitting ball.

Scoring and winning: A team gets a point when they win a rally that they served. When a point is won, the players of the winning team switch sides. The first team to 11 points wins, but you have to win by two points.

The serve: The player on the right always serves first. The ball must contact the paddle below the waist and must land in the diagonally opposite court, past the non-volley line. The player must hit the ball without bouncing it first. Both players on a team will serve before the service passes to the other team. To keep the first service of a game fair, only the first player serves during the first service of the game.

Keeping track of scoring: Players switch sides at points so a simple score system keeps track of who serves. Before a serve, server calls out their team’s score, other team’s score, and first or second server. If my team has 5 points, other team has 3, and my partner has served and lost a point, I call out “5-3-2.”

The return: Receiving team must let a ball bounce before returning serve. Also, a serving team MUST let a returned ball bounce once more before hitting. It means there will be two bounces in first two hits of a rally.

 In singles, server hits from right side of court when his/her score is even and left side when odd.

Here is a link to the complete official rules from the USAPA website if you like more details http://www.usapa.org/officialrules/pbrules.pdf

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