Pickle ball has been the latest sports craze with courts popping up everywhere lately! I learned how to play pickle ball in gym class in high school and love that it has become so popular. I have had so much fun playing the past few years and find it to be the perfect active pass time. On a recent trip to Nantucket I had the chance to meet the lovely Lee Whitwell and learned a few tips from her! Lee began her career as a national tennis champion at Francis Marion University and later transitioned to pickle ball in 2016. She is from Gibraltar, United Kingdom and was such a joy to spend time with. Lee is an ambassador for Oofos and the team planned the perfect day for us complete with their amazing recovery footwear.
I’m thrilled that in today’s post Lee is sharing a her 10 top tips with us for beginner pickle ball players. In addition to Lee’s tips, I’m also sharing a few sport outfits perfect for the pickle ball court. Be sure to follow her on IG to keep up with all she has going on! @ladygibraltr
Make sure you have the correct court shoes (you want shoes which provide lateral support)
Examples – tennis court shoes, pickle ball shoes, outdoor volleyball shoes.
Lee’s top shoe brands: Tyrol, Babolat, Kswiss
Note from Abby: These Oofos recovery sneakers are the best to wear after pickle ball!
There are 2 types of balls outdoor and indoor. The surface determines the ball. For example – an indoor court with an outdoor surface will use an outdoor ball. An indoor ball is used primarily on a gym floor.
Take a learn to play or intro to pickle ball class – you will meet people to play with!
Take your time, remember you have a lot more time to hit the ball than you think.
Drill – find a pickle ball buddy and drill. Practice your dinks, thirds, serves and returns.
Master the first 4 shots in pickle ball (Serve, return, third and fourth shot)
Practice serve plus third and return of serve plus 4th shot.
Lee’s paddle picks by price:
Under $100: Bread and Butter
Under $150: Selkirk Amped, JOOLA Hyperion, Vulcan
$150-$200: Six Zero, Bread and Butter, Diadem, Engage Pursuit, ProKennex, Vulcan , Selkirk
Breathe – we tend to hold our breath when hitting the ball which causes us to tense up and grip the paddle even harder – learn to exhale on contact, this allows your body to relax and you can execute your shot.
Try and see the ball hit your paddle and see the ball hit your opponents paddle. Focusing on the ball allows you to see its trajectory and pace.
Watch the pros play – see their court positioning, how unrushed everything looks. A lot of time and practice has gone into making the game look this easy!
Smile and have fun – you have found your new playground…..Enjoy!
Thanks for reading! Enjoy pickle ball!