What happens when the principles of tennis are combined with a smaller court, some slightly different rules and a hollow plastic ball? Pickleball is what happens!
History of National Pickleball Month
Pickleball can trace its history back to 1965 when it was founded by three friends on Bainbridge Island in Washington state. Beginning in a grassroots way, pickle ball began to grow in the Pacific Northwest region where it was founded and has more recently grown in popularity throughout the entire nation.
Understandably, many people are curious about how the sport got its name! And it has nothing to do with eating pickles. As it turns out, the name came about from the wife of one of the original founders the same summer that they began playing. She considered it to be a reference to the leftovers that are thrown together, in the same vein as the leftover or non-starters in crew races.
National Pickleball Month got its start in 2018 when it was established by the USA Pickleball Association (USAPA) with the purpose of raising awareness and connecting more people with the sport. USAPA is the national governing body for the sport that looks a bit like tennis but has a bit of a spin on it as well as a smaller court.
To add to the focus of celebrating National Pickleball Month, the USAPA offers some different focuses for each week. Weekly themes from the past have included:
- Why We Love Pickleball
- Up Your Game
- Member Appreciation
- Looking Ahead
Whether an avid fan or rather new to the sport, anyone and everyone is invited to join in on the fun by celebrating and participating in National Pickleball Month!
How to Celebrate National Pickleball Month
Considering that pickleball is both healthy and fun, National Pickleball Month offers the perfect time in the spring to get outside and start playing! Take a look at some of these ideas for observing this event:
Play Some Pickleball
The best way to get involved in National Pickleball Month might be to try playing it – and there are thirty whole days to do it in! The cost of playing pickleball is relatively low when compared to tennis, as the equipment is cheaper and open play courts are less expensive too.
Those who are new to the game can head over to a court to watch first, check out some tutoring sessions online, then just grab some friends and see how it goes. Some of the basics: it’s possible to play singles or doubles, the ball needs to bounce once per side after the serve, and the score goes up to eleven points.
Learn Some Benefits of Pickleball
Not sure whether pickleball is worth investing in? Well, in addition to being loads of fun, pickleball also offers accessibility, affordability, and has benefits to physical health. Check out some of these benefits in celebration of National Pickleball Month:
Improved heart health from cardio exercise.
Benefits to balance and coordination.
Helpful for mood and mental health.
Creates opportunities for social connection.