Do you want to start playing pickleball like a pro? If the answer is yes, you’re in the right place! It will take little effort to improve your game, as pickleball boasts a shallow learning curve. But you have to be fully prepared to commit time and energy.
Perhaps, you’re already a good player, given the level of the people you have been playing against. Now, ask yourself this question, “Do I stand a chance if I play against top pickleball players?”
If no is the answer, you need to take drastic steps to improve your game. Even if it’s a yes, you have to aim higher. In pickleball, there’s always room for improvement.
So, are you ready? Let’s get to business!
Tip#1: Have Fun Playing:
Most players consider winning their games as a do or die affair, which is fantastic. Having such a mindset can propel you to success, though not all the time.
When you treat every game that way, you might place yourself under unnecessary pressure, which could take away your confidence.
Playing under severe pressure can create an element of fear in you. And when that happens, you’ll find yourself not playing to capacity anymore. The pressure would create instability in your mind and stifle your flexibility.
The reverse is the case when you have fun while playing pickleball games. Enjoy the game to the fullest. That way, you won’t soak yourself in unnecessary pressure that will cage you mentally.
Tip#2: Work On Your Mobility:
It doesn’t matter if you’re playing pickleball for recreational purposes. Please, make your games enjoyable to watch so that spectators will develop more interest in the game.
What is this tip all about? Well, you already know. It is about players’ movements during games. Most people enjoy standing on one spot during games.
If one didn’t know how exciting pickleball is, watching this category of people play may create a feeling of dislike for the game.
But then, it doesn’t have to be that way. Pickleball is not a sport where players remain static. You have to be mobile and motivate your partner to do the same. Bring the balls back into the game, and cause all manner of problems to your opponents with your speed.
The thing is, even though you’re only playing for recreational purposes, being mobile is the fastest way to acquire the benefits of playing pickleball. You’ll find yourself sweating profusely, and that’s an exciting part of the game.
A Handy Tip: Please, note that you don’t have to start running like a pro. And if you have an injury, ensure you don’t aggravate the condition. However, explain to your partner how limited your movement would be throughout the game.
Furthermore, if you have to rest to avoid aggravating the situation, please do so. If you’re injury-free but have issues with speed, focus your energy on improving that aspect of your game.
You can do early morning jogging at varying speeds. You can start by running slowly, faster and then super-fast within a few minutes. Over time, you’ll improve your mobility in pickleball games.
Again, please feel free to try other techniques to improve your speed, as what worked for someone else might not work for you.
Tip#3: Interact With Your Partner:
You and your partner are a team. It doesn’t matter if both of you haven’t been playing together. Discuss how both of you should be handling the middle balls during the game.
You have to consider planning with your partner before games a must-do ritual. Why? Communication and creating plans together brings you and your partner on the same page.
When you synchronize with your partner, winning is almost sure! So, make it happen. You can also discuss the signs both of you should use to communicate during the game. Do it and watch your chances of winning the game soar higher.
A Handy Tip: If you have a partner, please don’t rate yourself higher than the person. Be ready to accept criticisms from your partner, and listen when they give suggestions.
It is hard winning pickleball games with a player or partner that isn’t happy. So, try to make your partners happy by showing them that they are still essential team members.
Tip#4: Identify The Weaker Link Among Players:
Every player is unique in their own way. But in a game like pickleball, where you have two different players partnering, one might be better than the other.
How can you benefit by identifying the weaker link among your opponents? You’ll have a unique opportunity to earn more points.
So, kindly focus on the weaker player, and let every opportunity you have to send the ball their way count.
What does this imply? Keep the ball away from the pro player as much as you can. He or she player might discover your plan and may try helping the weaker partner. But don’t fall for any trick. Continue targeting the weaker player and earn as many points as you can.
Please note that this tip is more useful when playing a competitive game. If you were playing a non-competitive game, don’t try this. Just enjoy your game to the fullest.
A Handy Tip: You can identify the weaker link among opponents before or during games. You can also watch them play, study and pick out the weaker player.
Tip#5: Embrace High Percentage Pickleball:
Firstly, what is high percentage pickleball? It refers to hitting shots that offer the highest percentage of success. It is one proven way to improve shot selection and reduce unforced errors.
A shot fired down the middle of two players is a high percentage shot. The ball’s speed and where it would land, (at the centre of both players) can cause confusion to both players (your opponents). Both may struggle to clear out the ball and fail to do so.
High percentage pickleball can earn you more points, but always targeting the same area can prove risky. It will enable your opponents to study your game and make you pay dearly.
So, the middle shouldn’t be your only target while playing high percentage pickleball. Target other areas. Here are other target areas to have in mind.
Another important thing is to understand the shots to avoid when playing high percentage pickleball. Here they are.
Long shots fired to the baseline or sideline:
If you find yourself near the transition area or baseline, know that shots fired towards the baseline or sidelines from there are low percentage. Don’t play high percentage pickleball with such shots.
Difficult serves and return of serves:
Every player understands that a deep serve, including a deep return of serve, can amount to success. The only major issue is serving closer to the baseline. The ball could go out of bounds and cause you to lose points. You will lose your serves, too.
A Handy Tip: How can you avoid unforced errors when you serve the pickleball? It is simple. Let the ball drop feet inside the baseline.
Attacking shots that drop below the net:
Avoid these types of shots when playing high percentage pickleball. If you decide to hit the ball, keep in mind that it might go out of bounds. There’s a high possibility of this happening, given the condition the ball is in.
In general, don’t play high percentage pickleball with difficult shots. The probability of scoring points with such shots is relatively low.
Tip#6: Use Your Strength To The Fullest:
You have to put up a fight to defeat some opponents. You don’t have to play cool. If you’re super good at dinking, waste no time! Engage your opponents in a sweaty dink war and be ready to unleash everything you know about the tactic.
The bottom line is using your pickleball skills to capacity. If you’re top-notch in driving, your speed can do the trick for you. But one thing you need to pay attention to is your predictability.
Please don’t make it too easy for your opponents to predict you. Fire different shots and target other areas as much as you can.
If you have been looking for how to improve your pickleball game, you’re not alone. Many people are looking for tips to become better in the game. Excitingly, we found time to share some of those tips, to help you become a better player.
With pickleball becoming a top global sport, now is the time to take your game to another level. Moreover, if you only care to play it for recreational purposes, you’ll still find some of the tips here quite helpful.
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