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20+ Reasons Pickleball Has Become So Popular (A Beginner-Friendly Sport)

Pickleball is an up-and-coming sport that is on its way to becoming one of America’s favorite racquet (paddle) sports. It’s considered to be one of the fastest-growing sports in America in the last decades. But, what makes this game so appealing?

This sport, which was invented in the 1960s, is fun, easy to learn, and family-friendly. Over the last years, this sport has been, continually, rising in popularity. Most likely, you’ve heard that Pickleball is quite popular among seniors, and it’s true. However, what you, probably, haven’t heard is that it’s becoming trendy among the younger population. In fact, according to USA Pickleball, the younger demographics are the main responsible for the game’s popularity growth in recent years.

With that being said, you’re probably asking yourself why Pickleball is so popular? Well, there is more than one reason for this.

These are 20+ reasons why Pickleball is so popular. Pickleball is…

1. A social activity.

Pickleball is an extremely social game. It provides an opportunity to meet new people and, probably, establish genuine connections. Moreover, it is downright fun. There is a higher chance that you will have ample opportunity for laughter, which helps to reduce stress.

The fact that the pickleball court is small, when compared to other racket sports, makes it easy for players to interact since they are close enough to each other. So if you are looking for a perfect way to bond with your friends or family while having fun, this sport makes it easy for you to do just that.

An increasing number of cities have started creating pickleball leagues and events, where people can sign up for different tournaments. In most cases, people sign up not because they want to compete with other players but because they are interested in meeting new people in the community.

2. Suitable for parks and recreation departments.

Due to public demand, several parks and recreation departments are already converting tennis courts to be used for pickleball. For most people looking to add a new activity into their recreational offerings, the game is an affordable and popular choice. In most cases, Pickleball is a perfect way to spend your summer. Since it can be played both outdoors and indoors, it is an attractive option for all types of recreational facilities.

Moreover, setting up tri-sport recreational nets or outdoor pickleball nets is easy, making converting to Pickleball, mini-volleyball, and badminton a breeze.

3. A healthy sport.

There are several health benefits of playing this sport; that’s why it is recommended for aging adults because it helps them to stay active and healthy. Pickleball can boost your immunity, lower blood pressure, revs up your energy levels, as well as, relax muscles.

Actually, Pickleball offers a great opportunity to exercise your body and mind. It lets you build on your agility, balance, hand-eye coordination, and reflexes without exerting much pressure on your body. This sport can be a good alternative for aging players who used to play tennis or badminton but are restrained by physical limitations, such as shoulder, knee, hip, and other issues.

4. A great sport for all skills levels.

While this sport is not as dynamic as other rackets sports, such as tennis, it usually appeals to anyone with some sense of mobility. You can find youngsters enjoying this sport as much as adults do. It is virtually suitable for people aged between 5 to 85 years (or even older).

Pickleball is played on smaller courts, which means players don’t have to move around as much, thus making it great for older people to enjoy the sport. A majority of retired adults like this sport because it gives them an opportunity to get their exercise without having to run on a more spacious court.

And in any case, the game doesn’t require any special athletic skills.
Young children and teens, also, like playing this sport because they find it fun at the same time intense. Playing on a small court means you can utilize your hand-eye coordination just like you do when playing ping-ball.

5. Family-friendly.

This is one of the few sports where you can find two teens, a pregnant woman, and a 70-year-old grandfather enjoying the game on the same court. This uniqueness does not only make this sport fun to play, but it also provides an exciting opportunity for families to spend time together.

6. Easy to pick up and learn.

Besides being a fun sport, perhaps another reason that makes Pickleball attract many people is that it is easy to learn. It doesn’t matter if you are a seasoned player who is interested in a competitive game or a novice who just wants to learn the game, Pickleball accommodates you.

On the other hand, other racquet sports, such as tennis, can be challenging to play because you need to learn how to hit the ball properly to engage in long and fun rallies. Bearing this in mind, it may take a few years for you to play decent tennis. And don’t get me started on the high price tag of taking tennis lessons…

For Pickleball, getting to the ball and hitting it is a lot easier because of the small court and the paddles. You can, literally, learn how to play this game within a few hours.

7. Requires minimal space.

The recommended pickleball court is almost four times smaller than a tennis court. This means that you don’t need a big space to construct a pickleball court. The small playing field makes it an excellent choice for most backyards.

8. Can be a competitive sport too.

Do not be deceived by the fun nature of the sport. Pickleball can also satisfy your competitive needs, especially if you want to pursue it as a professional player. The fact that this sport put more emphasis on strategy rather than physical prowess means that Pickleball can be competitive.

Besides this, there are several tournaments ranging from the local competitions organized by clubs and local associations to the national and international tournaments that attract players from various corners of the globe.

9. A fresh and fun sport.

If you are tired of running in the morning or playing tennis, you can break the monotony with Pickleball. After all, it is fun and more social than most sports, so you will most likely be motivated during the game. Some skills required in this sport will be beneficial in other sports, so even if you are into other sports, Pickleball can still compliment them.

10. Requires affordable (and minimal) equipment.

With Pickleball, you don’t need special equipment when compared to other similar sports. Besides the net, all you need to get started are a pair of paddles and a ball. And most of this equipment is quite affordable. Unlike golf and tennis, you don’t have to become a member of an expensive club to play the game.

11. Unique rules.

Pickleball is somewhat different from other racquet sports due to its unique rules. The most outstanding of all has to be the non-volley zone rule (a.k.a. the kitchen). Another unique rule is the double bounce rule, which allows for rallies to last longer, making the game more enjoyable. Also, the fact that you can only score a point when you serve makes the game more competitive.

12. Affordable to play.

One of the interesting things about playing this sport is that you will have fun without having to break your wallet. Many people find this sport appealing because you don’t need to spend big money on expensive equipment. A whiffle ball and a basic set of paddles are all you need to get started, and these items can cost you less than $30 unless you are looking to play at a higher level, which may require high-end paddles.

Even if you can’t afford these items at the moment, you can still find them in gyms and recreational parks. On top of this, most tournaments are relatively inexpensive to enter.

13. Appealing to many other racquet sports players.

As mentioned earlier, Pickleball is a combination of several racket sports, yet, it is also a fantastic game on its own right. If you are coming from a badminton or tennis (or even ping-pong) background, you will find it easy to adapt to the sport. In Pickleball, you use a net, a ball, and a paddle just like table tennis.

The rallies are, almost, similar to other popular racquet sports, such as tennis and badminton. So playing this sport is likely to improve your performance in tennis, table tennis or badminton.

14. Provides a great way to exercise.

While it may not be as physically demanding as badminton or tennis, this sport will still keep you on your toes. Playing Pickleball will get your whole body in motion, thus, giving you the chance to burn some calories.

If you are not currently physically active, then Pickleball will provide you with some essential exercise. It is a great way to get into exercise while having fun, especially if you are rarely engaged in any form of exercise.

15. Not that demanding.

Pickleball is not as demanding as tennis or other similar sports. In fact, four pickleball courts can easily fit in one tennis court, which means that there is much less space to cover.

Besides this, the sport doesn’t put much emphasis on speed and raw strength when compared to tennis. Instead, it focuses more on strategy. Having said that, that doesn’t mean Pickleball doesn’t offer opportunities for exercise. On the contrary, this sport is an excellent exercise, only that you are not straining so much.

16. Beginner friendly.

Pickleball is not only fun and easy to learn, but it is also easy to play. Unlike tennis, where, as a beginner, you would spend half of the time chasing and picking up the balls on the court (I bet a lot of people, who have tried tennis, can relate to this).

In Pickleball, it’s possible, for a complete novice, to start rallying back and forth with a partner on their first game. This means that you will have more time for fun and spend less time worrying about playing the game itself.

17. A very portable game.

You can play the sport anywhere, as long as you have enough space, as well as, a flat surface. You can, literally, make your own Pickleball court; you’ll just need to draw the court lines with chalk and use two chairs and caution tape for the net. Then, just grab a ball and paddles, and you are ready to go. Someplace where you could play Pickleball is on your dead-end street or backyard.

18. A growing number of clubs offer Pickleball.

New courts are springing up throughout the country. You will hardly miss a pickleball court in community centers or retirement facilities. In fact, some tennis clubs have been forced to convert some of their courts to pickleball courts due to increase demand.

19. Has well established organizations.

Just like tennis, Pickleball has well-established rules, and there are organizations to develop and regulate the sport. For instance, the USA Pickleball Association (USAPA) is the national governing body for Pickleball in the US and its territories. Since its inception in 1984, the association has overseen many tournaments throughout the years.

20. Media and sponsorships.

The growth of any sport relies on the support of all the stakeholders. Pickleball has got much attention because of sponsorship and media coverage. More people are investing in the space, so you would only expect the sport to get more fans.

21. Although easy to pick up, it is still a fast-pace game.

Anyone who has played this sport will definitely agree that time flies when you are on the pitch. The fact that you are playing on a smaller court means that you need to be on your toes. Unexpectedly, volleys usually come fast and furious.

22. Can share facilities with other sports.

You don’t need a special place to start playing Pickleball. In fact, you can easily convert an existing tennis court into a pickleball court. All you need is to bring in the new measurements. Even if there is no Pickleball court available, you can easily improvise your own court in a recreation center.

Last Word

There you have it. If you haven’t already started playing this sport, then the above reasons are more than enough to convince you to join the growing number of pickleball enthusiasts. In any case, you don’t need any special equipment or a big space to play Pickleball. You can construct a simple court in your backyard or even play it in an existing tennis public court. Let the fun begin!