Pickleball Court Dimensions
Since pickleball has become so much more popular in recent years, a lot more aspects of the game are becoming analysed. From equipment, to tactics, to rules, pickleball being on the global stage has meant that you can now find out about every dimension of the game in a great amount of detail.
However, some recreational players overlook the importance of a pickleball court’s dimensions which, when you stop and think about it, is one of the most important aspects of the game to understand.
Sure, in tennis you will have more court surface to cover, but in pickleball the smaller playing area means you need to be even more tactically aware of your positioning and the positioning of your opponents. So, let’s learn about pickleball court dimensions together!
What are the Pickleball Court’s Dimensions
Simply put, the dimensions of a pickleball court are the same as those of a badminton court. This means that you can rock up to your local sports centre, park or pickleball club and play the game on existing badminton court lines.
You can also set up a pickleball court on a quarter of a tennis court, so you can make use of existing space at your local tennis club too.
The overall surface area of a pickleball court is 880sq ft or 81.75sq m. This may sound like a lot, but when you consider that the width of a pickleball court is just 20ft or 6.1m and the distance between the baseline and the net is 22ft or 6.71m it is really not that intimidating.
When you think that the average pace length of an adult is around 30in, it would only take around 8 steps to cover the whole width and around 9 steps to cover the whole length of a pickleball court.
This isn’t even taking into account the fact that a sideward step whilst moving (or even a cross over step) would likely cover more ground, so you really don’t have to travel that far to cover the entire court surface in pickleball.
From one end all the way to the other, a pickleball court measures 44ft or 13.41m.
This means that the sport is a lot more space economical than say a tennis court, as there are also less overruns required in pickleball as the speeds that a player may reach whilst running for a ball are far lower.
The ball being significantly lighter and the technique that players use being a lot more compact also means that the fences around a pickleball court don’t necessarily need to be as a tennis court, meaning more pickleball courts can be erected in community areas such as parks, YMCA clubs and school playing fields.
Both singles and doubles are played on the same sized court in pickleball, whereas in other sports such as tennis and badminton, tramlines or doubles alleys are used to widen the court for the team version of the sport.
This again enhances the accessibility and user friendliness of pickleball as especially when you are playing doubles, there is still a very small area of court you have to cover.
The length of the no volley zone on a pickleball court is 7ft or 2.1m so this is only a small area that is out of bounds on the serve.
This area is generally used for touch shots and acute angles as players have to let the ball bounce when it lands in this part of the court.
Therefore, an opponent cannot cut off an angle by hitting a volley so they will have to follow the ball outside of the court after it has bounced, opening up the court for an easy put away.
A pickleball net is 36in at the two ends and 34in in the middle, so slightly lower than that of a tennis net due to the significantly smaller court size.
Although the playing court space of a pickleball court is 20inx40in, Pickleball Inc. suggests an ideal overall court space to be 30inx60in to account for running outside of the court.
This allows for the most athletic performance on the court and reduces the risk of sustaining an injury when running for that angled dropshot!
Areas of a Pickleball Court
Of course, the outer areas of a pickleball court are the sidelines and the two baselines. These are commonly used terms in both tennis and badminton to depict the outer borders of the court.
However, the middle of the court is separated by the front of the court by the ‘no serving line’ which also forms the outer edge of the ‘no volley zone’ or kitchen.
The ball must be served into the back portion of the court which makes up the majority of the playing area, cross court to the corresponding diagonal box. These two boxes are separated by the centre line and denote where players should stand when playing doubles.
A player serves underarm from behind the baseline and must hit the ball beyond the ‘no serving line’ which is 7ft from the net. The rally is then played out and players can hit the ball anywhere in the court inside the baseline and the two sidelines.
However, the ball cannot be volleyed inside the kitchen as this constitutes a fault, handing the serve over the opposition.
Therefore, the no volley zone is great for playing acute angles and drop shots that lure your opponent in, as they will have to back peddle quite quickly if they want to retrieve their next shot without volleying the ball.
Pickleball Court Surfaces
In tennis, there are quite a few different surfaces the sport can be played on From clay to grass to hard courts, these surfaces require different tactics, equipment and skills in order to play on them effectively.
However, pickleball courts are almost exclusively made from asphalt or concrete as these are universally used for other sports like tennis and basketball.
They are therefore readily available and quite easy to maintain. However, concrete tends to offer better durability, whereas asphalt tends to be a little more textured and require a bit more upkeep.
However, if you are looking for a more temporary solution, some pickleball courts are actually made from snap together plastic.
This sits on top of your traditional tennis, basketball or netball court and is ideal for when you want to create a pickleball court but don’t want to permanently alter the underlying playing surface.
Overall, pickleball has become a very well adopted and loved sport around the world. In its rise to the global stage in recent years, it has become a lot easier to access detailed information about all areas of the sport.
From paddles, to balls, to playing styles, to court availability, no matter what you are looking for to do with paddleball you will almost certainly be able to find it nowadays!
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