Pickleball is a relatively modern sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton, and table tennis—but it follows its own rules and has gained a cult-like following in recent years. Interestingly, the sport has roots here in Washington. Here’s a few more facts about the sport and why you should book a court today.
Pickleball was invented in 1965 by Joel Pritchard, a congressman from Washington state, and his friend Bill Bell on Bainbridge Island.
The first pickleball tournament in the world was held at the South Center Athletic Club in Tukwila, Washington in 1976.
The United States Amateur Pickleball Association (U.S.A.P.A.) was formed in 1984 and the most current organization, USA Pickleball Association (USAPA), formed in 2003.
The USAPA surpassed 10,000 members in 2015 and 17,000 members in 2016, the same year that the first tournament was nationally televised (on CBS Sports).
Naples, Florida is the pickleball capital of the world.
Players are known as “picklers.”
Pickleballs move roughly 1/3 the speed of tennis balls.