Padel tennis is a fast-paced racquet sport that combines elements of tennis and squash. Played on a smaller court with solid walls and a solid perforated paddle, it’s an excellent choice for beginners looking to enjoy an active and social sport. In this beginner’s guide, we’ll explore the basics of the paddle tennis court and what you need to know to get started.
Paddle tennis courts are notably smaller than traditional tennis courts, making the game more accessible for beginners. The court is 50 feet long and 20 feet wide, with a net in the middle. The service boxes are 20 feet deep, and there’s a 12-foot high back screen on both sides. These compact dimensions encourage quick rallies and strategic play.
Paddle and ball:
Paddle tennis uses solid paddles, which are smaller and have fewer holes than traditional tennis racquets. The paddle’s perforations allow for control and spin. The ball used is similar in size to a tennis ball but is depressurized to reduce the speed and bounce, making it suitable for the smaller court.
Paddle tennis follows a scoring system similar to traditional tennis. The game is typically played as doubles, with two players on each team. The scoring sequence is 15, 30, and 40, followed by the game point. If both teams reach 40 (deuce), a team must win two consecutive points to win the game. A set is usually played to six games, and a match can be best of three sets or pro-set to eight games.
Serving in paddle tennis is done underhand, and the server must stand behind the baseline and hit the ball diagonally into the opponent’s service box, similar to tennis. The serve must clear the net and land within the service box diagonally opposite. Unlike tennis, there are no second serves in paddle tennis, so accuracy is key.
One of the unique aspects of paddle tennis is the use of the walls. Players can use the walls to strategically bounce the ball and keep it in play. Understanding how to use the walls to your advantage and predict your opponent’s shots is essential for success on the court.
Movement and strategy:
Paddle tennis emphasizes quick reflexes, agility, and teamwork. Players must communicate effectively with their partner to cover the court and anticipate shots. Strategy plays a significant role, as players aim to position themselves for powerful volleys and accurate shots.