My previous post, Assigning Courts by Skill Level, was one of the most read and shared posts Crazy Pickleball Lady has published. The feedback and comments it generated on Facebook from players and pickleball clubs in the USA and in Europe confirms that playing evenly skilled games is a priority, yet a worldwide problem. People just want to play good games, especially where court space and playing times are limited!
Some of the comments from players and clubs indicated that they have implemented this type of system already, and confirmed that after ironing out the initial wrinkles, it works. Playing up or down one skill level allows everyone to put 100% effort into every shot. Conversely, more than one level separation doesn’t help anyone, and won’t allow a good game experience for any of the participants.
Now, before anyone misunderstands my intentions and thinks I’m just a pickleball snob, I want to make clear that I am happy to play with or against anyone of any skill level…..IF…..they want help/advice as we play to improve themselves. All they have to do is ASK!
I’d like to share an idea from Bonnie Coffey, who writes an interesting blog called Coffeys2Go Pickleball. She shared that one of the best systems she’s seen involves a paddle stacking system, where each player places a ring/tag over the top of their paddle indicating their skill level. Only players within one skill level difference (.5 if using a USAPA type rating system) can add their paddles to that stack.
- This sounds to me like a good project for a handyman in your club! Build a pegboard where you hang tags showing skill levels, on rings which fit over a paddle handle. Place it where you stack paddles and players will select the correct tag to identify their level of play. When their game comes up, they put the ring/tag back on the pegboard.
Great idea Bonnie! Thanks for sharing!
I’d love to hear, and share what you’re club is doing! Send me a message, or make a public comment on this post!
FOLLOW Crazy Pickleball Lady! Enter your email address, and get a notification when I’ve made a new post. Your email is not used for anything else.
Then, share my posts with your pickleball friends on Facebook and Twitter!