Pickleball – The Who, What, and Why of this Sport on the Rise

I recently attended a North Kingstown Chamber of Commerce lunch time networking meeting.  At the meeting, I met a very enthusiastic supporter of a sport called Pickleball.  Being a huge sports fan, I was intrigued by this sport I have no knowledge of.  So, I asked that enthusiastic supporter, Diane Sullivan of Atria Senior Living, to give me some insight.  Here is an excerpt from Diane about the sport and how you can get involved with Pickleball in our community.

Pickleball – Sponsored by Atria Harborhill Outdoor drop-in program begins May 1st! Diane Sullivan, the Community Sales Director for Atria Harborhill and the United States of America Pickleball Association Ambassador, will offer a drop-in Pickleball program on the basketball courts behind the Swift Community Center on Fridays beginning May 1st. Diane Sullivan is a retired tennis pro who became interested in Pickleball when she saw the potential for seniors to enjoy a less rigorous game. The drop-in program is weather dependent and will be offered from 9:30 – 11:00 a.m.

Playing Pickleball

The fee to play is $2 per person. Participants must sign a release of liability and assumption of risk agreement prior to playing. Participants should wear comfortable clothing and sneakers. Equipment will be supplied, but you can bring a racquet and/or pickleballs if you have them.

Pickleball is a very popular sport with seniors in the Southwest and Southeast U.S. and it is coming right up the east coast! It is estimated that the sport has about 100,000 players in the United States. Scoring is similar to table tennis, with some exceptions. Players serve the ball underhand, the serve and the return must bounce. Once each side has volleyed, play continues as in tennis, with players permitted to play the ball on one bounce or volley from the air. It is similar to a tennis net with a slow moving whiffle ball and played with large paddles on a smaller court. The dimensions of the perimeter lines of the court are 20’x 44′, the same size as a doubles badminton court.

All interested in playing this new sport are welcome to attend the Friday drop-in program.

Contact information:

Diane Sullivan, Community Sales Director

Atria Senior Living Harborhill

159 Division Street

East Greenwich, RI 02818

w: 401-884-2704





Thanks Diane.  Here is a video link to a recent national story on Pickleball on the NBC Nightly News. Click the video link below to view.

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