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Conquering 6 Common Pickleball Weaknesses

How to get better at pickleball

In the world of pickleball, weaknesses are universal - no one is immune! Despite the game’s inherent fun, it requires a level of calculation and attention to play pickleball. At Play-PKL, we recognize the importance of acknowledging weaknesses so that we can help you transform them into strengths. Whether you're a seasoned player, a fresh enthusiast stepping onto the court, or anywhere in between, these challenges are an integral part of your pickleball journey! Learning to conquer these hurdles is not only a part of the process but also what keeps the game thrilling and ever-evolving.

1. Vulnerability at the Net

Stepping up to thepickleball net, or the “the kitchen”, wherevolleys and dinks rule, might feel like shining a light on your weaknesses. But, this is where your game can level up. With practice, the net can be your secret weapon. Volleys and dinks aren't just shots; they're chances for you to finesse your moves and take control.

Improvement Tip: Embrace the net challenge by practicingdinking andvolleying techniques. You'll see your control improve right before your eyes. Thosesoft drop shots? They'll turn into your go-to moves. Keep in mind, this journey to masteringthe pickleball kitchen is about more than just polishing your shots – it's about becoming the kind of player who sets the game's rhythm.

2. Court Awareness

Picture having thepickleball court in the palm of your hand. Anticipating shots, positioning yourself precisely, and executing returns that capture attention – that's the power of heightened court awareness. 
Improvement Tip: Elevate your court awareness by getting well acquainted with the ball's trajectory. Notice where shots are headed and respond accordingly. Take time to watch how the ball behaves based on how and where it’s hit. Is it going low or high? Is it curving left or right? These subtle cues can be your compass to anticipate your opponent’s next move.

Pickleball Paddle for Beginners and Intermediate Pickleball Players
3. Serve Consistency

A reliablepickleball serve holds the key to controlling the point's narrative and establishing the tone for subsequent volleys. Each serve becomes an opportunity to shape the game's direction and showcase your strength on the court.
Improvement Tip: Refine your serve through mastering rhythm and technique. Cultivate a repertoire ofpickleball serves – short, deep, and angled – for a multi-dimensional advantage. Having an appropriate paddle helps. Play-PKL provides a greatpickleball paddle, suitable for beginner through intermediatepickleball players, weighing just under 8 ounces.

4. Mastering Footwork

Fancy footwork is vital for agile maneuvering and strategic court positioning, enabling you to quickly reach shots and execute them seamlessly. It's a dynamic blend of strategy and agility, requiring precise coordination with each step. On the court, your footwork becomes a tool for control, helping you dictate the flow of the game. As you hone your footwork skills, you'll gain a distinct advantage, keeping your opponents on their toes and enhancing your overall performance. Your ability to move swiftly and position yourself strategically will be a game changer that sets you apart on the pickleball court.

Improvement Tip: Tackle footwork challenges withagility drills andbasic footwear drills. Split-stepping, shuffling, and lateral movements – these techniques will become your signature steps on the court. Check out some greatfoundational exercises here.

5. Balancing Power and Strategy

Achieving a balance between power and strategy is the cornerstone of a versatile pickleball game. The rush of apickleball smash across the court can be exhilarating, but an excessive dependence on power can lead to unintended consequences. Solely relying on power might make your play predictable, and it can even lead to missed opportunities due to its limited scope. 
Improvement Tip: Take note of how the pros balance power and strategy. Balance your powerful shots with well-placed, calculated shots that capitalize on your opponent's vulnerabilities. This approach not only keeps them on their toes but also crafts an unpredictable gameplay that's both challenging and engaging. Remember, while thosepickleball bangerscan be impressive, opponents might find themselves growing a bit frustrated with their relentlessness. Instead, mix in strategic finesse to get a clear edge. 

Read more about How to Beat a Bangerhere

Pickleball Accessories

6. Understanding the Game

Nobody likes losing because ofillegal pickleball shots! To win at pickleball, you've got to know the game inside out. That means mastering not justthe rules of pickleball but also the tactical moves that give you the upper hand. Particularly, knowing thetypes of pickleball shots and when to use each one (and when not to) is key to success. The Play-PKL8 Essential Rules of Pickleball andPickleball Rules Changes for 2023 are great resources for getting started.  
Improvement Tip: Dive into theUSA Pickleball Official Rulebook, sign up for Play-PKL emails fordigestible pickleball content and access to our downloadable eBook, take part inpickleball clinics(clickhere to findplaces to play pickleball near you), and soak up the wisdom of experienced players bystreaming pickleball tournaments online, or watching players compete in person. Learning the ropes will give you the confidence to make the right calls on the court.

At Play-PKL, we are committed to being your pickleball transformation partner. By embracing these challenges head on and dedicating yourself to constant improvement, you'll stride onto the pickleball court with newfound confidence, ready to tackle every challenge. Remember that even the most seasoned pickleball pros embarked on their journeys as rookies. From humble beginnings to becoming powerhouses, the journey from weakness to strength is the very essence of the game! 

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