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Four 2024 Pickleball Rule Changes You Need to Know

Four 2024 Pickleball Rule Changes You Need to Know

Pickleball is an ever evolving sport- changing and growing to match what players want and need. With the surge in the sport’s popularity, more players are sharing their thoughts and suggestions regarding the official rules of pickleball. These ideas are submitted to the governing body of pickleball, USA Pickleball, where a team of experts and pros review and decide on which proposals make it into the pickleball rulebook. 2024 has arrived, so it’s officially time to dive into the 2024 pickleball rule changes. 

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Considerable USA Pickleball Rule Changes 2024

  1. Correcting Mistakes: In the past, if players made errors like serving from the wrong spot, they'd be penalized (receive a fault). Now, there are no more penalties. Referees will simply fix these mistakes before announcing the score. It's like getting a do-over without any consequences.

  2. Draping Net: Previously, when a ball hit a net that was on the ground, it would lead to a replay. The tricky part was deciding if the net actually affected the pickleball’s trajectory. Now, whether it affected the ball or not, it's an automatic replay. This change applies to both official, referee-monitored games and casual, non-official games.

  3. Paddle Handling: If you accidentally catch or carry the ball on your paddle, it is now considered a fault, with no need to prove it was intentional.

  4. Conceding a Rally: If a player or team challenges a call, saying the ball was 'in' when the referee or line judge called it 'out,' and they realize they wouldn't have been able to hit the 'in' ball anyway, they can choose to give the point to the other player or team. It's like admitting, "Even if it was in, I couldn't have returned it, so you win this one." 

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Other Noteworthy Pickleball Rule Changes

  • Players are now allowed to utilize any unused timeouts to extend a medical timeout.
  • In tournament settings, during a non-officiated match, players have the option to approach the head referee or tournament director if they suspect that their opponent's paddle violates any USA Pickleball paddle regulations.
  • The format known as mini-singles (skinny singles) is now formally acknowledged as an official playing style. (Skinny singles involves dividing the court in half vertically or diagonally to make it easier to play one-on-one.)
  • Players may be forced to change attire, particularly clothing that closely resembles the color of the ball, as to avoid distractions.

Click here for the full list of 2024 USA Pickleball Rule Changes.

The 2024 rule changes not only make the game more fair and enjoyable but also set the stage for what's to come. As the pickleball community embraces these changes, it's a reminder that the sport keeps evolving. So, stay in ready position, because who knows what exciting twists and turns 2025 might bring to the court.

Do you know about the 2023 Rules Changes? Check out last year’s changes here

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