Are Tennis and Pickleball Compatible?

By Ron Steege, USPTA, Director of Tennis

Are Tennis and Pickleball Compatible?

This question was bound to come up when we announced that we would be installing pickleball courts at Greenwood. Will playing Pickleball help or hurt your Tennis skills? To answer that, let’s take a closer look at the types of skills and benefits that Pickleball has to offer:

The sudden boom in pickleball can be traced back to the same group that accounted for the tennis boom back in the 70’s and 80’s. Now that these tennis fanatics are seniors, their love for tennis has carried over to pickleball due to the social aspect and reduced strain on the body. The transition from tennis to pickleball was quite easy for this group. Tennis players tend to pick up fairly decent PB skills in a matter of minutes vs the months or even years it probably took them to learn tennis.

Pickleball does a great job of developing motor skills such as hand-eye coordination, balance and, due to the premium on getting to the net, you’re bound to improve your volley skills and touch around the net. To be an effective PB player you must be able to get your body low to execute many of these shots. These are great tennis mechanics as well.

From what I’ve seen with the tennis players I know who also play pickleball, there has been noticeable improvement in these player’s volley and overhead skills in tennis. I haven’t observed anyone or had a student tell me pickleball has hurt their tennis game, it’s actually the opposite. It is my expectation that we will begin to see people start with pickleball and have earlier success in tennis if they make that transition. Pickleball is a relatively easy game to learn, and I believe PB could be a great starting point in the progression for developing tennis players as well.

So, to answer your question: I believe tennis and pickleball are very compatible and I would encourage everyone to do both. We look forward to seeing you on ALL of our courts!

If you have more questions regarding the two sports or are interested in playing, contact Ron Steege. 

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Learn more about Tennis and Pickleball at Club Greenwood: