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About Paddle Tennis

Although paddle tennis resembles lawn tennis, the size of a paddle tennis court is smaller and the net is lower than the lawn tennis specifications. A paddle tennis court doesn't have double lanes and a solid paddle is used in this game as opposed to a string racket in lawn tennis. The game has been played for more than a century now and is gaining wide popularity around the world. Being played on a small court, paddle tennis requires more agility and quicker reactions.

  • Players: Played in both singles or doubles
  • Serves: Serve must be underhand. Only one serve is allowed, no second serves as in tennis
  • Score: Scoring method is the same as in tennis. Matches are best of three sets
  • Ball: Tennis ball with reduced pressure
  • Paddle: Solid with no strings. May be perforated
  • Court: There are two styles of courts. East and West coast styles
  • Walls: Walls or fences are not part of the game

Rules of Paddle Tennis

According to paddle tennis rules, a paddle tennis court should be 50 ft in length and 20 ft in width, with the distance from service line to service line being 44 ft. Here are some more paddle tennis rules, constituted to maintain the spirit of the game.

In order to meet the requirements set by the United States Paddle Tennis Association, the paddle used in this game should be not larger than 9 1/2 inches x 18 inches in size. It should be made from some solid material, such as wood, and should not have strings in it.

The ball used in this game should be a pressurized tennis ball, meeting the requirements set by the United States Tennis Association. The ball has to be punctured in order to reduce its internal pressure.

The net, 22 ft long and 2.6 ft wide, should be exactly 31 inches above the surface of the ground and 18 inches outside each sideline.

A proper court attire is a must in this game and the shoes should sport non-marking rubber soles.

The player who wins the toss, or paddle spin, may either choose the side or serve. In case the player chooses to serve, the opponent gets to choose a side, and if the player chooses the side, the opponent gets to serve.

When serving, the player should not strike the ball at a height above 31 inches. The player is allowed to serve only once and if he creates a foul, he loses a point.

The player can either toss the ball in the air or bounce it behind the base line on the court while serving, but the method once chosen has to be used for the entire set.

In singles matches, when the serve is returned, the server has to wait for the ball to bounce before returning it back.

The server shouldn't cross the baseline by any part of his body; doing this will be considered as a Footfault and the player will lose a point.

The service is regarded as a fault when the server misses the ball while attempting a serve or the ball touches the net when served.

At the end of each game, there is a role reversal. The receiver becomes server, while the server becomes the receiver.

The point gained by a player when the ball falls exactly on the line or touches the line is called a good ball and thus earns a legal point for the player.

The scoring in paddle tennis is similar to lawn tennis. The first point earns the player 15, second point 30, third point 40 while the fourth point wins him the game.

In order to win a set, the player should have a lead by a margin of 2 games over his opponent; if the game reaches to a point of a tie, there is a tie breaker to decide the winner.

At the end of each odd game, the players are supposed to change sides. There can either be an 8 game pro-set or best of 3 in a standard six-game set.

Breaks of 60 seconds when changing sides, 10 minutes between 2nd and 3rd set and 15 seconds between points are allowed. Unnecessary delays can call for a disqualification.

If the set points reach 6 all, 8 all or 12 all, then there is a tie breaker. In such a case, the player who reaches 7 games in a 6 set format, 9 games in an 8 set format or 13 games in a 12 set format, with a margin of 2 games, is declared the winner.

On the west coast, a restraint line is drawn 12' back parallel to the net. When in use, all players must keep both feet behind the restraint line until after the player receiving the serve has struck the ball.

The most important thing in any sporting event is the sportsman spirit. It is important that the players abide by the rules and regulations of the game, to ensure that there is a free and fair competition. Therefore paddle tennis rules are formed to ensure fair play in the game.

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