These three golden rules will make you win every pickleball game. If you want to play your best game out there, then you must stick to the 3 golden rules of pickleball.
In order to give yourself the best possible chance of delivering a stellar performance when you take the court. You must adhere to these guidelines every time, and against the better teams, you’ll need to be at your best in order to have the best chance of victory.
Hello and welcome to The Comprehensive Minds, your number-one spot for all pickleball content. In today’s article, we’re going to talk about the 3 golden rules that will make you win every pickleball game.
1. Enter the court with a solid plan
Be proactive in your approach, not reactive. The first golden rule is to have a plan. That may sound really simple, but we see people going out there without making a plan or with a very limited plan. This puts you in a situation on the court where you have to act quickly.
Your opponents can force you to do what they want. And you’re basically saying, I’ll just see what happens and deal with it as it comes up. That is a very bad idea. If you know how your opponent plays, it will help you come up with a plan for how to deal with them.
It’s fine if you don’t, you can check on them and see what they’re doing. Try different shots on them and see what comes back. As you go you can come up with a plan. If you don’t know them or how they play, you often have to do that.
But basically, before you go out and play a game, and especially before a league or tournament, you should have a plan. If I get this shot, I’m going to do this, and if I get this other shot, I’m going to do this. You need to decide who is going to take the middle ball after the serve and who’s going to let it go.
You or your partner could be the one. Talk about it. Make a choice beforehand. When you’re both at the nonvolley zone lines, who will take those middle dinks and middle attacks that could be floating through the middle of the court?
You want to have these things figured out ahead of time. Along with having a plan, you also want to know and understand how you can handle every situation in more than one way.
If your opponent sends you a shot and they know you always send back shot B when you send your shot. A, that won’t work in your favor because they can make a plan because they know what’s coming and you became too predictable.
On the predictable card, you should have at least two ways to handle any shot that comes your way. That right there is a great piece of advice. Make a plan with your partner for how you will approach the match.
Also, don’t count on what you’re doing too much. Yes, you should have that figured out. But you should also watch what happens when you hit insert type of shot.
When you know what’s coming. You can plan what you’re going to do to them. Keep an eye out for every point. There’s so much information going on. Take it all in, think about it and make a plan so you have a better chance of coming out on top.
2. You should buy time for yourself and take time away from your opponent
The second Golden Rule in Winning strategic Pickleball is to always look for ways to buy yourself time and take time away from your opponent. Let us give you some examples. On the return is a great example. You should hit return and then follow it in.
Do you have a lot of time to get to the nonvolley zone line if you drive the return? No. When hitting your first shot, you’re probably going to be stuck somewhere deeper than you’d like. A better idea is to hit a slice or a little bit of a lofty return.
So long as you get it deep, you’re good because a two-bounce rule means that you’ll be hitting your third shot from further back.
Give yourself a little more time to get to that good spot where you can meet your partner to up at the net. By the time you hit your fourth shot, it might be a little further away from the line, but you’ll be much closer than if you hadn’t hit that shot hard.
So that’s a good way to give yourself more time to move from the baseline to the net on the return. Find ways to buy time whenever you want to get up because you need time to make that change.
So trying to find ways to do it. When you’re serving a third shot drop is a great way to come in behind because it’s slow.
This gives you time to get up there and try to make it uncontactable so you won’t be attacked once you’re up there. Slow is a great way to buy more time.
We’ve already talked about it on the return and on the drop, but else is a good time to do it and you’re being attacked and don’t have a good ball to hit straight or down on to defend yourself.
If you’re getting that little contact, it’s usually not the best time to attack them back. Reset and give yourself time to get up to that net. Or if you have to dig out a few resets before you get a really good one that gives you time to move back up. Do it.
Most of the time, slower shots will buy you time. Now how are we going to keep them from spending time with us? Aggressive, dinking with deeper dinks is a good example of this.
If you push that dink toward their feet or slightly behind them, they have to decide whether to take it as a dink volley, or a half volley. So right off the hot volley or let it bounce and come up and step back.
So they have to make a choice while being pressed hard with a deep dink. That’s a great way to get pop-ups or even misses. Deep Dinks is a good example of something that takes time away.
If you can give the shot some topspin, it’ll hit and kick toward them. When you put pressure on them without actually attacking, you’re setting up the points that you can attack later. Find ways to put pressure on them. They give them less time by jamming or stretching them.
Hopefully, they’ll make a small mistake at worst and a big mistake at best. A small one could just be a ball and then you can now attack because it’s a little higher. When you push them and take away their time It’s easy to stay in charge of the situation.
When you charge to the point you have a much better chance of winning that point. And if you get enough of them over the course of a game, you win. So buy yourself some time and try to push them and waste their time.
3. Make sure to fully engage your body
Now, what exactly does it mean to have your body fully engaged in your play? Well, it means you have to move your feet split step and have good footwork to get to the ball. But you also have to have good footwork between each time you hit the ball. This is called recovery footwork as well.
Keep your eyes on the ball as much as you can. This is another important part of getting your whole body involved. And in the baseline, It’s pretty easy to do that when you have a lot of time.
But because you’re setting the ball a long way and it’s also coming back from a long way, even if you’re at the net and you’re facing away, you can still see the ball almost all the way into your paddle and off.
You can really see full contact because it happens too quickly, but you can see it coming in and going out. When you get to the net things are a little different. You still want to try to keep your eyes on the ball as much as possible, so it’s best to work on your eye-tracking speed.
However, in quick shootouts at the net, you’ll have to rely more on your peripheral vision to keep track of your contact, and in fast exchanges, you’ll need to keep your eyes on the space between your opponent’s contact and a few feet away so you can see when your opponent changes the direction of the ball and can react to it.
Because of this, you won’t be able to track perfectly all the way to your paddle. If you’re digging, you’re facing a slower shot. You’ll have the time to watch the ball more closely, which is something you should do whenever you can.
Last but not least, if you want your whole body to be involved, you need to breathe. But there is a certain way to breathe. Most of the time you’ll be inhaling when you’re getting ready to take your shot or when you’re setting up to take back.
When you swing and let your shot go and that’s when you’ll let out your breath. You should do that with every shot. You may need to take a breath between shots, but as you hit, you should breathe in to prepare and breathe out to hit.
These are the three golden rules of pickleball and how to implement a winning strategy during a match. This will allow you to take your game to the next level, become a feared opponent, and play on the best courts.
So which of the following golden rules is your favorite? Tell us in the comments. Also, don’t forget to share this article with your fellow pickers.