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Monday, January 25, 2016

Doubles Strategy

I have been focused on lots of teamwork mechanics and strategies in recent posts. The following Joe Baker video called Doubles Pickleball Strategy 101-How to Play Smart Pickleball, Ten Tips highlights the ten main strategies of winning doubles.

The video discusses specific points based on the overarching theme that a team should get to the kitchen line as quickly as possible and do everything possible to keep the other team from doing so.

Tip # 1 - The Serve:  Avoid service faults.  Aim for the middle of the service box.

Tip # 2 - The Return of Serve:  Avoid service return faults.  Aim for a specific spot just left of the center line and back 1/3 of the court.

Tip # 3 - Return the Serve and Charge:  Immediately after returning the serve, the returner should charge to the kitchen line to join his partner.

Tip # 4 - Partner positions:  Partners should position themselves intelligently, staying linked together and repositioning after each hit. 

Tip # 5 - Third Shot Drop or another alternative:  Hit a shot that makes your opponent swing up and gives you time to move toward the kitchen.

Tip # 6 - 4th Shot:  Hinder your opponent's progress toward the kitchen if he is not at the kitchen line.

Tip # 7 - Dinking:  Dink when everyone is at the net by hitting the ball into the kitchen. Keep the ball low and wait for your opponent to make a mistake.

Tip # 8 - Soft or Hard:  When your opponents are at the net, hit the ball softly when you must hit up at the ball.  You may hit hard when you can hit down on the ball.

Tip # 9 - Keep your Opponent Back:  Hit the ball to the feet of any opponent who has not reached the kitchen line.

Tip # 10 - Avoid low percentage shots:  Do not hit down-the-line or lob shots from the back of the court.

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