Community in a Pickle – Over Pickleball!

Category: Health Issues

June 3, 2015 — It is one of America’s fastest growing sports, attracting legions of new players from baby boomer ranks. Compared to tennis it is easy to pick up, doesn’t require as much stamina or range of motion, and is fun from the get-go. Yet all is not perfect in the state of pickleball.

Symptoms of the fallout occured in the Santa Rosa Press Democrat recently, which recounted issues concerning expansion of pickleball facilities at the large (3000 unit) Oakmont active adult community there. The article, “Oakmont in a Pickle over Pickleball“, chronicles the troubles that occurred as the community hoped to expand facilities for the fast growing sport.

The problem is a combination of the usual NIMBY issues with one inherent aspect of pickleball – the noise (Thwack!) that happens when a paddle hits the whiffle-like ball used in the sport. Nobody wants to have new courts located near their home, or near common facilities like swimming pools where residents go to relax. The problem is mostly noise, combined with possible unsightliness of the facilities. Officials have suggested that unused tennis courts could be converted to pickle ball courts and solve the problem, but advocates are not satisfied. As of the middle of May, the issue was still undecided.

More about pickleball
Pickleball definitely seems here to stay. It has so many attributes attractive to baby boomers. Here is more about the sport: “And the Newest Craze Is…Pickleball

Courtesy of Wikipedia and Thelyonhart

Courtesy of Wikipedia and Thelyonhart

Comments? Have you tried pickleball yet? Do you enjoy it? Would you mind having a pickleball court near your home or swimming pool? Please share your thoughts in the Comments section below.

For further reading
Crazy for Pickleball – And Not Just Retirees

Posted by Admin on June 2nd, 2015


  1. Took up pickle ball last year and love it because of the exercise and socialization. There are many tennis courts in 55+ communities that are not being used while there are lines for the pickle all courts. It makes sense to transform these courts to pickle ball courts with little expense.

    by Deb M — June 3, 2015

  2. Pickle ball is very social but it is not easy. My sister has played for years and loves it. On a visit I tried it but as a tennis player I found it difficult to adapt to the nuances. I have a great respect for the players. Maybe if I kept at it I might come to enjoy it. But at this point I prefer tennis.

    by Mejask — June 3, 2015

  3. great sport for an old tennis player, who has slowed down, something about ageing involved. wife and i got hooked NOV 2013. a lot of fun and good social mixing. noise can be a factor, depending on the facilities location. learned on an outdoor court, but play mostly indoors now. hope differences of opinions can get worked out, peacefully. yes we are addicted to the game.

    by david — June 3, 2015

  4. There will always be whiners, especially in retirement communities.
    They have nothing better to do than annoy other people who are actually having fun and enjoying themselves.
    Maybe they’re just jealous.

    by Denny — June 3, 2015

  5. Why is it called Pickleball?

    by Rocky Raccoon — June 3, 2015

  6. Mejask, don’t give up on pball. I played racquetball for years so had to adjust too. For one thing it has a stupid net in the middle of the court – ha! I’ve met other former tennis players who have made the adjustment after a little time and now love it! The main thing is keep active as you are doing.

    by Deb M — June 3, 2015

  7. The man that invented pickleball 40 years ago had a dog named “Pickle” that kept chasing the ball…hence, the name Pickleball. Yes 40 years ago. I think it started in Washington State.

    by Morris — June 3, 2015

  8. Very actice sport at RV RESORTS/ PARKS. It is noisy and although I enjoy it, would not want to renting or owning a lot near the court.

    by Rick — June 3, 2015

  9. Am President of Pickleball Club in Del Webb Sun City Huntley IL. Have zero problem with noise. By sharing the courts with the current tennis club during normal daily hours and only one evening on Thursday, we do fine. We even are growing to possibly building our own courts near the Softball Field on the current horseshoe pits, which do not have much business. All the homes are satisfactorily distances apart from any noise. The issue is moot here with all ages from 55 to 85, and we have 5500 homes.

    by Russ H — June 3, 2015

  10. Paddle Tennis (also called Platform Tennis) is a better sport and more fun as it is enclosed and you can play off the back and side walls. But it is hard to find courts in the West. Often played in the winter at ski areas as the courts can be heated to eliminate snow and ice.

    by Chuck — June 3, 2015

  11. @Rocky Racoon: “The game started during the summer of 1965 on Bainbridge Island, Washington, at the home of then State Representative Joel Pritchard who, in 1970, was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives for the State of Washington. He and two of his friends, Bill Bell and Barney McCallum, returned from golf and found their families bored one Saturday afternoon. They attempted to set up badminton, but no one could find the shuttlecock. They improvised with a Wiffle ball, lowered the badminton net, and fabricated paddles of plywood from a nearby shed.[2][3][4]

    Although some sources claim that the name “Pickleball” was derived from that of the Pritchard’s family dog, Pickles, other sources state that the claim is false, and that the name came from the term “pickle boat”, referring to the last boat to return with its catch.[2][4] According to Joan Pritchard, Joel Pritchard’s wife, the name came “after I said it reminded me of the Pickle Boat in crew where oarsmen were chosen from the leftovers of other boats. Somehow the idea the name came from our dog Pickles was attached to the naming of the game, but Pickles wasn’t on the scene for two more years. The dog was named for the game.”[5]”

    Source Wikipedia

    by art bonds — June 4, 2015

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