One of America's most popular lifestyle sports, PIckleball, is ready to disrupt the sporting world in Australia.The popular sport already has seven State and Territory Associations, with some clubs booked out months in advance. Enter Jenny Le, CEO and co-founder of Laneway Paddle, Co, who has jumped on the growing popularity of this sport and launched a range of artsy paddles to reflect the fun and enjoyable sport. Here, Jenny tells Lifestyle News all about the new sport.
Q: What exactly is Pickleball?
A: Pickleball uses a paddle to hit a plastic ball with holes in it. It combines some elements of tennis, badminton and table tennis.
It's popular as it's suitable for all skill levels, all ages and easy to pick up. Additionally it's a social activity since the courts are much smaller than a tennis court, players can hold conversations.
It's the fastest growing sport in the US and embraced by celebrities like Bill Gates and Le Bron James. Even tennis star Nick Kyrios has invested into pickleball.
Q: Where can you play it in Australia?
A: Some basketball courts, tennis courts and badminton courts can be turned into pickleball courts - they just need the lines and net.
Due to demand, some outdoor tennis courts have been converted to pickleball courts and you can play it at participating recreation centres in Australia.
Since it's such an addictive new craze, more sports centres are starting to welcome pickleball on their courts. You can find where to play it here: https://picklepals.com.au/
Q: You say it's about to disrupt the sporting world here, are there clubs already?
A: There are already clubs hosting Victoria, NSW and QLD, and more popping up and accommodating for Pickleball. One club in NSW mentioned that they were booked out four months in advance.
One of the best things about pickleball is that the rules are so simple and easy to learn. You can learn how to play in minutes from a friend, online or coach, and is suitable for kids to adults and skill levels.
Q: Does Pickleball help keep you fit?
A: Definitely. I've had plenty of great workouts from playing pickleball, feeling puffed by the end of it. It is a game of reflex, strategy and hand-eye coordination.
A lot of retirees that have joint problems who want to keep fit may opt for pickleball since the court is much smaller than a tennis court. I've played socially with retirees and lost terribly when I was starting out.
Q: When did you launch your paddles?
A: We launched our paddles in the first week of August and sold out of our Classic Checkered design within the first two weeks of it being on preorder!
We also had customers reviewing on our website saying that they were getting compliments on the courts while playing with their fun paddle designs.
We noticed that people were playing with paddles that were plain boring and uninspiring. At Laneway Paddle, we aim to make our paddles just as fun as the sport and become a lifestyle brand.
We recognise that pickleball is not just a sport, but is an addictive social activity that is easily implemented into people's lives making it the ultimate lifestyle sport.