A Relish For Senior Programming

Figure 3 shows two tennis courts that have been permanently converted to eight pickleball courts. (For a single tennis court conversion, refer to half of the diagram.) Square off angled corners if necessary. If the tennis court is the standard size, it only allows 5 feet between the pickleball sidelines and the fences. This should be considered the minimum dimension. If space and budget allow, add some overall width to give active players more room, as well as a space for seating by the courts.

Successful Playtime

Just that easily, conversions are happening across the United States with great success:

• Stanley Volkens, USA Pickleball Association Local Ambassador for Southwest Ohio, surveyed 16 tennis courts in Middletown and found them greatly underutilized. He proposed converting two tennis courts into six pickleball courts. The dimensions worked out perfectly. The courts have 14 feet between them with 8 feet at the ends. The tennis nets are the backdrops between the ends of the courts. The pickleball players did all the work, and paid all the costs ($3,956). They presented the new courts to the city with a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by park board and city council members.

• Paul Barksdale and Rex Lawler, Local Ambassadors for Greater Terre Haute, Ind., played on the Middletown courts in the Southwest Ohio Senior Games, and were so impressed that they brought a similar plan back home. They found underutilized tennis courts and proposed a shared-cost plan to their park and recreation department. The players raised $1,500 to cover nets, posts and other supplies; the park and recreation department agreed to provide the labor following the same step-by-step process and court format used in Ohio.

• In Port Angeles, Wash., two deteriorating tennis courts were converted into six pickleball courts. Originally donated to the city by the Elks in 1951, the $30,000 conversion cost was shared by the Elks and the city. The courts are often maxed out with 24 players at a time having fun and getting exercise.

But don’t take my word for it–just witness a heated inter-generational game, and you will see why this sport with a funny name is becoming so popular.

David Johnson is the Media Relations Chair for the USA Pickleball Association. He can be reached at media@usapa.org

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Related posts:

  1. Get Caught Up In Pickleball
  2. The Skinny On Pickleball
  3. Serving Up A Victory
  4. A Living Legend
  5. Net Gain

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