By Bo Sacks
I have been a Gordon JCC member for over 30 years. About five years ago, my wife Diane and I were doing a tennis drill with Lori and Brad Fishel. Lori said, “This looks like Pickleball,” and I asked, “What’s pickleball?” That question changed my life.
Pickleball is a combination of tennis, badminton, racquet ball and ping pong. The game is played in an area approximately half the size of a tennis court, the ball resembles a wiffle ball, and the hard paddle is twice the size of a ping pong paddle. The game is fast and fun and is great for all ages and skill levels. Currently it’s the fastest growing sport in America, spreading like wildfire across the country.
My first time playing was at the J, and within minutes I had fallen in love with the game. I started showing up every night open play was available. One of the things I noticed was that people older than me were laughing like they were kids, and I was immediately struck by that. I also liked that anyone could play, regardless of age, experience, or fitness level.
The more time I spent playing pickle ball the hungrier I was to improve my game and play at a higher level. I quickly found like-minded people at recreational centers around the city and began to take lessons from various coaches, which is when I began to learn the real fundamentals and strategy of pickleball. The best part is, pickleball has opened the door to experiences and connections I never expected.
I am now a PPR Certified Pickleball Instructor and play or teach everyday. My true love of the game lies in teaching others. I enjoy working with players of all abilities and relish the opportunity to help them reach their full potential. Pickleball has taken me all over the country and I love the common thread that binds the players I meet along the way.
My son Corey and I are looking forward to teaching Pickleball clinics at the Gordon JCC in February. There will be one for beginners and one for players who want to enhance their skills.
Check out the J’s website for more details. We have also started a company hosting corporate team building events with pickleball as the main activity. It’s a great way to bring your employees and other groups together for some fun and friendly competition. The social aspect of pickleball lends itself to quality interaction with co-workers. To learn more contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org