If you know me, you know I love to teach pickleball. I especially love to teach players one on one, but I realize not everyone can take a lesson with me. So I have one tip…communicate.
I think it is easier to teach people pickleball when I am able to work with them one on one. We are not all the same. We move slightly differently and it is easier for me to point out smaller things that are unique to each student.
However, I realize that most people don’t get the opportunity to take a one on one lesson with me. Many get their instruction by reading this blog and my blog or watching YouTube videos. Honestly, learning that way can be really tough. You may hear my advice differently than I intended. You might think you are doing what I recommended, but in fact, you are not. Finally, whether you get a lesson in person or by watching a video, if you attempt to make a change you will likely become worse before you become better. This is not bad…it is a necessary step on our road to mastery. But if you are not with me, if you are only reading a blog or watching a video, I can’t reassure you that “yes, you are doing it right….hang in there.”
Just One Tip
I recently spent some time watching a local pickleball tournament. Many of the players commented that they had watched all my videos and read everything I wrote. But as I was watching them play, I was thinking if I only had the ability to teach one thing that I thought would be super easy and most beneficial… what would it be?
My answer: talking! Learning to communicate is so key.
I had many teams this week taking lessons together, all saying they wanted to play better as a team. Without exception, the biggest thing for all of them was to learn to keep communicating. Learning to call the ball is so key. And equally important is listening. You must be able to hear when your partner calls the ball.
So many problems would be solved by learning to say “me” and “you.” Calling the ball
- Focuses your mind on the simple task at hand.
- By focusing on that one thing, you get out of your head a bit.
- Also, if you are talking you are breathing.
- In addition, I have observed that the player gets in position sooner and goes to the ball faster!
- Finally, when you call the ball you are making a choice. The more you make choices on the court, and not just react, the more control you have.
So when you go out and play next time, try to communicate more. Because I feel so strongly about partner communication, next week I’ll expound on timing, and your responsibilities when your partner is hitting the ball.