Pickleball is a new sport compared to tennis and it is no secret that often pickleball is played on a tennis court. It is simply because there are not many pickleball courts in the neighbourhoods and cities, therefore, many pickleball players convert a tennis court into a pickleball court, Pickeball is a relatively new sport, therefore, has led to frequent comparisons between Pickleball Court vs Tennis Court.
If you are in a similar situation and finding it hard to get to a pickleball court, don’t worry. If there is one pickleball court, chances are there are 3 tennis courts or even four tennis courts in the same neighbourhood. And you can play pickleball on one of these tennis courts with some tweaks to the court. Here is your guide to turning a tennis court into a temporary court for Pickleball.
Pickleball Court vs Tennis Court
A cursory look at a pickleball court and a tennis court will show some similar features. Both sports are played on a rectangular court with a net in the middle that divides the court into two zones.
A major difference between a pickleball court and a tennis court is court size. The standard tennis court or the size of a tennis court is much larger in dimensions and is 78 feet long and 36 feet wide. Whereas, a pickleball court is 20 feet wide and 44 feet long. This is the reason that it is easier to redraw the dimensions on an existing tennis court and use it for a pickleball game.
Both the tennis court and pickleball court have a net in the middle. The net height for pickleball is 36 inches at the sides and 34 inches in the middle, whereas the tennis net is 36 inches throughout. The material of a pickleball net and a tennis net is the same, therefore, with height adjustment, it can be used to play both sports.
For a doubles tennis game, there are ‘doubles alleys’ with additional space for both players. But pickleball singles and pickleball doubles play on the same court.
There is not much difference in terms of Court surface, as both sports are played outside on a professionally built court with concrete or asphalt surface. However, a key difference between pickleball and tennis is the ball. A tennis ball is bouncy whereas, a pickleball ball is not as bouncy so the surface makes a difference. That’s why pickleball cannot be played on grass.
Since there are fewer courts, you can definitely use a tennis court. Find a tennis court around your vicinity and convert it into a pickleball court.
Can You Play Pickleball and Tennis on One Court?
Yes, you can play pickleball on a tennis court. If you are eager to play pickleball but do not have a court, you can definitely use a tennis court. You can use this court to learn how to play pickleball and then go play in a professionally built court as you become a pro.
Simply redraw the tennis court lines according to pickleball court lines and zones, and you can play pickleball on a tennis court. Remove the temporarily drawn lines and you can play tennis again.
How to Convert a Tennis Court into a Pickleball Court: Steps
To use any tennis surface for Pickleball, it is best to ask for permission from a court owner or manager. There is often speculation of animosity between tennis players and pickleball enthusiasts, partly because of tussle over court space. To avoid such confrontations, it is best to ask for permission and set times and days for each sport.
On the designated time and space, you can create a court to play pickleball with a few simple steps and materials. Read to learn how to use the tennis court to play pickleball.
Follow these steps to convert a tennis court into a pickleball court:
Pickleball Court Dimensions and Lines
- Sidelines: The next step is to draw sidelines. Sidelines run perpendicular to the net and define the Non-volley zone. To mark these lines on a court, use temporary chalk, marker, or tape.
- Baseline: The baseline in a court at the end of the court on each side of the net. This defines the boundaries of the service area.
- Centerline: lines on each side of the net, these lines divide the space between the NVZ and the Baseline.
- Net: The net is placed at the centre of the court and is placed at a height of 36 inches on the sides and 34 inches in the middle. A tennis net can be lowered in the middle to make it fit for a Pickleball match.
- Service area: The service area is 10 X 15 on each side and is surrounded by baselines, sidelines, and NVZ lines.
- Non-Volley Zone or Kitchen: This area is 14 feet in total and 7 feet on each side. This kitchen area is defined by the sidelines, NVZ lines, and the net.
How to Draw Pickleball Lines on a Tennis Court Surface
First, use a measuring tape to set the dimensions inside the tennis court. To mark these different zones and lines, use chalk or other such temporary material. Then with the help of tape like a painter’s tap, draw the lines. White tape is the best option as it makes the lines visible.
This is how you can convert a tennis court to a pickleball court or play pickleball on a tennis court.
Set the pickleball Net
Lower the tennis net in the middle to adjust it for a game of pickleball. The pickleball net is 36 inches on the sides and 34 inches in the middle.
Check this YouTube video to build a pickleball court on a tennis court.
Temporary Pickleball Court
To create pickleball courts in a space that is unoccupied like a slab of concrete etc., you need to follow the same steps. To begin with, check if the surface is pickleball court fit i.e., there are no holes or other issues.
Watch this video to learn more about how to prepare this space for a pickleball court surface and draw permanent pickleball lines to build a temporary Pickleball court.
As the popularity of Pickleball is growing and people from all ages and backgrounds are taking this sport as a leisure activity, hobby, and even profession, the need for space is growing as well. In a single court, only 2 or four people can play at a time and if there are more people, it can be hard to practise or play. A simple solution to this lack of space is to use a tennis court to play pickleball with a few changes.A pickleball has a smaller court than a tennis court so it can be used to play pickleball.
To do that, follow the mentioned steps: If you want to play or practice pickleball on a tennis court you need to adjust the lines and zones. Use a measuring tape to measure the zones and lines, then use chalk to draw the lines, and then with the help of temporary tape put the lines on the court surface. Set up a pickleball net at the height of 26 inches on the sides and 34 inches in the middle.