Pickleball vs Paddle Tennis: What’s The Difference?

Humans have always been very interested in performing physical activities. From this desire to engage in physical activities for recreational purposes, many sports have emerged in the world. 

While most sports are different from one another, there are certain sports that are very similar to each other and often get confused with one another. Two of such sports happen to be Pickleball and Paddle Tennis. 

These two sports are quite similar at first glance as they share similar equipment and fairly similar rules. However, the two games are pretty different and have several distinguishable characteristics. 

Many people confuse the two and think they are one and the same. In order to clear out that misconception let’s take a look at the two games separately and see what the two are games like.

So, if you are interested in checking out the full comparison of Pickleball vs Paddle Tennis, be sure to stick around with us till the end of this article. 


Source: wikimedia.org

Right of the bat let’s talk about Pickleball. Pickleball is a type of paddleball sport, which happens to be very similar to a racquet sport. This sport combines a few elements of badminton, table tennis, and also tennis to form a completely new sport. 

The rules of this game are simple: The game can be played between/among two or four players. These players are required to use solid paddles that are typically made of wood or some composite materials, and try to hit a perforated polymer ball, with 26 to 40 round holes, over a net. 

Pickleball shares a bunch of features of various other racquet sports. For example, the game uses the dimensions and layout of a badminton court, while using a net used for tennis. The rules are somewhat similar to tennis as well, but with a few modifications.

Paddle Tennis

Now let’s take a look at the game people confuse Pickleball with. Paddle tennis happens to be a type of sport that was adapted from tennis and has been being played for over a century. It was rebranded as Pop Tennis in the year 2015.

The court that Paddle tennis is played on is slightly smaller than regular tennis. It also does not have the doubles lanes, and the net used for the game is happens to also be lower compared to tennis. 

Paddle tennis is a fun sport. You play Paddle Tennis using a solid paddle instead of a strung racquet, and a depressurized tennis ball.

Pickleball vs Paddle Tennis: What is The Difference Between The Two?

1. The Scoring system

The scoring system in both the games is very different from one another. Pickleball take much longer than paddle tennis. In other words, Pickleball games have a much longer duration.

2. The Ball

The ball type used in each game are very different as well. While Pickleball uses plastic or polymer balls that have 26 to 40 round roles in them, paddle tennis uses rubber tennis balls. The type of balls used in the game impacts how it takes place by a lot. So this one is definitely a notable difference.  

3. The Net Position 

Another notable difference between Pickleball and Paddle tennis is that Pickleball uses the same net as Tennis while Paddle tennis happens to use a net that is placed much lower than in a game of tennis. 

The position of the net makes the games very unique, especially in the way that they are played. As the position of the net in paddle tennis is lower, the players are not required to make the ball go too high making it slightly easier to transfer the ball to the other side in paddle tennis. 

Whereas, Pickleball having the same net position and size as tennis, is slightly tough to play compared to paddle tennis. 

4. The Court of the Games

Even the court that the two games are played in are pretty different. Pickleball is way more similar to tennis and badminton in terms of the court that it is played in. The court has the same linings and also the doubles lane. 

On the other hand, paddle tennis does not have a doubles lane, which makes the linings a bit different too. You could say the paddle tennis court even looks narrower than that of the court of Pickleball. 

5. Number of Players that Can Play

Due to the reason Pickleball having a doubles lane, the game can be played by 4 players at once. In other words, Pickleball can be played in doubles. But unfortunately, paddle tennis is a singles game and even the court doesn’t have a doubles lane. 

To sum it up, Pickleball is a game of maximum 4 players and minimum 2 players, while paddle tennis is a game that can only be played by 2 players and not more than that at once. 

6. Serving method

The serving method of the two games are also a bit different. Pickleball is served underhanded, while paddle tennis is served in a completely different manner. The bounce on the ball is also different in paddle tennis so the techniques for serves are very different from that of Pickleball. 

Final Words

So that’s all for the differences between Pickleball and paddle tennis. While this one isn’t necessarily a difference but, the popularity of Pickleball has risen considerably in the past few years due to the game being very easy to play and having simple rules and the equipment being inexpensive. 

On the other hand, paddle tennis hasn’t really gotten that popular compared to Pickleball for some reason. We think both games are pretty fun and interesting to play. So if you’re getting to know about the games and want to try them out, we totally recommend both. 

We hope you had a fun time reading this article and learned something new today. That’s all for this article about Pickleball vs paddle tennis, see you next time!

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