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It has only been 57 years since pickleball was created in 1965.  Since then, its popularity has grown substantially.  It has gained significant traction in Atlantic Canada over the last 5 years with 427% growth in Pickleball NS Membership since 2017.  In fact, both the NS Provincial Championships and the Atlantic Regional Championships will be played at the Atlantic Tennis Center (ATC) in Bedford, NS later this year.  Each of these events are expected to attract more than 450 players and volunteers from the region.

Pickleball is a racquet sport that uses a perforated ball and combines features of badminton, table tennis and tennis.  Part its appeal is that pickleball beginners in NS can learn and play the sport at any age.  While there are competitive streams of play, it is also a welcoming social sport that encourages pickleball beginners in NS to participate. 

As a strong believer in the benefit of sport for people of all ages, I love helping pickleball beginners in NS develop into recreational or competitive players.  One of the biggest challenges as a new pickleball player can be avoiding injury while getting started.  Here are 5 physio tips for pickleball beginners in NS to get their pickleball career started on the “right” foot!

Physio Tips – Shoes

Pickleball is a court sport.  Players change direction quickly and frequently move side-to-side.  Therefore, it is important that all players, including beginner pickleball players in NS, wear a court shoe that is designed to support the foot and ankle during these movements.  Running shoes are purposely built with the heel slightly higher (typically) and without much support on the sides of the shoe.  If worn for pickleball, running shoes increase the risk for ankle and knee injuries.

Physio Tips – Lessons

Technique is important!  Learning the basic rules and safety precautions for the sport can go a long way to preventing injury for pickleball beginners in NS.  Find a beginner lesson somewhere and take it!

Physio Tips – Warm-Up

Adults tend to hop out of their cars and right onto the court without helping their body prepare for sport participation.  Spending 10-15 minutes to increase heart rate (light walk/jog) and flexibility through a dynamic warm-up can help pickleball beginners in NS avoid injury.  Dynamic stretching involves moving through exaggerated positions required for the sport (ie: squats, lunges, arm raises and circles).  

Physio Tips – Volume of Play

Often pickleball beginners in NS want to play for long periods of time (ie: 2 hours) multiple times each week because it is so much fun!  Depending on their fitness level and past sport participation, shortening their court time and ensuring you have a day off between matches/practice can be important for pickleball beginners in NS to avoid injury.  This helps you develop the strength and endurance to be able to safely participate more often and for longer periods.

Physio Tips – Aches and Pains

When learning something new, it is normal to “feel” muscles that you didn’t even know were there!  However, if pickleball beginners in NS are getting the same little aches and pains after play, a physiotherapy assessment is warranted to address them quickly.  This can reduce time away from the courts and help avoid more significant injury in the future.

Finding ways to have fun and stay active are key to living healthy fulfilling lives.  If you’re curious about pickleball, check out the action at your local club and give it a try… I bet you’ll love it!  If you’re unsure about how to get started safely, book a physiotherapy assessment with our Zoomers physiotherapy team – we’d love to help you hit the courts!

Book an assessment with Zoomers

Use our online booking tool to find a time that works for you!