From April 23-30, thousands of individuals will converge on Naples, FL to experience some or all of the 2nd Annual US Open Pickleball Championships. And rightfully so as the event provides an opportunity to watch as the world’s top pickleball players battle for ultimate bragging rights in what is arguably one of the hottest and fastest growing sports in America.
So where exactly did this funny sounding sport come from? As the story goes, this retired couple had discovered pickleball, and they spent a lot of time playing together. As time went on, he lost interest but she started playing more and more. She eventually even became part of a competition team. Missing his wife, the husband reportedly said, “It’s me, or pickleball.” Some of you won’t be surprised to hear she chose pickleball!
Today it is one of the most played recreational sports in the country and is especially popular with baby boomers entering retirement. While it is a great way to get moving, it is relatively less hard on aging joints than other sports. It is also a great way to meet new people and be part of a community. According to the Sports & Fitness Industry Association’s 2015 Participant Report, 2.46 million people play pickleball.
If you don’t know a pickleball from a pickle jar, here is a bit of background. Pickleball is a fun, easy-to-learn sport that was created in 1965. It combines a bit of tennis, badminton, and even ping-pong. Pickleball can be played inside or outside, and it only requires a good-sized court, a modified tennis net, a paddle and a plastic ball. It can be played by two or four players. Play can be slow or fast and furious!
Given the continued growth of the sport and, in particular, its popularity among RVers, Naples Motorcoach Resort & Boat Club now boasts four brand new professional pickleball courts, providing residents and guests a great way to meet new friends, enjoy a competitive game, and get great exercise.
So if you are a self-professed pickleball addict or just curious about the sport, there’s no time like the present to hit one of our courts for a spirited game against your Naples Motorcoach Resort & Boat Club friends!
Also be sure to mark your calendar for the US Open Pickleball Championships April 23-30 in order to see some of the best pickleball players in action! You can find full details on the tournament here.