Can you Carry the Ball in Pickleball?

By: Brandon Fritze

Have you ever wondered if you’re playing pickleball correctly? One of the most common questions for new players is whether they can carry the ball. The answer is no, you can’t carry the ball in Pickleball.

In this article, we’ll explore the rules of pickleball, whether you can carry the ball, and how to play the game fairly and with good sportsmanship.

So, let’s dive in and learn everything you need to know to become a pro at pickleball!

Also Read: When to Poach in Pickleball?

What is Carrying in Pickleball?

First, let’s define what we mean by carrying the ball.

Carrying the ball is when a player holds it on the paddle rather than hitting it with a stroke.

Can You Carry the Ball in Pickleball

Rules to Carry in Pickleball

Pickleball is a fast and easy sport that is spreading quickly across the globe.

The rules of pickleball are straightforward to ensure fair play. Players must hit the ball with a stroke and cannot carry or scoop it.

It is also worth noting that the rules of pickleball are slightly different for recreational and competitive play.

The regulations for carrying the ball remain consistent. However, recreational players tend to be more lenient.

In casual pickleball, they may permit more ball contact as long as it’s not an obvious carry.

In contrast, competitive play strictly enforces the rules. It increases the likelihood of a fault for ball carrying.

Dinking in Pickleball

While you are not allowed to carry the ball, dinking is a standard technique for keeping the ball low and close to the net.

Dinking involves hitting the ball softly and with a momentary pause, which can create a challenging shot for the opponent.

However, players must be careful not to hold the ball on their paddle for too long during a dink.

Why is Carrying the Ball Not Allowed in Pickleball?

USAPA doesn’t allow you to carry or hold the ball in pickleball. The reason for this is to ensure fair play and prevent players from gaining an unfair advantage.

When players carry the ball, they catch and hold it on their paddle for too long before hitting it.

Holding the ball on the paddle disrupts the game flow and frustrates opponents, as they struggle to return such shots.

This constitutes a fault.

As a result, it grants the opposing team a point. Player understanding of this rule is vital for fair play.

How to Play Pickleball Fairly

To play pickleball fairly, players must follow the rules and avoid carrying the ball.

In addition, if a player is uncertain about their ball hold, they can seek clarification from their opponent or the referee.

Furthermore, demonstrating good sportsmanship and respect for opponents is crucial.

This involves calling the ball out if it lands outside the court and avoiding distracting noises or shouting.

Pickleball Etiquette

Pickleball etiquette is integral to the game, including respecting the rules and your opponents.

While following the game’s rules, it’s crucial to communicate with your partner and opponents.

You should also avoid distracting noises or shouting and call the ball out if it lands outside the court.

Good sportsmanship involves congratulating your opponents on a good shot or game and refraining from arguing with the referee or your opponents.

Final Thoughts on Carry the Ball in Pickleball

You are not allowed to carry the ball in pickleball. Players must hit the ball with a stroke and hold it on their paddle for a short time. While dinking is a common technique, you must do it within the rules and with a momentary pause.

By following the rules and exhibiting good sportsmanship, players can enjoy a fun and competitive game of pickleball.

Leave a Comment