Pickleball is a paddle sport (similar to a racquet sport) that combines elements of badminton, tennis, and table tennis. Two or four players use solid paddles made of wood or composite materials to hit a perforated polymer ball, similar to a wiffle ball , over a net. The sport shares features of other racquet sports, the dimensions and layout of a badminton court, and a net and rules somewhat similar to tennis, with several modifications. Pickleball was invented in the mid 1960s as a children’s backyard pastime but has become one of America’s most popular growing sports among all ages.
One of the greatest things about living in Ajijic as a retirement community is the fact that there are so many things to do here. No matter your passion, it can be found in the Lake Chapala area. And if not, you can start a club of your own!
In May 2016 we were fortunate enough to have the Raquet Club in San Juan Cosala introduce Pickleball to the area. We started out with only about 10 people coming out but we managed to keep it going through the summer months. Now, of course, with the influx of snowbirds to the Lakeside area, we regularly have 20 to 35 people come out during the winter months 10-20 during the summer.
The Raquet Club’s pickleball division started out with 4 courts with lines painted over top of the existing tennis court lines. This was great at the beginning but they soon saw that the demand was going to grow so they painted permanent pickleball courts with permanent nets and expanded the facilities to 6 courts.
Lots of new people are showing up every week as the word is spreading that this exciting and, in fact, fastest growing sport in North America, has finally reached Ajijic.
If you don’t know what pickleball is, then do a YouTube search and watch some matches and have a look at the USA Pickleball Association site as well The game is well suited for older people as the court is half the size of a tennis court so there is less running. It also works the mind too as many are challenged at keeping the score.
Pickleball can be played by players of any age, even into your 90’s!, It is a fun, fast, and exciting game to play and has attracted over 200,000 players from around the world.
Regular drop in days are Monday, Wednesday and Saturday starting between 8:30 and 9:00 until the last person leaves. The Raquet Club also has tennis pros available for lessons and paddle rental for those just starting out.
For more information and details on where the Raquet Club is, how to get past the guards, where to park and how to find the courts, please feel free to drop me an email through my ‘contact’ box and I would be happy to help. As well, you can check out the newly formed ‘Pickleball in Ajijic’ information website at: https://drhook50hp.wixsite.com/pickleballinajijic
See you soon on the courts!
Updated Information: Pickleball in Ajijic has now expanded!! A second set of courts are now available in Chapala at the Monte Carlo Hotel and Spa. Six brand new courts on a lakeside setting.