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Hey Dinkville Members,
Hope this email doesn't find you slipping on icy courts or attempting snow-covered drop shots! We've got some not-so-chill news – our beloved indoor pickleball paradise at Maryland Farms has fallen victim to winter's wrath. The pipes burst, leaving us in a bit of a pickle, literally!
Picture this: Nashville, the city where our indoor pickleball dreams were just getting warmed up, is now colder than a cucumber straight from the fridge. We're back to square one, folks, and the court conspiracy is real!
As we navigate this icy journey, consider it a temporary detour from our usual smashing success. In the meantime, let's brush up on our snowball skills – who knows, we might just invent a winter version of pickleball!
Super Dink: Glow in the Dark Pickleball Tournament on Feb 3rd
Dinkville is excited to announce Super Dink: Glow in the Dark Pickleball Tournament at C2 Pickleball in Hendersonville, TN on Saturday February 3rd! There will be Men's, Women's, and Mixed Doubles Brackets for ALL Skill Levels so make sure to find a partner and get signed up today!
There are 87 Teams Registered so make sure to Sign Up Today HERE!
Thank you to our tournament sponsor Miracle Automotive for making this event happen! If you are looking for a car or need anything at all in the car industry, make sure you head to Miracle Automotive!
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Today In Pickleball Brought To You By The Dink
Time to Level Up
It’s always nice to get a refresher on the basics. Here are 7 tips from pro Eric Roddy to help "your friend" level up.
1. Keep Your Eye on the Ball
This will not only help you make clean contact, but it will help train your brain to withstand longer rallies as you advance.
2. Use the Continental or "Handshake" Grip
Beginners will often use a ‘pancake’ grip because it is familiar or easier. This can lead to bad habits and restrict players from hitting certain shots. Using the continental grip is crucial, especially as you add shots to your arsenal.
3. Get Low
Stay low for every shot. It can look or feel ridiculous at times, but staying low before, during and after every shot will lead to the best results. Staying low also allows a player to better identify out balls.
4. Reduce Your Swing
Less is more in pickleball, especially when it comes to the backswing. Try to keep your paddle in front of you, especially when you are at the kitchen. This will help your timing and will help you react more quickly when the game starts to speed up.
5. Loosen your grip
As you start to learn how to dink, try to keep a firm wrist, but softly grip the paddle. Use the paddle as an extension of your arm and keep it straight, instead of letting your wrist turn over.
You can find tips 6 and 7 here along with a bonus tip to help keep you in peak playing condition.
Major Paddle Merger
A private equity firm has combined three big pickleball companies under one umbrella: Paddletek, ProXR Pickleball, and Boundless Pickleball.
Thirty-5 Capital, LLC, a firm focused on sports technology, announced the formation of United Pickleball Paddles, a subsidiary of their pickleball investment portfolio, through the acquisition of Paddletek.
Considering which pro players use those brands' paddles, this merger could be an impactful one:
Notable pros who use ProXR paddles include Zane Navratil, Riley Newman, Connor Garnett, Andre Mick, CJ Klinger, and Emily Ackerman.
Notable pros who use Paddletek paddles include world number one Anna Leigh Waters, Leigh Waters, Irina Tereschenko, Andrea Koop, and Riley Bohnert.
Thirty-5 Capital is also the majority owner of the Chicago Slice Major League Pickleball team and has recently made investments in businesses across pickleball.
Obviously, this puts a dent in Selkirk’s and JOOLA’s race to sign the top talent. They used to have the volume of signed pros, but this new paddle conglomerate is catching up. Find more details here.
PPA’s New Serve Rules: Your Take
Last issue, we asked you about the beta-tested rule at PPA Masters requiring players to drop the ball no higher than from their hip for a volley serve.
The majority of you were not fans of the (temporary) changes:
One of you wrote in, citing an opinion shared by many: that it can be difficult to determine “waist height,” and that this experimentation with the rules at the pro level is a slippery slope:
Does not help the game and will only cause confusion amongst refs and tournament players.
In an unrefereed match, can you imagine your opponent calling you on a serve? Let the arguments begin.
But the votes were split. Many of you, like the below reader, felt that the drop serve is more fair and reduces the risk of weaponization:
Far too many rec players still ‘hide’ the ball. It often looks like it's being hit out of their hand. The end result is a spin on the ball that the receiver can't see.
I'm all for a clear, visible release of the ball. If the server can't execute a volley serve in this manner, they can optionally use a drop serve.
As for the Pros, it reduces much of the ambiguities that the refs have to put up with.
Clearly, this is a split issue among pickleball fans. We expect further experimentation at pro-level events in the near future.
APP Takes the Stage
It's the APP's turn this week as the tour makes its first pro stop in Punta Gorda. Andrei Daescu dominated the 2023 season, winning double gold at most tour stops.
This year will likely be more challenging for the big man from South Florida. He and Rob Nunnery are still the favorites in men's doubles but mixed doubles will be a crapshoot in Punta Gorda.
That's because a familiar name is back in the mix. Jorja Johnson returns to the APP scene and will partner with Yates Johnson.
With some pro contracts still unsettled, it appears Jorja is jumping on the chance to compete in her home state.
- Jorja will partner with Parris Todd in women's doubles, where they will be the favorite to win gold
- Parris Todd will likely have a meeting with Judit Castillo or Megan Fudge in singles come Championship Sunday
- Todd could find herself on triple crown watch if she and Hunter Johnson pull through in mixed
Streaming for the event will start on Friday at noon ET back on good ole APPTV Youtube.
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