Neighborhood Captain Organizes Ladder Event
New Years day was beautiful outside in Nashville, TN so West Nashville Neighborhood Captain Jason Tilley organized the troops. By using our community discord app, Tilley was able to connect with members in the area to setup the event. 16+ members showed up to Bellevue courts to play and start off the Year with Pickleball! Make sure to sign up for free at Dinkville.com and join our community today! Sign up Here. See below pictures from the Ladder Event.
Up Your Game Brought To You By The Dink:
Punch Volley Parallels
Sometimes in pickleball, you find yourself with your back against the wall. In this video, Tyson McGuffin wants you to make that figurative situation literal.
When perfecting the punch volley, McGuffin suggests players drill with their back up against a wall. This is to prevent an unnecessary over wind-up where the paddle goes back too far.
McGuffin says the paddle should not leave your peripheral vision when executing the shot. The focus should be on punching forward through the ball to land it deep into the court. A compact, direct swing is key, like Rocky Balboa landing body shots on Ivan Drago.
In the video, McGuffin runs another drill with cones halfway through the transition zone and focuses on making sure all of his volleys land behind the line. In this scenario, the goal is to keep the opponent deep in the court with sharp punches of the ball. This forces them to make multiple attempts to move forward with drives or drops.
An added bit of wisdom from the McGuffin man: look and listen for the opponent to make "adjustment steps" before their drive. If they are off-balanced from improper footwork, chances are a hard drive attempt will sail deep.
When you're ready to get off of the wall and back on the court, think about control. You might benefit from consistent punch volleys that land deep in the court instead of trying to win the point in one shot.
Get To Know Dinkville Member Jason Tilley
Who are you? I’m Jason Tilley. I’ve lived in Nashville nearly 10 years and in Bellevue for about 5. I am married and have two dogs, who frequently appear on my socks during pickleball matches!
When did you start playing pickleball? I started playing pickleball in Summer 2022 and have been hooked since!
How did you get started with Dinkville? I got started with Dinkville after seeking more organized play in Nashville. I appreciate how Dinkville unites pickleball players across the metro and provides structure, guidance, and support in this growing community.
Why do you love pickleball? I love pickleball because it bundles all aspects of the human experience (physical, mental, emotional) into a fun, fast-paced scenario. I stick with pickleball because the community is AMAZING—so welcoming and friendly, competitive yet supportive.
What’s your favorite shot in Pickleball? The backhand roll volley, hands down!
What’s your goals this year in pickleball? I recently became certified as a Level I Pickleball Instructor with IPTPA. So, my goals this year are to compete in a 4.0 tournament and achieve Level II Instructor certification.
What’s your advice to new players? Give it a go! If you’ve been hesitant about going out the first time, take the risk; you’ll be hooked after your first try! Anyone you play with will bring a different level of experience and skill, and you can learn something from everyone you play.
Today In Pickleball Brought To You By The Dink:
New Year, New Drama
The start of 2023 is looking eerily similar to 2022. Paddle-testing drama is not going anywhere in the new year. With hundreds of new paddles flooding the market, regulation of paddles and balls has become an arduous task.
The recent drama involves an alleged Paddletek paddle from Catherine Parenteau that was given to a fan. The fan claims that the paddle has a raw carbon fiber surface and is not the same version as the off the shelf USAP approved Tempest Reign Pro.
All of this is speculation at this point, but the NMLPickleball post on the subject did spark a response from USAP's Carl Schmits...
He explains of the paddle-testing process at Nationals: paddles "were marked with non-transferrable, serialized stickers that were required to be presented to officials...This process does need to scale across the 50-ish pro events this year, stay tuned."
The dust has not settled on this latest paddle controversy, but as we saw last year, the paddle testing process has been outpaced by technology. Major progress is required to keep up with the massive boom the sport has seen in the past two years.
To be continued!
Playing the World's Smallest Violin
Sam Querrey, #1 overall in the MLP Challenger Level Draft & former top tennis pro, has responded to native pro pickleballers who are “salty” that he was drafted at all despite having never played in a pro pickleball tournament.
Querrey campaigned to be drafted in the Premier Level draft, and although he missed the cut, he will be the face of the new DC squad and have a chance to prove himself before teams are re-drafted in July.
His post shows him drilling while pretending to play a tiny violin. Savage. You've got to love the banter here.
Querrey's first real test comes next week at the PPA Masters where he's registered to play all three pro events partnering with Wes Burrows in men's and Christa Gecheva in mixed.
What's More Important Than the Third Shot Drop?
Besides dinking, there may be no more rudimentary skill in pickleball than the third shot drop. But as basic as this technique is, pro pickleballers also know the importance of what comes immediately after shot no. 3.
Pro Pickleball Stats took a closer look at pro players’ third shot drops during the PPA Hertz Championships in December.
Over 9 men’s, women’s, and mixed matches, there were 563 drops analyzed. Those 563 third shot shots fell into three categories: third shot drops that opponents volleyed, ones that opponents played on the bounce, and ones that hit into the net. Only 4% were hit into the net.
About the fourth shot being hit as a volley or on the bounce, Pro Pickleball Stats says there are "optional" instances for both.
“Significantly more 4ths are volleyed rather than played on the bounce. The pros ‘miss’ high, not low. The pros don't mind missing high because they are confident their 5th, 7th, 9th, etc., shots will get them through the transition area and eventually achieve neutrality at the NVZ.”
Rec players: a third shot drop doesn't need to be great when you are adept at your 5ths, 7ths, etc. shots. It is worthwhile to refine your third shot drops (and drives), but it is also valuable to practice those extra shots needed to advance through the transition zone.
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Landon Hallam, Dinkville Commissioner, Landon@dinkville.com