The Benefits of Building an Indoor Pickleball Facility

Introduction

Pickleball has quickly gained popularity in recent years, becoming one of the fastest growing sports in the country. With the increasing number of players and fans, there is a growing demand for quality indoor pickleball facilities. Unlike outdoor courts, indoor facilities offer year-round protection from the elements, ensuring that play can continue regardless of weather conditions. For businesses and recreation centers looking to build an indoor pickleball facility, it is important to consider the requirements of the sport and create a structure that provides an enjoyable pickleball experience. This comprehensive guide will explore the various factors to consider when designing an indoor pickleball facility, from court dimensions to court surfaces and spacing.

Court Considerations

One of the most crucial aspects of building an indoor pickleball facility is the design of the courts themselves. The surface of the courts can be made of concrete or asphalt, both of which are durable options. However, indoor facilities have the advantage of protection against inclement weather, eliminating the need for frequent resurfacing. It is recommended to use a 100% acrylic coating on the courts to ensure a dependable base for play and minimize wear and tear. Additionally, the court colors should contrast with the color of the pickleball for better visibility. Popular options include blue courts, which provide a striking contrast to the common pickleball colors of yellow, orange, and lime green.

Court Dimensions and Layout

To create a consistent playing experience, pickleball facilities need to adhere to specific court dimensions and layout guidelines. The sidelines of the court should span a total of 44 feet in length, while the baselines should be 20 feet in length and run parallel to the net. The centerline separates the service areas and runs down the middle from the baseline to the non-volley zone. There are two service areas that are 15 feet long on either side of the net, and two 7-foot-wide non-volley zones, also known as “the kitchen,” that sit on opposite sides of the net. The height of the pickleball net is 36 inches at the sidelines, sloping down to 34 inches in the center of the court. It is important to ensure sufficient space around the court for casual and competitive play, with a recommended playing area of 30 feet wide by 60 feet in length for casual play and 34 feet wide by 64 feet in length for competitive play.

Court Quantity and Spacing

When deciding on the number of courts for an indoor pickleball facility, it is essential to consider the intended use and capacity. While it was common in the past to start with a small number of courts and gradually add more, many operations are now building facilities that can accommodate over fifteen courts right from the start. Regardless of the number of courts, spacing is crucial to ensure a safe playing environment and prevent injuries. Adequate spacing should be provided to avoid players getting too close to the walls, fencing, or each other during play. In all-in-one style venues, there should be enough room for additional amenities such as concession and rest areas, locker rooms, spectator sections, or a pro shop.

An Example: The Opelika Sportsplex

The Opelika Sportsplex in Opelika, Alabama serves as a great example of what an indoor pickleball facility can look like. The sportsplex incorporated a clearspan fabric truss building to provide coverage for twelve indoor pickleball courts. This allows them to host a wide range of events, from casual play to Olympic qualifying tournaments, regardless of weather conditions. Building an indoor pickleball facility has made a significant impact on the Opelika community, attracting a growing fan and player base. With the ability to expand their facility in the future, they are well-positioned to meet the increasing demand for pickleball.

Conclusion

Building an indoor pickleball facility offers numerous benefits, including protection from the elements, year-round playability, and the ability to create a comfortable playing environment. Design considerations such as court dimensions, surfaces, and spacing are key in creating a superior pickleball experience. By investing in an indoor facility, businesses and recreation centers can become part of the rapidly growing sport and develop into premier pickleball destinations in their regions.

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