PICKLEBALL COURT GUIDE
PICKLEBALL COURT DIMENSIONS & SURFACES
Invented in Washington State in the mid-1960s, pickleball has existed for longer than you might think. However, it’s only in recent years that the family-friendly sport has seen a huge surge in popularity and participation.
If you have heard about pickleball, and want to give it a go, then you’ll need to find, or set out your own pickleball court. In this guide, we’ll look at everything pickleball court-related, including pickleball court dimensions, surfaces and much more!
What are the dimensions of a pickleball court?
Measured in feet, pickleball courts are 20ft wide and 44ft long - which is the equivalent of 6.10m x 13.41m.
Within a pickleball court’s playing area there are several zones that are unique to pickleball. The ‘non-volley zone’ (also known as the ‘kitchen’) is 20ft (6.10m) wide and has a length of 7ft (2.13m). The right and left service areas are both 10ft (3.05m) wide, and 15ft (4.57m) long.
Pickleball court layout
Each side of a pickleball court is divided into the non-volley zone and a right and left service area.
The non-volley zone is positioned either side of the net. As the name suggests it is prohibited for players to volley the ball (hit the ball without it bouncing first) in this area.
Each service area is marked out between the non-volley zone and the baseline of the court. Players serve behind the baseline diagonally across into the opposite service area. Once a rally begins (the ball has been served and returned) players can volley in the service area.
What is the height of a pickleball net?
The regulation pickleball net height is slightly lower than a tennis net, and should be 36 inches (91.44cm) high at the sidelines and 34 inches (86.36cm) high at the centre.
PICKLEBALL COURT SURFACES
Whilst the rules and regulations regarding the dimensions of a pickleball court are strict, you can play pickleball on a range of surfaces. For example, you can play on concrete, asphalt, Astroturf, clay, wood (indoor sports halls), or even grass.
One of the few differences between indoor and outdoor pickleball is the court playing surface. Most indoor pickleball courts are made using a specialised polyurethane sport surface, whilst most home and backyard courts are marked out on concrete.
Pickleball modular court tiles on a concrete base are a popular option for those who don’t want a permanent pickleball court to be marked out. The tiles can also give extra grip and reduce the impact on the lower body.
What’s the difference between a pickleball court and a tennis court?
Tennis courts are a lot bigger than pickleball courts and have different markings.
Tennis courts are 36ft wide (including doubles lines) and 78ft (23.77m) long, whereas pickleball courts are 20ft (6.10m) wide and 44ft (13.41m) long, meaning tennis courts are 80% wider and 77% longer!
|Pickleball Court Vs Tennis Court Comparison Table|
|Pickleball Court||Tennis Court|
|Court Length||44ft (13.41m)||78ft (23.77m)|
|Court Width (Singles)||20ft (6.10m)*||27ft (8.23m)|
|Court Width (Doubles)||20ft (6.10m)*||36ft (10.97m)|
|Net Height (Centre)||34 inches (86.36cm/2.83ft)||36 inches (91.4 cm/3ft)|
|Net Height (Sideline)||36 inches (91.44cm/3ft)||42 inches (1.07 cm/3.5 ft)|
|No Volley Zone||7ft from the net||None|
|Service Area Width||10ft (3.05m)||13.5ft (4.11m)|
|Service Area Length||15ft (4.57m) from the baseline||21ft (6.40m) from the net|
|Total Surface Area (Singles)||880ft²*||2,106ft²|
|Total Surface Area (Doubles)||880ft²*||2,808ft²|
*Pickleball courts are the same size for singles and doubles games. Tennis courts are wider for doubles matches compared to singles.
Can you play pickleball on a tennis court?
Despite tennis courts being bigger than pickleball courts; you can play pickleball on a tennis court if you have the right equipment. Many pickleball courts are temporary and laid out on tennis courts using line-marking equipment including temporary court lines, and freestanding pickleball nets.
Most tennis courts are set out with a north/south alignment. Ideally, you shouldn’t set out pickleball courts horizontally across an outdoor tennis court - as this will typically mean that the pickleball court will be orientated in an east/west direction, which can cause issues with players having the sun shining into their eyes.
The number of pickleball courts you want to mark out, will determine the best way of setting out pickleball courts on a tennis court.
Marking out 1 pickleball court on a tennis court
If you don’t have a dedicated pickleball net, you can lower the tennis court net and mark out the pickleball court on either side (providing you have permission to do so).
Measure 22ft (6.71m) on either side of the net to mark out the full length and baselines of the pickleball court.
Measure 10ft (3.05m) on either side of the tennis court's centreline (the line that divides the left and right service boxes) to mark out the width of the pickleball court.
This is arguably the easiest way to mark out a pickleball court on a tennis court but limits the number of active matches to 1 per tennis court.
Marking out 2 pickleball courts on a tennis court
Another popular way to lay out a pickleball court on a tennis court is to use the centreline of the tennis court that separates the left and right-hand service boxes, as the centreline for the pickleball court.
Using this method, 2 pickleball courts can be laid out on a tennis court.
Leave a gap of 8ft (2.44m) between the tennis net and mark out the first baseline of the pickleball court.
Measure 44ft (13.41m) from the pickleball’s baseline to mark out the full length of the court and the second baseline.
Measure 22ft (6.71m) from the pickleball’s baseline to mark the position of the pickleball net.
Mark out the pickleball courts' sidelines 10ft (3.05m) either side of the tennis court’s centreline.
Marking out 4 pickleball courts on a tennis court
Possibly the most popular and efficient way to mark out pickleball courts on a tennis court is to create 4 pickleball courts on 1 tennis court.
The first baseline of each pickleball court is marked out 6ft (1.83m) from the tennis net. This will usually give a space of around 10ft (3.05m) between the pickleball court's baseline and the perimeter of the tennis court enclosure.
You can use the centreline, which divides the two service areas on the tennis court, to gauge where to mark the sidelines for the pickleball courts.
Measuring 3.5ft (1.07m) on either side of the tennis court’s centreline, will give an adequate lateral gap of 7ft (2.13m) between the courts on the same side of the tennis net.
Once you’ve marked out the first baseline and sideline, you can follow the pickleball court’s dimensions to mark out the rest of the court.
For example, the second baseline should be 44ft (13.41m) from the initial baseline, the net should be placed across the middle of the court - 22ft (6.71m) from the baselines, and the service areas should be marked out 15ft from each baseline. Finally, the no volley zone or “kitchen” should be marked 7ft from the pickleball net on either side.
Is a pickleball court the same size as a badminton court?
Singles badminton courts are 17ft (5.18m) wide meaning they are narrower than pickleball courts, but doubles badminton matches use the same 20ft (6.10m) wide by 44ft (13.41m) long court area as pickleball courts do. Given that doubles badminton courts are the same size as pickleball courts, it makes them a great option for playing pickleball.
The line markings are different on a badminton court compared to a pickleball court. The front service line is marked 6.5ft from the net in badminton, whilst the non-volley zone/kitchen is marked out 7ft on either side of the net. Whilst this may sound like a minor difference, the 1/2 ft difference does make a big difference in pickleball as the non-volley zone is such a key part of the game.
The big difference between the two sports is the net height. Pickleball nets are 36 inches (91.44cm) high at the sides and 34 inches (86.36cm) high in the centre. Badminton nets are much higher at 61 inches (154.94cm) high at the sides and 59.8 inches (151.89cm) at the centre. This means that badminton nets aren’t suitable for pickleball unless they can be lowered significantly which isn’t always possible. If it isn’t possible you will need to use a separate pickleball net.
How do you make a home pickleball court?
If you want to create a pickleball court at home, it’s recommended that you have a space available that’s at least 30ft (9.14m) wide and 60ft (18.29m) long.
Although it’s possible to play pickleball on grass, ideally you’ll have a concrete base or area available. Grass is fine in the summer months, but the bounce will be reduced in the colder months of the year and you'll damage the turf if you play during or following wet weather.
You’ll also want to have:
• Line marking equipment like chalk, tape or rubber line markers
• A pickleball net
• Measuring equipment like a tape measure
The best way to start laying out your court is to start with the pickleball net. Once the net is positioned correctly, it can serve as a point of reference when you are marking out the rest of the court. Measure out the space you have available for your court, and place the pickleball net in the middle. If you have a space that is 60ft long, for example, position the net 30ft from the edge of the area, across the court.
Once the net is in position, mark out the two baselines 22ft (6.71m) from the net. The baselines should be the full width of the court - 20ft (6.10m).
When the baselines are in place, you can mark out the sidelines. The sidelines should be 22ft (6.71m) apart and 40ft (12.20m) long.
Next, mark out the non-volley zone/the kitchen, 7ft (2.13m) from the net and the full width of 20ft (6.10m) of the court.
Finally, you can mark out the centreline, which divides the right and left service areas on each side of the court. The centre line should be, as the name suggests, down the centre, perpendicular and 10ft from each sideline. The centreline does not have to be marked out in the no volley zone/kitchen.
We’ve now covered everything you need to know about pickleball courts. From pickleball court dimensions and net heights to playing surfaces and marking out a court, you have all the information you need to create and equip a pickleball court.
At Net World Sports, we stock a wide range of pickleball court equipment, including pickleball nets, pickleball posts and line marking equipment. We also sell a selection of USAPA regulation indoor and outdoor pickleball balls, paddles as well as a wide array of pickleball training equipment such as rebounders and speed hurdles.