The Rules of Pickleball

Pickleball is a game enjoyed by thousands of people around the world because it’s fun and easy to learn. The game is played on a court about the size of a badminton court—20 feet by 44 feet—for either singles or doubles play. These court dimensions were established by the USA Pickleball Association with input from World Pickleball Association (WPA) and other governing bodies. Rules vary slightly from organization to organization, but nine easy pickleball rules govern all pickleball games.

The 9 Easy Pickleball Rules 2022
  1. Scoring is done sequentially (1,2,3,4, etc.).
  2. The score goes to 11 points, but in some tournaments, the score goes to 15 or 21.
  3. The winning team must win by at least 2 points. So, if the score is 10–10, the winning team must get at least 2 more points to win or, in this example, one of the teams must score 12 points, keeping the other team at 10.
  4. Only the team that is currently serving can score points.
  5. Each team gets to serve at least twice—once per player, except for the very first serve of the game.
  6. A team scores a point when its opponent doesn’t successfully return the ball.
  7. When a team scores a point, the players on that team switch sides, allowing the other partner to serve again.
  8. The serving team continues to serve and score points until it misses a shot.
  9. The server must always say the score before serving.
Pickleball Scoring

Under pickleball rules, a team scores by doing the following:

  • Points can only be scored on one’s serve when the ball is not returned.
  • When a fault (when the ball hits the net on the server’s side) is awarded to the opponent.


Official pickleball rules are not complicated, which makes the game more about the fun, making friends, and keeping physically active.