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Pickleball Goals You Should Have in 2024

by Jason Flamm on

Everybody take a big deep breath, then let it out. Congratulations! You survived 2023. Now, it’s time to prepare for 2024, and if you’re like most people, that means setting some big hairy goals that you’ll probably forget about by mid-January.

That’s okay. We’re not here to judge. Instead, we’re here to help you set some goals that really matter. No, not health, wealth, and happiness–pshhhh. Save that stuff for that new leather journal you just got in your stocking.

We’re here to help you set pickleball goals. Some big, some small, but all in the pursuit of better dinks, drives, and DUPR ratings. Without further buildup, let’s get started.

Here are some of our favorite pickleball goals you can adopt in 2024.

Goal #1 - Drill More

This one is pretty self-explanatory. If you want to get better at pickleball–like significantly better–everyone agrees that you actually need to play pickleball less and drill more.

Fortunately, there are a ton of resources out there for drilling. Check out a few of these articles:

And much, much more! We are blessed in 2024 with so many pickleball content creators. Find one you like and put what they teach into practice.

Goal #2 - Be a Better Teammate

No one is immune to playing poorly sometimes. And, while you’re trying to up your game in 2024, you will hit some horrible shots.

If you find yourself on the court with someone not playing their best or who isn’t very good, be the spark that helps them get better. Don’t make others feel worse than they already do after a bad shot. Be the person who uplifts and tells them, “You got it next time!” or compliment them on the good shots they take.

Anyone can roll their eyes, shrug, and shake their head about their teammate. But the best people to play with are those we want to play with over and over again.

This video from ThatPickleballGuy should inspire you to be a better teammate in 2024.

Goal #3 - Raise Your Game

According to Jordan Briones, there are four pillars pickleball players should focus on:

  1. Fitness and Footwork
  2. Fundamentals and Skills
  3. Shot Selection and Strategy
  4. Mindset and Mental Game

He recently published a new video to help players achieve better results and raise their game in 2024. Check it out:

Goal #4 - Play in a National Tournament (or three)

Rec play, open play, and paddle stack are where most pickleballers spend their time playing.

For some, these games are enough. But, if you want to raise your game and play more competitively, consider playing in tournaments. And, if you’re already playing in tournaments, consider doing a national one.

The APP, The PPA, and plenty of other organizations all host events nationwide that bring in hundreds and thousands of pickleballers.

You’ll get to meet some great people with common interests, and you may even get to rub elbows with the pros.

Bonus Goal - Play Higher Than Your Ranking

“Complacency is a continuous struggle that we all have to fight.” - Jack Nicklaus

If you repeatedly play the same people or in the same level tournaments, then your chances of improving aren’t great. It’s easy to grow complacent.

Which then leads to boredom. If you want to keep your game fresh, in both skills and enjoyment, you should occasionally play “up” a level.

Sure, those 4.0s will roll their eyes at you or give you a dirty look after you’ve missed your third drive in a row, but so what? You don’t know if you can hang with them until you try.

When you get a chance, you should push yourself a bit more and enter that tournament you “know” you’ll get crushed in. While there, just enjoy the moment and record your match to see what skills you need to get there for good someday.

Also, you might just surprise yourself.

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Goals from Dink Readers

We asked the readers what they hope to improve in 2024. Here’s what you all had to say:

  • “Defend drives better.”
  • “Patience. Discipline to hunt for a winner vs trying to force one before it’s time!”
  • “Continue to improve transition play and resets.”
  • “Dinking and drop shots.”
  • “Develop a topspin drive and try for the banana shot.”
  • “Get 4.0 certification at 80 years old.”
  • “Organizing more fun events with group.”
  • “Improve fitness for singles.”
  • “Continue to have fun.”
  • “Get to 4.0”
  • “Consistency.”

Whatever your goals for 2024, we hope you are healthier, happier, and play way more pickleball…and, of course, have a whole lot of fun doing it.

See you on the courts!

Jason Flamm

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