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Take a Glimpse at Pickleball in the 1970s

by Adam Forziati on

Sonoma County, California apparently has a long history of pickleball.

Photographer Jim Johnson recently published a collection of images  from the 1970s sent to him from local picklefan Robert Phillips cataloging his experience at “Sonoma Mountain Pickleball Camp."

We’re reaching out for more details; but in the meantime, check out these priceless images:

The big hair, the (very) short shorts & striped white athletic socks...we can practically hear The Doobie Brothers playing!

And check out the form of that guy in green, clearly defending a smash.

Some more solid 1970s athletic fashion. The gloved paddle hand means he's serious!

Is this the wind-up to a serve? I spy a ball in hand, but it looks like he already hit one. Either way, it probably wouldn't pass the current regulations surrounding serves.

Something we're pretty impressed by is the well-lit outdoor court. Fifty-plus years later, we're still having trouble nailing that down in some areas.

Finally, the equipment. We've come a long way from wooden paddle technology, but I have to imagine the extra weight on this one led to some seriously-fast put aways...if the player's arm muscles were developed enough.

And good to see that "pickleball green" has always been a thing! Though we're glad they eventually dropped the hyphen.

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