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Speedups Are the Most Important Factor in Closely-Matched Games

by The Dink Media Team on

One of the best parts about playing pickleball is finding a foursome of players who are all at the same level. Everyone can play at full capacity, creating a challenge for all.

When playing matches of equal skill level, the margin between wins and losses is thin. Really thin. So what is the biggest factor in separating the winners from the losers?

According to another phenomenal post from Jim Ramsey, a major indicator of success is speedups that are initiated and won.

He tracked “rally-ending speed-ups: instances when a potential or regular dinking rally was accelerated, and the ensuing hands-battle led directly to the end of the rally.”

This seemingly obscure stat actually turned out to be influential. The scenario occurred in 44% of the points he studied.

He found that “When one team performed more than five percent better than their opponent at initiating speed-ups that led directly to winning a rally-ending hands-battle, they also won the match 88% of the time.”

That means that just a slight edge in those hand-speed battles can have huge impact on your win percentage.

Are you being precise and timely in your attacks? Or are you a little too trigger-happy in your approach?

Pickleball speedup tips:

  • Remember: when you’re looking to attack, it’s important to wait for the right ball. When you see one, be intentional with your target. Don't try to win the point with one speedup. Think of it as a setup for your next shot.
  • Aim for the paddle-side hip or shoulder to force a mistake from your opponent.
  • As you prepare to hit the speed-up shot, shift your weight from your back foot to your front foot. This weight transfer will help generate power and quickness in your shot.
  • Engage your legs and core muscles to generate power and explosiveness. Bend your knees and use your legs to push off the ground, transferring the energy through your body and into the shot.

Do this over and over and you should be on the positive side of this statistical breakdown.

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