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Monday, August 29, 2011

What are your goals?

Have you seen this guy on the courts? Lee Moore is a board member (Treasurer) of the BENDPICKLEBALLCLUB.COM. He has played many tournaments and this is his first medal he has won! Lee never became discouraged and his goals are to practice and practice and listen to what the more experienced players are telling him! Lee will always have a smile on his face if he wins or loses and will try to help each of you improve your game! If he is telling you to "soften" your game listen ...he has played the game, of hitting the ball hard from racquetball, and finally has changed the way he is playing Pickleball! We are so fortunate to have so many great players that are sharing their secrets with us! AJ , Irene, Roger, Karen and Lee are giving you many tips to enhance your game! Listen and you all will improve! Your goals are important! It may not be to win a medal; it may be to just socialize, to exercise, to teach a friend or to improve your health! Keep pickling and never give up on being your best!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Announcement

The Senior Center building at Larkspur Park, in Bend, will be closed for maintance beginning Monday August 29th through Sunday September 11th. The center will re-open Monday September 12th. Pickleball will continue as usual with the following exceptions:
There will be NO play on Labor Day Mon. September 5th.
There will be NO play at Larkspur Park on Thursday September 8th.
Please join us at Central Oregon Community College (COCC) from 9 am to 11 am on Tuesday and Thursday! See blog for directions!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Simplified Pickleball Rules

The complete and current rules of pickleball can be found on the USA Pickleball Association's website (www.usapa.org). However, as a quick reference for most of the basic rules of the game, we have posted the Simplified Rules document produced by AZPickleballFun.com. You can select that option from the list of resources on the right of this page.

For those of you still fairly new to the game,this is a quick and easy way to check on rules that you learned - or thought you did - during your training. Please feel free to copy these rules for yourself for ease of use and refer to them as often as you like.

And keep those shots in bounds!

Another Tournament Opportunity: Eagle Crest in Redmond

Now that you've been playing pickleball for a while, well, maybe for some only a little while, you're probably anxious to play in your first local tournament. The pickleball group at Eagle Crest in Redmond is running a tournament they're calling "Endless Summer Pickleball Bash" on Thursday September 22.

This should be a really fun event for everyone. Participants will be separated by skill level, so you don't have to get in over your head. The objective is to wrap up the summer with some great pickleball games.

You can read the details about the tournament and find an entry form in the option list on the right side of this page. Click on "Eagle Crest Pickleball Tournament" and away you go!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Growing pains!

Remember when you were a teen and how the pain in your legs hurt? Pickleball is in that teen stage where the frustrations and limitations are starting to surface. This group picture did not include EVERYONE that participated as this photo was taken at the END of our session!
We had 55 players today so we are being stretched beyond our limits of nets and courts. Please be patient as the board members try new approaches to accomodate each of you! Each of you are important and if you have any concerns please do not hesitate to talk to your board members. They are open to suggestions! Pickleball is a sport for all ages and remember that the parents, grandparents and extended family members all can play together! Help us grow in Bend...suggestions are so welcome! Keep Pickling!

Friday, August 19, 2011

More about YOUTH participation

Thursday we had two new younger players on the court that are visiting family! Jackie is from Wilsonville Oregon and is a World Cup Ski Racer as well as a NW Downhill Champion! Marie is from Forks Washington and is in the Air Force DEPS program! These girls picked up on the game quickly and will play again for sure! It is fun to watch the speed and agility that these younger people have! Do not let that intimidate you if you see them on the other side of your net! Use skills that do not require racing around the court like they do! Learn to place your ball to their backhand or down the middle or soften up your game by playing more at the kitchen! Their speed will make you think more about the way you are playing your game!

Youth Tennis Staff LOVES Pickleball!

Kevin Collier, Sports Coordinator for the Bend Park and Recreation District, is an excellent, committed tennis player - and for awhile now has been talking about wanting to try pickleball. Recently the summer-long Youth Tennis Program at Juniper Park in Bend came to an end, and Kevin, instead of taking the Youth Tennis Program staff to lunch to thank them, as he often has done, this time decided to ask his staff what THEY wanted to do.

Yesterday was the last day of Youth Tennis lessons at Juniper Park.  I usually take the staff out to lunch, instead, they opted for some Pickleball!!  That was the first time I tried it, it was a blast.

Thanks, Kevin, for making our day. It's great to see the younger folks joining in the fun of Pickleball, and it was even better to hear that you had joined them.

By the way, can you spot where they are playing? If you've been to it, you'd recognize it...our newest permanent drop-in pickleball court at Quail Park, off Regency off Mt. Washington in NW Bend!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Meet Jodi!

Jodi is one of the new players and is progressing at a fast pace! Maybe her love for the game is what inspires her to continue to want to learn and play. You will see her at almost all of the venues ! Jodi has lived in Bend approx. 7 years. When I ask her how she learned about Pickl ball she stated that her friend, Emily, had talked about playing it in California and then Jodi saw the July 16th Bulletin article introducing Bend to Pickleball and she decided to come out and try it! Jodi went to the Sr. Center to observe and within 1 week she was playing with her new sports clothes, paddle, shoes and knee braces! She is now "hooked"! Jodi has been deaf since birth, however, can read lips very well if you look at her and speak clearly (NOT LOUDLY)! She has a fun loving spirit and may surprise you with some of her antics! Intoduce yourself to her and keep pickling!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Tournament Opportunity: San Diego Senior Games

Here's an announcement about a pickleball tournament in San Diego in September. Follow the links if you're interested in participating.

Be sure to mark your calendars for the San Diego Senior Games at Melba Bishop, September 16th –19th.
This is a sanctioned tournament so if you are not a member of the USAPA now is a good time to join. http://usapa.org/memberships/index.php
You can also view this information on our North County Blog. If you haven’t looked at the blog lately now is a good time. You will also find information on Pat’s Boot Camp on the blog. If you haven’t already book marked the link to our blog http://sdnorthcountypicklers.blogspot.com now is a good time.
New players can enter the tournament at the 2.5 level for the experience and fun of participating in a tournament.
For more information contact:
"Narramore, Randy" randyn@earthlink.net

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Establishing your Target

At the risk of disappointing those of you who came to this site to look for your picture, you'll remember I DID warn you that, from time to time, I was gonna have some game-improvement thoughts here. With this in mind, the second series of tips goes to the subject of target - or perhaps, given its importance, I should say Target (with a capital "T"). Let's begin with a little introspection - where do YOU aim the ball when you hit it? What is YOUR Target?

If you've answered "it varies", technicially you're right but in a larger sense you're wrong. It doesn't vary as much as you'd think. There are several Targets that I regularly use and while opportunity dictates which I might use in a given rally I consistently am waiting for one of these several...and it's not a large number.

(1) Backhand. Given the absence of anything better, I will go to your backhand side 2 out of 3 times. Many of us believe we have great backhands and you may, but chances are you will hit a slightly less-controlled shot from your backhand side - perhaps a ball a bit too high, or one hit a bit too hard, and I'm looking to exploit that with my following shot. (Note that this reality is different for pickleball from, say, Tennis, where often a backhand is a MORE controllable shot than a forehand.)
(2) Unweighted side. Once I have you moving your weight to one side (e.g. covering your backhand), I will go to the other side. To be obvious, if you've noticed that I do in fact go to your backhand two out of three times, it will be natural for you to move your paddle or weight a bit to get ready for the next shot to your backhand side. Then I may be able to slide a shot past you, just outside your forehand side. (This also makes a case for waiting as long as you can before hitting the ball. Too many of you hit the ball as quickly as you can, as if the opportunity is gonna disappear if you wait another 10th of a second. That's wrong-think. Often times, waiting that heartbeat gives your opponent a chance to precommit themselves and shift their weight...and then you simply hit the other way.) By the way, this is true of dinking contests, too...if we are moving each other back and forth, I might try "patterning" you a bit...hitting a dink ( a dink being by my definition a short, in-the-kitchen drop shot hit from the no-volley-zone line), say, cross-court to your backhand several times until I see you move over ahead of time...and if, that time, your partner does not move over with you, then my Target becomes the hole that just opened up in the middle. If we are going backhand to backhand cross-court at that point, with me being in left court), I will shift myself quickly (my being right-handed) further to the left so I can get a quick, flat forehand shot into the middle. I am stretching this to call it a true example of hitting to the unweighted side, but the Target develops because of you getting stuck in a pattern and getting your weight on your backhand side at the far edge of the court, so maybe it isn't too far off the mark.
(3)  At a line about level with their feet. If my opponent has made the critical error of backing away from the net, or, more often, they are a heartbeat slow in getting up to the line, hit the ball at a spot off to the side of a line even with their feet. If you must hit it right AT their feet (and risk their being able to get a quality paddle on the ball), go into the middle of their body-mass. This shot isn't always a winner in and of itself, but like many shots will often force your opponent to hit a return off-balance and then you are putting away a pop-up.
(4)  At the oponent. This takes several forms. If you are off-balance for any reason and I can target away from you, I'll do it, going every time to the side you have unweighted. But if that risks letting your partner get into the act, I will go back more directly at you two or perhaps three times - for as long as you are off-balance. Or, if you hit a strong shot right at me, your tendency might be to wait and see how well you did with it and your paddle may drop just a bit below your chest line. If you drop your paddle at the line I may try to hit youm, and in this case my Target WITHIN the target will be chest or perhaps your FOREHAND shoulder...typically the hardest point for you to get a quality paddle on...unless I suspect you are wanting that shot and are dropping your paddle intentionally to attract it. (My friend Al does this, and I still fall into his trap from time to time.)

Much of somehow knowing which shot to hit, Target-wise, comes from experience, but if you were to think about these Targets for a bit and put them firmly into your mind as possibilities, then, when the opportunities arise, you'll be more ready. But as a final thought...targets do come and go and sometimes in the same point or rally you will have several good opportunities. Don't waste emotional energy worrying about one you've missed when you are still in a live point. Hit a safe return (a soft dink over the middle, for instance), get your body square in position, and wait for the next one. It will be there, and this time you'll be there, too.

We are GROWING!

Thank you all for participating in Pickleball! We truly are growing and so much of the thanks goes to the board members who have worked very hard to bring Pickleball to BEND! We still hope to have public courts that are just for Pickleball! We will continue to pursue! Remember to check our Quail Park . It is such a beautiful place to play and maybe you could invite a neighbor that is walking by to participate! It is important to share your information with new people! We will continue to grow if YOU share what you have learned! We want to make BEND a future place for tournaments and each of you can help us do that by sharing, helping and participating! Just a final thought! We started Pickleball late Spring with no where to play and look how far we have came! Amazing! Each of you new players are doing so well and we love your smiles and enthusiasm! Always try to be safe on the courts! This will be a future posting!

Bend Pickleball Club Shirts!

We still have Bend Pickleball Club shirts available! Do not miss out on these comfortable beautiful shirts! Karen is selling them at all of our play days and if you are not at one of the venues you can email her at bendpickleballclub@hotmail.com and reserve yours now! The shirts are $20.00 ( BELOW OUR COST) however, if you would like to donate a couple of dollars to help our club offset the cost we would be delighted to accept your donation! Wearing your shirt is a great way to introduce new people to this wonderful game of Pickleball!

Monday, August 8, 2011

NO EXCUSES!

Have you seen this guy on the court? Roger is his name and be careful because he knows about Pickleball! He is an experienced player, however, had to have shoulder surgery approx. two months ago so he is now playing LEFT handed while he heals! He devised the special apparatus you see him wearing to remind him NOT to use the right arm! If you see him running for a ball yell at him to BE CAREFUL! Be just a little easy on him for now, however, remember next season he will come back with a healed shoulder and that is the time to give him NO MERCY! Remember he is aware of your weakness..give him time and he will take advantage of that!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Preparing the court!


When you come to play Pickleball do you realize how much time is spent preparing the courts for play? The courts are swept or blown off each day. Tape is put down and nets are put up! After we play nets are taken down, tape is removed from courts at the college and all water bottles and garbage is picked up! YOU CAN HELP if you like! It is important that we leave the courts in good shape when we leave. Please take your garbage with you, offer to help take down the nets and tape! Karen, Vice President, is recycling all water bottles and donating the money back to the club so look for the bag to put your empty bottles in! Thank you to all who are helping make Pickleball a fun sport in Bend!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

And Now....Bend Pickleball Club SHIRTS!


You have, of course, been waiting with both baited and unbaited breath for your new Bend Pickleball Club shirt, and now your patience will be rewarded. We have received the very first shipment of our shirts, complete with new logos, in Men's Crew and Women's V-Neck styles, in Stay-Dri materials, both shirts a handsome Steel (Dark Grey) color, and both in M, L and XL sizes (sorry, no S or 2/3 XL in this first shipment, but let us know if that's what you want for the next order, soon to come!). We will be offering these shirts at slightly below the club cost, or a measly $20 (plus our cost to ship, if applicable). How can you order them? Email us at bendpickleballclub@hotmail.com and let us know what you want, or, better, show up at Mountain High development Saturday AM from 9-11 and buy them there. Bring cash or checks...sorry, no cards, yet! (Also we will have club-logo pickleballs for your car antennas available at the same event...$2.50 per ball and a great way to find your car in the parking lot while advertising YOUR Pickleball Club!) See you Saturday, or email us!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Meet Evelyn Cooke Director of Programs

Evelyn Cooke has been a volunteer at the Senior Center for approx. 1 1/2 years. Oh are they lucky to have this lady! Her spirits are always high and if you can catch up to her SAY HELLO! She is so willing to promote Pickleball and help you with any questions you may have. Evelyn will be at the Senior Center when all of the snowbirds are away so she will be the one you will want to contact to play INDOORS at the Senior Center in the winter months. Evelyn can make anyone smile and again...she talks while she walks! She is so energetic that you will be ready to play Pickleball just talking to her! Bendpickleballclub@hotmail.com is so fortunate to have Evelyn on the board!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Meet Lee Moore Treasurer of Bend Pickleball Club!

Meet Lee Moore our treasurer! Do you wonder where your $2.00 donation goes as you drop your money in the "can"? Your donation buys the bottled water, balls, nets, provided paddles, flyers and the blue tape that you see each day that you play! Lee loves to count pennies...just ask his wife! Lee LOVES Pickleball and is available to answer any question that you may have about Pickleball or about the money you are donating! Lee started playing Pickleball in Sept. 2010 and does more amazing shots than anyone I have seen! His feet are off the ground a good portion of the time! If you have not seen him play..go watch him! If you call out the name "Grasshopper" he will smile and look towards you TRY IT! Please introduce yourself to Lee! He loves to talk and encourage any new player!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Meet Irene Fraties Secretary of the Bend Pickleball Club

Irene did not get those beautiful arms from sitting behind a desk, however, she is a great secretary for our club. She is precise and articulate in everything she does! The bendpickleballclub@hotmail.com is so fortunate to have her behind a pen! Irene is a great teacher and many of you have been fortunate to have her as your instructor! When she tells or yells at you to get to that kitchen she means GET TO THE KITCHEN! If you have any questions about pickleball feel assured that you will be given the right answer! Please come up and introduce yourself to Irene! She always has a smile and is so full of information that she is willing to share! By the way....she is married to President AJ Fraties so you might want to give him a smile or nod just to make him feel good!

Quail Park is ready for players!

This is our first official public Pickleball court! It is in a beautiful small park on the NW side.
Directions: From Hwy 97 (3rd St) turn on Greenwood going West. Cross the river, which turns into Newport Ave, and travel West to Mt. Washington Dr. ; turn right onto Mt. Washington. Travel .6 miles, turn left on NW Regency St. and the park is on the left
Thank you Parks and Rec!