Pickleball Doubles Rules Clarified: Rules You Must Know!

Do you want to play pickleball with your partner? If so, do you know the pickleball doubles rules of the game? Playing with friends or partners will be very fun if you can play competitively. In general, the rules for playing doubles are the same as the rules for singles with a few twists. Most of the rules in doubles play concern player position, and the server rules are a bit more confusing than in singles. We will give you an overview below.

Follow the Basic Rules For Doubles Pickleball

1. Pickleball Serving Rules Doubles

The one fundamental rule of pickleball is to make sure your feet are behind the baseline when serving. At the start of each new game, only one player from the first-serving team is allowed to serve and must surrender the ball to the opponent if a point is not scored. Only after that, the two players in each team will take turns serving.

The server team starts from the right and will alternate every time they get a point. This player will serve until he does not win a point. After that, his partner will also serve until he gets no points. Then the service will be given to the opposing team.

When the server scores points he will switch positions with his partner. Opposing teams are not allowed to switch sides.

The serving team aims to score points and win and the receiving team must force the serving team to make mistakes so they have a turn to serve and make points.

Each player has one chance to make a successful serve. One additional chance is if the player serves a “let” or service that makes the ball hit the net and is in the correct contact area.

In 2021 USAPA introduced a “drop serve” which means that in addition to the pickleball doubles serving rules above, players are allowed to bounce the ball to the ground before hitting it to serve.

pickleball double

Read more: “7 Must-Know Pickleball Serving Rules 2023 To Master Your Game”

2. Position Rules

This positional shift rule also looks odd but is important in the game of pickleball. So, if you play doubles and win a rally, your teams will have to switch positions and face different opponents. The receiving team is not allowed to switch positions or remain in their original position.

The player to the right of the serving team must direct the ball diagonally to the opposing right team. When the service player or team gets a point, the serving player’s position will switch with the same serving player. When the player makes a service fault, one more service opportunity will be given to his partner. If the partner fails, then the serve moves to the opponent’s side.

3 Score Number

The rules of pickleball doubles for mentioning the score are divided into 3 parts in the format server score-recipient score-server number. If you have trouble understanding, try to see the explanation below

Suppose the server has scored 5 points, the receiver has 3 points, and the second server of the team is serving, then the score for those points will be declared 5-3-2


4. Pickleball Underhand Serve

The service should be shot under the hand or in other words the contact of the ball with the paddle cannot be higher than the waist. The arms should move in an upward arc and the head of the paddle should be under the wrist when shooting the pickleball. In addition, the server must have a diagonal path and land between the NVZ and the baseline of the service court.

5. Double Bounce Rule

This rule states that the ball must bounce once in the area between the NVZ and the opponent’s baseline. The service recipient must also reflect the ball to the server before being hit again by the server. This rule is called the double bounce rule in pickleball.

After that, the ball must be shot in a volley or bounce once. More than once will be considered a violation. The rule of entering the kitchen before the ball bounces in pickleball singles is also applied in doubles. The rules regarding the kitchen are the same, we may not return the ball in the kitchen unless it bounces. The two-bounce rule has the goal of reducing the advantages of serves and volleys and making rallies longer.

6. Double Match Scoring

The scoring rules in doubles pickleball are the same. In one game look for the best of 3 sets. One set has a winning limit of 11 points. And to win a set a team must have a difference of 2 points. If the difference in points remains 1 then the match will continue until one team reaches a difference of 2 points.

7. Usage of Wristbands

The next unique rule in the game of doubles is wearing colorful wristbands. The use of this wristband is intended to make it easy to identify players both the referee and the spectators.

It aims to help people who are elderly also know which players are on duty. It is recommended that these wristbands come in different colors between players and you can also buy them at online stores.

wristbands for pickleball

8. Faults

Faults to watch out for:

1. The ball must not hit the net

2. Shooting out of bounds.

3. Bounces the ball twice on their own side of play.

4. Doing a volley shot in the kitchen or NVZ

Let’s Start Playing With Partners Immediately!

Playing double pickleball will be more fun. In addition to more intense games, you can also train your teamwork and cohesiveness with your partners. But there are some special pickleball rules and strategy for doubles. Playing doubles can improve cooperation and train coordination within a team. If you move together as a team, you can hinder the other’s play and pressure their space to return the ball. So, after reading the article above, are you ready to play doubles with your partner?

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