Thursday, 06 July 2017 13:33

Pickleball comes to the T.J. Davis

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A demonstrator wearing a pickleball shirt. A demonstrator wearing a pickleball shirt.

Pickleball may be best described as the offspring of tennis and ping-pong, a game played on a small court with a low net, wiffle balls and oversized paddles.

The game was introduced today at T.J. Davis Recreation Center as another offering of the city’s recreation department and demonstrated by members of the Warrenton Pickleball Club of the Two Lakes.

The club seeks to expand pickleball opportunities across the Roanoke Valley and T.J. Davis plans to have sessions each Thursday from 10 a.m. to noon throughout July, said Koy Worrell, the center’s supervisor.

(For more information call Worrell at 252-533-2847)

A regulation tennis court can be divided into four pickleball courts, said Stan Mead, one of the enthusiasts who came to T.J. Davis today. “It allows people of different skill levels to play in a family atmosphere.”

Mead finds it addicting. “We play every single day, twice a day. It’s good for eye-hand coordination and balance. It’s really good for you.”

Mead has seen people as young as 9 to as old as 88 playing competitively.

A player for three years now, he said, “I’m in better shape than I was 10, 20, 30 years ago.”

Stan Brothers is a designated ambassador for the sport through the USA Pickleball Association.Brothers got into the sport when he was visiting Hilton Head and has been playing for six years. “The more I played, the more exercise I got, the more weight I lost.”

There is an active group of 18 to 20 playing in Warrenton and the group has established the game in Emporia.

John Burd came to learn about the game after learning the rec center was offering it. “I watched the video. I’ve never played it.”

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