What Is The Double Bounce Rule In Pickleball?

  • Date: January 20, 2023
  • Time to read: 4 min.

Welcome to Pickleball 101, everyone! Today, we’re going to be talking about the double bounce rule. It’s one of the most important rules in pickleball and can make or break a game. For those of you new to the sport, this is an essential rule to understand if you want to play competitively. Let’s dive right in and take a look at what this fundamental rule means for the game of pickleball.

The Double Bounce Rule – Explained!

The double bounce rule states that both players must hit the ball twice before it goes over the net. This means that when a player serves, they must hit the serve twice before it can go over the net and be considered “in bounds.” If they miss their second hit, then it will be considered out of bounds, and their opponent will get the point.

Similarly, when returning shots, players must also hit the ball twice before it goes over the net. This means that if you are returning a shot from your opponent but fail to make contact with it on your second swing—for example, if you accidentally let it drop after hitting it once—then you will lose a point as well.

The double bounce rule is essential for maintaining fair play in pickleball as it prevents players from using powerful serves or returns that would otherwise give them an unfair advantage over their opponents. Additionally, players must always be aware of how many times they have hit the ball and not assume that each shot counts as just one hit; this helps ensure that neither player has an advantage due to familiarity with the rules or lack thereof.

Who invented the rule?

Pickleball was invented in 1965 by two fathers, Joe Pritchard and Bill Bell when they wanted to entertain their children on warm summer days. Many of the original rules were defined precisely by them to make the game fun yet fair for the whole family – however, the source of the double bounce rule remains a mystery! We can only speculate as to whether this was part of the initial setup or if it came later on. Either way, it’s still an essential part of pickleball today!

Example of double bounce for doubles

Before any game of pickleball begins, teams decide who serves first by flipping a coin. In this example, Team B has been chosen to serve. All players gather around the court and take their positions, the server standing behind the right baseline on his side of the court. As per the double-bounce rule, he announces “0-0-2” before serving – counting down ‘3-2-1’ with his last call, signaling to let go of the ball. He serves underhand, angling it into his opponent’s court, allowing it to bounce once before Team A’s receiving player hits it back with aggressive force. This sudden change in speed and direction from the receiver causes the server to step away from the baseline and adjust its strategy accordingly.

Team B’s receiver hits the ball back over the net, and it bounces once again before being caught by Team A’s returning player, who then sends it back to Team B. As per the double-bounce rule, both teams must hit the ball twice before it can go over the net – a point is only scored when either team fails to make contact on their second swing.

The double bounce rule is an essential part of pickleball that ensures fair play between all competitors of any skill level. By understanding how this rule works and implementing it into your game plan, you will be sure to have a thrilling match every time you step onto the court!

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have to let the ball bounce in pickleball?

A common misunderstanding regarding pickleball is whether or not you have to let the ball bounce. The answer to this question is yes. You do need to let the ball bounce at least once before your team can hit it back over the net. This rule generally applies to both singles and doubles games. Following these regulations helps make pickleball a fun and fair game for everyone involved!

Are the Double Bounce and Two-Bounce Rule the same?

When it comes to pickleball, the double-bounce rule and the two-bounce rule are exactly the same! In 2018, the official pickleball game rule book changed the terminology for this rule, but that doesn’t change the fact that both terms refer to the same exact thing. Friendly reminder: whether you call it double bounce or two-bounce, at least you know that everyone is talking about the same thing!


To sum up, understanding and adhering to the double bounce rule is key for anyone who wants to compete in pickleball tournaments or simply enjoy playing casually with friends. Knowing when you need to hit a shot twice is essential for fair play and helping maintain balance between competitors; remember, every time someone fails to make contact with their second swing they’ll lose a point! Now that you know all about this important rule of pickleball, get out there and become an expert player! You got this!

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