Pickleball Doubles Rules – (Scoring & Playing Strategy)

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Most of the players find pickleball doubles more interesting than singles. Playing pickleball as doubles also fascinates me as there is more social interaction and entertainment. The beginners and those players who just played pickleball as singles in the past found curious to learn pickleball doubles rules and strategies. Pickleball doubles rules are little bit different than singles.

Not only playing doubles pickleball is interesting but also coaching. You as a team will find this article advantageous. I will tell you how the scoring system works in doubles and all the rules and strategies that you need to play the game.

Pickleball doubles rules

How to play Pickleball Doubles?

Are you going to play pickleball with your team? You and your partner must warm up yourself for this.

As you know communication and understandings matters a lot, you both can prepare yourself for non-verbal communication too. It will definitely help you to personalize your secrets.

For playing doubles, choose the team that matches your skill level. Learn the rules, strategies, scoring and tips to make it better.

One should master the dink shots, and drop shots to win the doubles play. You must have grip on your paddle to play well.

Pickleball Doubles Rules

We will discuss some basic rules of pickleball doubles that are mandatory to learn. The team should have these rules at their fingertips, as these are the basics.

  • When a team that serves a ball gets a point the serving member will move to the other court’s end. This movement is mandatory.
  • Players of both the teams after playing the volley bound not to step in the non-volley zone/ the kitchen.
  • To double bounce shot, this rule makes a player compel to hit first stroke without letting the ball bounce.
  • After serve of the ball, the receiving team bounds to respond/hit the ball (back) after a bounce, otherwise, it will consider foul.
  • It is a mutual consent of both the teams apropos jumping across non-volley line/ the kitchen, in case, they do not touch any portion of the said line. Keep in mind that this decision should finalize before start of the game mutually.

Pickleball Doubles Serving Rules

As you are already familiar with the basic differences between single and doubles, so let’s move towards serving in doubles.

The toss may decide between two teams and one can select for serving.

In pickleball, whether you are playing as singles or doubles, the serving team will be able to score points only.

Now the matter to ponder is how will the player be selected for serving first?

When I was learning pickleball doubles rules, this question was aroused in my mind too as the players seem to change their positions among team members. My respectable coach said, remember the person on the right side of the court will always serve the ball first, and who is serving will remain serving until he makes a fault.

serving in doubles

Be careful, you know only one serve is permitted for each player. When your ball hit the net or makes any other fault the serve will shift to the second player.

If the second player loses the serve the whole team will get out of the serves. This situation knows as “side out”. Now, the next turn will be for the opponent team.

Pickleball Doubles Strategy (Pickleball Doubles Scoring)

Accessing up scoring system/ strategy is tricky in pickleball. I have written a separate comprehensive article on it for your convenience.

Let’s talk about scoring numbers working in doubles briefly.

As you know, there are three digits or integers that represent the score. In doubles, you may find it a little bit tricky as there are four players on the whole.

                                   5 – 4 -1

In doubles pickleball, the first number refers to the present serving team score. It will always represent the present serving team’s score.

If the serving team gets side out, the first digit is for the next serving team’s score. The second integer symbolizes the other team’s score, you can say receiving team’s score.

The last factor or integer will denote the server of the serving team. It can be 1 or 2, as there are only two players in each team.

Pickleball 3 digits scoring for doubles

I already discus above how the first and second server is decided. Let me clear you in one sentence, the first server plays from the right side of the court and the second from the left side of the court. That’s all about the Pickleball strategy for doubles!

Tips and Tricks to Play Pickleball Doubles

From the above discussion, you might be thinking when you lose the toss you lose the whole game.

Nothing is like that guy, don’t let yourself be overwhelmed by the loss of toss.

You still can win the game by concentration, non-verbal communication, and strict attention.

You know what one of my brilliant partners said, it’s just about your perception of how you are perceiving your loss and win. Never give up if you lose the toss.

Let’s guide you about the tips for having a grip on winning:

  • Get to the non-volley zone as soon as possible. If you are serving the team you will earn more points and if you are receiving the team you can make it hard for the serving team to score.
  • To pressurize your opponent, you must have a grip on drop shots.
  • Try to strike the shots at the opponent’s feet.
  • You should serve consistent and deep. If you lose the rally, it will consider as fault and you will lose the serve.
  • You must return the serve deep and consistent. When you return the serve, try to reach near the net to give your opponent tough time.
  • Be attentive and patient during the play. Observe the opponent’s weakness and select the shots like this.
  • Focus on your opponent’s shot selection and learn his expertise and weaknesses as soon as the game proceeds.

Master the backhand shots and give tough time to opponent team. Remember and master these tips and strategies to make the game interesting.

While playing the game be patient and relax. Anyone has to lose the game, if you’re the one doesn’t get frustrated it’s a part of the game. Play for fun and relax your body and mind.

How Communication Matters Among Players in a Team?

Playing as doubles require mutual collaboration, otherwise, you will lose. I myself was an eye-witness to point failure owing to a lack of mutual understanding and coordination.

Ostensibly, it happens when player of a team hit the ball, whereupon, the respondent team players had hit the ball simultaneously without making a call for the shot and the ball was dropped into their own court.

So, it is highly recommended that players should have mutual coordination to avoid such irreparable mistakes.

Mutual understanding matters not only for winning the game but also to enjoy the game.

 When you are not cooperative or your partner is not honest with you both of you cannot even enjoy the play. Choose your partner wisely and don’t blame each other for losing the game.

Missteps Taken by Beginners in Pickleball Doubles

We always learn by mistakes. Whenever you make mistake don’t be upset learn from it.

I remember when I was a beginner, I was serving as a second server in my team, the play was almost at the ending stage and I got the ball hit into the net.

It was a heartbreaking situation and receiving team won the game.

From that day, I learned to never hit the ball into the kitchen. The novice players take some missteps like this. To avoid them let’s discuss:

  • They may hit the ball twice that is against the rule.
  • Bad communication with a partner may lead to hitting the ball by both teammates at the same time.
  • As I discussed in my own experience, the ball strike into the net often considers a fault.
  • Miss the double bounce rule and hit the ball before it bounced.

These are the common mistakes the players make during playing doubles. Be attentive and focus on these missteps so that you will be careful in future.

Final Thoughts on Doubles Pickleball Rules

Plays based on teams are always amusing and productive. I never enjoy the individual play. Pickleball is one of the best recreational games that can be played individually or on a team, but you will get amused in doubles more.

Learning pickleball doubles rules is easy and entertaining as well, as you all find group study more productive than individual cramming. Just be patient and work in a team to play well. The communication and understanding between players of each team is best way of proceeding.

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