Pickleball is still gaining momentum in the United States and abroad, which means more and more courts will start popping up. However, you might still find yourself in a situation where the best you have is a badminton court or a tennis court. So, can you use a badminton net when playing pickleball?
Pickleball, like tennis, uses a short net. On the other hand, badminton uses a high net which encourages players to loft the shuttlecock (ball). So, if you want to use a badminton net to play pickleball, you would have to lower it significantly. Remember, the pickleball net is even shorter than a tennis net.
I have found myself in a few situations where I needed to play pickleball but did not have the correct court; instead, I had to improvise. So, after discussing the differences between a pickleball and a badminton net, I want to give you a few tips on making it work just in case you have no other options. Let’s jump into it.
Pickleball Net VS Badminton Net: Dimensions
The most significant difference between a pickleball net and a badminton one is the distance from the ground to the top of the net. If you remove the stands, the differences become less noticeable. With that out of the way, let’s talk about both Nets to give you a better idea.
What Size Is A Pickleball Net?
Please note that the dimensions mentioned in this article are as per the USPA. If you live in another country or play casual pickleball, these dimensions might differ, although it is rare as most pickleball courts follow the same rules.
- The width of a pickleball court is 20ft. The net needs to span the entirety of that width. So, most nets are approximately 22 feet wide, so there is little margin for error.
- The height from the floor to the top of the net should be 36 inches at the sides of the net. Remember, there is leniency when it comes to the height in the center. However, the net should not dip lower than 34 inches at the center.
The reason for the leniency is that when you stretch the net anywhere around 20 feet, the center will naturally dip. The only way to prevent a dip would be to tie the net too tight, possibly damaging it.
What Size Is A Badminton Net?
Although a badminton net is not the same as a pickleball net, the courts are almost identical. The standard width of a doubles badminton court is 20 feet; therefore, the net will be around that width.
As per the Olympics regulations, a badminton net should be 61 inches at the sides. Again, the net will naturally dip near the center. So, the rules state that the net can be 59.8 inches in the middle.
How To Use A Badminton Net For Pickleball
Not all badminton nets are the same. I find that there is a significant difference between outdoor and indoor courts. Because of this, there are various ways that you can customize a badminton net to better suit pickleball. Let’s get into it:
- In some cases, you want to see if you can flip the net over entirely. This might cause an issue where you have two extended poles above the net; however, it is essential to remember that you are improvising.
- If the poles for the net are solid, you want to see if you can untie the net and lower it. Suppose you can get the net’s top to be 34 inches tall; you are on the right track. However, if it is slightly lower, that is still better than being too high, especially as high as regulation badminton nets.
Please remember that if you are using a public court, it is always best to get permission before making adjustments to the nets or the poles they are attached to.
Should You Use A Badminton Net For Pickleball?
If you plan to take pickleball seriously, you should always use the proper equipment. However, if you cannot always access an appropriate court for pickleball, you should always improvise, including using a badminton net. With that said, there are risks involved. These include:
- It is easy to get used to using improvised equipment.
- When you play on a proper court, regulation equipment might throw you off your game if you are used to non-regulation equipment.
- Not using the right equipment might make pickleball a little less enjoyable.
Any pickleball court will have a good net, but I understand that not everybody has access to a good court. If you have to, you can still get your practice in by using a badminton net and court. I must emphasize that you should seek a proper pickleball court now and then so you don’t get too used to a badminton court.
Where To Buy A Pickleball Net
Even though pickleball is the fastest growing sport in the United States of America, not every sports store stocks the appropriate equipment. You should not worry too much as you can buy everything you need online.
With your own pickleball net, you can go to your nearest tennis court with some tape and make an improvised pickleball court.
To make things a little bit easier for you, I have selected some of the best deals for great pickleball nets from Amazon:
The Falconz net is perfect. Not only is it regulation size but it is also portable and easy to carry around.
Here are a few things I love about this net:
- The carry bag is included.
- At 22 feet wide, it covers the whole court with some room for error.
- You do not need any tools for assembling the net.
- The steel bottom makes the net stable.
One of the best deals on Amazon is for this all-inclusive set. You get a complete pickleball racket set, a few balls, and the net with it. Basically, you have everything you need to get started, or it gives you a few spare pieces of equipment for those times when you want to get your friends involved.
Here are a few things I love about this net:
- The package gives you everything you need to get started.
- The net is fully portable.
- With a sturdy frame, you have less to worry about.
- Carry bags for all the equipment are included.
Is using a badminton net for pickleball a good idea? That is a tricky question to answer. If you cannot get access to a full pickleball court, get yourself some tape, buy a net, and that way, you can set up wherever you have to.