Funny name, serious game for Pickleball players - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Funny name, serious game for Pickleball players

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB)-- Pickleball is the fastest growing sport in America, attracting players of all ages. The league at EP Tom Sawyer State Park is attracting crowds of players every week.

Pickleball players describe the game as part ping-pong, part tennis, part badminton.

"After they get over the humor of the name I tell them it's kind of like ping-pong on steroids," said player Paul Cullen.

It might have a silly name but players are serious about this game.

"We have one lady here that almost never hits the ball with her feet on the floor," said Cullen.

Pickleball is the fastest growing sport in America and at EP Tom Sawyer State Park there's nothing sour about this sweet game.

"I just picked it up, loved it, can't stop. It's so much fun," said Brenda Chamberlain.

The league started back in the 1980s and at times struggled to get enough players for a game. But in recent years its numbers have grown.

"The lady said have you considered pickleball and I said I've never even heard of it," said Cullen.

The rules are similar to tennis but the courts are smaller. The low impact sport attracts lifelong tennis and racquetball players.

"It's good exercise, but it's not going to wear you out," said Cullen.

Many of the players who show up every week are in their golden years, like Rasma Olins. She's nearing 90 years-old and took up the game just a few years ago.

"I love it," said Olins.

She's on the court twice a week and doesn't see herself putting down the paddle anytime soon.

"If you don't move, you can't move so better be active," said Olins.

Brenda Chamberlain might be the junior member of this league and loves competing with Olins. 

"I love playing with her because I only hope I could play if I was 89," said Chamberlain.

She says she gets just as much out of the game. In fact, she says speed and agility aren't necessarily what wins the point.

"The people that are smart that play Pickleball are the best Pickleball players," said Chamberlain.

Pickleball games are played all over the Kentuckiana area. It's played Tuesdays and Thursdays at EP Tom Sawyer State Park and is $3 a person.

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