Pickleball Rises in Popularity in Westchester

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Curious about pickleball, one of the fastest growing sports in the country? Here’s where players in Westchester are picking up their paddles.

Pickleball isn’t just a game we played during gym class in middle school. The sport is spreading like wildfire all over the country and right here in Westchester. It’s a great way to get your exercise in and socialize with your friends.

Pickleball has been taking the fitness industry by storm. The sport has surged in popularity in recent years among various generations as it’s easier on the joints than other racket sports of the like (tennis), and a court can be created relatively easily — what’s necessary is a ground-level net for a 20’ x 44’ court, paddles, and a modified whiffle ball.

Statistics prove the sport’s phenomenon as of late: in 2020, 4.2 million people played pickleball in the U.S., up from 3.46 million in 2019, according to the Sports & Fitness Industry Association’s (SFIA) 2021 Topline Participation Report, released in February 2021. Now, 4.8 million people are reportedly trying their hand at the country’s fastest growing sport.

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Locations in Westchester to pick up a paddle include Ardsley’s House of Sports, Mohegan Lake’s Granite Knolls Sports & Recreation (for outdoor play), Solaris Sports Club in Yorktown Heights, and Lifetime, which has locations in Chappaqua and Harrison.

House of Sports, Lifetime, and Solaris are all popular for their indoor play that’s climate controlled, with the national fitness center boasting an exceptionally extensive array of programs: introductory classes, lessons, drills, social leagues, and competitive tournaments, offering pickleball as part of its monthly membership (other amenities at the gym, like tennis court access, require an additional membership).

If you’re not a member, but still want to pick up a paddle, one-day membership allows access to these courts. Open-play often allows for friendly competition with those of all ages. Veterans of the game and total newbies can enjoy this social aerobic activity.

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