How Do You Get In Shape For Pickleball?

how do you get in shape for pickleball

To be in shape for pickleball or any other sport, combining fitness with fun is crucial. But how do you get in shape for pickleball?

In this article, you’ll learn specialized fitness strategies that significantly enhance your gameplay and overall health.

Let’s dive in and transform your pickleball performance together!


Who Needs To Get In Shape For Pickleball?

Suppose you’re starting out or have been playing pickleball for some time. In that case, you know that getting in shape is crucial not only for enhancing your game but also for improving your overall health.

Players of all ages, from young adults to seniors, benefit from tailored workouts to enhance agility, speed, endurance, and flexibility(1).

These attributes are essential for competing effectively and enjoying the game safely.

Fitness sharpens your skills on the court and helps reduce the risk of injuries, allowing you to play more intensely and frequently.

A targeted fitness regimen supports a healthier lifestyle, boosts physical and mental well-being, and ensures that everyone, regardless of skill level, can enjoy the dynamic and inclusive sport of pickleball.

Where Can You Train for Pickleball Fitness?

Training for pickleball can be approached from various angles, each offering unique benefits to boost your game:

Home Workouts

You can easily shape up for pickleball without leaving your home.

Simple exercises and minimal equipment are all you need to build a routine that bolsters your strength, agility, and endurance.

Whether it’s bodyweight exercises or resistance band workouts, there are plenty of options to keep you fit right from your living room.

Local Gyms

For those who prefer a more structured environment, many gyms and community centres provide resources tailored explicitly for pickleball players(2).

These facilities often feature specialized training programs and workshops, complete with expert guidance and the necessary equipment to refine the skills crucial for excelling at pickleball.

Outdoor Spaces

Leveraging local parks and recreational areas is another fantastic way to enhance your fitness.

Outdoor training boosts your physical condition and helps you adapt to environments similar to outdoor pickleball courts, making your workouts both practical and enjoyable.

Our Specialized Online Workout Program

Suppose you aim to become faster and more fit, enhance your stamina, prevent injuries, improve balance, and boost your overall health and pickleball performance.

In that case, our specialized online workout program is perfect for you. Here’s what it offers:

  • For All Ages & Skill Levels: Tailored for everyone, from beginners to intermediate players looking to level up their game.
  •     Two Levels of Intensity: Start your training with Level 1 and advance to Level 2 as you build strength and confidence.
  • 12 Weeks of Structured Training: Organized into two 6-week levels, each phase is designed to progressively enhance your pickleball skills and physical fitness.
  • Comprehensive Workouts: Includes warm-ups, on-court movement, strength and core training, coordination drills, and mobility and stretch routines—all adjusted to be age-appropriate.
  • Detailed Training Plans: Follow our carefully crafted plans to steadily improve your game and fitness.
  • Detailed Training Plans: Follow our carefully crafted plans to steadily improve your game and fitness.

  • How to Start Getting in Shape for Pickleball?

    Cardiovascular Exercises

    To get your heart in game shape, focus on cardiovascular routines that enhance your stamina.

    Engage in activities like jogging, cycling, or brisk walking—aim for at least 30 minutes daily.

    This prepares you for the energy demands of prolonged pickleball matches and improves your overall heart health.

    Consistent cardio exercises ensure you have the endurance to stay sharp and reactive throughout every game.

    Strength Training

    Build the muscle power needed for those powerful pickleball shots by incorporating strength training into your fitness regimen.

    Exercises like squats and lunges strengthen your lower body. At the same time, push-ups and overhead presses develop upper body strength, which is crucial for those hard-to-reach shots.

    Integrating these exercises two to three times a week can significantly improve your game by enhancing your shot power and court mobility.

    Flexibility Training

    Don’t overlook the importance of flexibility in pickleball.

    Adding yoga or Pilates to your routine can significantly increase your range of motion, allowing for more fluid and efficient movements on the court.

    Aim for flexibility sessions after strength workouts to maximize muscle recovery and maintain optimal performance.

    Agility Drills

    Agility is essential for mastering the quick, precise movements needed in pickleball.

    Incorporate agility drills like cone drills, ladder exercises, and shadow playing into your training regimen.

    These activities improve your ability to move and change directions quickly, enhancing your overall court coverage.

    Regular practice of these drills can make a noticeable difference in your ability to respond to fast-paced game situations, giving you an edge over your competitors.

    Weekly Training Program

    Here’s a sample weekly training program that keeps each session to about 30 minutes, making your regimen manageable and sustainable, especially if you’re balancing other responsibilities like work, family, and social activities:

    MondayCardiovascular Exercise30 minsJogging or cycling at a moderate pace
    TuesdayStrength Training30 minsFocus on lower body: squats, lunges
    WednesdayFlexibility Training30 minsYoga or Pilates session focusing on flexibility
    ThursdayCardiovascular Exercise30 minsBrisk walking or interval training
    FridayStrength Training30 minsFocus on upper body: push-ups, overhead presses
    SaturdayAgility Drills30 minsCone drills, ladder exercises, shadow playing
    SundayRest DayActive recovery: light stretching, leisurely walk

    Nutritional Guidelines for Optimal Performance

    When gearing up for a pickleball game, selecting the right foods and considering supplements can significantly improve your performance.

    Load up on complex carbohydrates like whole grains and lean proteins such as chicken or fish, complemented by healthy fats from avocados or nuts.

    This combination fuels your body with a sustained release of energy, allowing you to maintain peak performance throughout the game.

    After you’ve given your all on the court, it’s crucial to refuel effectively. Within the first 30 minutes post-game, eat a protein-rich meal, like a turkey sandwich or a yogurt parfait, and include some complex carbs, like fruit or oatmeal.

    This helps replenish your energy reserves and supports muscle recovery, ensuring you’re ready for your next match.

    Don’t underestimate the power of staying hydrated. Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your games to keep your body temperature regulated and to replenish fluids lost through sweat.

    Proper hydration enhances your performance and speeds up your recovery process, helping you stay in top form both on and off the court.

    Tracking Your Progress

    To truly thrive in pickleball, consider the power of setting clear fitness goals.

    Are you looking to power through those long, challenging matches or speed up your court movements?

    Pinpointing these targets can seriously fuel your motivation and push your performance beyond its current bounds. And hey, isn’t it satisfying to check off those ambitious goals individually?

    Next up, let’s talk tech. Why not harness the potential of the latest apps and fitness gadgets? These aren’t just flashy accessories; they’re your personal trainers in digital form, tracking every stride on your fitness journey.

    They analyze your every move, offering insights that help fine-tune your training plan, ensuring every workout pushes you closer to your pickleball prowess.

    And remember, your experiences on the court are golden nuggets of feedback.

    Could you run another five sets after the last whistle? Movements felt sharper than ever?

    These are signs that your fitness routine is paying off, transforming your game into something even more impressive.

    Keep this feedback loop going; it’s a surefire way to keep your game and your spirits high.


    American Council on Exercise (ACE). “Fitness Program for Seniors.” ACE, 2020,

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans.” CDC, 2nd edition, 2018,

    Mayo Clinic Staff. “Exercise: 7 Benefits of Regular Physical Activity.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 2021,

    National Institute on Aging (NIA). “Exercise and Physical Activity: Your Everyday Guide from the National Institute on Aging.” National Institutes of Health, U.S.

    Department of Health and Human Services, 2021,

    Pickleball Canada. “The Importance of Fitness for Pickleball Players.” Pickleball Canada Organization, 2022,

    WebMD Editorial Contributors. “Agility Drills for Better Performance.” WebMD, LLC, 2020,

    World Health Organization (WHO). “Global Recommendations on Physical Activity for Health.” WHO, 2010,