PICKLEBALL – A new ball game from the US that is catching on fast, being a cross between tennis, badminton and table tennis.
Cobham Village Hall, Tuesdays and Fridays 2-4 p.m. Sessions cost £5, all equipment provided
Another Group is panning to start in January at the Excel Leisure Centre for Tuesday or Thursday afternoon, starting mid-Jan. Cost £5 per member and session.
For more information, members are asked to consult the most recent Newsletter. Otherwise please contact the Group Co-ordinator on 01932 222963 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The Cobbham Leader says:
"After reading an article in Third Age Matters (No 29 Winter 2017) I was inspired to set up a Table Tennis group in Cobham. However storage of the tables quickly became the key issue.
Fortunately, in the next issue of TAM (No 30 February 2018) there was an article on “Pickleball” with the title “Hybrid game is catching on”. Originating in the USA, the sport is the fastest growing in that country. It is described as a cross between Tennis, Badminton and Table Tennis and likened to playing Table Tennis whist standing on the table! It is usually played on a badminton court. It has the key advantages that storage is not an issue and that it is not expensive to buy a complete starter kit (£250). I immediately decided to form a group and give it priority over table tennis.
I found the original twelve members of the group by a single post on the social network Nextdoor and imposed the condition that membership of Elmbridge U3A was mandatory. This was not an issue.
So we started on March 9th 2018 at Cobham Village Hall, hiring a professional coach for the first two hour session, by the end of which it was self-evident we had a hit. Soon after taking over, I extended the group to include Tuesday afternoon sessions and these have proved popular, with many of us playing twice a week. I am told that Pickleball is now the fastest growing sport in the UK as well, and there are at least five other clubs within a short drive of Cobham.
We have employed a professional coach to help us, and it is very noticeable how much the group has improved in just six months. We are now planning to run a members’ tournament and to invite local clubs for friendly matches.
This sport is ideal for mobile seniors, especially those who have played racquet sports in the past as they pick up the game very quickly. It is fast and furious with lots of volleys and much of the action close to the net. But more than anything else IT IS GREAT FUN! Members pay only £5 for each session and need to be members of Elmbridge U3A."