Height of a Pickleball Net

If you’ve just started playing pickleball and are looking to take it more seriously, it’s important to know certain things about the sport, including things like court dimensions and the height of the pickleball net. 

It is also important to know how these dimensions in pickleball compare to those in tennis as they are similar sports that sometimes get confused with each other; we will attempt to differentiate them as much as possible.

How High Is A Pickleball Net?

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Just like the net in tennis, the height of the net in pickleball differs in the middle and at the sides. 

The pickleball net is 34 inches tall in the middle of the court and 36 inches tall at each sideline.

That’s why it is advantageous to hit the ball down the middle of the court sometimes because it can be hit lower.

Pickleball Net Height vs Tennis 

Regardless of the similarities between the sports, there is a considerable difference between the height of a tennis net and the height of a pickleball net. 

In pickleball, the net height is 36 inches at the posts and 34 inches high in the middle, while in tennis, the net is 42 inches high at the posts and drops half a foot in the middle for 36 inches. 

The height differences at the posts and in the middle are what bring about the sag that you may have noticed across different sports that use a net. In case you ever thought the net was sagging because it wasn’t installed properly; it is very intentional. 

This sag allows for different angles of play and coordinates with the types of spin and patterns of play. 

Since serves are done diagonally across the court, this also means you’ll get the most net leniency going right over the center of the net.

Pickleball Net Width

Pickleball Court

The pickleball net is 22 feet wide. It extends past each sideline by 1 foot. 

This is an important part of the game as the ball is not required to pass over the net. Players can hit the ball around the post, hence the need for extending the net on each sideline. 

Without this extension, players would just hit the ball around the post whenever they are in a difficult position. The net extending past the sideline makes this more difficult and more impressive when it happens; it’s a really difficult skill to pull off.

Pickleball Net Width vs Tennis

Tennis courts are significantly wider than pickleball courts and the width of the nets in each sport reflects that. 

In pickleball, the net width should be at least 21 feet & 9 inches extending from either post, sideline to sideline; While in tennis, the net is 42 feet wide for doubles and 33 feet wide for singles.

Pickleball Net: Indoor vs Outdoor

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The differences between indoor and outdoor pickleball are the weather, ball, and playing surface. 

There is wind when playing outside, so the balls designed for outdoor pickleball are heavier with harder plastic and smaller holes. 

Another reason why the balls are designed differently is because of the playing surface. When playing outside, the ball tends to bounce lower and move faster than when playing inside. 

As for the court dimensions themselves, it is the same when playing inside or outside. The pickleball net remains 36 inches at the posts and 34 inches at the center in both indoor and outdoor pickleball.

What Material Is A Pickleball Net Made Of?

Most portable net systems are made from some type of steel. Most times, they are coated with paint or a rust-resistant protectant. A net system that features these qualities will be more durable than one with a frame made of uncoated metal. 

Also, the best pickleball nets have easy net tension straps to keep the net taut, but still allow a bit of slack. 

Because of the difference in height between the end and the center of the net, a good pickleball net will include a center post or center base with a strap of sorts to adjust the net’s tension as needed.

Can You Use A Tennis Net For Pickleball?

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Yes, you can use a tennis net for pickleball with a little adjustment at the center of the tennis net and by lowering the net, if possible.

Tennis nets can be used for pickleball; using tennis nets for pickleball is actually more common than you might think. When being used for pickleball, tennis nets should be lowered to accommodate pickleball better. 

To do this, at the very least you should tighten the center strap to lower the middle point from 36 inches to 34 inches. If possible, lower the posts by 6 inches. Lowering the posts can be very challenging at times, especially when the posts were not designed to be lowered. 

Usually, the middle strap of the net is just tightened or shifted; this goes a long way to improving the pickleball experience when using a tennis net.

Related: How to play pickleball on a tennis court

Can You Use A Pickleball Net For Tennis?

Yes, you can, but I can’t think of a reason why you’d want to.

In truth, nothing is stopping you from playing tennis with a pickleball net; there is just no reason to do that. 

The lower net won’t make for a very fun and challenging game, in addition to the fact that tennis is the more popular sport, hence tennis courts and nets are easy to find. 

There is just no appeal for using a pickleball net to play tennis. That being said, if that is what you want to do, go for it.

Final Note

Although you can use a tennis net to play pickleball irrespective of the height difference, it’s advisable to use a pickleball net so that you can get the full experience of the sport that the creators intended.

Pickleball is becoming increasingly popular In America and around the world so getting it right before everyone else does will do you the world of good. 

I hope this article answered your questions about the height of a pickleball net and any other related questions you might have had. 

Thank you and cheers!!!

Last update on 2023-09-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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