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Are you wondering what the difference is between pickleball courts and badminton courts? Well, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we will discuss the key differences and similarities between pickleball and badminton courts and whether you can use them interchangeably.
Badminton and pickleball are both racquet/paddle sports with similarly sized courts, but there are a few significant differences between the two. While they are both popular sports that are enjoyed by people all across the globe, pickleball is the much newer of the two and is growing at an incredibly fast pace.
Badminton made its appearance in the Olympics in 1992, and although pickleball hasn’t made it to the Olympic stage yet, it seems to be well on its way! Pickleball is being played in three professional leagues and is quickly growing in international popularity. It’s said that pickleball is a combination of tennis, badminton, and table tennis – all of which are Olympic sports. So the future is looking bright for the sport of pickleball!
Below, we will explain the differences between pickleball and badminton courts.
Pickleball Courts Vs. Badminton Courts
There are a few key differences between pickleball and badminton. Pickleball uses paddles to hit a plastic pickleball over the net, while in badminton, rackets are used to hit the shuttlecock (a feathered projectile) over a taller net.
In both sports, you’re swinging a racket or paddle at an object with a funny name. These are both great sports, but despite their similarities, there are also some huge differences. Let’s get into them!
Size Of The Courts
Although badminton and pickleball courts have many similarities regarding the court dimensions, they are far from the same.
Badminton Court Size
A standard badminton court is 44 feet long and 20 feet wide for doubles, and 44 feet long and 17 feet wide for singles gameplay.
Pickleball Court Size
A pickleball court happens to be similar in size to a doubles badminton court. The standard pickleball court measures 44 feet long and 20 feet wide; this includes the boundary lines.
Badminton Court Layout
Badminton courts have two playing areas on either side of the net that are vertically divided down the middle to distinguish the service areas.
For doubles, there is a shorter back service line, which means that serves have to land 2.5 feet closer in from the back line to be counted in bounds. Essentially, the inbound serving area in a doubles game is shorter but wider.
Badminton also has a non-volley zone that measures 6.5 feet from the center line (the net) on both sides.
Pickleball Court Layout
Pickleball courts have a 7-foot non-volley zone that extends to both sides from the center line beneath the net. This non-volley zone is the area that is referred to as the kitchen.
Measuring from the kitchen line, there are 15 feet to the baseline at the back of the court. A center line separates this area into two 10-foot wide halves. The center line is used to distinguish the right and left service areas.
Badminton Net Dimensions
A badminton net spans the entire 20-foot width of the court, with the supporting poles placed over the doubles sidelines (even when singles games are played). Badminton nets have a width of 2.5 feet and are suspended above the ground at the height of 5 feet and 1 inch at the edges and 5 feet at the center.
Pickleball Net Dimensions
A standard pickleball court has a net that spans the entire 20-foot width of the court. It measures 36 inches high at the sidelines and 34 inches high in the middle. A pickleball net nearly touches the ground with its bottom edge, similar to a tennis net.
Can You Play Pickleball On a Badminton Court?
While the overall dimensions of a pickleball court and a badminton court are the same, they are not quite interchangeable. Sure, both courts are 20 feet by 44 feet. But the service lines, non-volley zones, and net heights are quite a bit different. The front serve line for badminton is 6.5 feet from the center of the net, while the kitchen lines for pickleball are 7 feet from the center of the net.
A proper game of pickleball can’t be played on a badminton court as is. However, as long as the court surface is hard enough, and you can get the net low enough, a badminton court can be used for a casual pickleball game or practice. If you have a portable pickleball net and a way of marking the non-volley lines, it’ll be closer to what you want for a temporary pickleball court.
The best temporary pickleball courts are typically set up on tennis courts, but they can be set up on badminton courts too.
If you have an old badminton court with a good surface that is no longer in use, it can be turned into a pickleball court with the right line and net modifications.