Jonny Pickleball, Professional Pickleball Player and Certified Instructor at The Pickleball Academy of Southwest Florida, demonstrating proper fundamentals for dinking.
Having sound and proper fundamentals in the execution of the dink, directly affects the confidence, (or lack) of confidence, in your success when positioned at the seven-foot line.
So, let’s start by stealing a phrase from tennis referred to as the ready position. In pickleball, I refer to it as the pre and the post dink positions.
I often see beginner and even veteran intermediate players not keeping themselves in a proper stance/ready position, both before and after executing a dink.
Many players tend to stand with their feet too close together, which creates a body balance which is upright or (at attention) as I refer to it.
Standing straight up tends to make us top heavy and off-balance. It also encourages us to bend from the back instead of using our legs to get down to the level of a low bouncing ball.
The fundamentals of a proper ready position when standing at the no volley zone/kitchen line should include the following:
- You should have your feet spaced with your weight, (upper/lower) body balance equally distributed.
- Your knees should be slightly bent, you should be on your toes and not flat-footed.
- Your head and shoulders should be held up with proper posture.
- Your paddle should be about chest high, to be ready for a possible volley or spike put-away shot.
- As you execute a dink, make sure you maintain proper posture and bend with your legs, not with your back.
So, make yourself a “Ready Freddy!”
Applying these fundamentals to your position at the NVZ/kitchen line will improve your ability to execute confident and effective dinks, which will win you more points!