The Passion of Pickleball

Note: All WP Saskatchewan Transcripts are edited for flow and readability.

(Jeff K.) “Something that we can do outside.” 
(Rick) “And once I tried it, I said, Oh, wow! This is a lot of fun.” 
(Bev) “Just get out of the house and do something different.” 
(Jane) “And so it’s just a whole variety of people.” 
(Jeff T.) “You know, the more people we can get out, the better.” 
(Tom) “Well, I think it’s the social aspect. 
(Noreen) “You meet a lot of people.” 
(Roger) “I got introduced to this sport by my wife. It’s something that we go out and do together.” 
(Gaylene) “If I could play five times a week, I would play five times a week.” 
(Carla) “I have no idea. You get addicted immediately.” 
(Rick) “Welcome! Welcome to pickleball. Come on in.” 

(Interviewer) If I’ve never heard of the sport, what is pickleball? 
(Rick) “It’s a combination of tennis and badminton and ping pong where you play on a court that is the same size as a badminton court. But the net is the same height approximately as a tennis court. It’s played with paddles that are made of carbon fiber, typically. Played with a plastic wiffle ball. And the idea is just to hit the ball over the net more times than your opponent.” 
(Jane) “Well, it’s a good combination of a social outing and good exercise.” 
(Deb) “Well, for me, one thing, it’s a great sport. You can play it in the summer and the winter; all season.” 
(Noreen) “First of all, it’s easy to learn. You can get on the court and you don’t have to run quite as much as tennis. And I just think it’s got a lot of sociability as well, and both indoors and outdoors.” 
(Jeff K.) “Well, its got a dumb name, so it’s probably easy to remember. But also it doesn’t take up much space and the rules are pretty light. As long as it’s not a super windy day, you can just play it outside anywhere. The courts are all free, so you can give it a try.” 
(Bev) “Well, when I first started playing pickleball, it was in a community center. So just in a gym with a number of different people. I would go Monday evenings once a week and play with a small group of people.” 
(Tom) “Well, I think it’s the social aspect as much as anything. The competitiveness. I like that. Able to play with people your own skill level. There’s so many skill levels from beginner up to basically close to professional, if not professional.” 
(Roger) “Sunshine and get a little bit exercise and, you know, have some fellowship and time with fellow players.” 
(Gaylene) “I started in 2015. I left my 40 years of employment. I heard about pickleball during the day. So I found it and just got thrown into the sport and loved it and have played ever since.” 
(Jeff K.) “But my mom’s not so good anymore. Bunch of botched shoulder surgeries and stuff.” 
(Tom) “It was pretty uneventful. I don’t remember.” 
(Bev) “I don’t remember exactly the first time we played pickleball.” 
(Roger) “Even though she tells me that if I’m the man that I’m supposed to have the power and the hitting, but I’m more of a control player.” 
(Jeff K.) “Play with whoever. Invite friends to play, I play with my mom. So I got something to do outside.” 
(Bev) “We really enjoy being together on the court and we’re going to be in our first tournament together in June.” 
(Rick) “And sometimes we call the centerline the divorce line because it can get a little bit tense out there when you’re playing with your spouse.” 
(Roger) “A few tense moments on the court, but we get through it. It’s just such a great sport.” 
(Tom) “Well, I think when you’re on the court, especially when you’re playing together, not always do you play together, you might be playing opposite. You just start interacting with each other between plays and during the play.” 
(Bev) “We’re both quite competitive!” 
(Rick) “We’ve traveled all over North America playing tournaments and met people from all over the United States and Canada. In fact, we were even down in Mexico in March and we played three times a week down in Mexico. So it’s being played absolutely everywhere.” 
(Bev) “I play quite a few tournaments, so I travel around, especially in the summertime.” 

(Jane) “I have friends from all over North America because I go south in the winter and play a lot down there. Well, I mean, I was in, I think, 12 tournaments down south last winter. And so it’s just a whole variety of people.” 
(Gaylene) “I love the sport. I love all the people. I like the competitive. I’m very competitive. So I like the option to be competitive or not.” 
(Bev) “Reconnecting with other pickleballers that come from all over the country to play in tournaments.” 
(Jeff K.) “It’s super easy to try. You don’t really need that much equipment. You don’t need to be very good at it. Court is really forgiving. My mom’s got two bum arms and she still plays pretty well.” 
(Rick) “Number one is it’s so much fun. And then they start to realize the health benefits from it after that. Then they start to realize the social piece of it. So the fun piece just builds into those other two.” 
(Jeff T.) “And, I haven’t really heard too many people say once they pick up a paddle and start playing, ‘No, this isn’t for me.’ They’re like, ‘I’ll see you tomorrow. What are you doing? Can we stick around another hour, or?’” 
(Noreen) “My family’s coming home this summer and I’m sure we’re all going to play from the age of 4 to 22 to 50.” 
(Bev) “I don’t know what I would do if I couldn’t play pickleball. I can’t imagine life without pickleball.” 
(Tom) “How long? As long as I’m able and maybe even after that a little.” 
(Gaylene) “So if I get 2 hours of straight pickleball like that impresses me. I’ve got my Fitbit on. I’m burning between 600 to 700 calories in 2 hours. That’s also a benefit. So I’m getting the cardio and the social, and spending my time doing something I love, so, It’s a win-win.” 
(Carla) “Normally it takes some time to get addicted, but you have such a good time. It’s also good for keeping score, like keeping your mind going, what the score is. You really have to be thinking. It’s good for people to keep their mind going, too.” 
(Roger) “Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose and we’re all competitive. But it’s just to get out and have fun, get some exercise, and you know, enjoy other people’s company.” 

This WP Saskatchewan story was filmed at Douglas Park, Queen City Pickleball Hub, and Mahon Courts in Regina, Saskatchewan featuring Rick Beattie at the QCPR and players: Carla Desnoyers; Noreen Hetherington; Jeff Krall; Jane Powell; Jeff Templeton; Tom Templeton; Bev Tollefson; Gaylene Weir; Roger Weir; and Deb Zick.

WP (Work & Play) Saskatchewan is a fund-raising production of the registered non-profit charitable Saskatchewan Safety Council (Charitable Registration Number: 11914-0382-RR). It serves the strategic priorities of the organization by creating community connections and provides a new platform upon which injury prevention messaging can be communicated.