What Is the Difference Between Pickleball Singles & Doubles?

Pickleball has become increasingly popular over recent years.

For those who have yet to try it out, it may come as a surprise that there are actually two different versions of this sport; namely singles and doubles matches!

Although at first glance they appear similar, there are actually quite a few key differences between them. Which can make them more or less suitable for certain kinds of players, depending upon their skill level or personal preference, when playing this exciting game!

what is the difference between pickleball singles & doubles
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This blog will offer an overview of the difference between pickleball singles and doubles. So, you can decide which version suits your style best!

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The Major Differences Between Pickleball Singles & Doubles

Pickleball is a popular sport that has been gaining in popularity over the last few years. The game is similar to tennis, but with some distinct differences.

There are several major differences between pickleball singles and doubles that should be considered when deciding which type of game to play.

1. Court Size

The court size for pickleball singles is much smaller than for doubles. In singles, the court measures 20 feet by 44 feet. However, in doubles, it measures 44 feet by 88 feet – nearly twice as large! This means that players in a single match have less room to maneuver around on the court and must be more focused on their positioning at all times.

Court Size
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Furthermore, since there are fewer players on each side of a single match (one instead of two), it can lead to longer rallies due to fewer opponents blocking shots or hitting them away from each other quickly during fast-paced exchanges.

2. Scoring

Pickleball scoring singles differs significantly from scoring in doubles matches. In a single game, points are usually won after every two volleys or hits back and forth over the net. Whereas in double games, points are typically only scored when one team fails to return the ball correctly over the net or into an opponent’s side of the play area (the “kitchen”).

Ron Alvey – Shutterstock

Additionally, both sides typically receive one serve each before switching off during double matches. Only one player serves per point during single games—meaning service rotations tend not to happen very often if at all throughout an entire match!

3. Strategy

Strategy plays an even more important role while playing pickleball singles than it does while playing doubles matches. Since there is no partner helping out with defensive shots like they would do while playing double. So, individuals must become adept at reading their opponents’ movements and anticipating their next shot accurately if they hope to win any given point!

Additionally, having strong serves & returns become even more critical since you don’t have another teammate who could potentially bail you out. If your first shot goes awry…so you better make sure it counts every time!!

PickleBall Single & Double Matches offer different challenges & rewards for those looking to engage in this great sport, no matter what level they may find themselves currently at!

Advantages and Disadvantages of Both Versions

While pickleball can be played either in singles or doubles, each format has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. We have jotted down the pros and cons of both pickleball singles and doubles for your better knowledge.

Playing Singles:


  • Allows a player to practice and perfect their skills without relying on a partner.
  • More control over the game strategy, as the player, can make decisions regarding shots and movement without having to consult with anyone else.
  • Ability to compete against opponents of varying levels of skill in singles play.


  • Less social interaction as compared to doubles play, which is often more team-oriented.
  • It can be more physically demanding for one person, as they must cover the entire court alone.
  • Less room for error or mistakes when playing alone due to reliance on only one person’s skill level and ability.

Playing Doubles:


  • Allows for more strategy and communication between partners.
  • Can be easier to cover the court when playing with a partner
  • Increased opportunities for team play, socializing, and camaraderie.


  • Difficulty in finding an even match with many levels of skill among players.
  • Lack of consistency when switching partners or teams during play.
  • More difficult to defend the net from two opponents at once.

What game do you prefer? Doubles or Singles?

The debate between playing doubles or singles in pickleball is a long-standing one, with no clear consensus. The game people prefer largely depends on the individual’s preferences and playing style

Generally speaking, those who enjoy a more social atmosphere and fast-paced action tend to gravitate towards doubles, while those who prefer slower-paced games and solo play may lean towards singles.

Doubles can be an exciting way to play with friends or family members. As it fosters teamwork and communication between players. It also allows for greater court coverage since there are two players instead of one covering each side of the court.

playing doubles or singles in pickleball
halbergman – iStock

On the other hand, singles are often viewed as more of a mental challenge due to having only one player defending both sides of the court against their opponent’s shots. This requires quick thinking in order to anticipate where balls will go and how best to defend them.

Ultimately, whether someone prefers doubles or singles depends upon personal preference. Both pickleball singles and doubles have their own advantages and disadvantages. Singles allow for more individual growth and improved agility, while doubles offer more tactical options and improved communication/teamwork.

Ultimately, the decision of whether to play singles or doubles is up to the individual player or the team.

Also, read our other blog:


Can pickleball be played 1v1 and 2v2?

Yes, pickleball can be played on both 1v1 and 2v2. In a 1v1 game, each player uses one paddle to hit the ball back and forth across the net. In a 2v2 game, two players on each side use two paddles to hit the ball back, and forth across the net. The rules of pickleball are designed for both singles (1 vs 1) and doubles (2 vs 2) play.

What is a doubles game in pickleball?

A doubles game in pickleball is a game where two teams of two players compete against each other. Each team stands at opposite ends of the court, and they use paddles to hit a perforated plastic ball over the net. The first team to score 11 points wins the game.

What is the difference between pickleball doubles and singles?

The main differences between pickleball doubles and singles are the number of players, rules, court size, and ball type. In doubles, two players compete against another two players on a larger court with a slightly different ball type than used in singles. Additionally, there are some rule variations that apply specifically to doubles play.

Is it harder to play pickleball doubles or singles?

It depends on personal preference, as both can be challenging depending on the skill level of each player involved in the game. Generally speaking, playing in a team environment makes it easier for beginners to learn and get better at the game. Since they have someone to help them out with shots or strategy during rallies. However, experienced players may find that playing singles offer more opportunities for creativity when hitting shots due to having more space on the court compared to when playing in pairs.

How do I score in pickleball?

Scoring in pickleball works like this—each team serves twice before the point is over, and a team can win only by two points or more (called “win by two”). When serving, the first player serves from their right side to their opponent’s left side; then they switch sides with each serve until one team has reached 11 points or higher (with a margin of 2).

Well, It’s a Wrap!

Confidently, we were able to give in-depth details regarding the difference between pickleball singles and doubles.

When deciding whether to play singles or doubles, it is important to consider the differences between the two formats.

Singles require more focus on technique and often involve a more strategic approach. While doubles encourage good teamwork and communication between players. Depending on what type of experience you are looking for, either format can be enjoyable and rewarding.

Ultimately, pickleball provides an enjoyable experience no matter which style you choose—so grab some friends and get out there for some competitive fun!

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