Pickleball is a fast-paced paddle sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton, and table tennis. Played on a compact court with a low net, players use solid paddles to hit a perforated plastic ball. The game’s popularity has grown exponentially in recent years due to its accessibility for people of all ages and skill levels. Simple rules and its friendly atmosphere make Pickleball a favorite in community centers, schools, and retirement communities worldwide.
Pickleball launched at the Boulder JCC with three indoor courts last July, since then over 600 people have learned to play, improved their skills, and enjoyed some friendly competition in the Boulder area. Last fall the Boulder JCC introduced lessons and clinics with a Pickleball Professional, Kathy Mihelic. We had some time with Kathy during her busy teaching schedule to ask her a few questions.
How long have you lived in Boulder?
My husband, Dan, and I met in our freshman dorm as students at C.U. in 1985. We actually raised our family in Wichita, KS and then moved back to the Boulder area in 2015. We love being back in Colorado!
What do you love the most about teaching at the Boulder JCC?
I have met so many great people teaching Pickleball at Boulder JCC. Not only is it a great gym with an amazing view of the flatirons, but the support of Maya (Community and Family Engagement Coordinator) and the team have been so helpful in communicating with students, getting classes online, marketing the program, and making sure everything runs smoothly.
Do you have any tips for folks wanting to take up Pickleball?
Get signed up for a beginner (Learn to Play) class. It’s a great introduction to the game. Paddles are provided for use during the lesson. All you need to do is wear sneakers and show up ready to learn and have fun.
What is a misconception people have about Pickleball?
A lot of people think you have to have a background in sports to be good at Pickleball. I have taught a lot of people who have been surprised at how well they have done or how much they have enjoyed it with little or no experience in sports. I used to be a tennis pro and have found that teaching Pickleball is so much more fun because it is very social. I’ve seen people have success more quickly. Pickleball is great for all ages and genders. Men, women, children, and grandchildren can all play and enjoy it together.
If you are interested in learning more about Pickleball check out the Boulder JCC website. All Fall options for Pickleball lessons, clinics and open play are now available for registration.
All Boulder JCC programs are open to everyone of all or no religious affiliation. You do not need to be Jewish to participate. There is also no membership requirement to participate in Boulder JCC programs. Advance registration is always recommended for programs at the Boulder JCC. Using a computer rather than your mobile device will make the registration process easier for you. For registration support call 303-998-1900 or contact Acy Jackson firstname.lastname@example.org.