Pickleball rules doubles

October 13, 2022
Read Time:12 Minute, 21 Second

People always like multiplayer-capable games because they allow them to have fun with their friends and family, which helps them to develop those relationships. 

And Pickleball is one of that games!

A lot of unexpected things can happen when you play the game of pickleball

Every time you go to sleep and wake up, this game has something fresh to offer you, much like the pickleball rules doubles. 

Pickleball is becoming more popular outside the United States thanks to various domestic and international competitions. In the blink of an eye, it is growing everywhere.

If you’re unfamiliar with pickleball, this blog is for you. Concise explanation of the rules before you reach the court.

The rules of pickleball doubles are detailed below so you can take your team to a stunning victory. 

Here, I’ll teach you the ropes of the game and some typical tactics you’ll need to follow to play a game of pickleball with a partner.

What are Pickleball rules doubles – Some Pickleball Doubles Rule Basics

Pickleball rules doubles - What are Pickleball rules doubles  1024x768

You can choose to play this game alone or with a partner, and either way is perfectly acceptable. 

However, most people find that playing in doubles is far more enjoyable!

But the regulations of a pickleball singles game and a pickleball doubles game are subtly different. 

Rules Of A Pickleball Double Games

I’m going to describe the rules of a pickleball doubles game here, along with some of the basics of the game.

  • Regarding the opening serve, only one member of the serving team can take the honors. But later each player will have an opportunity to serve the ball.
  • Serves should be thrown with a backhand motion, with the player’s waist or lower making contact with the ball.
  • All throws must go into the opposing diagonal service zone. There will be a fault if you don’t deliver the ball similarly.
  • The first player to serve has the opportunity until he makes a fault. When that happens, the next player on the same team gets a turn at serving, and he will, gets a single do-over chance. And if he, too, makes a mistake, the next team will start serving after that.

One member of the initial serving team receives a service chance to begin the match.

  • Each team member may make 1 serving error per turn. However, one player can score all 11 points in a row if they don’t make any mistakes.
  • The server continues to serve, and the team members must switch sides until the serving team makes a fault.
  • The defensive team in pickleball never switches positions. But players change their sides to be at baseline and at the kitchen line.
  • The initial shot of a rally must be bounce by both sides. The “Double Bounce Rule” operates as follows. 
  • The Kitchen and the Non-Volley Zone are off-limits until the ball has been bounced on the opposing team’s side.
  • Players are restricted to taking only one bounce while remaining within half of the court. When a shooting team receives two rebounds, they have earned a point.
  • It’s not a point-scoring rally. Only the serving team’s points will be counted.
  • Games are best-of-11, won by a margin of 2. So whichever teams succeed in scoring this first, will win the game!

How to Serve in Pickleball Doubles

Pickleball rules doubles - Serving rule in pickleball edited

There isn’t much difference between the pickleball doubles rules and the single-player game.

  1. Right position

    As a rule, when a team enters the court, its members must immediately line up at the backline of one side of the court. But the receiving team member who isn’t receiving should be standing in the kitchen line.

  2. The team on the right side starts serving the ball first,

    and the team on the left serves the ball second.

  3. Serve by throwing the ball diagonally across the net to the opponent’s left side.

    The side from which you volley will change with each earned point by you.

  4. The shot in pickleball should be passed from underhanded

  5. You can’t serve till the paddle is below your hips, and you can’t move your feet past the back line

  6. Performing a backhand serve

    Correctly performing a backhand serve requires an immediate, upwards delivery of the ball rather than a bounce into place.
    You must follow through to hit a moving ball with an underhand swing.

  7. Keep serving

    Unless your rival leads an end or a fault in your service, you will keep serving.
    If you were your team’s first server, your teammate would serve until he makes an error. The opposing team only begins serving after that.

  8. The net’s top rule

    One time this doesn’t apply is if you succeed in hitting the goal and have the ball fall into the correct area on the opposite side. 
    If the ball reaches the net’s top and travels outside the volley area.

Scoring Rules for Pickleball Doubles – Doubles Pickleball Strategies

Pickleball rules doubles - Scoring Rules for Pickleball Doubles edited

As I’ve already mentioned, the pickleball rules for doubles and singles are mostly the same. 

Whether it’s the serve or some other basic laws and restrictions. 

There isn’t a huge change that will require you to spend time learning the pickleball rules for doubles. 

Yet, if you are already familiar with the single-player regulations, all you need to do is bring your partner. Now you can get a second serve option, which is the only difference this game has!

Yes, a team has two serves per game in pickleball doubles, although there is only one serve per player in singles!

First, let’s look at the scoring rules for pickleball doubles, and then we’ll go through some of the many strategies you can use.

Scoring Rules For Pickleball Doubles:

  • The opening score is 0-0-2.
  • The players that serve can earn a point, whereas the team that receives a ball cannot. 
  • Each game begins with a serve from the right side (even court) to the left side (odd court).
  • After a score, the player switches sides and delivers into the diagonal court across from where the point was scored.
  • When a point is achieved, the members on the serving side keep moving one position to the right or left.
  • No side swapping occurs during service until a point is won. Those on the receiving end never swap positions. However, they only move from the back line to the kitchen line.
  • When a rally ends in a loss for the serving team due to a fault, they can still try serving again as they have a second chance. But if the fault happens again, the serve goes to the other server in the game. 
  • Every team has two chances to call fault whenever it is their turn to serve. However, the team that serves first has only one chance to make a mistake at the beginning.

The score should be referred to as three numbers 0-0-2

  • The proper order to announce the scores is as follows: server score, receiver score, followed, exclusively for doubles, by the server number: 1 or 2.
  • A match will begin with the score being called 0-0-2. *The server number (1 or 2) will only be in effect for that particular service turn.
  • If the team receives the serve back, the teammates in the right area of the pickleball field will play first.
  • When the team gets the ball back at some point, the team on the right of the zone will be the one to deliver the shot first.
  • Many newcomers to the game falsely assume that their server number will remain constant.

No Unfair Advantages.

  • To prevent the first team from receiving an unfair advantage, the rule states that only the right-side player can start serving during the first play move of the game.
  • As the first team scores a point, they will move from left to right. When the first team serving loses a point, the second team serves. 
  • If the first-round server loses a point on the left side, his playing partner will serve since he’ll be on the right.
    So, if you commit a blunder in the left corner, the other team will serve the next point; if they make two faults, your teammate will serve the next point. 
  • When your team’s turn to serve comes around, if you pass serving to the opposing team while they are in the right corner, you will begin serving again.
  • If the result is even, the team’s initial server must stand on the right area of the field, and if it’s odd, the server must be on the left.
  • If that’s not the situation, whichever the opponents are on the wrong side of the net, their score won’t count if they hit it by chance!

Strategies Of Rules Pickleball Doubles Game

To help you guys, I’m going to explain a few methods for the rules of doubles pickleball. Let me give you some tips and tricks.

Go to the non-volley line after the return of serve

Move over to the side where volleying is not allowed. 
You must position yourself towards the non-volley line. 
After each returning service maximizes your possibility of success in the rally.

Don’t make any mistakes before your opponent

Always err on caution and give yourself some room for error, both over the net and at the boundaries. 
Give your competition the chance to blunder so rather than you.

Attempt to keep your competitors at the baseline

The benefit you have over your competitors will be eliminated. 
If they can touch the non-volley line with a shorter stroke. 
Instead, a winning pickleball doubles strategy involves striking shots that force the other team back into their court.

Target their feet with your shots

The purpose isn’t to damage your opponent. 
But to throw them off their game gives you a better chance to score. 
This is accomplished by aiming for their feet and the top of their heads, where they have less time to process your attack and more of a chance to miss.

Increase the depth of your serve

The most critical element of serving is to attack the ball deep after hitting it.

Move further away from the baseline while returning

Too often, players will return serves from right at or within a foot of the baseline.
You should stand 2-3 feet from the baseline when returning a serve. Unless you anticipate the ball will be hit short. 
While returning the ball, you’ll have plenty of room to move into. 
Don’t worry about getting stranded and handing your opponent a point because they served deep.

Return hard at all times

Put some muscle into the paddles and attempt to make some hard shots.
Don’t worry about becoming lost and giving your opponent a point simply because they served deep.

It is crucial to coordinate with your teammate when returning middle shots

You can avoid losing the game if you communicate with your teammate in real time. 
Such as where you both plan to run and how you will take your shots.

Act as one unified group

Individual decision-making can be disadvantageous to team performance. 
The team must work together to achieve the best possible result and win.

Keep your patience

If you want to hit the ball as far as possible, keep calm and concentrate patiently on the field. 
Don’t freak out, or you’ll make bad decisions and end up losing.

Pickleball kitchen rules for doubles

Pickleball rules doubles - Non volley area 1024x576

The “kitchen” or “non-volley zone” must be avoided at all costs, regardless of the number of players in the game.

It is essential to exercise extreme caution around that location. 

A single misstep would result in a minor error that could compromise your game and your team’s plan.

As per the pickleball kitchen regulation, all volleys must be made outside the court’s “non-volley zone” (the kitchen). 

In short, players didn’t wander into the kitchen or contact the kitchen line when passing the ball. 

You can be sure that the ball bounce on the ground at least once before it hits the kitchen.

Rules Of Kitchen Zone:

1: Any volleys played must attempt outside the “no volley” area.

2: An individual or entity that contacts the volleying player while getting the ball violates the rule and will count as a fault.

3: Before or after making contact with the ball, if the paddle moves into the “kitchen,” that is a mistake.

4: After touching the non-volley zone, a player is not eligible to hit a return until both feet are back on the court outside the non-volley area.

*You can’t do things like start inside the no-volley zone, then jump up and land outside of it after hitting a volley*

Frequently Asked Questions.

Q: What is serving rotation in doubles pickleball?

The serving rotation is diagonal in doubles pickleball, and the players have to move from right to left to left to right after hitting the ball and getting a score.

Q: How do you keep score in doubles in pickleball?

You can easily keep score by examining who shot first between you and your opponent. 
For the same reason, your score will be even if your mate is on the right side of the field, and your score will be odd if they are on the left.

Q: Can you hit the ball twice in doubles pickleball?

Yes, you can strike the ball twice, but only if you do it in one fluid motion and in the same direction. 
If the stroke goes in multiple directions, it will be a fault.

Wrapping It Up!

Because the rules for pickleball doubles are the same as those for pickleball played by a single player. 

It is not difficult for anyone to learn how to play either version of the game, and individuals can do so without any difficulty or confusion.

There is a saying, “Pickleball is cheaper than therapy,” 

So, if you are not feeling like yourself and need time to ponder and engage in some other activity, pickleball is your best alternative because it is more affordable than therapy.

What exactly are you holding out for at this point? 

Send a text to your friends and organize a pickleball match for tomorrow; you’ll have a blast.



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Hey, fellow pickleball player!

My name is Ethan Josephson. I am a pickleball enthusiast who has been playing this fantastic game for more than 5 years. Before that I had almost 20-years-experience with tennis and table tennis, but pickleball fascinated me completely.