FIRST THING I DO WHEN I STEP ON THE COURT:
I give myself a strategic game plan if it’s during a tournament, or something to work on if it’s during practice. This helps me focus and get into the right state of mind.
LAST NEW PICKLEBALL SLANG I LEARNED:
“Find my equal!” which you say when you’ve played an amazing point full of offensive and defensive shots and ended up winning [the point]. It was created by Chet Subaru [a comedic character portrayed by pro player AJ Koller].
FIRST PADDLE I EVER PURCHASED:
An Engage Elite Pro Pickleball Paddle.
LAST SONG I LISTEN TO BEFORE A GAME:
Dance music. Anything with a really good pumped-up beat.
FIRST THING I DO AFTER I LOSE A MATCH:
I usually find a quiet place to decompress and reflect on the match while it’s still fresh in my mind, to figure out where I need to improve.
LAST MOVE I MASTERED:
The one-hand-backhand full-stretch attack flick. It’s hard to do but can be highly effective!
I PLAYED IN:
At the end of November 2018, I played 4.5 mixed doubles with AJ, who helped me learn the ropes and introduced me to players in my area.
LAST PERSON I’D WANT TO FACE ACROSS THE PICKLEBALL NET:
My dad. He was my tennis coach growing up, and he’s very strategic and analytical. Now that I’m playing pickleball at a professional level, he’s starting to get into it as well.
FIRST THING I TELL PEOPLE WHO’VE NEVER HEARD OF THE SPORT:
It’s like chess…easy to learn, hard to master, but oh so much fun.