Volunteer Instructors’ Skills Are Tested for SPA Player Development Classes

Ron Flanders, lead instructor in Pickleball 301 (left), tests volunteer instructor Nancy Teeter (right) on her pickleball skills. (Photo by Raymond H. Goettsch)

Raymond H. Goettsch

During the last two weeks of September 2023, SaddleBrooke Pickleball Association (SPA) members volunteering to be instructors in player development classes had their own pickleball skills tested. The successful volunteers will be assigned to assist in three player development classes created by Player Development Director Paul Massara: Pickleball 101, Pickleball 201, and Pickleball 301.

These classes will commence the first full week of each month (except December) with four sessions, one each week. Registration will commence two weeks ahead on the Event Calendar on the SPA website. Registrants must commit to attending all four sessions of the class.

Under lead instructor Greg Nelson, Pickleball 101 is designed for SPA members who are new to pickleball and do not yet have a club skill rating. These four sessions are designed to develop the following skills: dinking, forehand and backhand (both cross court and down the line), volleying (both forehand and backhand), and serving from both court sides and return of serve (both forehand and backhand). These classes will also focus on the basic rules of pickleball. At the end of the four sessions, each participant’s skills will be assessed to determine if a 2.0 club rating has been earned.

Pickleball 201, with lead instructor Jeff Grant, has been developed for SPA members who have achieved a 2.0 club skill rating. In these four sessions, participants will improve the basic skills taught in Pickleball 101, and they will be introduced to new skills: drop shot, court movement and positioning, and hitting zones. At the conclusion of the four sessions, each participant’s skills will be evaluated to decide if a 2.5 club skill rating has been achieved.

With Ron Flanders as lead instructor, Pickleball 301 is designed for members who have obtained a 2.5 club skill rating. In these four sessions, participants will continue to refine their basic skills. They will also be introduced to strategies for shot selection and interaction with doubles partners. Following these four sessions, each participant’s skill will be analyzed. In addition, each participant will be evaluated on his/her performance in playing three doubles games scheduled after the sessions to determine if a 3.0 club skill rating has been reached.