|I just want to start off this week's article by saying that on a couple of levels I genuinely wish that this was not a topic of discussion. Unfortunately, though, we are experiencing an extremely challenging time and despite all that is going on, the question “is it okay to still play pickleball or not during the COVID-19 pandemic?” is causing a burst of controversy across the pickleball world. I’ve decided to write my thoughts on this because as an ambassador of the sport, I feel this is an opportunity to remind the community that this is the time to support the entire pickleball world.
What I’ve seen and heard, people who continue to still play pickleball on public property, with people who they do not live with, are justifying themselves in the following ways:
Here’s my counter to these claims:
Not playing has been tough. Sometimes I feel as though I'm losing "my touch". But as an alternative I’ve decided to keep active and burn calories with home workouts, running or cycling at strategic times of the day and living room yoga. While these options are not quenching that pickleball craving, I'm able to maintain my cardio fitness and most importantly, it leaves me knowing that I am practicing appropriate social distancing.
Friends and fellow players, I know that pickleball has transformed your lives as it has done for me and that we intend to play the sport for many, many years to come. During COVID-19 please re-consider the next time you plan to play and ask yourself if practicing pickleball is truly an essential or if giving it up for a few months is the appropriate action? Consider the vulnerable age groups and the entirety of our sport. I believe that together we can be champions, ambassadors and role models of pickleball. Together, we can do our part and help stop the spread of this virus.
I look forward to seeing you again on the pickleball court. Until then, please be safe and be well.