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Caregiver stress is a constant refrain in conversations by and about caregivers. One of the highly recommended helps for it is often exercise. Finding time to squeeze in exercise can sometimes be difficult, and even if you can manage it, what do you do?
My favorite exercise is walking and I’m finding it easier to do now that I’ve started making phone calls to family and friends as I walk. But what if you hate walking? There’s always the treadmill or an exercise class or tennis. What’s that? Tennis is too hard on your arthritic knees? How about Pickleball?
Pickleball – What’s That?
Pickleball? You read that right. It’s a hot not-so-new game that sounds like a ton of fun. I, for one, had never heard about it until I noticed the article, Valley Seniors Bounce to New Type of Mini-tennis, in the Fresno Bee.
Apparently, this intriguing game was created by U.S. Representative Joel Pritchard and some of his friends, and named after the Congressman’s family dog, Pickles, in 1965. Now there are thousands of senior citizens along with many in the Baby Boomer Generation who are enjoying this game’s competitive action, which is similar to tennis but much easier on the knees.
According to the article, you play on a smaller court, so “there is less running than in tennis and a premium is put on quick reactions, strategy and ball placement. Volleys sometimes last for minutes.”
Here’s a video of some seniors having fun in a tournament:
Pickleball Supplies and Books
It sounds like it might be a bit more complicated than tennis, and it is not cheap. Amazon carries the pickleball paddles with prices ranging from $20-$35 along with balls for about $8 – much less expensive than when I first wrote this article a few years ago. For that matter, when I originally wrote this, you couldn’t find them at Walmart or Target online at all. But they both carry good options now! Amazon also carries the book, The Art of Pickleball in regular or Kindle along with some other books on the topic. All About Pickleball has an interesting site and there you can get a free guide which includes the rules along with links to other Pickleball resources. And for that matter…
More Pickleball Resources
Other sites with information about this fun-looking game of Pickleball include:
Even in My Town of Roseville California!
I must admit, it really looks like fun. I love to play tennis, but it is getting harder and harder for me to keep up. One of these days I’m going to give this a try. In fact, I just found out that, in addition to Pickleball being available at Sun City Roseville, my city of Roseville CA has started adding Pickleball lines for it to some of their tennis courts. That should definitely make it much easier for me to get started. How about you? Have you already started? We’d love to hear about it. This definitely looks like a great way for some of us Sandwich Generation caregivers and grandparents to have fun, get healthy exercise, and burn off some of that caregiver stress. I bet our grandkids would have fun playing it with us as well!