The Fascinating History of Pickleball: When Was It Invented?


Pickleball is a popular sport that has been around for several decades and is played in over 40 countries. While the exact origin of pickleball has been disputed, it’s believed to have been invented in 1965 by three friends from Washington State as a way to pass time during the summer months. In this blog post, we’ll dive into when exactly pickleball was invented and how it developed into one of the most popular sports today.

The Origins of Pickleball

It’s widely accepted that pickleball was first created in 1965 by Joel Pritchard, Bill Bell, and Barney McCallum on Bainbridge Island near Seattle, Washington. The trio decided to create a new game out of boredom after their children didn’t show up for badminton practice one day. They began using ping-pong paddles and whiffel balls over a makeshift net they had set up on their lawns with string and two-by-fours. The game quickly gained traction amongst their neighbors who continued to play it throughout the summer months until eventually more people across the United States started playing as well.

Growth & Expansion

Word about pickleball spread quickly across North America with its popularity increasing exponentially every year since its inception in 1965. In 1976, Congress officially recognized recorded pickleball being played at an Army base which later led to tournaments being held all over the country starting in 1984 when USA Pickle Ball Association (USAPA) was founded by Bob Farrar and Steve Paranto who are credited with developing many rules used today such as serving diagonally instead of straight ahead like tennis or racquet ball games require. USAPA continues to be responsible for promoting competitive play both domestically as well as internationally where there are now dozens of sanctioned tournaments annually worldwide including ones hosted by International Federation Of Pickled Sports (IFPS).


Pickleball’s meteoric rise from an impromptu backyard activity between friends has transformed into an international phenomenon enjoyed around the world today thanks largely due to Joel Pritchard’s original vision along with help from other innovators like Bob Farrer and Steve Paranto who helped shape modern ruleset standards necessary for competitive play while also allowing recreational players enjoy casual matches without having worry too much about technicalities either way makes sure everyone involved can have fun regardless what skill level they may possess!