Honcho Pickleball League partners with DUPR to drive growth, unify league with global rating system.

DUPR
April 1, 2024

Honcho Pickleball League, the premier national amateur pickleball league, and DUPR (Dynamic Universal Pickleball Rating), today announced a partnership to drive growth and local skill-based playing opportunities for players across the country. 

Honcho Pickleball League is one of the largest amateur leagues in the country with capacity to support up to 3,200 players across 12 states with 20 venue partners for this upcoming round of seasons taking place from late April through June, and has established itself as a leader in the grassroots growth of pickleball. As part of the partnership, Honcho will adopt DUPR as the official rating system of the league, and DUPR will support Honcho as it looks to enter into new markets and add new venue partners to offer even more opportunities for players to compete. 

“We are excited to dive into this relationship with DUPR,” said Chris Mott, Chief Revenue Officer, Honcho Pickleball League. “Their support not only provides us with one of the largest, most detailed player databases in the sport, but also aligns with our mission to provide exceptional pickleball experiences and development opportunities for our players. We look forward to a fruitful relationship that brings added excitement and competition to our communities across the nation.”

DUPR’s solution provides organizers with the ability to showcase their events to the most active and engaged community in pickleball, and enables players to find more opportunities to play at their level wherever they are. The foundation of DUPR is its industry-leading rating, which analyzes match results to provide an accurate, reliable evaluation of a players skill level across age, gender and location. With DUPR, organizers can create more competitive opportunities for players by organizing events and matches by player ratings, and players can know their level to find better, more fun competition. 

“DUPR is committed to democratizing pickleball, collaborating with teams, leagues and operators everywhere to give them access to technology that supports even better pickleball experiences,” said Tito Machado, DUPR CEO.  “We are excited to showcase Honcho Pickleball League to our community, support their players with a dynamic, accurate rating system, and aid their expansion into new markets to grow the game we all love.”

DUPR supports players, organizers and operators in pickleball with free-to-use tools to make the pickleball experience even more fun and ultimately driving the growth of the game. From its global rating system to its dynamic digital community where players can find and connect with matches, leagues, clubs and tournaments, DUPR is providing the fast-growing sport with the foundational framework to ensure enjoyment and fun for generations to come. 

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About DUPR 

DUPR (Dynamic Universal Pickleball Rating) is the premier global pickleball rating system and technology platform, trusted by the world's leading clubs, tournaments, leagues and players. DUPR's dynamic rating system unifies pickleball across age, gender and location by analyzing match results to accurately evaluate all players across a 2.000 - 8.000 scale. Players and operators can visit www.dupr.com to sign up and learn more. 

About Honcho Pickleball League 

Honcho Pickleball League is the premier destination for pickleball enthusiasts who crave the perfect blend of competition, community and fun. Our league exudes confidence and swagger, providing consistent, fully administered game play on a weekly basis. We are the epitome of high-energy, fostering an electrifying atmosphere both on and off the court. Ranging from mid-season happy hours to championship gatherings to league merch to big winners pots and packages, this is not your standard local league and community!

We embody a winning spirit, striving to create an innovative and inclusive environment to continue to support in the greater effort of growing the sport of pickleball. Our league offers consistent weekly match play with multiple skill set divisions to choose from to ensure that players can excel in their passion for pickleball, week over week!. We proudly associate with top pickleball brands, ensuring an unparalleled experience for all. Visit www.honchopickle.com for more.

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April 17, 2024

Building Strength and Mobility Off the Court: Exercises to Support Pickleball Performance

The only way to improve your pickleball skills and reach your full potential is through structured practice and consistent competitive play. However, injuries and chronic pain are preventing some pickleball players from reaching their full potential on the court, leading to frustration and missed opportunities to enjoy the game they love.

UBS reports that in 2023 alone, there were almost $400 million in injury claims. But you don’t have to be a statistic. 

Many pickleball players are solely focused on playing, neglecting the importance of off-court training — leading to muscle imbalances, poor movement patterns, and increased risk of injury. Without addressing these underlying issues through targeted strength and mobility training, pickleball players may find themselves sidelined by injuries or unable to improve their skills and perform at their best.

In this article, we'll explore the science-backed benefits of incorporating strength and mobility training into your pickleball routine and provide you with simple and effective steps you can take today to help you reduce injuries, move more efficiently on the court, and unlock your full potential as a player.

The Benefits of Resistance Training for Pickleball Players

Resistance training is essential for global health and wellness, but especially for pickleball players. A well-structured plan builds strength, endurance, and resilience to injury.

Research demonstrates that resistance training:

  • Increases fat-free mass & decreases body fat % 
  • Increases muscle strength and power
  • Improves bone density and balance, reducing the risk of fractures from falls or impacts
  • Strengthens tendons and ligaments, minimizing the risk of overuse & traumatic injuries

By incorporating resistance training at least twice a week, you'll build a strong foundation for your pickleball game and extend your life expectancy. A recent study with over 90,000 participants found a 41% reduction in all-cause mortality when resistance training was combined with at least 150 - 300 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA). 

And yes, pickleball qualifies as MVPA!

Designing a Resistance Training Plan for Pickleball Players

A well-designed resistance plan should target the major movement patterns: push, pull, hinge, squat, twist, and carry. These movements are functional for daily living and are the foundation of many sporting actions.


When designing your resistance training plan, there are a few critical variables to account for:

Intensity

Intensity refers to the weight or resistance you use when performing an exercise. It can come from various sources, such as dumbbells, barbells, resistance bands, or even your body weight. The heavier the load, the more challenging the exercise becomes for your muscles.

Intensity Guidelines

Beginner: If you’ve been doing resistance training for less than 6 months, choose a moderate intensity and focus on performing each exercise with good technical proficiency.

Intermediate: If you’ve been resistance training for less than two years, choose an intensity that challenges but doesn’t change your form.

Advanced: If you’ve been resistance training for 2+ years, you’ll need to use higher-intensity loads to continue to see improvement. After several warm-up sets, your primary sets should push you within a few reps of failure while maintaining excellent form.

Volume

Volume refers to the overall workload your muscles handle during a training session or week. It takes into account the number of exercises you perform and the sets and repetitions you complete for each exercise.

A dose of approximately 10 sets per muscle group per week is a general minimum prescription to optimize your workouts. Research indicates there are potential benefits to higher volumes for underdeveloped muscle groups, but you should always progress your volume slowly. 

Avoid increasing your total workout volume by more than 15% per week, or you will dramatically increase your risk for injury.

Frequency 

The US Department of Health & Human Services and the World Health Organization recommend that adults perform at least two total body strengthening sessions per week. 

Rest Interval 

As a general rule, rest periods should last at least 2 minutes when performing multi-joint exercises. Shorter rest periods (60-90 secs) can be employed for single-joint exercises.

The Role of Mobility Training in Pickleball Performance

Research indicates that improving mobility through targeted exercise programs can reduce the risk of injury in various sports. Mobility refers to the ability to move your joints through their full range of motion and to be strong and stable in those positions. 

For instance, a mobile pickleball player should be able to flex their hips, knees, and ankles at the kitchen line to return shots. An immobile player may place undue stress on their lower back from bowing at the waist instead of bending the hips, knees, and ankles to return shots.

There are several areas of the body where poor mobility can lead to pain and injury:

  • Ankles: essential for quick direction changes and to prevent ankle sprains
  • Hips: important hinging, squatting, and rotating 
  • Shoulders: crucial for overhead shots, serving, dinking, and more
  • Knees: critical for squatting and generating force to move quickly

How & When to Train for Mobility

Because mobility training is a low-stress activity on the body, it can be done daily. Incorporating mobility exercises into your warm-up and cool-down routines is an efficient way to incorporate them into your exercise plan, and it can significantly impact your performance and injury resilience. 

Focus on exercises that move your joints through a full range of motion, such as shoulder, elbow, knee, and hip circles. Squatting and lunging patterns, as well as yoga pushups, are exceptional exercises for enhancing mobility.

Here are a few mobility training exercises you can start today that target various muscle groups of the lower body and upper body to improve overall movement quality: 

Cossack Squat

Targeting hips, hamstrings, and adductors/groin
  • Start with your feet wider than your shoulders, toes pointing out. 
  • Lift your arms straight out in front of you, shift your weight onto the right leg, and sit back as if there is a chair behind you. 
  • Keep the other leg straight, bend the right knee, and lower it as far down as you can without lifting the right heel and keeping the chest lifted. 
  • Return to standing and alternate sides until you reach 16-20 repetitions. 

Cat-Cow

Targeting spine mobility and upper back

  • Start on all fours with hands underneath the shoulders, knees underneath the hips, and back straight. 
  • Arch the back, lifting the head and tailbone to the ceiling. 
  • Reverse the movement by rounding the back, tailbone, and shoulders, pulling the belly button towards the spine, and looking towards the hips. 
  • Alternate positions for a total of 8-10 reps in each position. 

90/90 Hip Rotations

Targeting hip joints and glutes

  • Begin sitting on your sit bones with your feet wider than shoulder-width apart and knees at a 90-degree angle. 
  • With your back straight and core engaged, you can rest your hands behind you for support (progress to lifting your hands and maintaining balance).
  • Rotate your hips to one side, keep a tall upper body posture, then slowly rotate back to the opposite side, alternating rotations for 8-12 repetitions. 

BONUS:

Here’s a video sequence for improving knee mobility with Dr. Kyle Richmond, a rehab and mobility expert.

Watch video HERE

Integrating Strength and Mobility Training into Your Pickleball Routine

Consistency is key to reap the full benefits of strength and mobility training. 

Aim to incorporate resistance training at least twice weekly, focusing on exercises targeting major movement patterns. Also, consider making mobility training a regular part of your pre-and post-match routine or a regular at-home training program.

Using a personalized training app like AIM7 can help streamline your off-court training. With customized resistance training plans based on your fitness level and available equipment, as well as guided warm-ups, cool-downs, and daily mobility sessions, AIM7 makes it easy to integrate strength and mobility training into your routine.

Get your free 60-day trial by using the code (A760FREE).

Conclusion

Pickleball is a challenging sport that demands a combination of skill, strength, and mobility. By prioritizing off-court training and incorporating resistance and mobility exercises into your routine, you'll reduce your risk of injury and unlock your full potential on the court. 

Remember, the key to success is consistency and a well-designed plan. So grab your weights, resistance bands, and pickleball paddle, and get ready to take your game to the next level!

By Erik Korem, PhD & Susie Reiner, PhD

Educational
Partners
April 8, 2024

University of Florida Wins the Georgia Super Regional with Help From Their Spectacular Spectator Section

There is no limit to the number of teams a school can submit to a Regional, and the University of Florida (UF) used that to their advantage this past weekend by bringing five teams to compete. Never before had a school brought more than three teams to a DUPR Collegiate Pickleball event! By the time the finals rolled around, all of the players from the eliminated UF teams could be heard cheering on their last remaining team in hopes of securing their first Regional championship. 

In the finals, UF faced Clemson, who was both the winner of last year’s Georgia Regional and the winner of the last Super Regional in Virginia. Clemson taking the first game in Women’s Doubles didn’t phase UF, as UF rattled off 3 straight wins in Men’s Doubles, 1st Mixed Doubles, and 2nd Mixed Doubles to secure the title. Prior to the Georgia Super Regional, UF and Clemson had already secured spots at Nationals, so the remaining four bids went to University of Georgia, University of North Florida, Florida College, and Southeastern University (SEU). All school maintained a great team spirit throughout the tournament which made it even more exciting to be a part of!

The Georgia Super Regional also welcomed Charleston Southern University, Davidson College, University of Kentucky, Louisiana State University, and The University of Texas at Tyler to their first DUPR Collegiate Pickleball event! University of Kentucky almost pulled off a #14 seed vs. #3 seed upset against SEU in the Round of 16 by taking them to a Dreambreaker. In fact, the playoffs for this tournament saw an incredibly high number of Dreambreakers, as 7 out of the 15 elimination playoff matches went to a Dreambreaker, including both semifinals and 3/4 of the quarterfinals. Here is the link to view the full schedule and standings from the weekend.

A special thanks goes to our DUPR Collegiate Pickleball partners: JOOLA, HEAD, GAMMA, Rally Republic, Total Pickleball, and OOFOS. Another thanks goes to Pickle & Social in Buford, GA for hosting the 2nd annual Georgia Super Regional! 

Collegiate
Events
April 2, 2024

Cliff Drysdale Tennis and Peter Burwash International Have Joined Forces with Minor League Pickleball!

Cliff Drysdale Tennis and Peter Burwash International have joined forces with Minor League Pickleball to bring a new and exciting experience to racquet sports enthusiasts across the nation. This strategic partnership will see a series of innovative events and competitions hosted at various CDT and PBI managed properties starting this 2024!

Minor League Pickleball is an innovative team competition where teams of four players (2 women and 2 men) compete against each other in a novel and engaging format, with twists on traditional match-ups and scoring for games, matches, and tiebreakers. Teams compete against each other in Matches using the MLPlay™ format, featuring team matches that are composed of four 21-point games, one women’s doubles, one men’s doubles, and the final two games consisting of mixed doubles. Teams play in a round robin pool, with guaranteed matches and a playoff bracket to determine the winning team. All participating players must have a DUPR (Dynamic Universal Pickleball Rating) account, and teams are formed by combining the DUPR ratings of all four players.

“We are thrilled to partner with Minor League Pickleball, a fantastic event concept that highlights many of sport’s most appealing qualities,” said Scott McCulloch, President and COO for Cliff Drysdale Tennis and Peter Burwash International. “Providing our members, guests and loyal community of pickleball players with engaging play options and competitive offerings is one of our top priorities, and Minor League Pickleball events will help strengthen our programs across the nation.”


“Minor League Pickleball is focused on providing amateur players with the most dynamic and exciting opportunities to compete. By partnering with Cliff Drysdale Tennis and Peter Burwash International, we’re able to reach even more players and host MiLP events at some of the most renowned racquet sports facilities in the world. We’re excited to work together to bring more people into this exciting game and create more engaging opportunities to play,” said Caroline Luelf, Director of Minor League Pickleball. 

Caroline Luelf, Director of Minor League Pickleball, expressed her excitement about working with CDT and PBI to expand the reach of the sport and create more opportunities for players to enjoy the game. The events will be held at select locations across the U.S., including private clubs, public facilities, and resorts, with a special travel experience planned for July at Omni Amelia Island Resort.

All players who compete in MiLP events will accumulate points to earn an opportunity to compete in the Minor League Pickleball National Championship, scheduled for December 13-15 and featuring a $50,000 prize purse.

Upcoming Minor League Pickleball events at CDT and PBI managed facilities:

April 13-14: JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort and Spa (Palm Desert, CA)
April 20-21: Esplanade Naples Golf and Country Club (Naples, FL)
May 4-5: Weston Racquet Club (Weston, FL)
May 18-19: Tyler Athletic and Swim Club (Tyler, TX)
June 22-23: John Newcombe Country Club  (New Braunfels, TX)
July 19-21: Omni Amelia Island Resort, Travel Package  (Amelia Island, FL)

To register for events and learn more about Minor League Pickleball, visit: www.dupr.com/minorleague

To learn more about Cliff Drysdale Tennis, visit: www.cliffdrysdale.com 

To learn more about Peter Burwash International, visit: www.pbitennis.com

Partners
Updates
Minor League