Pickleball with a Heart began as a tiny tournament to raise enough money to make 40 generous candy bags for underprivileged kids in our community.
Since that first event in October 2021, they hosted various fundraising tournaments and ladder leagues and raised over $10,000 for small local charities.
They became interested in DUPR because they wanted their events to be competitive and fair, encouraging new players to enter competitions and have a positive tournament experience.
Their club is "virtual," meaning they play at various local courts. Most events are played on six courts at the Greentree Sportsplex, though they have hosted events at Glen Creek Tennis Club, Peters Township Tennis Center, and South Park Tennis Courts.
Their club has grown to over 520 members! They are proud to be making a difference in these small charities with little to no dedicated fundraising volunteers and are thrilled that DUPR is a part of their journey.
To find out more about Pickleball with a Heart, visit their club page: HERE
Provided By: Laurie Lawrence, Founder of Pickleball with a Heart
For most kids, gym class is the highlight of the school week. It’s a much-needed break from serious class work and a chance to run around, play with friends, and expend energy playing basketball, soccer, volleyball, and floor hockey. Today, an increasing number of schools are adding pickleball to the menu as a way to provide students with a fun, easy way to increase physical activity and combat childhood obesity while addressing their ever-shrinking budgets.
Tailor-Made For Schools
Many aspects that have made pickleball so popular with adults – it’s easy to learn, it’s a fun workout, games are quick, and it allows people of various abilities and fitness levels to play together – also make it a great fit for school gym classes. Students can progress very quickly, which builds up their self-esteem and a sense of accomplishment and can lead to improvements in their overall academic achievement.
Pickleball is also ideal for schools because it solves the problem of how to provide students with a fun physical activity while adhering to tight budgets. According to The Society of Health and Physical Educators, (SHAPE America), the average elementary school spends only $462 per year on physical education. That’s not per child —that’s for the entire school. Given these constraints, pickleball provides a cost-effective activity that many students can play while meeting government mandates for physical education.
DUPR Fuels the Growth of Pickleball Among Younger Players
The Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA) estimates that 8.9 million people played pickleball in 2023. As the average age of pickleball participants continues to trend downward – it’s currently at 35 – DUPR is working with organizations across the country to expand the sport further among younger players. For example, the most recent National Junior Pickleball Championships powered by DUPR was held in October in Las Vegas and featured 113 boys and girls ranging in age from 9-18 competing in singles, doubles, and team tournaments.
Bringing Pickleball to Schools
In addition to DUPR’s efforts, the nonprofit organization PHIT America is making it easy for schools to add pickleball to their physical education curriculum. PHIT America’s Play Pickleball initiative donates everything a school needs – paddles, nets, balls, training aids -- to introduce pickleball to students. Launched in Spring 2023 with the ambitious goal of delivering more than 100 kits to elementary schools throughout the US, PHIT America is partnering with pickleball pro KaSandra Gerke to spread the word about the fun and health benefits kids can enjoy from playing pickleball.
Pickleball is all about teamwork and good sportsmanship and therefore fits nicely with the values schools teach every day. The sport’s explosive growth over the past few years is poised to continue, and anyone who has watched an MLP or PPA match is witnessing the success younger players are having on tour. Seventeen-year-old Anna Leigh Waters continues to dominate and teen phenoms Hayden Patriquin and Quang Duong consistently compete at the highest levels. You never know, somewhere in America a student could be picking up a paddle in gym class for the first time, get hooked on the sport and soon play in a few pickleball tournaments, get their DUPR rating, and maybe become tomorrow’s next great pickleball champion.
Tyson McGuffin is one of the most well-known names in pickleball. As one of the top players in the sport, he has made a significant impact with his skills and dedication to the game. In this Q&A session, we get to know Tyson, who is a DUPR athlete and active member of our community, a little bit better. We discuss his favorite hobbies, goals, and his thoughts on the DUPR Rating System.
What is your favorite hobby (jokingly outside of pickleball of course)?
“ I just picked up golf and am really loving that. Also cooking. I love my wife, but I do all the cooking.”
What is your favorite destination that you have played pickleball in?
“I love Palm Springs. Weather is nice, golf is great, and the vibes are good.”
What are some goals you have set for yourself in 2024 - whether personally or professionally in pickleball?
“I am determined to keep working on my craft, always stay grounded and be the people's champ. No matter what category - husband, father, player, coach, content creator - I want to shoot for 100%.”
How do you think the DUPR Rating System has enhanced the overall pickleball experience? Do you often or ever compare your DUPR to other players that you are playing, is it a factor going into a match that you play?
“Having an accurate rating system helps the level of play. It creates consistency and sustainability in the sport. It ensures equal play in a competitive setting. The algorithm helps determine how to organize play when you have a range of ratings. Knowing everyone’s DUPR helps keep matches competitive when levels are all over the place.
What inspired you to go pro?
“I was done playing tennis, but still wanted to compete. I was turned on to this silly sport by a member at the club where I was teaching. I have zero moderation in most things in life so dove fully into going pro quickly.”
We are proud to call Tyson McGuffin a DUPR Athlete. His dedication and love for the sport is obvious. With his goals set for continual growth and providing an inclusive playing environment through DUPR, Tyson is making his mark on the pickleball world and inspiring others to do the same.
Follow Tyson and all your favorite DUPR Athlete's on the DUPR app - Download now!
After an amazing 2023, DUPR Collegiate Pickleball is excited to announce everything new we have to offer for 2024! In the post below, we describe changes we’re making to the bids, regionals, and rankings, as well as introducing campus regionals, DUPR duals, and regions! To get in contact with us, use our email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here are how bids will work for 2024:
In total, there will be 48 bids given out to the 2024 Collegiate National Championship.
Regionals run by DUPR have been upgraded into Super Regionals! These Super Regionals will have more bids, scholarship money, teams, and courts than our 2023 Regionals.
Spring Super Regionals
Fall Super Regionals
Scholarship Money - $6000 total
1st-4th place teams will receive a bid to Nationals. If any of these teams already possess a bid, the opportunity for a bid will extend to the next highest-ranking team that does not have one. In some cases, schools may need to engage in an additional match to determine which team will receive the extended bid opportunity.
The Team Bracket will consist of MLP teams from each school, where there are 2-3 men and 2-3 women players on each team. It will operate the same as our 2023 Regionals, where teams will play Women’s Doubles, Men’s Doubles, 2 Mixed Doubles, and potentially a Dreambreaker to determine a winner between teams. The Challenger Bracket will be an open doubles tournament, unless we have enough players sign up to split into Men’s Doubles/Mixed Doubles/Women’s Doubles.
Schools may bring an unlimited number of teams and challenger players. Any school may attend any Super Regional.
Email email@example.com to have a team bracket made for your school in the Regional you want to attend. Your team bracket players will register in that bracket we made for you, and all challenger bracket players will register in the bracket labeled “Challenger Bracket”
Campus Regionals are a way for DUPR Collegiate Pickleball to work with individual clubs running their own collegiate tournaments. If your club is running a collegiate tournament, and it meets certain requirements, the tournament can be a part of our Campus Regional series. Each Campus Regional will receive a Nationals bid to give out, as well as be featured on the DUPR Collegiate Pickleball website. Only 16 tournaments will be selected for the Campus Regional series in 2024. Here is the link for the application and more details.
2024 Collegiate Individual National Championships (CINC)
Date: June 1st-2nd
Location: The Pickle Lodge in Cincinnati, OH
Scholarship Money: $20,000 total
Individual Nationals is returning in 2024! This event will crown a champion for each of the Men’s & Women’s Doubles, Mixed Doubles, and Men’s & Women’s Singles brackets. Any college student taking at least 6 credit hours can compete!
2023 CINC Champions
2024 Collegiate National Championship (CNC)
For Nationals, 48 schools from across the country will compete to be the champion! Schools will be split into 8 groups of 6, and the top two teams from each group will advance to the single-elimination playoffs. There will also be a challenger bracket at the 2024 CNC, which will operate similar to the 2023 CNC challenger bracket.
For the first time, we are allowing schools to bring multiple teams to Nationals! Schools with a bid can bring a 2nd team to compete against other 2nd teams. This 2nd team bracket is separate from the main 1st team championship bracket and will have scholarship money up for grabs.
To participate in the team brackets at CNC, a school must:
To participate in the challenger bracket at CNC, players must:
Nationals will be held on 11/22-11/24. The final location is still being determined.
Ready to challenge your local rivals? Got a free weekend and craving some Collegiate Pickleball? We have just the solution - introducing DUPR Duals. This new initiative will allow teams to organize matches against each other that count towards their team record and ranking. All dual matches following this format will be featured on the DUPR Collegiate Pickleball website. Here is the link to our doc explaining how to conduct a dual match with another school.
DUPR Collegiate Council
DUPR is the home of collegiate pickleball, and we want to make sure that we continue to foster open communication and collaboration with our player base. In 2024, we will organize a DUPR Collegiate Council that will be made up of leaders and players from each region of collegiate pickleball. The DUPR Collegiate Council and DUPR’s Collegiate Team will meet regularly to discuss feedback on previous events, the steps that DUPR is taking to grow the sport, and your input on what we can do to increase each player’s experience. Participation in the DUPR Collegiate Council will be by invitation only. If you are interested in lending your experience to help us grow collegiate pickleball, you may apply here.
In 2024 we are changing the way teams are ranked. This new ranking system will reflect a team’s performance, instead of just their combined DUPR. The old system from 2023 will be renamed “Team Ratings” and will still be updated monthly and posted on our website. The new system will be called “Team Rankings”, and will be updated weekly with results from dual matches, campus regionals, and super regionals. We intend to use this ranking to seed teams for the 2024 Collegiate National Championship.
Here is the formula:
Percentile - Range from 1 to 0, based on the results from every other school. The worst result is a 0, and the best is a 1. Max score is a 10.00 (4.00+3.00+2.00+1.00), lowest is a 0.00. Only matches played by a school’s 1st and 2nd teams will count towards their school’s ranking.
Introducing DUPR Regions - Teams are split up into different regions based on geographic location. These regions were decided based on a variety of factors, and with the ever-growing collegiate pickleball landscape, we shall review regional splits on an annual basis. DUPR Regions will allow players to be eligible for regional awards, experience heightened rivalries, and access more competitive opportunities.
Please note - Due to the current distribution of Collegiate Pickleball teams, not all regions will have the same amount of Super/Campus Regionals for 2024. Teams can compete in any regional tournament they wish, regardless of their assigned region.
See below to see what region your team belongs to -
Starting in 2024, DUPR shall implement the inaugural DUPR Collegiate Pickleball Awards! This initiative aims to reward players, coaches, and programs for their contributions to the success of DUPR Collegiate Pickleball on and off the court. These awards will be decided by the DUPR Collegiate Council and will be given out at the 2024 Collegiate National Championship during the awards banquet.
DUPR Rookie of the Year
DUPR Senior Player of the Year
DUPR Coach of the Year
DUPR Community Service Award (Team)
DUPR Ambassador of the Year