Pickleball at the Y! | YMCA DC

Pickleball at the Y!

The rules of pickleball are simple and the game is easy for beginners of all ages to learn. Games can develop into a quick, fast-paced, competition for players of all skill levels. Pickleball combines many elements of tennis, badminton and ping-pong and can be played singles or doubles. Gather some friends or meet new players at a social drop-in session at the Y. Pickleball is now offered both indoors and outdoors!

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CELEBRATING THE BEST OF PICKLEBALL AT THE YMCA

The YMCA Bethesda-Chevy Chase hosted a day of Pickleball featuring the #1 pickleball player and doubles team in the world, Ben and Collin Johns, on Monday, June 7th.  The day’s events included a round-robin, clinic, and exhibition led by the best players in the world, supported by YMCA’s Pickleball Director, Sonny Tannan. With over 300 people in attendance, the Y was able to provide a memorable experience to members and the local Pickleball community.  In addition, vital funds were raised when an autographed paddle autographed by Ben Johns was auctioned off in the evening, which led to seven children to attend YMCA Summer Camp who could otherwise not afford a summer camp experience. If you’d like to make a contribution to make an even larger impact, we welcome your support to help send a kid to camp by clicking here!

Click here to view more photos from the event.

Meet Sonny Tannan, the YMCA's Director of Pickleball

Sonny has been coaching and playing sports since his days in college. He transitioned from coaching as a tennis pro in various tennis clubs, to Nike and eventually to the sport of pickleball. He is a Team HEAD-sponsored player, USA Pickleball Ambassador and PPR Certified Professional. Feel free to check out his website (https://sonnytannan.com/) or reach out to connect with him on social media.

He welcomes every level of play to step on the court in order to learn something about their game and how to elevate it to the next level. If you have just begun to play the sport or are looking for competitive strategy and tactics for tournament-level play, you will leave each lesson with at least 1 actionable item to improve your game. See you on the courts soon!

Meet Kristen Larrick, Director of Pickleball Programming

Kristen Larrick has been a part of the YMCA since the day she was born. Growing up, she spent a lot of her time in childcare, participating in sports camps, working as a camp counselor, and volunteering at events at the YMCA. Kristen’s time spent participating on many YMCA sports teams and camps led her to a full scholarship to play Division 1 volleyball at the College of William & Mary. Here, she majored in Kinesiology and minored in Art and Art History with the intent on continuing to be a part of the YMCA.

She began her talents at the YMCA as the Assistant Wellness Director at YMCA Anthony Bowen in D.C., overseeing the gym floor, personal training, and group exercise. After about 2 years, she spent a summer helping out at YMCA Camp Letts in Edgewater M.D., and then returned as Assistant Wellness Director at YMCA Fairfax County Reston in V.A. for about a year.

Kristen is excited to help start the pickleball program at the YMCA of Metropolitan Washington as the new Director of Pickleball Programming! The YMCA has always been an integral part of Kristen’s life and over the years she has adopted the mission and is passionate about continuing her efforts to give back to the community.

Meet Eric White, Pickleball Coach

Eric, a PPR certified teaching professional, has been playing pickleball for over 7 years and currently carries a 5.0+ rating.   He won a bronze medal at the US Open in the 5.0 division (19-49 year division) at the age of 46 and is the USAPA Ambassador for Calvert County, Maryland.  He has years of experience teaching pickleball clinics, small group instruction lessons, ladder leagues, and ratings clinics.  Eric has also been a tennis coach at Huntingtown High School for the last 17 years and prior to that a junior college tennis coach for 4 years.  He looks forward to helping you achieve your pickleball goals!

Meet George Dwyer, Pickleball Coach

George Dwyer is a certified teaching pro by the Professional Pickleball Registry. He has taught hundreds of students through Introductory, Intermediate, and Individual instruction sessions and clinics. He has been teaching for several years for the City of Alexandria, Virginia Department of Recreation, Parks and Cultural Activities, and now the Y. Dr. Dwyer is a contributing editor at Pickleball Magazine, and serves on the Advisory Board of the Jimmy and Rosslyn Carter School of Peace and Conflict Resolution at George Mason University.

Meet Bianca Russo, Pickleball Coach

Bianca (she/her) has been playing pickleball since 2003 in NJ — she learned the game in high school gym class. Now a PPR certified pickleball coach, Bianca teaches the sport to beginners and improvers in Washington, DC and in Maryland. Having placed in third during the mixed doubles DC Classic pickleball tournament during Spring of ’21, Bianca is thirsty to improve her own game and compete more in regional tournaments and leagues. Want to get better at pickleball? Play more pickleball! Paddles up.

Meet Brad Paleg, Pickleball Coach

Brad is a certified teaching coach (Professional Pickleball Registry). He has an extensive racquet sports background including one-wall paddleball, platform tennis, table tennis, racquetball, and pickleball. For much of his professional career, Brad has trained hundreds in technology-related topics. He has studied adult learning strategies at the graduate level and uses these skills in his classes. Brad is excited to be instructing students to improve various aspects of their games in a safe and fun manner. No matter your physical capabilities or athletic background, pickleball can be enjoyed by all. Brad looks forward to working with you to evolve your game.

The five basic pickleball rules are:

  1. Serving must be underhand from the baseline, diagonally crosscourt, and the serve cannot land in the no-volley zone (kitchen).
  2. The serving player/team must let the return of serve bounce.
  3. The ball must stay in bounds during play and bounce no more than once per side.
  4. Players cannot hit the ball in the air when in the kitchen.
  5. Games are played to 11, win by two. Points are only scored by the serving player/team. There are more rules to the game, but these five will help you to get started. Have fun!

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