Tuesday, November 28, 2023 (Court Day #611)

With my PPR coaching certification workshop coming up on Friday and they said they will be evaluating my play there—though there was talk of using UTPR or DUPR ratings—I felt it would be wise to get in some gameplay. I had physical therapy and Scotts Valley anyway at 5:30 p.m., so once I was done about an hour later, I just hopped in the car and drove across the road to the courts.

Skypark

Even with the November chill in the air where you could see your breath, things were hopping and they were using the sign-up board.

It was super fun getting to see a lot of the regulars there. There is David and Max and Tiffany and her twin sister Nicole, and Larry Y. and Mike. Also, there was Sean Lynch, who is teaching the other pickleball class through Santa Cruz County Parks & Rec at Willowbrook on Sundays immediately after my class. I didn’t get a chance to play with him tonight. I hear he’s a banger with little soft game, while I may have played with him in the past, I don’t recall doing so.

Overall, I was disappointed in my play as evening . . . not a surprise, given this is my second outing in three months and minimal play in the last six months. My play was kind of sloppy and I hit a few shots wide trying for winners. There is also an overhead that I jumped up, swung, and the ball landed about three feet in front of me. I’m not sure that I’ve ever done that before! It was rather embarrassing, but fortunately I was playing with a fun group of people.

This play went on over the three hour stretch that I was there. My play improved to the point where I starting to get happier with it. I need to be patient with myself.

There are a couple of noticeable changes over the last six months. One is Pauly has gotten much better. He has some side spin his drives and has better serves too. I noticed was Max has some pretty good spin on his serves . . . much like the banana shot I was talking about in one of my last few posts, that’s what he’s using. One thing is, Max is consistently using that one serve and that makes him predictable. I was taking half a step to the right. There was one where he switched it up and served it barely in reach of my backhand and got me—point! Although that was only once over the course of the night. All the rest of his serves were curving off to my right. Nonetheless, it’s a good weapon that he’s developed.

There is young woman there, but I don’t believe that I played with before it seems that she knew the fellow name Spencer. Her name is Sam. She somewhat short and stocky and has an obviously strong tennis background. She didn’t have much of a soft game, but her drives and scoops are excellent.

I was in a game with Brandon against David and Max when the lights clicked off at 9:30 p.m. The score was tied 10-10. It was very entertaining and challenging game.

My surgery knee was not very happy by the end of the three hours. As I walked to my car, I was significantly hurting on the inside of my right knee. Also the back of my right hand and my right wrist were aching a bit.


Wednesday, November 29, 2023 (No Play)

My knee is sore this morning with certain motions, but is much better than last night.

Pickleball Passes Tennis

Apple’s website has an article that I just discovered from last month about pickleball through data collected from their Apple Watches. (I have an older one that I only wear when I need discretion to access texts and calls and I don’t use my Apple Watch for pickleball!)
https://www.apple.com/newsroom/2023/10/new-apple-research-highlights-the-health-benefits-of-pickleball/

“Researchers also saw a steady increase in the popularity of pickleball workouts, with pickleball workouts surpassing tennis workouts for the first time. Utah took the top spot as the state with the most recorded pickleball workouts per capita in the study. The research found that both pickleball and tennis workouts were popular across all adult ages, and both were more popular with men than women.” 

“The average peak heart rate was nine beats per minute faster during tennis workouts, which averaged 152 beats per minute, compared to 143 beats per minute in pickleball.”

A incredibly strong growth trend for pickleball. Tennis appears stable. It’s interesting to see the peaks and valleys of weather on the chart . . . dipping in winter and peaking in summer.


Thursday, November 30, 2023 (No Play)

Tonight, around 8 p.m., I discovered that there are an additional two hours of videos that I was supposed to watch before the coaching certification workshop tomorrow. Oops. Cramming…

Number of days on a court: 611
Number of total hours: 2,680
Number of paid coaching hours: 5

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