What Is the Two Bounce Rule in Pickleball

What Is the Two Bounce Rule in Pickleball?

Pickleball has straightforward rules that are easy to understand. One of the fundamental rules is the two-bounce rule. It applies to the serve, the return, and the shot after the return. 

The rule is straightforward, but it makes pickleball an entertaining game of rallying rather than a hurried game of quick points. For a smooth game of pickleball, it is essential to know the double bounce rule.

So what is the two-bounce rule in pickleball? Keep reading to learn everything you need about the two bounce rules!

What Is the Two Bounce Rule in Pickleball?

What Is the Two Bounce Rule in Pickleball

In simple terms, the double bounce rule states that the ball must bounce twice—once in the receiver’s square before they hit it back over the net and once again on the server’s side before they do the same.

In other words, each half must wait for the ball to land on their courtside following the serve before executing the first volley. 

The two-bounce rule applies to the first two strokes made after the ball has been served for a point, which is the first thing to understand. It indicates that each team will play its initial shot after the bounce. 

This means that both the serving team and the receiving side must wait for the ball to bounce before playing once it has been served or returned. So volleys are only permitted once the ball has rebounded on both sides of the court.

Note that this restriction does not allow you to let the ball bounce twice on your side of the court. As such, you immediately lose the point if you allow the ball to bounce twice on your side. 

This rule merely states that the ball must bounce once on each side for the serve and return shots. It is called the Double Bounce Rule because the bounce must occur on both sides of the court.

One thing worth noting is that the point begins as soon as the server serves the ball. So the point belongs to the server if they serve an ace or the returner hits the serve out of bounds or into the net. Then the point is awarded to the receiver if the server misses the serve or hits a winner.

Two Bounce Rule Vs Double Bounce Rule

Two Bounce Rule Vs Double Bounce Rule

There is no need to get confused about the name since there are no differences between them. The double bounce rule was renamed the “two-bounce rule” in the 2018 edition of the official pickleball rules book

However, it has the same meaning. The requirement that the ball bounces once on each side before being struck out of the air is enforced by this regulation.

Its meaning is the same whether it is referred to as the “double bounce rule” or the “two bounce rule.” It alludes to the serve and serves return bouncing.

What Is the Purpose of the Double Bounce Rule?

For new players, this rule may be challenging to understand. But you’ll see its significance soon enough. The double bounce rule helps to maintain a steady pace of play. It has to do with the changeover from serve to play. In addition, it enables players to fall into a fun playing pattern.

You might be questioning the initial purpose of this rule. Although it might appear odd or ridiculous, there is a fundamental justification underlying the rule.

Sports are incredibly challenging to create. Sports games have a straightforward goal—hit a little white ball into a hole in the ground—but they are also straightforward to manipulate when there are no regulations. So we have rules for sports to make them less likely to be manipulated and broken, not to make them more difficult.

Imagine hitting a home run in baseball without running around the bases. Or think about it for a second how the game of soccer would be like if players just had to take the ball and run to score without dribbling through the players. Rules prevent us from yelling, “what a boring game,” or “why so cheap?”

Pickleball is the same. The Double Bounce Rule was created to make the game playable. The game would be too frustrating to play without this regulation. The rule is set up to allow for a natural game progression without providing anyone with an unfair edge.

Pickleball is a skill- and strategy-based sport that emphasizes doubles play. Everyone can use this rule, not just those adepts at quick basepoint drives or overhead smashes! The finest players can make any serve return or shaky shot at the line look simple.

If serves were made at the moment without bouncing, the point would be over in two shots. So if the point only has two or three shots, the game will become monotonous. Also, high servers and soft serve will be challenging to handle since they bounce before returning.

The opposing team may have difficulties if a ball is dinked over the net since they will have to sprint from the baseline while attempting not to miss an easy volley return! For this reason, pickleball must bounce before being returned.

More so, this rule encourages longer rallies even though it may appear like an unfair way to erase a serve and volley advantage. It makes the game’s transition seamless. 

In addition to extra room on their opponent’s court-facing side with shorter shots than crosscourt ones, it allows each team more time for planning without allowing them to grab the lead in points immediately.

How to Remember the Pickleball Two Bounce Rule

How to Remember the Pickleball Two Bounce Rule

Standing far back on the court when returning a serve is the easiest way to keep this rule fresh in your mind. Try taking a few steps backwards to remind yourself that you must let the ball bounce. As a visual cue for where you should stand, use the baseline. 

The same advice also applies to the serving side. Give yourself room for the third shot by allowing yourself to take a step backwards. This is also highly effective if the ball drops close to the baseline since you will have allowed time to let it bounce rather than reacting hastily and hitting a volley.

Another frequent blunder is when someone on the court’s serving side advances too quickly after the serve. 

 When a serve is made, it’s typical for beginners to begin going toward the net. However, this is incorrect. If the return is deep and coming your way, it will likely land close to your feet and be challenging to strike after it bounces. So always remember to back up!



The pickleball double bounce regulation is mainly in place to prevent incredibly sharp points. Early in games, players would be able to score put-away goals to win, which would diminish the fun of the game. As you already know, long rallies are best. Moreover, more calories tend to burn in playing intense with Pickleball.

Pickleball is a fair game because the ball bounces on both sides, preventing either the server or returner from having a significant advantage at any particular point.

So now you can answer the question of the two-bounce rule in pickleball. Also, you know what to do not to fault this rule. As such, when next you are out playing your favorite pickleball game, play like a pro by keeping this forget this rule.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) 

Got more questions regarding the two-bounce rule in pickleball? Here are some that are already answered.

Can You Allow the Ball Bounce Two Times in Pickleball?

You immediately lose the point if you allow the ball to bounce twice on your side. This rule merely states that the ball must bounce once on each side for the serve and return shots. The Double Bounce Rule is so-called because the bounce must occur on both sides of the court.

How Many Times Do You Have to Let the Ball Bounce in Pickleball?

Players must let the ball bounce once before volleying on each side, and there is a seven-foot kitchen zone on either side of the net to avoid “spiking.” The server keeps serving, switching service courts until there is a fault.

Can the Second Bounce in Pickleball Be in the Kitchen?

You can enter the kitchen at any point during a game of pickleball, but you can’t stand there and volley the ball. This implies that you can stand in the kitchen and hit the ball if it has bounced.

In pickleball, the kitchen is the space that extends to both sidelines and is 7 feet from the net on each side. The non-volley zone is the official moniker for the kitchen. Players are not permitted to volley the ball in the kitchen or on the kitchen line.

What Is the Most Challenging Trick to Do in Pickleball?

Keeping the pickleball low while still over the net is one of the most challenging pickleball skills to master. If your pickleball is low, your opponents won’t be able to gain the lead with a forceful stroke.

For instance, if you serve low, your opponent is more likely to hit a drop shot than a drive. A dink rather than a quick volley will also follow from a low shot at the Non-Volley Zone Line.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top