Types of Pickleball Games played at CTPA
CTPA offer a variety of games for our members based on their interest and the type of players they are. Below is a chart of the different types of member we are and the recommended play based on the type of player you are. Below that is a description of all the games. We hope this information helps you get out on the court to play.
Type of player
Level Play Play is limited to those in the same skill level (2.5,3.0,3.5,4.0) This is where you are playing members of similar skill levels. This allows for enjoyable play for all types of players and a great way to improve your game.
Multi-Level Play Play combines two levels or more in the same session, thus providing opportunities to players of lower level to complete with players of a higher level. This type of play supports development and growth.
Public Play Play is open to all skill levels as well as the public. Players choose if they want to play round robin, Winner stay and split, etc. Public Play is usually between the hours of 1 PM to 4 PM.
Open play encourages players from different levels to play together regardless of their CTPA Club Rating. Depending on the number of courts available, Open Play courts may be designated as Beginner, Intermediate or Advanced. Players can choose the courts they wish to play on. Registering on CourtReserve is encouraged so that others know there will be enough players but not required. Players can register for one level but move between levels if they wish.
Open Play is a 4 on, 4 off system of play. Players will stack paddles in sets of 4 in order on a bench. The first 4 paddles are the players who will play on the next available court. If 4 players want to group together, they must wait until all 4 players are available and go behind all existing players. They must allow others to proceed in front of them to fill any unfilled foursomes. For example, if there are 3 players waiting and then a group of 4 following in line, the group of 4 cannot play until the group of 3 is filled regardless of the number of open courts.
- If you cannot get a reservation for Up.Down split I suggest you wait list and also look 1 hour prior to the event to see if there are any last minute opening.
- If you cannot make it because of a last minute event please remove your name from Court Reserve and email the coordinator. Please do not do a no-show without me knowing as there are so many people on the waiting list.
- We will start on time since we only have 2 hours to play. Arrive a minimum of 5 minutes before start time. If you arrive after courts are re-adjusted which will be a couple minutes before we start, you will begin on Court 1 and maybe even start the first game as the time keeper. At times we may have people who have not signed up but are waiting at the courts in case someone does not show. If you are not there by the time we start the second game, you may no longer have a spot.
- Please warm up and start on one of the Courts that you signed on…..don’t go to another court to start warming up.
- We will play 12 minute games. The team on the gate side will serve first.
- The team with the most points when the time is up will go up a court and split. The losing team will go down a court and split. When the time is up, know if you finished on the right or left hand side of the court. When you go up or down and split, you will want to find the person from the other team who finished in the same court position as you (right or left). The team that finishes on the right side will serve first on the gate side.
- You do not have to change sides during the game since sides are assigned randomly….but if all four players agree to switch at 6 or 8 points, that is OK.
- If the score is tied when the buzzer goes off, then the team who has the serve is the winner. If time is called the point in progress will not count as play stops immediately.
- The losing team on the lower courts may come off to allow the (one) or two people waiting to get on. As the team comes off they will be responsible to start the timer and to holler out that time is up. When that team come back on the next game, they will be right or left based on where the finished the last game. If there are 3 people waiting then we suggest to play a 3 person cutthroat game during the time. The last to arrive will wait until the third game to get on and will be joined by one of the team members that lost on the first game. The other team mate will be first for game four.
- Balls are not provided. Please have a ball and take it with you when you go up or down to the next court.
- We will break 2 minutes between games but after every three games will take a 5 minute break. Those who want a rest for a game can change places with the team waiting to get onto Court 1.
Round Robin Play
- Play a timed game (typically 12 minutes) playing with a minimum of 5 players
- Players are assigned a number (starting with 1 and finishing with the number of players)
- The “coordinator” assigns courts and teams based on the ‘round robin rotation sheet’ (provided) beginning with round 1. When the round (game) is completed the “coordinator” will refer to the Round robin rotation sheet for the round 2 team assignments/courts. This continues until the allocated court time for the Round robin play is completed. It is important that if you sign up for a RR session that you are there for the entire duration.
- At the end of the timed play the team with the lead is declared the “winner”; if the score is tied, the team with the ball is deemed the winner.
- Round robin play can be mixed, men only or women only. It can also be played across levels or within levels.
Challenge Courts are assigned by skill level as follows, but can be used by other levels if assigned skill levels are not utilizing them.
Using Both sides of the Courts Using One side
Court 2 Level 2.5 Court 5 Levels 2.5 - 3.0
Court 3 Levels 2.5 - 3.0 Court 6 Levels 3.0 – 3.5
Courts 4 & 5 Levels 3.0 – 3.5 Court 7 Levels 3.5 – 4.0
Courts 6 & 7 Levels 3.5 – 4.0 Court 8 Levels 34.0 – 4.5+
Court 8 Levels 4.0 - 4.5+
What is a Challenge?
A “challenge” is indicated by placing your paddle in the fence of the court you wish to challenge and verbally announcing “We challenge” to alert players that you are waiting to play. Ideally, it is best to challenge with a partner. If a player challenges without a partner, one of the exiting players can choose to partner with the single player. Once the game is finished either the losing team or team with two or more consecutive games (wins or losses) is replaced by the challengers. Teams can remain together for up to three consecutive games and then must switch partners for at least one game. Play is on a first come-first served basis. Additional teams can hang their paddles beneath the paddles already in the fence and rotate onto the court in paddle order.
How do skill level assigned challenge courts work?
The skill level challenge courts are a preference or priority and not exclusive. Meaning, any of the challenge courts can be used by any skill level unless there are sufficient players (at least 4) of the skill level assigned for that court, they will have priority of that court. The lower levels always have priority to regain their courts. If you are not of that level and playing on the court and are challenged by at least 4 players of the assigned skill level, you should finish your game and vacate the court. If there are less than 4 players challenging for their assigned skill level court, the normal 2 person challenge rules apply. If two higher level players challenge on a lower level court, the lower level players can choose to accept or not. Accepting a higher level challenge is a great opportunity to improve your game or use the gams as a mentoring opportunity.
Are non-CTPA members/Guests allowed to play?
A non-member may only play if a guest pass is purchased in advance by a CTPA Member for that day. Guest passes can be purchased on Court Reserve at 9 PM for $5. You can check if someone bought a Guest Pass by going to 9PM of that day and seeing if it was purchased.
Ladders There is typically a small fee associated this event
- Ladder is generally a 6-week session. The league has many players.
- Groupings of 4 or 5 players will be assigned. You will pair with all players in your group for a game. If there are 4 people in your group you will play 3 games to 15, if you have 5 people you will play 4 games to 11.
- Based on the total points you accumulate will determine if you finished, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, etc.
- The next week you will be assigned to a higher or lower ranking based on your game scores the previous week. Therefore, you as a person will go up or down the ladder based on your success.
- Ladders can be played as individuals, mixed doubles, doubles, women or men only. It can be also played as singles.
- More information on the web site under Member Section
Your Four Pickleball (YFP)
YFP allows four people to play together, guilt free, without rotating in other players. Nonmembers are allowed but a member must buy a pass on line at Court Reserve BEFORE you play. You can buy one pass per member.
Chose your foursome and play together until all courts are filled and other foursomes are queueing. When that happens and your game ends, leave the court and call in the next foursome. Queue with ONE paddle from the group, by the queueing board on the fence by court 6.
How do I sign up for YFP?
You must register on Court Reserve to be one of the YFP captains. As of now, we are allowing 12 foursomes on 8 courts to play within a certain period of time. Only the captain of the group needs to sign up for a spot. (10 captains for 7 courts, 9 captains for 6 courts, 8 captains for 5 courts, 7 captains for 4 courts). Only one person from your group signs up.
Courts are full for YFP how does our group start?
Queue one paddle (per foursome) at the fence on Court 6. Let all YFP courts know you are queueing if you are first to queue. The next foursome MUST come off the court after finishing their game to 11 (or win by two). Please limit your warm up to 2 minutes and begin playing.
My group has 5 members, can the extra person queue their paddle so he/she does not have to wait so long to get on the court?
No. Your group can only queue one paddle and only when you are finished with the game and off the court. Only then you can queue one paddle (for your group).
How many paddles should be at the queuing station?
If 9 captains signed up for six courts, then there should only be a maximum of three paddles in the queue.
I am a captain and know there should only be 3 paddles queued but there are four. What do I do?
Pull out each paddle and see who owns it and what group they represent. The person who is not part of the groups who signed up needs to have the rules POLITELY explained to them. The rules are posted on the courtside bulletin board. Most people who violate the rules do so because they are not familiar with the rules…..again politely explain the rules to them.
Other Questions & Answers about YFP:
Our group has four captains (4 groups of 4) and 17 people showed up. Can we just take 3 courts to use as our own and we will just rotate our people?
No, each group of four players must come off the courts after they are done with their game to 11 points and queue to play again. That is the rules of YFP.
Our group has 2 captains and 11 people. Another friend came, making it 12 people. Can we now queue three sets of four people?
No….if there are 2 captains listed on Court Reserve, then you only have two teams that can rotate through. Playing as three groups is unfair to all the other captains/groups that signed up and we are encouraging people to keep track of paddles being queued to avoid this from happening….but if these people are part of your group, ultimately you are the responsible person who should step up and explain the rules to them and discourage them from queuing a paddle.
We never know how many of our group will show up. So we are just going to take 4 captains slots and if only have 8 or 12 people, so what….everyone else will be happy to have less teams.
The only way for the committee to combat this is to start penalizing people who over book or start charging for captains to sign up for YFP. If you start doing this, others will figure it out and start doing it too. Please be respectful to your fellow members by not overbooking courts.
Someone showed up who was not invited and wants to play in our group?
If you do not want the person in your group then tell them….that is the main idea of YFP, you can play “guilt-free” with whom you want to play. This is on you to say “No”. If you want to include them, that is fine, just as long as you still follow the rules of YFP. Please do not start an extra group and starting queueing an extra paddle.
Why does YFP have to be so complex?
- If you follow the rules and have just three people with you it is very simple.
- As a captain, you are not reserving a court exclusively for you. YFP on 6 courts allow for 36 members (9 groups) to play during that session instead of only 24.
- If you start adding a 5th & 6th person to you group, you need to explain to your extra people waiting that they cannot queue a paddle. Only when your group is off the court can you queue.
- Help prevent another group from slipping in by keeping track of how many paddles are being queued.
- Most importantly don’t be that group that tries to slip in who did not sign up. If you arrive early for the next sessions and the courts are full with YFP play does not mean you are invited to play with others.
- If you were not invited by a captain to play then don’t show up to the courts during YFP and expect to play. YFP is NOT “open play”…..it is a session just like a ladder or U/D-S that requires a reservation or in this case (YFP) an invitation.
I booked as a captain but I was told last minute that one of my teammates could not show up. What do I do?
If you know 12 hours or more in advance, please cancel out. If it is the morning of, please try to find a replacement if possible by reaching out to others.
I saw on the schedule there was one court as Open Play Court (Challenge Court, lessons, etc.) and no one signed up for it, so my group will play there exclusively?
If you signed up for YFP and another court not scheduled for YFP is being unused, then all YFP captains will share it. Even if it was a 3.5+ Challenge Court and everyone in your group happens to be a 3.5+ members. If your name was on the YFP list, then you are only committed for YFP. If your group did not sign up for 3.5 Challenge Court, then they are committed to YFP. Again, be FAIR and respectful of all our members.
I want to bring a guest, is that OK?
You can bring one guest but only if you purchased a guest pass in advance, on Court Reserve. Go to 9PM of that day and register for a guest pass and pay the $5 fee. If you want a second guest, then another member will have to buy a guest pass for you. Please be fair to all your fellow members who paid their yearly fee and get a guest pass for non-members. It’s easy to do and know that any member can easily check if you bought the pass or not.
How can I check if another member purchased a guest pass for their guest?
Just go on Court Reserve at 9PM of that day and look. That members name should be listed as buying a guest pass. If they did not, please let a committee member know and we will speak to that member.
- Singles are played with one person on each side of the court. The rules of pickleball are the same, however the tactics of the game are different from doubles games. There are limited sessions available for singles.
- Shootouts Small fee associated with this event
- Allow you and a fixed partner to sign up together for a competitive match against others of the same level. Shootouts are typically round robin format where your team will play once against all other teams. There may or may not be a final round, based on the structure.
Tournaments Fee associated with this event
- Same as a shootout above but may be played as a double elimination with pairings assigned randomly.
How are ‘types of play’ determined in the Court Reserve schedule?
The type of play is determined by a volunteer coordinator. It is recommended to have a coordinator at session for each type of play. The coordinator will facilitate the play and provide feedback with court utilization participation. The feedback is not about play; it is means of determining the best types of play and levels to utilize the courts. We want them all to be full! When the courts become too crowded, the township will consider building additional courts! We would like this to happen as soon as possible!
Having a session coordinator will advocate for the popular types of play, providing feedback to our Court Utilization or Schedule Managers, who are open for additional support in scheduling future play and events.
Court Utilization Manager, Maria Siggia Schwab, firstname.lastname@example.org Opens a New Window.
Schedule Manager, Paula Vigrass, email@example.com Opens a New Window.
Keep in mind we are an ‘all-volunteer’ organization so we ask all members to do their part in helping to make our association the best it can be. If you are attending one or two sessions on a regular basis, please consider adopting that session as the coordinator. It is in your best interest to ensure that type of play remains on future schedules. Being a coordinator does not require that you are at every session, but simply to make certain the session is running smoothly.
If you have any questions email a Court Utilization Coordinator:
Maria Siggia Schwab firstname.lastname@example.org Opens a New Window.
Rose Ayres email@example.com Opens a New Window.