Want to play the fastest growing sport in America, but only have a tennis net?
Don’t worry! This helpful guide will cover everything you need to know about whether you can adapt that tennis net for the perfect game of pickleball.
Specifically, we’ll dive into:
- The differences between a pickleball net and a tennis net
- Whether you can use a tennis net to play pickleball and (spoiler)
- How to use a tennis net to play pickleball!
Ready? Let’s pickle!
Pickleball Net vs Tennis Net
Pickleball and tennis nets look similar and are even made of similar materials, but they differ in height, width, and how they are constructed. Pickleball nets are 34 inches high (middle), 36 inches high (near posts), and ~ 22 feet wide. Tennis nets are higher with a center height of 36 inches and a post height of 42 inches. Tennis nets are 42 feet wide and also have a thicker cable running through the “tape” or top part of the net.
Can you tell the difference between these?
If you are looking to play pickleball using a tennis net, it’s important to know that the tennis net will likely be several inches higher than a standard pickleball net.
And due to the thicker cable in the tennis net, “let” balls that hit the tape and go over in pickleball may not make it over a tennis net.
Otherwise, it is perfectly fine to enjoy a game of pickleball with a tennis net!
Is a pickleball net the same height as a tennis net?
No. A pickleball net is not the same height as a tennis net. Pickleball nets are 34 inches high in the middle and 36 inches high near the end posts. Tennis nets are higher with a center height of 36 inches and a post height of 42 inches.
Can you use a tennis net for pickleball?
Yes! You can use a tennis net for pickleball. There are actually a couple of ways to do this, including using the tennis net as is or weighting the tennis net to drop it to regulation pickleball net height.
If you’re in a pinch and there’s no pickleball net available to you, the easiest option is to use the tennis net as is.
If you’re more serious about the game and want the net to be as close to pickleball regulation as possible, you can use weights, bungee cords, or other materials to lower the net to pickleball regulations.
And note in the picture below that you won't be able to do around the post (ATP) shots due to the width of the tennis net!
Also, even though the net height differences are only slight, it’s still recommended to use erase-able chalk or tape to mark off the kitchen, side, service, and center lines of a pickleball court for reference.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Tennis Net vs Pickleball Net
Are pickleball and tennis nets the same?
No - although pickleball nets and tennis nets have a similar look and construction, there are distinct differences between the 2.
Pickleball nets are lower than tennis nets and not as wide.
In addition, tennis nets have a stronger cable running through the top of the net than pickleball nets do (this will change how “let” behave if you are using a tennis net for pickleball).
Are pickleball nets lower than tennis?
What is the correct height of a pickleball net?
The correct height of a regulation pickleball net is 34 inches (86.36 cm) in the middle and 36 inches (91.44 cm) at the end posts. This is the regulation net height set by the USA Pickleball Association.
What is the pickleball net height & width in meters?
If you prefer the metric system, the pickleball net height and width in meters are as follows:
- Pickleball Net Height: 0.86 meters in the center and 0.91 meters at the end posts
- Pickleball Net Width: 6.1 meters (play area), 6.71 meters (total)
What is the tennis net height and width in meters?
Tennis nets are higher and wider than pickleball nets. Their metric heights are:
- Tennis Net Height: 0.91 meters in the center, 1.07 meters at the end posts
- Tennis Net Width: 12.8 meters