Pickleball Rules Doubles: The Most Complete Scoring Guide

Pickleball Rules Doubles: The Most Complete Scoring Guide

Pickleball is nowadays the fastest-growing sport in the USA. With over 2.8 million players all over the world (and still growing), now is the right time to join this trend. Pickleball game is a low-impact recreational activity that is super suitable for players of all ages.  Pickleball could play in a singles format, but most players would agree that when playing doubles the best experience in pickleball is had. 

In this article, we will introduce the rules for pickleball doubles, common strategies to incorporate, and the equipment you’ll need to take to the court. Let’s get to know about the doubles pickleball rules and have some fun! Pickleball is played either as doubles (two players per team) or singles, and doubles is the most common way to play. Pickleball rules doubles is the same as pickleball rules singles.

Pickleball Double Rules And Scoring

In this section, we will demonstrate pickleball rules doubles scoring, let’s get to know the guide to pickleball doubles scoring and learn some pickleball doubles scoring explained here, then you can go to the court with all this knowledge and have some fun with your friends or family!

Pickleball Double Rules

Here are the pickleball rules for doubles:

  • All serves must be made underhand, with contact to the ball made below the waist.
  • All serves must be performed in the opposite diagonal service space. Failure to do so will lose a point.
  • Players are only allowed one attempted serve at one time.
  • At the beginning of the game, only one player from the initial serving team is given a service turn. For the rest of the match, both members of the team will have a service turn before giving up the ball to their opponents. 
  • The server will continue to change sides of the court they serve until they cause a fault.
  • The receiving team never alternates sides during the game of pickleball.
  • According to the Double Bounce Rule, two teams must play their first shot of a rally off the bounce. Once both teams have done successfully… OPA! And volleys are now very fair game.
  • No players are allowed to be in the non-volley zone, also known as “the kitchen” unless the ball has already bounced on their side, which includes a player landing in the zone following a volley.
  • Only one bounce is permitted on the same side of the pickleball court. If two bounces occur, the team that hits the shot will win the point.
  • There is no rally scoring. Only the serving team can get the score. 
  • This is the format of keeping score: [Serving Team’s Score – Receiving Team’s Score – Service Turn]
  • Games are played best of 3 games. All matches are played to 11 points and win by 2.

Pickleball Double Scoring

How does scoring work in Pickleball? This is always a curious question for new and experienced players. There are different ways for scoring to work when playing singles or doubles, but actually, there only has a difference in cadence. Here, we provide a pickleball scoring guide for players to use as they progress their games. We will tell you the basic rules for serving, how to call the score, and doubles Pickleball scoring.

Pickleball Scoring Guide

  • Points to Win: The match is played to 11 points, and you must win by 2 points.
  • Position of Player: The player on the right side of the court will always serve first for his team.
  • Scoring Points: Only in one’s team’s serve, the player can win points.

Pickleball Doubles Scoring and Rules

  • A player can only win a point when his or her team is serving. If the player is on the receiving side, he can’t win that point. The serving team is the only team that can score points.
  • The first serve is served by the person on the right service court, which is also called the even court. The player serves underhand and diagonally to the opposite court.
  • If the serving team wins the point, the server moves from the right to the left side of the court, also known as the odd court, and then serves diagonally again.
  • To begin a game, the first serving team will start as the #2 serve, which means it will be a team side out if they lose the rally. But this situation only occurs on the first serve of a game.
  • The server will continue to serve from the right to the left side each time when they win a point.
  • Only players on the serving side of the court alternate from right to left, and they only alternate when scoring a point. Players on the receiving side do not change sides.
  • When the first server loses the rally, the serve passes to the second server on the same team. When the point ends, players stay on the side where they were, and the server serves from that side.
  • If that server two also loses the serve, it is the opponent’s team’s turn to serve, and they can try to score points. Similarly, the player on the right side serves first. This same pattern continues throughout the whole game.
  • The server number (1 or 2) only applies to that service turn. There is a common misconception among beginning players that the player keeps the same server number throughout the game, but actually, the number is effective only for one turn.
  • For every first serve of the game, only one person from the serving team serves. The first point in pickleball is called 0-0-2. The number “2” means that the game is started by the second server, and if the serving team loses a score, the serve passes to the opposite team. This rule minimizes the advantage of being the first team to serve in a match.

How to Call the Score in Pickleball Game

The score is always called by the player who serves, saying three numbers.
First Number: Serving Team’s Score
Second Number: Receiving Team’s Score
Third Number: Server’s Number (either 1 or 2)

Pickleball Serving Rules Doubles

Now let’s talk about pickleball serving rules doubles, like many other sports, the player can only win a point if his/her team is serving in the pickleball game. Notice the expression “team”, which means each player of a team can serve at least once a turn. So how does this serving work?

About pickleball doubles serving positions, when it’s your team’s turn to serve, the person on the right serving court will always be the first player to serve. Remember the word, always. This rule makes it easy and foolproof in the aspect of figuring out who is the one that serves first when it’s your team’s turn. So, when thinking in this way, the player on the right is the first server and the player on the left is the second one to serve.

However, the serving doesn’t go in sequential order like that. It’s not that a team serves only twice and then the other team continues to serve. Instead, if a team scores a point, the player gets to keep serving, which means that a team can reach 11 points and win the pickleball game with just one player serving. But what happens if the server makes a fault, such as hitting the ball into the net? Then the server passes the serving turn to his partner, who then becomes the second server.

But what if he also messes up the server? Well, your team is all out of serves! This situation is called “side out”, which means that your site is out of serves, and now it’s the opponent’s turn to serve.

Another thing that we’d like to emphasize is that when a team wins a point (don’t forget that one can only score a point when serving), you should switch places with your partner.

The pickleball doubles serving rules are pretty simple, but I want to mention them because it’s going to be very important to help you keep track of the score, so remember the pickleball rules for serving in doubles.

Pickleball rotation rules

Here is pickleball rotation rules and how pickleball doubles serving rotation work. Get to know about pickleball serving rotation can help you improve your game experience: 

  • The first serve is served by the person on the right service court, which is also called the even court. The player serves underhand and diagonally to the opposite court.
  • If the serving team wins the point, the server moves from the right to the left side of the court, also known as the odd court, and then serves diagonally again.

Pickleball Stacking Rules

In terms of pickleball stacking rules, if the player wants to stack, his/her partner will stand to the left side of the first server (instead of moving to the right side of the court). Once the first server serves the pickleball, each player of his/her team will take a step to the right and assume the normal positions again.

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