Aerial view of tennis courts and pickleball courts Pickleball courts and tennis courts at Club Med on Providenciales.
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Providenciales Pickleball

Pickleball instructor in the Turks and Caicos
Jean-Guy of the TCI Tennis Academy, a local tennis and pickleball instructor.

While the highlight of a trip to the Turks and Caicos will undoubtedly be a visit to one of the world-class beaches for which the Turks and Caicos has become known, there are also a number of land sports and activities to be explored. One such activity is pickleball: a fun, social, and relatively low-stake sport that has become increasingly popular among visitors to the Turks and Caicos.

Pickleball, which combines elements of badminton, tennis, and table tennis, was first invented in the United States in 1965 and can be played either indoors or outdoors.

A standard pickleball court is the same size as a doubles badminton court, measuring 20 feet by 44 feet. The height of the net is about 36 inches at the sidelines and 34 inches in the middle. The court is striped similar to a tennis court with both right and left service courts, as well as a 7-foot non volley zone in the front of the net.

Pickleball court at dust in the Turks and Caicos
The courts at the Royal Turks and Caicos Golf Club. Many courts are lit for evening and night playing.

Each player needs a pickleball paddle—which is slightly smaller than a standard tennis racquet but larger than a tennis paddle—a holed pickleball, and a net. Unlike some sports, there is no specific dress code to be followed for playing—players can wear comfortable attire that is climate appropriate, such as athletic shorts and T-shirts. However, tennis-style clothing is commonly used. Comfortable court shoes and eye protection are also highly recommended.

Pickleball can be played as either doubles or singles, and the rules are relatively simple, which make it an easy game for beginners of all ages to learn. The game can, however, quickly develop into a fast-paced, competitive game for experienced players.

Pickleball Courts

A number of resorts in the Turks and Caicos, such as Beaches resort, Club Med Turkoise, Seven Stars Resort & Spa, and West Bay Club offer on-site pickleball courts and facilities as an amenity to their guests, as do select private villas. For guests staying elsewhere, access to pickleball courts can also be arranged at reasonable rates, at sites such as the Royal Turks and Caicos Golf Club and Graceway Sports Center.

Pickleball players
Pickleball courts can be found at several resorts, at the golf club, and at the sports center.

Most of the resorts also offer pickleballs as well as paddles for guest use, which eliminates the hassle of travelling with equipment. However, if you’d like to play using advanced equipment it is best to bring these with you as the pickleball equipment available on the islands is likely to be basic in nature. Similarly, while there are a number of stores that sell athletic clothing and shoes, prices on the island will likely be much higher than what you’d typically expect due to customs duties as well as import costs in the Turks and Caicos.

Clubs and Competitions

Providing the unique opportunity to play pickleball under the sun, a number of pickleball organizations have hosted pickleball tournaments, retreats, and vacations on the islands in recent years. These unique trips not only offer competitive play, but also professional clinics geared towards helping experienced players improve their skills and introducing the sport to new players—all while surrounded by the stunning turquoise hues of the Turks and Caicos and basking in the warm weather. There’s no doubt the islands are quickly becoming a popular pickleball destination.

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