Getting Started with Padel: A Beginner's Journey on How to Play Padel

How to Play Padel and Master the Game

Key Things to Remember

Learning about a new sport is all fun and games, literally! The do’s & don'ts and the tips & tricks that will help you play the sport to the best of your ability. Being a beginner allows you to challenge yourself and adapt your playing style to ensure that you and/or your partner are always on the winning side! Here is some of my handy advice to get you started before we dive deep into the intricacies of the game of padel!

  • Grasp the fundamentals: Focus on understanding the rules, equipment, and basic strokes like forehand, backhand, and volley. Consistent execution is key!
  • Gear up: Get a comfortable padel racquet and court shoes to optimize your movement.
  • Embrace the walls: Padel utilizes walls strategically. Learn how to use them to your advantage.
  • Practice makes perfect: Regular practice will enhance your skills and confidence.

Overview of Padel

Padel, a racquet sport born in Mexico in the late 1960s, has taken the western world by storm and amassed a sizeable crowd of padel lovers who enjoy this fun game. This game brings elements of tennis and squash to the court and is considered an interactive game that allows all ages to participate!

If you're searching for “how to play padel," we are here to tell you all the details you need to know about the sport to step onto the court with confidence!! 

Padel is typically played in doubles on an enclosed court with glass and metal mesh walls that aid you in your gameplay!

Padel Rules and Gameplay

The objective of learning how to play padel ball is to win the most sets (typically two out of three) and games within each set. Games are similar to tennis, with points scored at 15, 30, 40, and game. However, unlike tennis, padel utilizes a "golden point" system at deuce (40–40). The team that wins the next point wins the game.

Padel courts, as mentioned before, are slightly smaller than tennis courts enclosed by walls at 20m by 10m by 3m. Players can use these walls strategically to bounce the padel ball back into play after the first bounce on the ground. A net divides the court in half, positioned at the center and measuring 0.88m in height. 

Scoring a point occurs when the opposing team fails to return a valid shot or commits a fault. Faults include hitting the ball out of bounds, volleying the ball (hitting it before it bounces) in the non-volley zone, or serving incorrectly.

Necessary Equipment

Apart from the essential equipment that makes the game entertaining, your mindset that you bring to the court is also a factor to consider! You are here to engage in a fun and friendly match. Your equipment should consist of: 

  • Padel racquet: Unlike tennis racquets, padel racquets are solid-faced and have a smaller head with a strap for wrist security. Choose a lightweight racquet for beginners, focusing on comfort and maneuverability.
  • Padel Balls: Similar to tennis balls but with slightly less pressure, making them slower and easier to control. It is advised that, when playing padel, it is ideal to always use padel balls so as not to damage your racquet.
  • Court Shoes: Opt for shoes with good lateral support and a non-marking sole suitable for padel courts.

Basic Padel Strokes

Mastering fundamental strokes is crucial for success in padel. Here's a breakdown of two key strokes:

  • Forehand: Similar to a tennis forehand, this powerful stroke hits across the body with a dominant arm swing. Focus on a strong grip, balanced weight transfer, and a controlled swing for accuracy.
  • Backhand: The backhand can be executed with a one-handed or two-handed grip. In the one-handed grip, swing the racquet back and across your body, making contact with the ball in front of your non-dominant shoulder. The two-handed backhand offers more stability for beginners. Keep both arms close to your body and swing the racquet in a controlled arc.

Additionally, focusing on proper footwork and timing to execute these strokes effectively is also vital. As you become more proficient, you can explore advanced techniques such as smash and volley to enhance your gameplay and strategy.

Padel Grip

In padel, wielding your racquet effectively relies heavily on a proper grip. Here's how to hold it for optimal performance: Imagine shaking hands with the padel handle. This "continental grip" positions your thumb on one side of the bevel (angled edge) and your remaining fingers on the other. For extra control, some players extend their index finger slightly along the top face of the handle. This grip offers a sweet spot between power and control. It allows you to swing the racquet with freedom while maintaining stability for precise shots against the padel ball.  

A proper grip also reduces stress on your wrist and forearm, minimizing the risk of overuse injuries. By mastering your grip, you'll be able to generate powerful strokes, improve maneuverability, and enjoy a pain-free padel experience.


As we come to an end to this hopefully interesting and very informative article, you are now well versed in how to play padel ball! We've covered the essential aspects of playing padel and familiarised ourselves with the fundamentals. You're now equipped to step onto the court with confidence and enjoy the dynamic gameplay of padel.

Remember the importance of choosing the right equipment, such as the padel racquet and shoes, and focus on developing your technique over time. Whether you're a beginner or a seasoned player, applying the knowledge gained here will enhance your skills and enjoyment of the game. So gather your friends or find a local club like We Are Padel, and start playing padel today. Embrace the challenge, strive for improvement, and, most importantly, have fun on the court!