History of Padle Tennis
Paddle tennis was born in Acapulco (Mexico) in 1969 by the hand of Enrique Corcuera, who adapted a piece of land on his country house. It was played with wooden paddles and was called Paddle-Tennis.
The origin of paddle tennis in Spain dates back to 1974, when Alfonso de Hohenlohe, a German-Spanish businessman, made a trip to Acapulco, to visit his friend Enrique Corcuera. There, he discovered the play and brought it to Spain.
In 1975, an Argentinean friend of Alfonso de Hohenlohe decided to import the sport to his country after being a direct witness to its success. Argentina is where paddle tennis gains unprecedented importance, becoming the second most practiced sport. Distinguished men such as Horacio Álvarez Clementi, Cacho Nicastro and Diógenes de Urquiza were pioneers of this sport there.
It began to expand to different parts of Spain: Andalucia, Madrid, Barcelona, Galicia, Basque Country, etc. Today it is hard to calculate the number of courts in our country due to the numerous court constructions over the last few years.
In 1991 the International Padel Federation was established in Madrid. Its president, the Spanish Julio Alegría Artiach, created an international circuit and specified a worldwide regulation.
In 1993, paddle tennis was consolidated as a sport after recognition by the Higher Sports Council. Furthermore, paddle tennis is played in other countries in America such as Brazil, Uruguay, Chile, Paraguay, etc. It is also extending gradually to European countries like Sweden, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, etc. In fact, the different federations have been succeeding in these countries, achieving great success in terms of the number of federations and construction of new facilities. Spain is recognized as a paddle tennis promoter in Europe in this sense.
The success of this new sport in a short time attracted distinguished tennis figures such as Manolo Santana, who began to organize tournaments and expand the paddle tennis throughout the Costa del Sol, where several clubs began to build their own courts.
Information about Paddle Tennis
Paddle tennis has many similarities with tennis, it is played in pairs, two against two. The goal is that the ball passes to the opposite field with a single shot, with the help of the racket held by hand, without using other parts of the body and with the possibility of bouncing off the walls. The dimensions of the court, the ball, the paddles with which it is played and some of the rules are also different.
Many paddle tennis players believe that the ideal duration of a paddle tennis match should be approximately one hour and a half; because, if it lasts up more than two hours, part of the match’s intensity gets lost; and if it’s less than an hour, there is hardly time to play the three sets.
The paddle tennis court is a rectangle (10 meters wide by 20 meters long) divided by a net with a white band on the top with a height of 0.88 meters in the center (at the extremes it can rise to a maximum of 0.92 meters). The sidelines are parallel to the playing area (at a distance of 6.95 meters).
How do you play paddle tennis in pairs? If one goes to the left the other also goes to the left. If one goes to the right, the other also goes to the right. It is essential to always help your partner, going as a block, both in defense and in attack, covering the net.
Paddle tennis is the second most practiced sport in our country and the one that is having the most success over the last few years. There are more and more clubs to practice it every day, more courts in sports centers, and gradually more urbanizations are allocating some piece of land to build a paddle tennis court.
It is estimated that in Spain there are currently more than 11,000 paddle tennis courts distributed among more than 2,000 sports centers, as both, tennis clubs and gyms, have seen in this sport a way to get customers.
The current champion of the World Padel Tour is the Spanish Juan Lebrón (male category) and Gemma Triay and Lucía Sáinz (female category), but the Argentinean Fernando Belasteguín, also known as “Bela”, is probably the best paddle tennis player in history for most professional paddle tennis lovers.
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