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Improve your dink rally in pickleball
Here is a new blog by Matt Slowinski with The Pickleball Clinic
Welcome to our blog on offensive dinking strategies in pickleball. Dinking is a fundamental skill in pickleball, but not all players use it to its full potential.
In today's blog, we're going to dive into a powerful offensive dinking strategy that can help you earn more pop-ups during dink rallies and ultimately put you in control of the game. We'll be drawing inspiration from the top players in the sport, including Ben Johns, who has been known to use this strategy to great effect.
What is Offensive Dinking in Pickleball?
Dinking is a crucial shot in pickleball, but not many players utilize it to its full potential. Most players are content with just getting their dinks in the court, without much thought to how they can be used offensively. However, the top players at the 4.5+ and pro level use their dinks with a purpose, aiming to get their opponents to pop the ball up so they can attack. Offensive dinking involves moving your opponent around the court and hitting dinks that force them to hit the ball far from their body, and then close to their body, causing them to lose control and pop the ball up.
One of the most basic and effective offensive dinking strategies was popularized by pickleball superstar Ben Johns. The strategy involves picking a target on the court, which is your opponent's inside and outside foot. The inside foot refers to the court closest to the center line, while the outside foot is closest to the sideline. By moving your opponent out wide and then jamming them in the middle, you create a discrepancy in their positioning, making it harder for them to control the ball and forcing them to pop it up.
Implementing the Strategy
Start by hitting your dinks right at your opponent. Once you've established a rhythm, start moving them out wide by hitting the ball to their outside foot. Then bring them back in by hitting into their inside foot, causing them to move back and forth and hit far from their body, and then close to their body. This movement and discrepancy in positioning will hopefully cause your opponent to pop the ball up, allowing you to attack with a roll volley or speed up.
Offensive dinking is a powerful weapon in pickleball, and with these tips, you can take control of the game and put your opponent on the defensive. Remember to practice this strategy consistently and always have a purpose with your dinks. With time and effort, you can take your game to the next level and become a force to be reckoned with on the court.