“A lot of people play pickleball just for fun. You can still go to tournaments for fun, or you can go to tournaments and be serious about it, improve, and move up in the ranks.” - Lucy Kitcher Click To Tweet
What is it like to play in a pickleball tournament? So many players stay away from playing in a tournament, but today’s guest explains how even a novice player can benefit from them.
In this episode of Dinking Out Loud, we have Lucy Kitcher, a pickleball pro since 2017. In addition to competing in tournaments herself, Lucy has experience organizing tournaments all over the country, but her passion is organizing all-inclusive and surprisingly affordable pickleball trips. These trips are fabulous opportunities for players to improve their skills, travel, and have a blast learning from a pro.
Listen on to find out more about the benefits of tournaments and how to take advantage of a Lucy Kitcher pickleball trip.“My goal is to give players something affordable. There are many players that haven’t had any formal instruction and it is a good opportunity to improve their skills and have fun at the same time.” - Lucy Kitcher Click To Tweet
- [1:13] – Lucy shares her beginning of playing pickleball about 5 years ago. She checked out the sport and never put the paddle down.
- [1:55] – Starting her first tournament and finding success, Lucy took a sabbatical from her teaching job to focus on pickleball.
- [3:14] – LucyKitcher.com is now up and running for tournaments, resources, trips, and a contact form to reach Lucy.
- [4:38] – In the beginning, pickleball started out as a hobby and a way to take great trips with friends. But as Lucy started playing with better players and it grew her desire to compete in higher levels.
- [6:27] – A lot of players who decide to play in a tournament, play down a level for better chances at winning. For Lucy, she says she would rather play against better players and not win than not giving it a shot.
- [7:32] – During the pandemic isolation last year, Lucy set up a net in her living room and created daily tips for players while they dealt with being stuck at home.
- [9:16] – Lucy started in 2017 hosting trips. The key to making them successful is that they are affordable. Lucy describes what’s included in the price.
- [11:02] – A lot of people have said that she should raise her prices, but Lucy’s goal is to give players an affordable way to improve their skills.
- [11:31] – Lucy describes a typical day on a trip including how she divided groups.
- [12:22] – There were several trips that had to be cancelled last year due to the pandemic, but Lucy shares that she started them back up in November and has had one each month since.
- [13:10] – These trips sell out very quickly. If you are interested in booking one, you can find the details on Lucy’s website.
- [14:32] – Lucy describes the work involved in being a tournament organizer.
- [15:48] – Although a lot of work, Lucy says the best part of organizing a tournament is seeing the players having a great time.
- [17:33] – Outside of pickleball, Lucy shares that she loved bike riding and trapeze. It helps with core strength and balance.
- [19:52] – Lucy shares tips for players and examples of what players may not know going into a paddle sport.