Pickleball on the Common — a ‘winter lifesaver’

Pickleball has been more than just a game for this group

By Richard W. Dionne, Jr.
Posted 1/21/21

Peter Maloney and his teammate Eileen Malloy celebrated after he whacked the softball-sized plastic yellow ball over the net, sending it whistling by his opponents, Cathy Winston and David Schwartz, …

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Pickleball on the Common — a ‘winter lifesaver’

Pickleball has been more than just a game for this group

Posted

Peter Maloney and his teammate Eileen Malloy celebrated after he whacked the softball-sized plastic yellow ball over the net, sending it whistling by his opponents, Cathy Winston and David Schwartz, for a winner during a winter pickleball game at the Town Common tennis courts on Tuesday afternoon.

“When I told my family that I played pickleball, they laughed and made fun of me,” said Ms. Winston. “They don’t realize how fun it is and that it’s great exercise.”

The game is played on a court that fits inside half a tennis court and follows many of the same rules as tennis. The group plays weekly through a sports app called Team Tracky, which sets the schedule and manages the league.

“The app tells us when we play. People sign up, we show up, we have our own nets, and it’s all good,” said Mr. Maloney.

The small group are such die-hards that they shoveled the court after the “big snow storm” back in December and played the very next day.

“We’ve played through snow showers and light rain,” said Ms. Winston. “We love it.”

The informal group, which stemmed from a town recreation league, stays Covid-friendly by wearing masks before and after matches. The group does not don masks during play.

“I talked to my doctor about this,” said Ms. Winston, “You’re outside and typically you’re not within two feet or less for an extended period of time,” she said.

“It’s been a winter lifesaver,” Mrs. Malloy said of playing pickleball during the pandemic.

Ms. Winston agreed. “We can be outside, socially distanced, having fun with our friends. And exercising.”

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