CJ Johnson Headshot
CJ Johnson
Tony Roig
Tony Roig

#122- How to Play With Open Play Partners Who Do Not Play “Right”

When we are playing recreational play, it can be frustrating when we get partnered with a player who just does not play “right.”

Open Play or Rec Play is one of the most beautiful things about our sport. It’s our chance to meet and play with different people. An opportunity to find a game whenever our schedule allows. Or even to find new groups to play with or players in a city we are visiting.

But Rec Play can also present us with some challenges.

In this episode, we talk about what to do when faced with a challenging situation or when a Rec Play partner just doesn’t play right.

In the RIFF-What does an ATP have to do with seeing the game?

CJ and I were watching a game the other day and one of the players had a chance to hit an ATP (around the post).

This is NOT a story about how to hit an ATP. Rather an observation on how slowing ourselves down out there can let us see the game better and, maybe, even hit an ATP :).

Want more intentionality and mindfulness?

Playing with intentionality and mindfulness is key when making decisions. Selecting the best shot for any given situation depends on the game’s framework. From the framework of the game, you can develop the objectives that you need to accomplish when you’re out on the court from objectives, you get strategies from strategies you select the best shot. If you want to play your best Pickleball and understand the game when you’re out there, you’ll need to understand the framework of Pickleball.

The most efficient way to learn the framework of Pickleball is through the Pickleball system. You not only get the shots and strategies and objectives you need, you get the framework of the game. Join us inside a system class and become a complete Pickleball player.

Links Mentioned in the Podcast

THE Pickleball System

Tyrol Pickleball Shoes

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Tony Roig

Hola. Hello. Konichiwa. After 40 years playing tennis, I am now a full-time pickleball player and professional. As a 5.0 rated Senior Pro Pickleball Player and an IPTPA-certified Master Teaching Professional, my focus is on helping players like you learn to play their best pickleball. In 2016, shortly after starting to play pickleball, my friend Tom and I jumped into the highest division at the first US Open in Naples, Florida. That morning it became clear just how much there is to learn in this seemingly simple sport – a lifetime of learning if you so choose. Since 2018, I have been on a mission to share my knowledge of pickleball so other players can enjoy the game at a higher level and attain their pickleball objectives. When not studying or playing pickleball, I like to travel with my other half, Jill.


  1. Avatar photo Muriel Flaherty on January 22, 2023 at 4:08 am

    This was a great podcast! It very relative and helpful. Thanks.

    • Avatar photo CJ Johnson on January 24, 2023 at 5:57 pm

      Thanks Muriel

  2. Avatar photo Steve on January 22, 2023 at 8:50 pm

    Thanks for the podcast regarding players who do not play the right way. I became so frustrated playing
    with and against these players that I have stepped away from the game to regroup.
    Obviously I am not the only player who feels this way . I am nearing the end of my self imposed 60 day suspension ( with pay ) and look forward to returning to the courts with a new outlook and better
    My mantra will be: I can only control what i can control.
    Steve 3.5

  3. Avatar photo Denise Mitchell on January 23, 2023 at 8:46 am

    Thank you for this episode. With it being winter (in Colorado) and fewer indoor courts than outdoor, I am getting exposed to more people who are playing the game that is in their head. NOT their fault … I chose the path to learning and improving. This podcast helped me to remember to not get frustrated, and to reset. Focus on MY game, MY shots and respect others who are on their own journey. With beginners, the game slows down and I can try new shots. With bangers, yep, I’m still learning to defuse them, which is just where I am at.

  4. Avatar photo Cheryl on January 23, 2023 at 12:28 pm

    I have really enjoyed your knowledge of the game. Seems that every topic I can relate. My Game has gone to the next level thanks to your help. It just makes sense!! I love to drill so I appreciate the different drills. I can always take something away from you two. God….I love this sport. Thank you!!!!
    Ex-racquetball player

    • Avatar photo CJ Johnson on January 24, 2023 at 5:59 pm

      Congratulations on your improvement Cheryl. We’re glad to be part of your journey.

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