By: CJ Johnson | July 24, 2018 |

Rules Review: Above the Net

Sometimes it’s okay to reach over the net; sometimes not so much.  Here’s the difference.

You may not cross the plane of the net with your arm or paddle before the ball comes to your side of the net.

It is okay to cross the plane of the net after the ball has reached your side. Of course, unless you are well over 6′, if you can reach over the net, you are probably in the kitchen and must remember to let the ball bounce.

Once in a while, an opponent will hit the ball with so much spin that it bounces back over the net on its own. You must hit that ball before it bounces on your opponents’ court, or it is a fault against you. If you are quick enough, you can reach over the net and tap it before it bounces. If you can do that, you’ll probably win the point!

You may not touch the net, ever, during play!

Bev writes a weekly email blast for our pickleball club. She delivers the rules with clarity and a sense of humor. If you have a rules question post it in the comments below.


CJ Johnson

Hey there — I’m a professional three-sport athlete and coach who has spent my entire adult life earning a living from playing and coaching sports. Since I started coaching more than three decades ago, one thing has remained the same: My commitment to see students not as they are but as what they can become and to move heaven and earth to help them realize their untapped potential. You should know that when it comes to helping pickleball players over 50 live their best lives on and off the courts, I'm an expert. Good pickleball is not just technique; it's the mind and body working holistically. That's why I'm also a personal trainer and weight management specialist. When I’m chillin', you'll find me watching Star Trek with my husband John and our two fur babies, Shirley and Ralph. (Yes, Happy Days)