What Type of Pickleball Player Are You?

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There are various personalities or skill levels of a pickleball player that come in all sorts of different personalities. You could be the dinker, banger, or monk. All of which are valued members of the pickleball community.

Without further ado, here are some types of players in pickleball. If one of them sounds familiar, then, chances are, it might be referring to you.

Novice/Beginner Players

Those categorized as novice/beginner players have either never played pickleball or have only done so a few times. At this stage, they do not understand how to keep score or where they should position themselves on the court. Further, they depend on others to “guide” them through the game.

Intermediate Pickleball Players

Intermediate players will almost certainly constitute the largest of the three skill rating categories (which we will mention below). An intermediate player will not like to play it with novices. However, intermediate players are often “intimidated” by seasoned players who can strike the ball forcefully and “target” the weaker of the two opponents.

Advanced Players

Lastly, “advanced” players are often those that smash hard, have superior mobility, and commit less mistakes than others at a given setting.

The Dinker

If you’re a dinker, you’re all about the soft-ball game. You like to draw out the game as much as you can.

You’ll likely frustrate a banger, who’s more used to hard balling and hitting long shots. Overall, you’ll know a dinker is in play if the scores are low and the games are long.

The Banger

Bangers are the loud and proud sorts of players. They tend to smash the ball with a lot of force that could be difficult to reciprocate.

As a banger, your number one complaint is probably where the boundary lines end. Either way, we say, keep on bangin’!

The Communicator

Communicators love dishing you the details of the game. You can count on them to keep track of the score.

Plus, they’ll likely communicate a few pointers on how to improve your game if you’re on their team.

The Monk

Although pickleball is usually about building your social life and initiating conversation, that may not hold true for the monk.

This personality likes to stay quiet during most of the game. You can articulate their form of communication in a series of muffled grunts and nods.

The Competitor

Let’s just say you’ll know when you’re dealing with the competitor. Their play for the win is fierce no matter who they’re up against.

If you made a shot out of reach for this personality, you may as well have unleashed the beast. Plus, they like to flaunt their skills with spins. Don’t forget to take cover. The competitor loves their body shots.

The Ball Magnet

Speaking of body shots, are you always on the receiving end of them? Is the ball always seemingly attracted to you by some force?

Well, chances are, you’re the ball magnet. We suggest getting some goggles and protective gear for your next game.

The Lobber

The lobber is all about that high shot. We commend their strategic play. They’re difficult to compete against.

Their opponents will probably be caught off guard or be inclined to move backward, beyond the baseline.

The Gear Head

The gear head is all about the new trends in pickleball equipment. You’ll likely spot such pickleball player with the newest edition of paddles along with some high-quality pickleball balls.

Bonus points if a gear head tries to open up a conversation about their paddle’s specs and where they got it from.

The Coach

If giving out pointers was part of the game, then the coach takes the cake. All jokes aside, the coach’s intentions are probably pure and they only want to see the players improve their game.

Understanding Pickleball Ratings

Pickleball ratings are shown as a 2-digit or 4-digit figure. In addition to understanding strategies, each skill level is determined by the ability to execute several strokes, including the forehand, backhand, dink, serve, third shot, and volley.

USA Pickleball Rating System

Here is a brief about the USAPA rating that can also help you with self rating depending upon your skill levels as mentioned below:

  • 1.0 – 2.0: A player who is just beginning to play pickleball and has no prior sports experience.
  • 2.5: A player with limited experience who is able to maintain a short rally.
  • 3.0: A player who knows court positioning and understands fundamentals.
  • 3.5 player: A player who recognizes the difference between a difficult and an easy game. They swiftly enter the non-volley zone. They realize when stacking may be advantageous.
  • 4.0: A player that recognizes and exploits their opponents’ weaknesses. They are conscious of their teammates’ positions on the pickleball court and can play as a team.
  • 4.5: A player who understands strategy and has efficient footwork. They can communicate and perform well with their companions.
  • 5.0: A player who has already mastered the pickleball strategy, have good footwork and can swiftly adapt their game to the weaknesses and strengths of their opponents. Also, they have the ability to exploit the weakness in their opponent’s game. They rarely commit unforced errors. Further, they have mastered both backhand and forehand drives, dinks, drop shots, and volleys of different speeds.
  • 5.5+: A player who is proficient and mastered pickleball strategies and is a top-caliber player.


After reading each personality, one or a couple are bound to stick to you. Personally speaking, I find myself in the range of being a lobber and competitor.

Having said that, pickleball embraces all these personalities. Also, with this player rating, one can assess their skills and self rate themselves. Accordingly, they can work on the specific skills needed and can reach the next point and keep improving their pickleball skill level.

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