What Do You Wear To Play Pickleball? [Dos and Don’ts]

What Do You Wear To Play Pickleball - An Ultimate Guide

Pickleball, the sport that combines tennis, badminton, and ping pong, has taken the sporting world by storm.

As players flock to the courts, it is crucial to understand the importance of wearing the appropriate attire to ensure comfort and safety during gameplay.

In 2023, the United States of America Pickleball Association implemented a new rule, emphasizing the avoidance of clothing resembling the color of the ball.

To optimize performance, moisture-wicking fabrics such as polyester or nylon blends are recommended, as they keep players dry and comfortable.

Lightweight and breathable tops with mesh panels or ventilation features are ideal, paired with shorts or athletic pants that allow for a wide range of motion.

Proper footwear designed specifically for court sports is essential, ensuring stability and preventing injuries.

Additionally, accessories like headbands, wristbands, and gloves aid in sweat absorption and grip enhancement.

By adhering to these guidelines, players can fully immerse themselves in the game, focusing on skill improvement and the sheer joy of playing pickleball.

What Do You Wear To Play Pickleball?

When playing pickleball, it is important to wear appropriate attire that promotes comfort, mobility, and safety.

Proper attire for pickleball is crucial to ensure an enjoyable and efficient playing experience.

To begin with, it is recommended to wear clothing made from moisture-wicking fabrics like polyester or nylon blends.

These materials help to keep the body cool and dry by drawing moisture away from the skin.

Lightweight and breathable tops with mesh panels or ventilation features are preferable.

For bottoms, shorts or athletic pants that allow for a wide range of motion are ideal.

It is important to avoid wearing jeans or restrictive clothing that may hinder movement.

Additionally, investing in proper footwear designed for court sports is essential.

These shoes should have a non-marking sole, good grip, traction, and ankle support.

By following these guidelines and prioritizing comfort and functionality, players can fully focus on honing their skills and enjoying the sport of pickleball.

Proper Footwear

Appropriate footwear is crucial for pickleball, as wearing unsuitable shoes can lead to discomfort, poor grip, and potential injuries on the court.

When choosing the right shoes for pickleball, it is important to prioritize features such as ankle support and a non-marking sole.

Opt for shoes specifically designed for court sports, as they provide the necessary stability and traction needed for quick lateral movements.

Ankle support is especially important in pickleball, as the sport involves frequent changes in direction and sudden stops. Shoes with ankle support can help prevent ankle sprains and provide stability during gameplay.

Additionally, ensure that the shoes have a good grip on the court surface to prevent slipping and sliding.

By selecting the appropriate footwear, players can enhance their performance, prevent injuries, and fully enjoy the game of pickleball.

Additional Guidelines

Consider adhering to the guidelines set by the United States of America Pickleball Association (USAPA) regarding clothing color to avoid any issues during tournaments.

The USAPA introduced a new rule in 2023 to prevent confusion by prohibiting players from wearing clothing that closely resembles the color of the ball.

To ensure compliance with tournament dress codes, it is important to choose clothing that does not match the color of the tournament ball.

Additionally, when playing pickleball, there are accessories that can enhance your performance and comfort.

Consider wearing headbands or wristbands to absorb sweat and improve grip.

Gloves can also be beneficial in improving grip and protecting against blisters.

Furthermore, wearing moisture-wicking socks made from synthetic materials can help keep your feet dry and comfortable during gameplay.

By following these guidelines and incorporating the appropriate accessories, you can enhance your pickleball experience.

Does Pickleball Have a Dress Code?

Some pickleball clubs have taken inspiration from tennis and incorporated certain dress code guidelines.

In an exciting development for the sport, a new rule has been introduced by the United States of America Pickleball Association (USAP) in 2023.

This rule, outlined in the Official USAP Rulebook section (2.G.1/2.G.4), now extends the definition of inappropriate apparel to include clothing that closely resembles the color of the tournament ball.

This change aims to prevent any potential confusion or unfair advantage during tournaments, ensuring a fair and transparent playing environment.

So, while pickleball players enjoy a certain level of freedom in their choice of attire, it is important to consider the impact of clothing on both performance and safety.

Whether participating in casual matches or competitive tournaments, being mindful of the rules and guidelines ensures a positive and enjoyable pickleball experience for everyone involved.

Clothing for Pickleball

  1. Moisture-Wicking Fabric: Opt for clothing made from moisture-wicking materials such as polyester or nylon blends.

    These fabrics are designed to wick away sweat from your body, keeping you dry and comfortable.

    Avoid cotton as it tends to retain moisture and can become heavy and uncomfortable.

  2. Breathable Tops: Choose lightweight and breathable tops, such as t-shirts, tank tops, or polo shirts.

    Look for designs with mesh panels or ventilation features to enhance airflow and regulate body temperature.

    This will help you stay cool even during long matches.

  3. Comfortable Bottoms: For the bottom half, go for shorts or athletic pants that allow for a wide range of motion.

    Look for fabrics that stretch and provide flexibility, such as nylon or spandex blends.

    Avoid wearing jeans or restrictive clothing that may hinder your movements.

  4. Appropriate Fit: Ensure that your clothing fits well without being too tight or too loose.

    Tight-fitting clothes can restrict your movements, while overly loose garments may get in the way or become a distraction.

    Find the right balance that allows for comfortable and unrestricted play.

  5. Sun Protection: If you’re playing outdoors, consider wearing clothing that offers sun protection.

    Look for tops with UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) ratings and consider wearing a hat and sunglasses to shield yourself from harmful UV rays.

    Don’t forget to apply sunscreen to exposed areas of skin.

Footwear for Pickleball

Proper footwear is essential for any sport, and pickleball is no exception.

Here are some key considerations when choosing shoes for pickleball:

  1. Court-Specific Shoes: Invest in shoes specifically designed for court sports.

    Pickleball is often played on hard court surfaces, so look for shoes that provide adequate cushioning and support to minimize the impact on your joints.

  2. Grip and Traction: The shoes you wear should have a non-marking sole with good grip and traction.

    This will prevent slippage and allow you to make quick lateral movements without compromising stability.

  3. Ankle Support: Pickleball involves a lot of side-to-side movements, so it’s important to wear shoes that offer proper ankle support.

    Look for shoes with a higher cut or reinforced ankle support to reduce the risk of sprains and injuries.

  4. Comfort and Fit: Make sure your shoes are comfortable and fit properly.

    Consider trying on different brands and styles to find the one that suits your feet best.

    Avoid shoes that are too tight or too loose, as they can lead to discomfort and blisters.

Accessories for Pickleball

In addition to clothing and footwear, there are a few accessories that can enhance your pickleball experience:

  1. Headbands/Wristbands: If you sweat a lot or want to keep your hair out of your face, consider wearing a headband or wristband.

    These accessories can help absorb sweat and prevent it from dripping onto your face or hands.

  2. Gloves: Some players prefer wearing gloves to improve their grip on the paddle and reduce the risk of blisters.

    If you find that your hands tend to get sweaty during games, gloves can provide an extra layer of grip and protection.

  3. Socks: Choose moisture-wicking socks that offer cushioning and support.

    Avoid cotton socks, as they tend to retain moisture and can lead to blisters.

    Look for socks made from synthetic materials that keep your feet dry and comfortable.

What Not to Wear When Playing Pickleball

To ensure a smooth and unhindered playing experience, avoid wearing clothing or accessories that can interfere with your movement.

Here are some items to steer clear of during your pickleball matches:

  • Jeans: Restrictive and uncomfortable for physical activities like pickleball.
  • Belts: These can restrict your range of motion and interfere with your gameplay.
  • Jewelry: This may pose a safety risk or cause distractions during play.
  • Hats with brims: Brims can obstruct your vision or cause discomfort during gameplay.
  • Sandals or flip flops: Insufficient foot support and inadequate traction on the court.

Dressing for Tournaments

If you plan on participating in pickleball tournaments, it is essential to follow additional guidelines to ensure fairness and uniformity among players.

According to the Official USAP Rulebook section (2.G.1/2.G.4), “Inappropriate apparel may now include apparel that approximates the color of the tournament ball.” This means that wearing clothing that matches the color of the tournament ball should be avoided to prevent confusion during gameplay.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I wear jewelry while playing pickleball?

While wearing jewelry may be a personal choice, it is not recommended during pickleball matches due to safety concerns.

The pickleball dress code generally advises against wearing jewelry to prevent injury to oneself and others on the court.

Is it necessary to wear sunscreen while playing pickleball?

Wearing sunscreen during pickleball is highly recommended to protect against harmful UV rays.

It helps prevent sunburn and reduces the risk of skin cancer.

Alternatively, wearing tops with UPF ratings and using hats and sunglasses can provide additional sun protection.

Are long-sleeved shirts suitable for pickleball?

Long-sleeved shirts can provide additional coverage and protection from the sun during pickleball.

However, it is important to choose lightweight, breathable materials that offer clothing comfort and allow for freedom of movement.

Can I wear a hat with a brim during pickleball matches?

Wearing a hat with a brim during pickleball matches is not recommended.

It is important to avoid headwear with brims as they can obstruct vision and pose a safety hazard during gameplay.

What type of gloves should I wear for pickleball?

Different types of pickleball gloves are available for players, including full-fingered, half-fingered, and fingerless options.

Some popular brands for pickleball gloves include Franklin, Head, and Selkirk.

These gloves improve grip and protect against blisters.


To optimize your pickleball experience, it is crucial to prioritize comfort and mobility when selecting your attire.

Choose clothing that allows for unrestricted movement,

utilizes breathable materials, and is appropriate for the weather conditions and level of play.

Avoid items that can hinder your performance or become safety hazards during matches.

By following these guidelines, you will not only look and feel your best on the court but also maximize your enjoyment of this exciting sport.

Remember, comfort and functionality should be the guiding principles when dressing for pickleball.

With the right attire, you’ll be able to focus on honing your skills, enjoying competitive matches, and embracing the spirit of pickleball.

Get out on the court, have fun, and play your best!

What to Wear for playing pickleball

About me

I am Stev Rene. I am a writer, blogger, and athlete. My blog focuses on sports and fitness.
I started this blog because I felt that many people lack knowledge about sports and fitness.