OrthoAtlanta Welcomes 2019 Pickleball Season with Spalding County Pickleball Association
ATLANTA, GA, April 3, 2019
Spring heralds the start of the 2019 Pickleball Season and OrthoAtlanta orthopedic and sports medicine specialists is excited to promote pickleball, one of the fastest growing sports in the U.S.
OrthoAtlanta proudly serves as the Official Sports Medicine Provider of the Spalding County Pickleball Association (SCPA) and its state-of-the-industry 18-court Spalding County Pickleball Complex at Wyomia Tyus Olympic Park in Griffin-Spalding County, Georgia. As a multi-year sponsor of the SCPA, OrthoAtlanta actively participates in local, state, regional and national pickleball tournaments hosted by the nationally-recognized pickleball facility in Griffin, GA.
Poised to meet or exceed last year’s record schedule, SCPA 2019 tournaments thus far include the Doc Holliday Shootout (April 12 - 14), Spalding County Senior Games (April 24 - 25), Georgia State Games (May 17 - 19), Georgia Recreation and Parks Association (GRPA) Pickleball District Playoffs (August 23 - 25), SSIPA East Championships (September 17 - 20) and the Georgia Golden Olympics (October 1 – 3). Additional events are also being considered.
Pickleball continues to experience annual double-digit participant growth and expanding interest across all age groups and demographics. In 2018, the Sports and Fitness Industry Association (SFIA) reported over 3.1 million U.S. participants, a 12% increase over prior year. In its pickleball participant report, SFIA cited a record 1.57 million casual players (those who play 1 – 7 times per year), and 930,000 core participants (those playing 8 times or more per year).
A racket game for all ages and abilities, pickleball is a cross between tennis, badminton and ping-pong. The game is played on a court smaller than a tennis court, with a net that is slightly lower. Players (singles or doubles) use ping-pong like paddles to hit the pickleball, a plastic ball with holes much like a whiffle ball. Pickleball tournaments and pickleball clubs and associations are expanding rapidly across the country. Country clubs, recreational facilities, and active lifestyle senior communities continue to build pickleball courts, or modify existing tennis courts, to get in on this fast-growing sport.
“Pickleball is a fun, fast-paced game, providing excellent aerobic exercise,” said Todd A. Schmidt, MD, OrthoAtlanta orthopedic surgeon. “Pickleball offers active players a great way to build strength in the shoulders, legs, knees, back and spine.” Pickleball paddles, once made exclusively of wood like ping pong paddles, are today also offered in lightweight composite materials, including aluminum and graphite, improving player performance, easing arm fatigue, and reducing stress on shoulder, wrist and elbow joints.
“OrthoAtlanta was quick to recognize the benefits of pickleball to players and their local communities,” said Peter Phelps, president of the Spalding County Pickleball Association. “OrthoAtlanta physicians and staff were among our earliest supporters and continue to be some of our most enthusiastic, displaying continued commitment to our pickleball initiatives, and a vision for safe and healthy pickleball throughout Georgia,” cited Phelps.
OrthoAtlanta physicians take an active role in advancing education on safe pickleball practices, meeting with tournament teams and area pickleball clubs, including Sun City Peachtree in Griffin, GA.
Read the complete press release for OrthoAtlanta Welcomes 2019 Pickleball Season with Spalding County Pickleball Association.