How to Play
These brief rules are designed to allow people to have a basic understanding of the game.
The ball is dropped onto the floor, behind the line marking the service box and between the centre line of the court and the side wall. The ball must be dropped, bounce and hit from waist height or below (for the serves only).
The serve must clear the net directly into the opponent’s diagonal service box, where it must bounce. The ball can go on to hit the glass side or back wall and be returned. However if, after the ball bounces it hits the mesh the serve is out.
The ball must not hit the net cord during the first two serves. If this happens the serve must be taken again.
The first serve has to be taken from the right and then it is alternated between the right and left sides.
Padel is usually played as a doubles game although it can be played as singles. During rallies the ball is only permitted to hit the playing surface once. A player can choose whether to volley the ball or to let it bounce.
If the ball bounces it must land directly onto the playing surface without previously hitting the fence or walls, otherwise it is a fault.
After hitting the surface, the ball can hit the fence or the walls, any number of times before the ball is returned over the net. The opponent can either hit the ball directly back to the server or they can hit the ball onto their own walls, before returning it.
If the ball bounces twice on the playing surface or onto the wire mesh before being returned over the net it is a fault.
If the ball goes over the metal fence after correctly bouncing the point is won, if it does not bounce the point is lost.
Play continues within these parameters until the ball bounces twice or is out of court.
Padel scoring points are 15, 30, 40 and game, with deuce at 40–40. Then two clear points need to be won before the game is finished.
Padel matches are most often the best of three sets. A set is the first side to win six games with two clear games. At 6-6 a tiebreak is played, which is the first side to seven points with two clear points between the sides.
If a 3rd set is played, at 5–5 play continues until one side has a two game lead over their opponents. If the participants agree before the game begins a tie break can be played instead of a 3rd set.