Should You Run Up to the Kitchen When Your Partner Hits the Return of Serve in Pickleball?

Debating whether to advance to the kitchen or wait for your partner’s shot in pickleball. What’s the right move?

In a 3.0-3.5 rec play, a pickleball player questions the strategy of running up to the kitchen when the partner hits the return of serve. The player feels the need to wait and see where the shot goes. Various opinions from the community shed light on the optimal approach to this situation.


  • Understanding the dynamics of when to advance to the kitchen in pickleball.
  • Strategic insights on partner coordination and shot evaluation.
  • Balancing risk and reward in approaching the kitchen line.
  • Community perspectives on the optimal strategy for maximizing performance.

Insightful Perspectives

One user emphasizes the importance of coordinating with the partner and assessing shot placement to decide when to advance to the kitchen. The strategy involves being responsive to the opponent’s moves and maintaining a defensive stance when necessary.

Partner Coordination

Another user suggests that staying back initially allows for better observation of the shot and movement in sync with the partner. This approach aims to optimize positioning and adapt to the incoming shot effectively.

Strategy Adjustment

Some users advocate for a cautious approach, especially if the partner’s shots vary in quality. Waiting for a clear indication of the shot type before making a move towards the kitchen can enhance overall gameplay performance.

Balancing Risk and Reward

Community feedback highlights the need to balance risk and reward in deciding whether to advance to the kitchen. Understanding the opponent’s strategies and optimizing defensive positioning are key factors in successful gameplay.

The diverse perspectives shared by the pickleball community underscore the complexity of strategic decision-making in the sport. By leveraging insights from experienced players and refining their approach to on-court scenarios, players can enhance their performance and competitiveness.