Tournament Players Group Drills

All players must be rated 4.0 or higher to sign up.

Currently we drill at Rohan, Pod B every Tuesday at 10:00AM and 11:00AM and at Truman every Wednesday at 10:00AM and 11:00AM.


Repetitively hitting some specific shot once a week and then moving on the following week to practice a different shot, without mastering either, might be fun but it probably won’t noticeable improve your results.

This group is for 4.0+ tournament players (i.e. players in PCVG leagues and tournaments and especially tournaments external to The Villages) who want to take their game to the next level.

While not an instructional clinic some suggestions about your play will be offered and new skills will be introduced and worked on every month.

Goals of this group

To improve your confidence, skills, strategy, stamina and enjoyment when playing recreational and competitive pickleball matches.

To have you play in a way that has a high probability for success against less disciplined opponents.


Gamifying drilling and ranking the results allowing you to practice against different opponents of similar skill level while being under match-like pressure and letting you see if you are moving up or down compared to your peers.

Developing your “Every ball goes back” mindset.

Working on consistently hitting your first five shots in every point.

Dink then dink then dink some more while mindfully improving awareness and shot choice.

Work on consciously picking a target for every shot until it happens automatically.

To have fun – in addition to enjoying tournaments and rec play you might find you get more enjoyment out of drilling than regular play.

Encourage you to do this kind of drill once or twice a week in addition to these sessions.

The four parts of every session

1. Warm Up

  • Dink straight across (use west half of the court)
  • Straight across one player works back a step or two each shot to transition zone, plays a few drops and 50% drives then works back a step each shot to the baseline, plays a few drops and 60-90% drives then works back to the NVZ moving a step or two with each shot. Repeat with other player moving back
  • Dink cross court forehand
  • Dink cross court backhand

2. Dink Match

  • Three half court games, straight across, cross court forehand, cross court backhand
  • First to 11, win by 1, switch at 6 and switch after each game, rally scoring
  • Lower ranked player gets side choice
  • All shots are allowed except lobs (for now)
  • Serves must be gentle and whoever has the ball after the previous point serves
  • The first three shots must bounce in or near the NVZ and then point is live
  • If the ball is close to the center-line then just continue playing the point and if there is a dispute then replay the point

3. Skill of the Month

  • A short drill that addresses one or more of the goals

4. Mini singles

  • Two games, USA Pickleball Mini Singles rules
  • First to 11, win by 1, switch for the second, regular scoring
  • Lower ranked player chooses either side or serve in the first game
  • Only half of the court is used. Both the Server AND the Receiver always stand on the side that matches their score i.e. right for even scores and left for odd scores
  • All shots are allowed except lobs (for now)
  • If the ball is close to the center-line then just continue playing the point and if there is a dispute then replay the point
  • Work on incorporating Skill of the Month into your game

Becoming a Group Member

You must first request membership in the group. You only need to request membership once.

Weekly Sign Up

Each week participants can sign up using a link to SignUpGenius that will be emailed to you after you have been accepted to the group.

Currently we drill at Rohan, Pod B every Tuesday at 10:00AM and 11:00AM and at Truman every Wednesday at 10:00AM and 11:00AM.

You can sign up any single session and 48 hours after the sign up opens, if there are unused slots, you may sign up for additional ones.

If you sign up and then for some reason are unable to attend please delete your SignUpGenius sign up immediately so others can drill.

If you have signed up and then have an emergency with less than 24 hours notice please message Mark Attwood using the contact information in the SignUpGenius invitation sent each week.

If there are an odd number of sign ups for a session one of the instructors will partner with a random participant and will only play defensively (except for high balls which will be mercilessly punished.)


In order to both have you play games against opponents with a similar skill to yours and to give you the opportunity to work your way up to play against stronger players who you might never normally meet your previous results of Dink games and Mini Singles will be used to calculate you ranking based on your average score from your 10 most recent drills.

From the 12 people in a session the 2 highest ranked players will be together, then the next two highest and so on. By consistently getting better scores than the people near your ranking you will move up and have the opportunity to play stronger opponents.

Scores from Dink games and Mini Singles are to be recorded by winner on the provided score-sheet after each game.

Rankings are calculated by taking the average score from your 10 most recent drills.

The number of places you can move up or down each week will be limited to prevent peoples ranking changing too much from a single very good or very bad match.

New rankings are published weekly and can be found HERE (Dinking) and HERE (Mini Singles)

Dink matches and Mini Singles will be time limited and any incomplete game(s) will be scaled and rounded to allow for fair rankings.


It’s a tough workout, especially as the temperature increases in summer, so you should take hydration breaks as needed.

Please wear eye protection.