Padel is a racket sport that combines elements of tennis, squash and badminton. This sport has been invented in  Mexico by Enrique Corcuera in 1969. Padel is a team sport which means that is played in doubles. The court has a floor made of concrete, plastic or artificial grass. It is designed similarly to a tennis court, only smaller – measuring 10m wide and 20m long, with a 0.88m high net in the middle. The court is surrounded by 4-meter-high walls made of glass or brick, or a fence when outside. Padel imports the scoring system of tennis. Serves are always underhand. Balls that hit the walls around the court after bouncing on the ground are still in play. Padel balls are required in official matches; these are similar to tennis balls but are slightly smaller. Padel is usually played casually with regular tennis balls. Padel rackets are made of a composite material without strings. The hitting surface is perforated.

Padel is currently most popular in Spain, Mexico and Andorra, as well as Latin American countries such as Argentina, although it is now starting to spread rapidly across Europe and other continents. It is spreading most as a leisure and recreational sport for amateurs, but also every year there are more and more professionals. Nowadays, the most important padel circuit is World Padel Tour (WPT), which started in Spain though it has already reached international expansion.

Despite being a game born in Spanish-speaking countries, the number of padel players and clubs built in the northern part of Europe is growing. Sweden is the country with the second highest number of searches for the term “padel” in Google after Spain.  And while countries such as Finland, Denmark, the Netherlands and Norway mainly opt for building indoor padel clubs because of their climatic conditions, Belgium, Italy, France and Germany prefer outdoor courts. The sport’s popularity along the Costa del Sol in southern Spain, Costa Brava in northern Spain and the Algarve in southern Portugal has exposed it to a large number of British visitors, leading to an increased popularity of the sport in the UK. Padel is probably the fastes-growing sport in USA too. Florida and Texas are the two states where you can find the biggest number of padel courts. The country of the rising sun, Japan, introduced padel in Asia back in 2013 by building the first padel site, and about a year later, another court was made in Singapore. China, Thailand, the UAE and India followed.

Nowadays, the sport is spreading rapidly throughout the entire Asia. Maybe Australians are less interested in this sport, but it is slightly spreading there too. Who knows, if the rising of padel continue in this speed, maybe we will see it as an Olympic sport soon. Stay tuned and take that racket – feel the joy!

Pin It on Pinterest