Spring 2017 Newsletter


Camosun College – Center of Sports Excellence



Springtime in BC is always a time of renewal, beauty, planning for the summer and especially, excitement for the upcoming outdoor play season.  Many new and older venues in the Province offer pickleball. This year will bring Vancouver into the limelight as courts are due to be brought on stream at Queen Elizabeth park in the heart of the city, Trout Lake , and Dunbar Rec with a view to expanding the number of neighbourhoods with new Pickleball Courts for the public to use. That participaction Canada is featuring pickleball, on its Birthday 150 , accross Canada will help our cause considerably. The articles in the Sun and the Province choosing Pickleball the #2 preferred activitiy for 2017 will also help a lot.

The header above shows the front of the Camosun College in Victoria – Center for Sports Excellence – which is a diploma, certificate and Degree offering in Physical Education offered by this center of higher education. Pickleball is played there on Sunday afternoon – 2-4 pm by a group of competitive, tournament players who register by clicking on a website. They are not registered in the leisure guide of the College or center . Alternatively, the same type of program can be accessed in South Surrey Rec on Saturday afternoons, at Guilford on Friday afternoons, at Fraser heights Rec on Wed evenings, in Richmond at Thompson rec center on Sundays, in Langley outdoor, , in Walnut grove indoor , and in Abbotsford. This allows these players to play with partners, try out new equipment ( balls ) etc that they will use in USA sponsored tournaments and prepare for play in the South where “ buy American” is now IN . No doubt, more of these types of programs will emerge. Overtures to Trinity College in Langley have been made. Laurentian in Sudbury have , for many years, offered Pickleball, alternating with badminton , on their intramural program and it is highly successful.

All high schools in Surrey, and many others in other jurisdictions teach pickleball as the P/E teachers know it is a good lifetime sport. 8000 schools in the USA teach pickleball. Hence we have a large cohort of young players looking for times, post high- school to play and recreate and compete. We need to give them the times in order to not lose them to work, family concerns, and many other sports. BC pickleball assoc this spring will / has taught forsyth elementary ( a core school in Whalley ) St Bernadettes ( Surrey ) , Star of the Sea ( South Surrey  – 12 years in a row )  Whte Rock elementary, Marpole / Oakridge Rec center ( Vancouver ) , Timms community center ( Langley ) , Princeton Rec center , Williams Lake Rec center, and possibly Prince George. This with the help of many volunteers who help the kids “ do it right the first time “   Should any of you wish to help – just call 604-536-9602 and we will send you the schedule.

Finally, a short word on a current issue. Some years ago, the snowbirds, used to using the USA Dura ball outdoor , insisted that we use it indoor. When a man got hit in the eye , by a lady with a graphite paddle , and subsequently lost his left eye, we banned the Dura ball in our center and for all tournaments. Hence the lighter, softer jugs ball became the standard for all indoor play, the Dura was relegated to outdoor if it is windy. The result was that the US suppliers lost market share to jugs. Today we have another similar situation. Most rec centers in Canada use the jugs ball but the tournament players and snowbirds are bringing back the new Onix ball , which is smaller , harder , faster and noisier ( important if you have lots of people playing at once ) Yesterday I played at South Surrey – 4 courts and NO ONE could hear the score. Three of the courts were using the new Onix ball. So, now is the time to poll your players, asking them which ball is 1) faster 2) noisier 3) more intrusive ( hurts ) 4) smaller 5) more suitable for recreational play – indoor which is the majority usage in our rec centers. Your Rec center then, can make the appropriate decision rather than letting the performance players influence the recreational players. Do let me know what your poll says :  Emailto:   

Good playing, have fun , get a court going in your neighbourhood ! Use a Magnum Sharpie from Staples to dot the court in advance ( the tennis players will never notice the dots and will never complain about it) , then use the throw down lines available from . You can then use a little tape if you wish more delineation. It works and is quick.

Chuck Lefaive
Founding director – ( ret)
Founding director – ( active)

Summer 2015 Newsletter


Hello fellow picklers, and friends of BC pickleball,

As summer is upon us early this year, we have lots of news of new, impending new and existing courts for you to try on the Nice Days in the province. So , let’s get started !

In the beginning there were few players, and few venues indoor . At that time, I was asked “ how many courts would you like us to mark up for pickleball ? “ Not knowing how many would play outdoor , as the numbers grew indoor, I said to parks and Rec “ one court on one tennis court should do the trick ! “ Well , now we know and have seen in videos from our American counterparts that one little court on one big court is not ideal. So, now we have a movement and traction afoot to put more courts on these disused tennis court and make it easier for the picklers to play the game .   Four courts on one tennis court with colour markings different for each sport is better and now being done.  This allows for 16 playing on four tennis courts and 16 waiting ( 32) instead of 8. As a business person , this is a no – brainer for parks and rec as it makes the facililty usable by both sports when not used by one or the other. These then become dedicated but shared courts for tennis and pickleball – usable by tennis when not used by pickleball and Vice Versa.

There should be signage on the fence indicating rules of engagement and that these courts are dedicated to two sports. Any Elementary school in Canada has multiple sports on one badminton court. why not us ?  When wind plays a factor, we can use the Dura outdoor ball, and when wind is negligible, use the jugs balls ( green or white – white gets dirty quickly ) . To mitigate the distance  and running you have to do, get a lock box and put the four portable sets, a hopper for the balls, a Chute for more balls, and put them as well as free paddles and balls ( donated by members and BC  in the box with a combination lock to be shared with your members. Further, if parks and Rec will go for it, request a wind block sheet on the two sides that are not affected by  stands and people viewing the games being played. A Practice Board like the one at Centennial park in White Rock is a good idea.  Successful programs have been put into place with parks and Rec by getting signatures on a petition and submit it with your proposal for whichever courts you wish to access,

Successful outdoor  programs have ocurred  this year , using this format ,  in Tsawassen, Creston, Kelowna, Nanaimo, Maple Ridge, Haney , Vancouver, White Rock, South Surrey and North Delta.
We thank all of these parks and Rec departments for their support of Pickleball, the fastest growing sport in Canada , with some 500 locations in Canada and 60 tournaments. This year Kelowna will join Oakridge Rec center ( Calgary ) in offering the second only outdoor national  for the Pickleball Canada / IFP / Usapa group. The other national, because no one from the rest of Canada was attending the  Abbotsford tournament will be held at the Rim Center in Kitchener / Waterloo . The original National was open only to Canadians and featured a “ Woody “ tournament at the end. It was lots of fun and all players and paddles were welcome to participate.

Flash :  next week White Rock will install a program as described above at Centennial Park and in the next month Surrey will do the same at South Surrey, making it the 3rd largest program in North America.

See you on the court this summer !

Chuck Lefaive

Founding Director – ( ret )
Founding Director – ( active)
ph – 604-536-9602

Xmas Newsletter 2014

A Great Year for Pickleball in Canada and BC

Many records were broken this year by Canadians at the US Nationals as well as Nationals at home and in some 40 tournaments in BC – both recreational and competitive. With 220+ locations in BC ,the largest public program in the world,we now have the infrastructure, and instructor personnel ( 222 ) to lead Canada into the next phase of  Pickleball” A la Canadian style”. Let’s put Canada First and pull our provinces together so that they are functional, independent and pointed at a National organization that looks after National affairs and does not hide behind the IFP label, which few know, stands for the USAPA in Canada. To do this we will need many young volunteers.

BC and Quebec are two provincial organizations that have dedicated much time and effort into producing a Canadian identity for this wonderful family sport. From the outset, we have provided bilingual translations, articles on many topics of interest, like noise in the play areas , court management with long lineups, rules that  allow our badminton courts to be used for all tournaments ( since they are free in the first place ) and a fresh approach to ranking and ratings – using a more credible format.

Marcel Lemieux – President of Pickleball Quebec ( unmentioned by Pickleball Canada in any of its newsletters) has produced some 45 indoor programs in the Montreal / Quebec city areas and 45 outdoor programs to complement these. This is  a remarkable achievement for a former Vice President of Pickleball Canada who was a founding  member of their organization as I was. He is a staunch Canadian , who in spite of a serious illness that prevented him from doing a lot the first year, he rebounded ( as did his wife Louise ) and they have produced a tremendous volunteer  effort for the sport of Pickleball in ” La Belle Provence “.  I invite you all to check out  and click on the English version if appropriate – you will be surprised!

Further to the above comments, the which was first registered with Industry Canada and hence official for Canada , is now available to you volunteer for.  I hope many of you will. Bill MacGregor from South Surrey is President ( ) and ready to include you in this national effort.

Finally, Rita and I wish you and yours a great holiday, health in the New Year and plenty of play-times over the Xmas and New Year breaks. I invite all to bring and play with your families as this is the future of our sport which is for All to enjoy .

Yours in Sport and Health,

Chuck Lefaive


article-2723515-207E841900000578-619_964x626” Five Ring wasteland ”  Article on Greek Olympic facility decline.
See National Post August 14, 2014


The Richmond Olympic oval, Hillcrest Rec centre next to Nat Bailey stadium, Creekside Rec centre in False Creek , Whistler Athletic centre at the Chekamus exit are all 2010 wonderfully converted efforts to put these expensive facilities to work for the populace of British Columbia. It is not by accident ( nor efforts by pickleball Canada ) that they are all in part funded by pickleball programs to a lesser or greater degree.  BCpickleball invited players in the lower mainland to come to the oval on the first day it opened to our sport some four years ago and 72 players responded, for an amazing turnout on eight courts out of a possible 16 courts.

The oval staff were impressed and went forward to purchase paddles and balls for leagues and beginners to use. The Richmond and small Vancouver cohort of players were asked if they would keep it going . They declined – citing soft spots on some courts and cost.

The Oval quickly reduced their price to 5.00 to play and 1.00 per car parking – very reasonable, as well as defining the usable courts which ended up as eight in number. A call in advance,with a foursome or eight-some will get the courts set up for you. Rumours persist that the cost is higher and courts not usable – not true. See article on on “an instructors course taught at the Richmond oval. ”

Well , what of the other Olympic heritage sites ? Creekside has had an active , but small cohort for several years, first started by BC Pickleball Assoc. Coal Harbour is due to start in September in downtown Vancouver on a trial basis until December. New players are welcome.

Hillcrest has had a program for three years and has half the space it needs to make a viable, larger program . Nice facility , with restaurant, curling , pool etc.

Whistler has one outdoor court at the first ( Chekamus exit ) coming into Whistler. It has great potential with a young population , three elementaries , a high school, tennis club and courts at the former Olympic residence , now the BC Gymnastics practice centre at Chekamus. It is interesting to note that Bathurst New Brunswick Tennis club has started the first clay court pickleball in Canada – something we have written about many times in these pages as a functional idea.

Finally, I have been asked many times, will Pickleball enter the Olympics ? Good use by our sport of Olympic Legacies is a really good start to that end , rather than showing to the world how taxpayer money can be wasted on elite sports that do not meet the criteria of ” A Game for All ” nor provide a fitter population as a whole – one of the cornerstones of the BC Gov’t program for a 20% fitter population by 2020. It is left to see if we meet our target.

Surely, as with ACE , the American Association for Exercise who, two years ago, chose pickleball as the go- to- sport for Americans, BC will judge pickleball as the growth sport of the decade…… For all ages and skill levels.

Would that we could have a crack at marking the Greek Olympic facility and fill
it with picklers instead of what it is now – a simple PHOTO OP for travellers. I have been there.


June 2014 Pickleball Newsletter

BC Pickleball Newsletter – June 2014

Now that we are in the full bloom of spring and early summer, it is time to consider Pickleball outdoors. Our southern neighbours will play at least 95% of the time outdoors all year. Many in the South have never played indoors. The games are similar with exception of the wind, rain, hail, cold, harder ball, and less hospitable surface, often having to contend with higher tennis net height and larger ( by far ) surface area to cover.

In spite of these formidable obstacles, outdoor courts continue to proliferate in private courts being built as well as public courts being double marked and in a few cases, dedicated courts by Parks and Rec have been put in place. The latter will, no doubt, be the most used. Several articles have appeared showing how to paint, chalk, tape and dot these courts so that folks can play on them. A list of usable courts appears on these pages. To join the dots, use a broomstick handle with a chalk , attached by wrapping an elastic band around it, and join the dots.

Since the non – snowbirds hold up the attendance at our Rec Centers all winter, perhaps the snowbirds might consider leading the outdoor programs in the summer, inviting the “ home group “ to join them……..

The USA banned paddle list has been posted so that IFP ruled tournaments might take into account the USA non – vested player opinion of what is an acceptable paddle?

The number of tournaments has increased again this year and we hope planning will be done to continue this effort in the fall and winter. The number of provincial programs now exceeds 210.

Efforts to court manage our various venues and the desire for integrated play is continuing with some success. It is amply apparent from watching the FIFA world soccer matches that sport is a great way to bring people together in an atmosphere of camaraderie and fun.

Let’s make Pickleball the most welcoming of all the sports and like our experience on a smaller scale, when we are all absorbed on the bench watching the game in progress.

Chuck Lefaive

Founding Director – (ret)
Founding Director – ( active)


Welcome 2013

Welcome to BC Pickleball 2013


Last year was our most successful year ever, catapulting our province into a leadership role in recreational programs in North America. Thanks to all who have given of their time and effort to make this happen.

For 2013, we anticipate more new programs, more tournaments starting with the sweetheart tournaments on valentines day, and many more of you becoming members of the BC Pickleball Association by clicking on the following either using the mail – in format or Pay pal provided for your convenience.

We will provide a new look to the website, a calendar of events as well as large print schedules of play times for those who request it.

Also, there is a new proposed change to rules regards paddles on the rules page with a 3-month commentary from you provided.  We have our sanctioning tournament document on the tournament page.

More outdoor programs are anticipated; more programs that offer evening and weekend times are needed so that we may capture a younger cohort for our sport

My thanks to all who have come forward to take the instructors course – their numbers are now over 200.  We would like to hear more from this group with their success stories.

May 2013 be your best year!

Yours in Sport and Health

Chuck Lefaive

Founding Director

BC Pickleball Assoc

A Position Paper for a Rules Change

Some minor fine – tuning here.

A position on pickleball paddles
Prior to adopting a rule
change for British Columbia
Pickleball Association

The historical development of paddles began in the 70`s with the first generation wood, edgeless paddles either 1-5 or 7 ply wood that were heavy, long lasting and cheap. For that reason few , if any retailers opted to carry them.
Then in the 70`s Second generation graphite and aluminum paddles with edges and honeycomb cores of composite Boeing material arrived on the scene , were deemed too fast, unsafe, noisy and more expensive.
Some countries like Singapore banned these paddles as offensive to the ears.
There are now hundreds of graphite and aluminium paddles available and the similarities are much greater than the differences – even though a test called the deflection test tries to show differences between them. Retailers still did not carry pickleball paddles.
In Feb. 2009 a softer paddle called Apike arrived on the scene which was unibody, edgeless, quieter, softer and colourful made of a Courtshoe cover and resin material core that made it more lively and fun for most to play with.It was produced under the rules of the day , which were L X W and a smooth surface. It took 10% of the US market in the first 2 months on the market. Then, from the desk of the usapa  a negative internet campaign was started from the lady tournament players in the USA . It lasted for three months ,which in the end, in May 2009 ,banned this new quieter addition, due to 1) spin 2) implied speed 3) changing nature of game 4) rebound effect 5) reflectivity, and 6) safety. Any other reason was tossed in for good measure. This, in spite of the fact that all programs mailed to indicated NO injuries with this paddle . Empiric evidence pointing to no injuries with this or ANY OTHER paddle having occurred anywhere in North America became evident early on.
Eye injuries have occurred, however strong cautions provincially and nationally have been in place for some time to use safety wear . Few adhere to the recommendation. These few injuries have all been with graphite paddles and Dura balls. Retailers did not carry the softer , quieter product as it was banned in the USA. Some in Canada did. Canadians using this quieter paddle , playing in the USA, were shunned by the bench , quoting the USAPA “ ruling for sanctioned tournaments. This behaviour was carried back to Canada . Many , who purchased the quieter softer paddle, stopped using it , as they wished to enter “ Sanctioned tournaments” which were done under IFP / usapa / pickleball Canada rules which disallowed them .
Presently we have several new offerings in the second and third generation category, which have gained approval on the deflection test.  Hush , the Edgeless and now Manta and several graphite and aluminum edgeless products have been approved for tournament use in the USA.
The Canadian, BC , Alberta and Quebec provincial organizations allow each player to choose their own product in all play.( see pledge )
In programs adjacent to homes and expensive RV`s in the USA –  noise has arisen as an issue to the point of rejection of the sport in some areas , or lawsuits, or tensions between players and owners . A Quieter ball or quieter paddle or both would be desireable. Since, in Canada, we have Recreation centers that are public and subsidized, all players are welcome and all paddles have been Allowed ( the first factor needed to be  in place, in order to judge the play characteristics of any paddle.) There have been no problems anywhere except the spillover attitudes of those returning from the South carrying with them the induced bias of the above – mentioned ruling in May 2009.
As a retail presence of paddles, is about to happen, so , perhaps, it is time to return to the cause of the internet campaign – one person from our center writing to the usapa complaining of his friend having got hit on the hand and skin scraped in the first week of launch  of the Apike paddle in 2009.
That is how rumours start .
Based on our four year experience and monitoring we are now prepared to state that since there is no empiric data that any paddle is unsafe , we welcome all paddles in all play and tournaments . The deflection test should be scrapped as non – relevant to the playing of our sport and let’s move on to safety issues like protective eye wear and proper instruction in our play areas. Our Prior recommendation was that all players and their paddles are welcome. Now we would like to add the safety feature. That is our proposal, your comments are welcome.

Chuck Lefaive
Founding director
British Columbia Pickleball Assoc

Draft document for Sanctioned Tournaments


A game for all.

Following is a sanctioned tournament document to be used as a discussion paper and eventually

To be used in Canadian Pickleball Federation, Quebec, BC, Alberta, Yukon and NWT Tournaments which seek sanctioning.

No fee will be charged for this service but  $ 1.00 from each registrant will be rebated to the provincial host organization for sanctioning insurance if needed.  Points will be provided, calculated and certificates of same granted at year’s end. Player ratings will be introduced on a self evaluation basis.


Guidelines are below :

Requesting sanctioning – use this form and send it in at least 30 days prior to event.

Tournament location…………………………

Your tourney name ————————-

Tourney date …………

Tourney Director ‘s name …… phone …….. e mail ………

# of players expected at your tournament………

Will tournament be using Quebec pickleball Rules ? ……….

Will this tournament have Quebec, BC, Alberta, Nwt and Yukon membership forms Available ? ……

NOTE: Sanctioning of tournaments should only be requested for an expected turnout of more than 100 players.

Points : grouping by tiered events


TIER 1 – National or international event

1sr – 2000 points

2nd 1500 points

3rd   1000 points

Tier 11 – provincial event

1st – 1600 points

2nd – 1200 points

3rd 600 points


Tier 111 – larger local tournaments

1st – 1500 points

2nd place – 800 points

3rd – 400  points

This point system will run from beginning to end of each year.

Why enter a sanctioned tournament ?

–        Being on the list of point winners at year’s end and the resultant rating you will receive are used to place players in appropriate brackets for seeding purposes.

–        To be awarded only to Canada Pickleball Fed and Provincial and territorial members.

–        To be awarded only to Pickleball Quebec members and affiliated provincial members.

–        Age brackets will be 1- under 18 2) 19-55 AND 3) 55+

–        To be awarded by age categories eg: junior 5.0 4.5 3.5 3.0 etc.


List of all events

Event eligibility


1-      Junior under 18 cannot enter older age division events – exception open events.

2-     Adult and Senior – may enter any event if you qualify.

3-     Rated  Events are open to all ages however Senior ratings  are  55+




To qualify for points

A tournament points event will appear on the provincial and national list of Tournament points Event. These points will be listed at year’s end . Your tournament must be listed with the Canadian PB Federation. Combined age brackets need eligible players to qualify for Tournament points.


Requirements :

1)     Approval by sanctioning chair + insurance if required – paid . Then they can advertise their Tournament. 60 days notice is advised.

2)     The National and provincial websites will advertise the tournament on their website, Advertising the tier level will occur after approval. If the insurance fee is not paid – this event will be listed as

3)      Approval pending.- Tier 1. Latest accepted payment is 10 days prior to event.

4)     100 players should be present for confirmed sanctioning next year.

5)      Must be open to all who meet age and skill criteria.

6)     The Tourney Director must follow Canadian Pickleball rules – open to all players and paddles – local exceptions can be made by the sanctioning chair.

7)     Memberships may be purchased online for the provinces or by mail. See

8)     Skill levels can be self rated or observation – rated. An estimate of skill level by the director for the Canadian Pickleball Federation Member. Members Pre or Post Tourney will help to set up a skill bank of players.

9)     Note – The Canadian Pickleball Federation members are automatically covered by insurance if the tournament is sanctioned – however the Rec center also has insurance of a global nature.

10)  If Self rating Tournaments wish to be used and have the size indicated with no points and no rankings – that is fine too.

If this option is chosen , then the drop – flyte method of tournament management should be used as it ranks and rates players as the tournament progresses and provides for ample games.


I hope this has addressed most concerns of our players in Canada who are at a much less developed level of play than our American counterparts. Hopefully this document will level the “playing Field“