What Is A Drop Shot In Pickleball?

When it comes to playing pickleball, there are lots of different shots to learn and master. None is more important than learning how to play the drop shot in pickleball. 

What Is A Drop Shot In Pickleball (2)

A lot of players find this type of shot difficult to master at first, but they realize how critical it is when it comes to pickleball game strategies. 

Drops shots are gentle yet precise shots that are supposed to land in your opponent’s no-volley zone.

Sometimes this type of shot can be referred to as the third shot drop, and it is seen as one of the more advanced shots that you can use in pickleball. 

In this article, we are going to discuss what a drop shot is and the benefits of performing a drop shot in pickleball. 

What Is A Drop Shot?

An essential tool in any pickleball player’s toolbox is the drop shot.

Occasionally, you may hear this type of shot called the third drop shot, since this type of shot is typically used as the third shot of a rally from the baseline.

It is an effective shot to use as it can provide players extra time to go forward and reach the kitchen line. 

Drop shots, however, are also frequently used at the net to slow down a hard-hit ball and start a softer dink rally.

Wherever on the court, if you can slow down a ball that has been hit at you quickly and place it in the non-volley zone, you are making one of the most deadly shots in pickleball.

There are a lot of advantages to this type of shot, but the major disadvantage is that it is a tricky shot to execute. 

Purpose Of Drop Shots

Drop shots are intended to hit the “kitchen” or non-volley zone (NVZ) of your opponent. You are gaining net control and positioning the return shot to your benefit by doing this, which gives you a competitive edge.

In pickleball, a well-placed and well-timed drop shot will make your opponent have to hit the ball up. This will give you more chances to hit down on your subsequent shot and put it away firmly. 

Professionals use the drop shot to position themselves for an overhead slam or baseline passing shot that will win the game. Yet, setting up requires patience and accuracy.

When Is The Best Time To Use A Drop Shot?

When you and your partner are situated close to the baseline, you have the opportunity to advance toward the net, making this the ideal situation for a drop shot.

The third shot of a point, which comes after the serve and serve return, is when this shot is most frequently done. The serving team uses the drop shot far more frequently as a result. 

In fact, the serving team might have to wait until the fifth or seventh shot in the rally to attempt a timely drop shot into the kitchen. This is if the return team uses deep return shots to keep them at the baseline.

How To Do A Drop Shot In Pickleball

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A gentle, direct shot to the kitchen qualifies as a good drop shot. Moreover, watch out for shots that bounce too high, which could give your opponent a smash hit.

Drop shots typically don’t have much wind behind them. In other words, they are made to be as soft but lethal as possible.

Step 1: Ensure you have a loose grip on your paddle to be able to make the longer drink. 

Step 2: Get under the ball by bending your knees. Strive for a point of contact that is knee-high or less.

Step 3: It ought to be a push stroke with little wind-up in the aftermath. With an upward, pendulum-lifting action, make contact with the ball. Try to be under the ball to create an arc.

Step 4: Always place the center of the arc on your side of the net, in the kitchen area. Let gravity take care of the remaining work.

Step 5: Look for a location in the center of the adjacent kitchen space. It should be neither too deep nor too near the net.

Step 6: Follow through and maintain forward motion as you go toward your kitchen line.

Tips For Completing A Drop Shot

A drop shot is really difficult to master and shouldn’t be used by beginners or anyone during a risky time in the game. This is because there are a lot of dangers for not getting the drop shot right.

You have to ensure that you are precise and consistent with your shots to be able to control the ball with your paddle. 

It’s important to emphasize that your drop shot must reach its apex (i.e., the highest point) on your side of the court. Otherwise, you may be hitting too hard or aiming too far.

With regard to trajectory height, your drop shot will normally land deeper the higher the arc. If you hit it too deep, your opponents will have little trouble volleying it out of the air.

Also, you face the possibility of striking the net if the depth is too shallow.

Final Thoughts

The drop shot is the most crucial, but also the most challenging pickleball shot to learn. Although challenging, it is possible if you know the proper technique and practice.

In pickleball, the drop shot has three major objectives: to get your team near the net, to get your opponent to make a mistake, or to position oneself to hit an attacking ball.

With a drop shot, you need to be consistent and precise in your shots to have confidence. We hope this article has been helpful, you should now have a better idea on what a drop shot in pickleball is.

Michael Walter
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