According to the USA Pickleball Association, teams consist of two players on a court half the size of a tennis court. The pickleball, which is like a Wiffle ball of hard plastic with holes in it, is volleyed back and forth across a short net using flat wooden rackets that are slightly larger than table tennis paddles, but smaller than tennis rackets.
"It's like you are standing on the table for Ping-Pong," said Tom Devoe, 64, who travels to the Elizabethtown center from Middletown every week for pickleball and badminton play.
Though pickleball might resemble tennis, it's much easier on the knees, it's less physically demanding, and it has the added benefit of plenty of social time, according to participants.
"It is so much fun to play, and we really don't take it too seriously," said six-year pickleball player Pat Wood, 80, of Elizabethtown.
"I think it helps to keep me young," Wood added.
Although pickleball is not a fast-moving game like badminton or tennis, it does require hand-eye coordination, as the pickleball doesn't have a lot of speed when hit.
It's a game of strategy, Devoe said.
"The ball is really unpredictable, and it doesn't always go where you want it to go," Wood said.
Played until a score of 11, the pickup game provides not only camaraderie for players but also a way to keep active indoors.
"I played softball up until two years ago," said Dawn Kerns, 73, of East Petersburg. "But I had to stop because everyone was getting hurt falling."