Pickleball Season is here! How to Stay in the Game and Prevent Injuries!

Treloar Physiotherapy is a proud sponsor of the Vancouver Pickleball Association and this year we have been working together to provide our community with a few tips for injury prevention! Pickleball is a very dynamic sport which requires a combination of muscle strength, stability, agility and coordination. We see a variety of injuries to muscles, tendons and ligaments. These injuries can occur with a sudden quick movement during the game or repetitive movements over the course of weeks. Many of these injuries can be prevented through adequate warm up, strength and mobility programs and proper footwear.  

Warm Up 

Avoid arriving late and heading straight to your court for your game or practice session!  We recommend you give yourself at least 15-20 minutes for a dynamic warm up prior to playing.  This includes a series of upper and lower body movements to help activate muscles, promote blood flow and improve range of motion of your joints. This global approach is designed to elevate your heart rate and prepare the body for active movement and vigorous activity.  The movements in the dynamic warm up should resemble the movement requirements during play. For example, side to side lunges would be an appropriate movement to warm up the legs.

Resistance Training 

For injury prevention and performance enhancement, strengthening exercises for both the upper and lower body are recommended, with an emphasis placed on the lower body regions that enable you to maintain and move from an athletic, “ready-position”.  A focus on the lower body will help to build strength, agility, coordination and load tolerance in the muscle, tendon and ligaments in the ankle, knee, hip and lower back. 

We recommend completing the strengthening program 2-3 times per week to help keep your joints resilient on the court. 

Recovery & Cool-Down

Static stretching involves holding a body and limb position for a short, sustained period of time. The aim is to create length to the muscles which can be useful for the cool-down process after you have finished playing.  This process can take up to 10-15 minutes.   


Court shoes are recommended for pickleball players as it offers lateral support and stability allowing for better protection of the foot and ankle. Court shoes are often branded as tennis or volleyball shoes, which are designed for either indoor or outdoor use. We recommend court shoes with good traction and tread to accommodate both the outdoor hard court and indoor gym-floor surfaces. This allows for stability while cutting or pivoting on the court, and can help minimize the risk of slipping. 

When to seek advice and possibly treatment? 

Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) is a normal response to muscle use, however this should not last longer than 2 days. You should consider seeing a physiotherapist if you develop joint or muscle soreness that affects your ability to perform daily activities or participate in pickleball. A physiotherapist specializes in assessing, diagnosing and treating muscle and joint conditions. Managing symptoms early on in your injury can help speed up your recovery, giving you more time on the court. You can also see a physiotherapist for prehab, which is a proactive approach to optimizing function and performance while also  preventing injury. A physiotherapist can help with identifying potential areas of weakness and provide an individualized exercise program to correct muscle imbalances and improve overall joint health.  

Keeping you in the game of pickleball is our main goal, so following this multifaceted approach should keep you on the court and continue enjoying the game for years to come! 

Written By: Jamie Mistry, Physiotherapist (Treloar Physiotherapy Kerrisdale)