7 Must-Read Pickleball Books to Improve Your Game Drastically

Posted on December 29, 2020
person holding a pickleball book in front of a pickleball court

Whether you’re looking to up your serving strategy, pick up new training drills, or learn about pickleball history, you can’t go wrong with adding one of these pickleball books to your training regimen. 

These pickleball books are appropriate for anyone, including:

  • Beginner players looking to start on the court
  • Advanced players with years of experience
  • People looking to find out more about pickleball

Written by some of the most respected coaches and experts in the game, check out our pickleball book recommendations below.

1. The Art of Pickleball

book cover for The Art of Pickleball

Gale Leach, a children's book author, picked up pickleball as a hobby. When looking for pickleball books on the game, she noticed almost none existed and decided to write her own. This book is the product of her research and time dedicated to getting better at the game.

The Art of Pickleball became a bestseller when Leach first published it in 2005. Now in its fourth edition, it's considered by pickleball experts to be one of the must-have guides for players of all skill levels.

Leach goes in-depth on the equipment, conditioning, mental strategy, play strategies, and even the game's jargon, making it an informative choice for all pickleballers. With tips from pros on their game plans, it's a must-read for any player.

2. The Pickleball Bible

book cover for The Pickleball Bible

The Pickleball Bible comes from exercise scientist and coach Dr. Rick Lambson and Tim Finger, a teacher and consultant for tennis and pickleball. Together, the two have decades of experience in training students to be in top form.

The two used an educational approach to write this book, going in-depth on rules, strokes, volleys, drills, and mental strategies. With its scientific method, this book should make a lasting impression in your pickleball study and have an immediate impact on your style.

The Pickleball Bible looks like a workbook, with readers given space by the authors to document their progress. It also features annotated diagrams for correct positioning and court movement. The digital edition of the book also has links to video content.

3. How to Play Pickleball: The Complete Guide From A to Z

book cover for How to Play Pickleball - The Complete Guide from A to Z

Richard Movsessian, known to pickleball fanatics as Coach Mo, co-authored this pick with Joe Baker, who also authored At the Line Pickleball. The pair touch on everything from the sport’s history to special situations like the overhead dink.

While there’s something for everyone, beginners can think of the book as a personal coaching session with two of the sport’s top names.

Phil Bagley, USAPA National Champion, has touted this book as "the pickleball bible," a fantastic resource for any player. With endorsements from professional players, this pick is an obvious addition to any player's bookshelf.

4. At the Line Pickleball: The Winning Doubles Pickleball Strategy

At the Line Pickleball book

At the Line Pickleball is another pick by Joe Baker. While not a professional pickleball player, he's well-known among players for his pickleball video series -- so much so that he's commonly called "Video Joe."

Like Baker's videos, this book features tips for players of all skill levels. This book also has the bonus of focusing primarily on doubles strategies. Many of the other books on this list feature tips for doubles, but this guide is the only one that makes that mode a priority.

At the Line Pickleball is also formatted to test your knowledge with quizzes on each chapter's content, further ingraining every new lesson into your memory. 

5. Smart Pickleball: The Pickleball Guru’s Guide

Smart Pickleball The Pickleball Guru's Guide Book

Prem Carnot, also known as the "Pickleball Guru," gives readers a front-row seat to one of his sold-out pickleball clinics in Smart Pickleball. Carnot has taught thousands of North American players how to advance their skills and uses those same lessons here.

Carnot teaches readers his trademarked Smart Pickleball technique, where you’ll walk away knowing the difference between just hitting the ball and serving it using the way of Smart Pickleball. After a read through this guide, you’ll notice changes right away.

The book features detailed diagrams and all of the Pickleball Guru’s existing drills that he’s taught to thousands of students. This book also comes in an audiobook edition, so you can learn while you’re out on the court.

6. Mind Game: A Quantum Performance Leap for Pickleball and Tennis

Mind Game A Quantum Performance Leap for Competitive Pickleball and Tennis

Mind Game was written by Neil Schulenburg, who is not only an avid pickleball player but a psychotherapist. As a professional in all things mental, Dr. Schulenburg takes readers through the demanding part of pickleball.

While you must know the rules and etiquette of the game before you step onto the court, players should also be aware that pickleball is just as much a mental game as it is a physical one. 

Dr. Schulenburg teaches readers about the two hemispheres of the brain. He expounds on how each hemisphere processes the mental part of playing sports, especially strategy games like pickleball and tennis. 

You'll come away from your read-through of Mind Game with not only a better way to outthink your opponents but a better understanding of your thinking in general.

7. Pickleball Zen: Improving Your Pickleball Game -- An Unconventional Approach

Pickleball Zen: Improving your Pickleball game

As Pickleball Zen points out, golfers have two coaches: a coach for technique and a mental coach. Paul Hudanich, or "Coach Om," as he calls himself, aims to be the mental coach for any reader of Pickleball Zen

Hudanich has also written Inner Game and Venus Rising, additional guides on rethinking your approach to pickleball.

Along with Mind Game, this guide should give you plenty of resources to rebuild the way you think about pickleball and know that the game starts before you even walk onto the court.

Conclusion

The pickleball book market has exploded over the past several years, going from empty, with books written by players because there were none available, to well-known pros and coaches publishing their best tips and strategies for success.

If you’re looking to raise your game at any level or learn just why they call it pickleball, you can’t go wrong with any of the pickleball books on this list.

Consumer Guides

Gear and equipment is a crucial part of pickleball. Check out our consumer guides on various topics to ensure you get the right products:

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The Author
Melvin Robles
I'm Melvin. The author and editor of PickleballGuide. I've played pickleball since 2014 and tennis since I was ten. I hope you enjoy your time on here.
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