As we noted earlier this week, the spin serve is very likely on its way out as the USA Pickleball board votes Friday on proposed rules changes. Pickleball Cafe has analysis of the other proposed rules changes on the table, and this one on questionable clothing deserves highlighting (pun intended):
“Avoid Wearing Clothing…
…that closely matches the ball color. (Keep your mind out of the gutter!) There are actually two parts to this change. The most impactful change is to rule 2.G.1. which adds the mention of clothing that ‘approximates the color of the ball’ as something that could be a ‘Safety’ or ‘Distraction’ issue, and may require the player to change apparel.”
Specifically, the rules change reportedly spells out that:
“Players [should] avoid wearing clothing that closely matches the ball color;” and2.G.1. Safety and Distraction. A player may be required to change apparel that are inappropriate, including that which approximates the color of the ball.
What’s interesting is that the rules changes still don’t outright ban ball-matching apparel and still leave it up to the discretion of tournament directors.
Our guess is that we amateurs will still be allowed to get matchy-matchy with our Duras and Franklins at fun, local events, but the professional, high-stakes tournaments will put an end to outfits like NBA legend Rick Barry’s traffic-stopping court wardrobe…
Bottom line: Proceed with caution and perhaps save the neon for glow pickleball night.