What Is The Pickleball Kitchen Rule And How To Stop Breaking It

Barrett Kincheloe article, Basics, beginner, Rules 137 Comments

The pickleball non-volley zone or kitchen rule is easily one of the most infamous rules in pickleball. And also one of the most hilarious. There’s nothing funnier than seeing someone volley a ball (hit it out of mid-air) while they are in the middle of the kitchen (which is a fault). Everyone yells “Kitchen!” all at once with an uproar of “Ohhhh!” or bellows of laughter.

If you’re a beginner, I’m going to give you the basics of how the kitchen works. But if you’re an advanced player, keep reading! There are a few extra details about the kitchen that you may not know yet! A lot of players are under the impression that there is only one kitchen rule to be concerned with. But it’s actually a bit more complicated than that. 

If you’re here for a quick answer, the kitchen rule states that you cannot be touching the kitchen zone or kitchen line while volleying a ball. Any object that is physically connected to you counts, including your partner. This also includes your momentum that landed you in the kitchen after volleying a ball.

Curious still? Let’s go!

Video explanation

What is the kitchen?

In pickleball, the kitchen is a colloquial term for the non-volley zone. This is a section of the court that is 7 feet away from both sides of the net and extends to each sideline. Take a look at this image:

pickleball kitchen rule

The reason why the kitchen is so well known is that it’s one of the easiest rules to break as a beginner, but also that it’s a unique rule that’s uncommon in other racket sports.

Simply put, the kitchen rule keeps people from standing at the net and smashing everything downward. Imagine if players were allowed to stand at the net while playing. The game would be unplayable. That’s what the kitchen is for.

Here’s one of the most important aspects to understand the kitchen (non-volley zone): the kitchen is the physical ground, not the space above it. It’s perfectly legal to volley a ball while your paddle is hovering over the kitchen zone, but not if you’re physically touching the ground or the line.

The kitchen rules

Alright, let’s move on to the rules!

Like I mentioned earlier, here is the main kitchen rule: You cannot be standing in, or otherwise make contact with the kitchen zone or kitchen line while volleying a ball. A volley is a fancy word for hitting the ball in mid-air before it hits the ground. This includes the initiation of a volley. Keep that word in mind as you read; it’s very important. Here’s what the rule says in the International Federation of Pickleball’s (IFP) official tournament rulebook:

“9.B. A fault will be declared if, in the act of volleying the ball, a player or anything the player is wearing or carrying touches the non-volley zone or touches any non-volley line. For example, a fault will be declared if, in the act of volleying the ball, one of the player’s feet touches a non-volley line.”

That’s pretty simple, right? Just don’t hit the ball out of mid-air while your feet are in the kitchen or on the kitchen line. Easy!

However, it gets a bit more complicated than that. The rule also says “anything the player is wearing or carrying”. So yes, it’s still a fault if you drop your paddle in the kitchen after you’ve volleyed the ball, even if you’re outside the kitchen. But it can be anything that is physically attached to you. You’ll get called on a fault if your hat falls off, or even if your keys fall out of your pocket or anything similar. This also includes anything that happens via momentum. As the IFP rulebook says:

“9.C. A fault will be declared if, in the act of volleying the ball, the player’s momentum causes the player or anything the player is wearing or carrying to touch the non-volley zone or touch any non-volley line. It is a fault if the player’s momentum causes the player to touch anything that is touching the non-volley zone, including the player’s partner. It is a fault even if the ball is declared dead before the player touches the non-volley zone.”

I’ve made this mistake before. I was standing about 1 inch away from the kitchen line when I reached for a ball far into the kitchen and volleyed the ball. However, I lost my balance and I placed my paddle on the ground in the kitchen in order to keep my feet from going in. I called a fault on myself though, because the momentum from the volley is what made me touch the kitchen. Whoops!

This also includes balls that are declared dead. So if you’re in a tournament, just don’t ever walk into the kitchen even if it’s a dead ball.

Keep in mind, it’s OK if you volley a ball standing outside the kitchen, while the paddle is over the line in mid-air. The kitchen is the flat, marked area on the ground, not the air above it. Excluding one rule, which is next.

Remember: the kitchen rule only applies to balls that have been volleyed. If the ball has bounced already, the kitchen rules no longer apply to that particular case.

Getting complicated

Here’s another important part that often gets missed:

“9.D. A fault will be declared if the player violates the intent of the non-volley zone rule. All volleys must be initiated outside of the non-volley zone. A maneuver such as standing within the non-volley zone, jumping up to hit a volley, and then landing outside the non-volley zone is prohibited. If a player has touched the non-volley zone for any reason, that player cannot volley the return until both feet have made contact with the playing surface completely outside the non-volley zone.”

This is where things get a little weird and become hard to judge. Basically, you cannot be standing in the kitchen zone, jump up to volley the ball without your feet touching the ground, then land outside the kitchen. Here’s that “initiate” word that I told you about at the beginning of the article. You cannot initiate a volley while being in the kitchen, whether you’re physically touching the ground, or if you were touching the ground when you started the volley.

This means that you can’t be standing in the kitchen, jump up to volley a ball, then land outside the kitchen. Fault!

In order to safely volley the ball after being in the kitchen, you must reset your stance outside the kitchen first before initiating the stroke.

What you CAN do in the kitchen

Before we continue, if you want to learn how to get to the kitchen quickly and effectively, make sure you check out this article on how to do so.

Whatever you want! As long as you’re not initiating or volleying a ball.

It’s very common to see players hop into the kitchen to return a short dink. This is fine, as long as the ball has bounced first. You have to be careful with this though because if you’re sitting in the kitchen then you’re also a sitting duck. The reason is that if you’re standing in the kitchen, then any volley you make is automatically a fault. But in order for you to not volley the ball, you’ll have to let it go, or hope it bounces first. In other words, you’re in an impossible situation. If you have to go into the kitchen, get out as soon as you can!

Once you begin to play pickleball more, you’ll feel like the kitchen is some type of pit of endless lava. That can help to get you out of the kitchen if you have to go in, but don’t be afraid of it though! You can perform groundstrokes in the kitchen as much as you want. Just wait for them to bounce, stay calm, step forward, and make a balanced and calculated stroke.

Toeing the line

With all that said, you’re probably wondering, “Where should I stand if the kitchen is so dangerous?”

Where you stand on the court will change depending on what’s going on with the game, but in general, you want to be as close to the kitchen as possible without being on the line. This is especially true during a consistent dinking rally. This is a concept called “toeing the line”.

I got this from Sarah Ansboury, a professional pickleball player who has made a huge name for herself. Toeing the line simply means that your feet are lined up just a few inches behind the kitchen line. This assures that you’re as close to the kitchen as possible without going in.

Believe me, this takes practice, especially if you’re a beginner. It’s very easy to lose your sense of where the kitchen is while playing. But eventually, as you play more, you’ll be able to “feel” an imaginary wall in front of you that will mentally keep you from going in. It takes practice, but it will come.

If you’re a beginner, try to focus on running up to the kitchen line as much as possible. This is not only the correct way to play the game, but it’s also going to give you better practice when dealing with the kitchen rules.

Wrapping up

Knowing all the rules about the kitchen is important, especially if you’re going to be playing in tournaments. As usual, leave a comment down below and let me know if you have any questions.

Comments 137

  1. 1. I return an overhead (Volley) from way back and keep running into the kitchen. Clearly, momentum didn’t carry me into the kitchen. Is this a fault?

    2. I return a volley from just outside the kitchen, make 2-3 steps before stepping into it. Fault?

    When is it considered that I reset my stance? number of steps? number of seconds?

    Thanks

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  2. Question if I am out of the kitchen and hit the ball coming over the net in the air and I land and my foot is over the kitchen line but not touching it is it a fault? another words that old portion of my shoe is over the line but because of the curl of the shoe it is not touching

  3. Can you volley a ball then to avoid stepping in the kitchen, jump over the corner of the kitchen and land out of bounds and not be considered a fault?

      1. Same question…

        Also, do you have to be “in bounds” before volleying the ball (and not in the kitchen)? I.e. can you start out of bounds and jump over a corner back in bounds while volleying? This is the opposite direction of the previous question…

  4. Hi. Just finished playing. Major controversy!! My teammate returned a bounced ball from the area of dead man zone and continued into the kitchen everyone yelled fault!!! I’m like. It bounced. Everyone said. Nope can’t go into the kitchen after returning a bounced ball outa the kitchen. Makes no sense to me. Please clarify. Thanks.

    1. Question:
      You hit a groundstroke but your momentum from the shot carries you into the non-volley zone. Is this a fault?
      Answer:
      Regardless of where the ball bounces on the court — as long as it bounces first — your momentum from hitting your groundstroke can, indeed, carry you into the Non-Volley Zone without penalty. Click here to see confirmation from our friends at the USAPA. Just don’t hit a volley on your next shot while in the kitchen! 😉

    2. If the ball bounced, you can step in the kitchen. You are correct: it is not a fault. Only if your partner had volleyed the ball and stepped in the kitchen it would have been a fault.

  5. So after hitting a volley, when can you step into the kitchen – if you can’t even after the ball is dead?

    1. So I hit a volley and opponent returns it, at what point can I step into the kitchen? After it bounces on opponents side or after opponent hits it as a volley or not until it has been returned and crosses the net or not until it bounces on my side? I understand if my volley is a winner I can’t step into the kitchen until the next ball is served (I am assuming ball is ‘dead’ from end of last point until the next serve).

    2. My understanding is that it hinges upon your momentum, as judged by continuous movement. If you volley it and continue into the kitchen, it is a fault, even if it has bounced twice or if it is volleyed back by the opposing player by the time you reach the kitchen. But if you have clearly stopped your momentum after a volley, you should be able to enter the kitchen again whether or not the ball is dead. For example, if you hit a hard volley to the back court, and your opponent hits a high lob back that will land in your kitchen near the net, you can step into the kitchen AS LONG AS it is clear that your entering the kitchen is not a continuation of your motion toward the net from your volley. (Different views, anyone?)

      I think that my only remaining question would be: Suppose that you hit a volley from well behind the kitchen line, and your opponent, just behind his kitchen line, drops it with a soft volley back into your kitchen where the ball bounces for the first time in the sequence. If you are still moving forward with momentum from your volley shot, can you step into the kitchen AFTER it has bounced in your kitchen for a groundstroke save? (Not a common scenario, but perhaps plausible?)

  6. Ball hit over net on return both players swing at ball player one hits ball over net his partner strikes the back of his paddle but did not hit the ball but stepped into the kitchen. Is this a fault

  7. Both players are outside the kitchen when the ball is returned in the air down the middle. Both players attempt to volley the ball and their paddles make contact as the ball is hit. Player one’s paddle is in front and strikes the ball and they stay outside the kitchen; however player two’s momentum takes them into the kitchen on the follow through. I’m thinking it’s a fault since there was contact between the players (paddles).
    Fault on not?
    Thanks!

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    2. Player who did not hit the ball is only one who stepped into kitchen player who struck ball does not go into kitchen

      1. A player on team A steps on the kitchen line after hitting a volley. Team B calls a fault but team A denies stepping in the kitchen line. With no referee who’s call is correct?

        Thx

  8. I read about half the questions and responses and couldn’t find an answer to this yet. My question is about SERVICE on the kitchen LINE. My understanding is that during normal game play the lines surrounding the kitchen are a part of the kitchen. But on a service, how does that work? For example, I serve over the net and it lands ON the kitchen line. Is that serve good or a fault? If it had landed inside the kitchen it’s a fault. But all other lines are “in”. So this is confusing to me.

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      Thanks for your comment. I understand your confusion. Let me help clear it up. A line on the pickleball court is a part of whatever section it’s assigned to. As an example, the kitchen line is assigned to the kitchen, therefore it is a part of the kitchen. Similar to how baseball fields have an outfield warning track that’s a different material and color, pickleball colors have lines to symbolize that the court or section of the court is about to end.

      Since you can’t sever the ball into the kitchen, then you can also not serve on the line since the kitchen line is apart of the kitchen.

      Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rIqZCgR6_hQ

  9. Can you drop your paddle into the kitchen? For example. I hit the ball from “no man’s land” and the ball goes over the net but my paddle flies out of my hand and land in the nvz.

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  10. I’m in the kitchen and the ball has bounced once in the kitchen……I return the ball and the opposition returns with a dink to my team member who returns with a dink. During this entire play I’m still in the kitchen. Is this a fault?

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      No, because the ball has bounced. The kitchen rule only applies to balls hit that haven’t bounced.

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          1. Barrett,

            I think you should mention that you can be in the kitchen at anytime you’d like….you just can’t volley in the kitchen. I see people all the time trying to volley on a bounced ball in the kitchen while keeping “OUT” of the kitchen at the same time. You likely have covered this….but on this particular question, I could tell that is what the questioner (Bill) was getting at….doesn’t really have to do with the “overhead” hitting of the ball….which would be very unlikely unless you were very short.

            Dan

          2. Didn’t mean “volley” in the last comment…just hit the ball off the bounce when the ball landed in the kitchen (NVZ).

            Dan

        2. If you know that the ball will bounce short in the kitchen, step in early and be ready for it before the ball bounces. Do this especially if you think the ball will bounce higher than the net.

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        That’s a fault. The ball cannot touch the kitchen on a serve, and that includes the line.

  11. We are hoping to get our club to instal 10 & UNDER PERMANENT GREEN LINE TAPES to a har-tru court. Can this court still be used for tennis league play? Much pushback from tennis community, so trying to accommodate both sports. Any solutions? Not financially feasible to build separate PB court yet.

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  12. Whose responsibility is it to call a fault at the kitchen line. If the person doing the volley and didn’t realize his foot was on or over the kitchen line, can the opponent call it and the call stick. If the player doing the fault didn’t know he did and doesn’t believe the opponent’s call and his partner didn’t see it, can the player contest it? What is the rule for calling the fault when the player didn’t know he did it and the opponent saw it?
    Thank you

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      Yes, the opponent can absolutely call that in a rec game. But that’s typically not allowed in tournament play. During a tournament, the referee is the one that calls the faults and the player can’t do anything about that. But in rec play, just be honest!

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      1. If you hit a volley (hit the ball before it bounces) and then the play is over (the ball is dead). When CAN you legally go into the kitchen? Only after the start of the next point?

  13. I volleyed the ball 10’ back from the nvz line. I haven’t touched the ball since ( my partner has played the ball since my volley). If i enter the kitchen is it a fault?

    1. Can you ever just stand in the kitchen during play?
      Someone I play with said it’s ok to stand in the kitchen, but you still have to wait for the ball to bounce first.
      I may not see your response, could you send me your answer to my email! vsr62007@yahoo.com, patiently waiting for a reply ????????

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        Yes, you can just stand in the kitchen, but it’s not a good idea. If someone hits a ball directly at you and you hit it without bouncing, it’ll be a fault automatically.

        1. Barret, If you have one foot on the kitchen line and the ball is returned to you and it bounces outside the kitchen and you return it, is this a fault or a fair play?

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            Remember that the kitchen rule applies to balls that have not bounced. If the ball bounces, the kitchen rules no longer apply for that shot.

      2. Interesting I was told today that if standing in kitchen, ball bounces you hit it
        It is your loss of point? What

        My understanding is you can be in kitchen anytime.. let ball bounce first
        Ok!
        You hit it after bounces does not matter if in kitchen before bounces!
        Confirm correct
        Thanks!
        Jody

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      If the momentum of your swing brought you into the kitchen, then it’s a fault. However, if you have fully reset your stance, then you can go in without a fault.

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  14. If you volley the ball from outside the kitchen it lands on the opposite side and the your momentum has brought you into the kitchen after the bounce on the other side, is it still a fault?

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  15. If the ball is dinked over the net into your kitchen and bounces….is it legal to go to one knee to return the ball?

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  16. We play without umpires. Is there any rule about who can call a kitchen foul? we play that only the side that has made the foul can call it. The opposing team can’t make the call. Is there any rule ????

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      The opposing team can absolutely make that call. It’s a grey area though and people don’t like it. This is why most people only play tournaments with certified referees.

  17. A volley was returned and bounced and rolled out of bounds, I turned and my heal crossed into the kitchen and I was called for a fault.
    Just rec play but when is a dead ball dead.
    Thanks

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      This is a great question and I’m looking to do a video on weird sections of the rules like this. Stay tuned on my YouTube channel for that one. But in rec play, no one should ever call something like this. It’s a bit extreme in my opinion.

      1. Rules say for a fault to occur the “momentum” of the swing carries you into the NVZ. Simple stepping into the zone later would not apply

  18. We had this happen recently, I played a volley and dropped my paddle into the kitchen. I immediately called a foul on myself. All of us were at the net and my volley was returned very quickly to my partner. If the ball had been returned to my side of the net before I lost control of my paddle, would it still have been a fault? I felt it would be since the momentum of my swing caused me to drop the paddle but my playing partners thought that if the ball was still alive and came back to our side first, it would be no different than if a player was standing in the kitchen while his partner played a shot.

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      Yes, it would have still been a fault. It’s all about whether or not that volley motion is what brought you into the kitchen. If it was, then a dead ball is declared and the fault is “administered” so to speak. Does that make sense? In order for it to not be a fault, you have to fully reset your stance. It’s a bit of a grey area, but I hope it answers your question!

  19. My opponent hits a severe back spin shot, the ball lands in the kitchen of our court (very close to the net) then bounces backwards to the opponents’ court over the net due to the back spin. I know that I can step into the kitchen since the ball lands first. My question is can I hit the ball over the opponent court since the ball bounces backwards, as long as I don’t touch the net? Thank you!

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      Yes, you can. But make sure that you actually hit the ball. If you cross the plane of the net but don’t make contact with the ball, it’s a fault on you.

  20. Question: Player A is at the kitchen line and returns a volley by slamming it to the opponent court. The shot is “in” and the opponent was not able to return the shot. Player A then went to turn around and stepped into the kitchen, is this a fault seeing it wasn’t momentum that took him/her into the kitchen? The use of momentum was a big debate when this scenario occurred. Your opinion is appreciated.

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      Sorry Aleta, I missed your question on accident.

      I have seen this kind of situation pop up, but it’s rare. If momentum is what caused you to fall into the kitchen then it’s a fault. However, if you reset your stance completely then step into the kitchen, then it’s not a fault. Hope that helps!

  21. Hi, I’m serving the ball into my opponents court, can the return serve bounce in the kitchen otr does it have to be returned outside of the kitchen?

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      Hey Pati, the return serve can land anywhere on the opponent’s side of the court as long as it’s in.

  22. While straddling the kitchen line (one foot in, one foot out) can you lift the “in” foot and hit a volley? Would you have established yourself as “outside” the kitchen by purposely standing on a single foot? I have never seen this happen but I haven’t been playing long. Thank you in advance for your help.

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      No, you can’t have your foot physically on the kitchen line or ground, lift your foot, then volley. You have to establish yourself fully outside the kitchen before you can volley. However, you can hover your foot over the kitchen as much as you want. Just can’t make contact if you want to volley.

  23. Our opponent today told me that after I legally played a bounced ball from inside the kitchen, I have to be out of the kitchen BEFORE the opponents return shot comes back over the net. True?

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      Well, it’s not a rule that you have to get out of the kitchen, however, you certainly want to. You never want to be standing in the kitchen if you can’t help it.

    2. If an apponent lopes a high volley and you can see it is going land in the kitchen can you go into the kitchen wait for the bounce and hit the ball back to any area of the oppositions side of the court

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  24. My partner was outside the kitchen, made a great return that bounced on the other side and then bounced a second time. His momentum then carried him into the kitchen well after the point was won. What’s the ruling?

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      I’m assuming that his return was a volley. If the momentum was caused by the volley, then that’s a fault, regardless of whether it was a dead ball or not.

  25. I don’t understand the dead ball kitchen rule. If it hits a player and the point is over, how can a fault be called? Point is over. If not, then how long do you have to wait? Was playing, hit a volley, hit the person and I tripped over my feet. I took two steps and then fell. My opponent said that it was a fault because my momentum, no matter how long it took carried me into the kitchen.

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      Hey Tony, great question.

      A dead ball just means that whatever has happened on the court has stopped play. Most of the times, it’s a fault that causes this. However, the kitchen rules don’t obey this.

      Your opponent is correct. It is a fault on you because your shot was the first one made. And no matter what happens after the ball is declared dead, the kitchen rule still applies. In order to reset the kitchen rule, you must plant both feet outside the kitchen in order to have it reset.

      It always has to be a fault in cases like this. The reason is that if this was allowed, then people would jump into the kitchen and purposely hit people all day. And that’s just not how they want the game to be played.

      Great question though. This is a slightly grey area of the rules that the rulebook doesn’t explain very well. Hope that helps!

      1. He said that he took 2 steps and it sounds like they were outside of the kitchen so that would count as a reset

        1. Frank to steps is not considered a stop of momentum. One must regain one’s balance with both feet planted.

  26. I have a question? Since you state the kitchen is the line and not the space above it, so why can you lean over the kitchen and volley a ball in the air, and you can’t jump outside the kitchen, volley a ball in mid air, land, and get out of the kitchen? Makes no sense if the paddle connected to you is over the space in the kitchen, which, isn’t the kitchen is ok, but jumping doing the same thing with the paddle in the exact position as if standing and leaning is a foul.

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      I’m not entirely understanding your question.

      Are you asking that since you can stand at the kitchen, lean over and hit the ball over the kitchen, then why can you not stand in the kitchen, jump out, hit the ball, then land outside? Is that correct?

      First, remember that the kitchen is not just the line, it’s the entire rectangle. I think that may be where you’re confused.

      Second, the reason why you can’t be in the kitchen before, during, or after you hit the ball is that it gives you an unfair advantage that is hard to control with rules. The USAPA has to make sure that the game is played fairly in order to make it fun for everyone. So making the rules very strict like this, even if they don’t make sense, is the only way to ensure that the game is played fairly.

      But also, standing at the kitchen line, leaning over and hitting the ball is not the same as jumping out of the kitchen since you’re closer to the net and thus have a better angle and a greater advantage.

      Let me know if that answers your question. Thanks!

  27. TIM Hi new to pickleball , just wanting to understand , any ball that lands outside the kitchen on a bounce and you hit a ground stroke and your momentum carries you into the kitchen its ok ?

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      Yes, that’s fine. Think of it this way: the kitchen rule only applies to balls that haven’t bounced. If the ball hasn’t bounce yet, then the kitchen rule applicable!

  28. How long after you volley a ball do you have to stay outnof the kitchen? Until the ball is hit on the other side? Until they return the ball?

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      You have to completely reset your stance and your motion. Basically, make sure both feet are on the ground and your arms aren’t moving. That signals that you’ve reset and are OK to go into the kitchen.

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  29. Question, a high lob shot lands (bounces) in the kitchen and bounces up to shoulder height. Can I return it with an overhanded smash while standing in the kitchen?

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      Yes, since the ball bounced first, the kitchen rule no longer applies for that specific shot.

  30. When playing someone said you can play in the pickle ball area. I thought you could only go in and get right back out not stay in and play ftom the kitchen

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  31. A new person started playing pickleball with us. She had played in another state. She told us we not playing correctly. She said if the ball bounces and you have to get in the kitchen to return it you must keep one foot out of the kitchen or it is a fault. I have never seen this rule written anywhere or heard it mentioned watching pickleball on you tube.

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      That is incorrect. You do not have to keep a foot outside the kitchen to return a bounced ball in the kitchen.

  32. If I return a serve legally @ the kitchen line & they return the ball in our zone than I fall in is that a fault?

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      It’s impossible to return a serve at the kitchen line because the ball has to bounce first. You should be at the baseline when returning a serve.

  33. If a ball lands 1″ beyond the kitchen line and I return the ball and my momentum takes me into the kitchen, is that a violation

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      No, because the ball has already landed. The kitchen rule only applies to balls that are volleyed.

  34. If you hit a volley outside the kitchen, the ball hits the opponents body and then your momentum carries you into the kitchen, is this a fault or is the point won when the ball hits the opponents?

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  35. If you are outside the kitchen and volley the ball and then jump over the corner of the kitchen towards the net and land out of bounds of the court. So you basically hop the corner of the kitchen to avoid falling into the kitchen. After hitting the ball you would now be standing a couple of feet from the net and a couple of feet to the right orvleft of the side kitchen line. Is this okay or a fault?

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  36. If you are standing outside the kitchen, can you volley the ball and in your follow through, jump outside the corner of the kitchen, either right side or left and land outside the court without stepping in the kitchen?

    Thank you
    Terry

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      Yes. But you cannot be standing in the kitchen, jump, then volley the ball and land outside.

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  37. My tournament playing friend tells me that if your sneaker is an inch over the line and your standing flat footed, not on your toes, it is still legal to hit the ball on a fly bc of the upward curvature of the front of the sneaker. True?

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      True. The actual kitchen zone is the physical ground, not the space above it. This is why it’s also OK to stick your paddle out into the kitchen. As long as you don’t touch the floor, you’re fine. Since the upward curvature of the shoe isn’t physically touching the line, then it’s fine.

  38. If you are outside the kitchen near one of the sides of the court can you volley the ball and then jump over the corner of the kitchen towards the net and land out of bounds of the court. So you basically hop the corner of the kitchen to avoid falling into the kitchen. After hitting the ball you would now be standing a couple of feet from the net and a couple of feet to the right orvleft of the side kitchen line.

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      Gordon, my sincerest apologies. For some reason, I did not see your comment.

      Yes, you can do this. It’s called the Erne and it’s a common thing to do.

  39. Explain this please. The ball bounced outsidebpf the kitchen, it was hit and momentum took player into the kitchen. Shouldn’t this be a fault? Ball didn’t bounce in the kitchen, so player shouldn’t enter, right?

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      That is not a fault because the ball has already bounced. The kitchen rule only concerns balls that are volleyed, not balls that have already hit the ground.

      In your case, since the ball has already bounced, the kitchen rules do not matter. Does that make sense?

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  40. How abiut this question. The ball bounces in court area, not the kitchen, you hit it and step into the kitchen. Fault or no fault? We are at Robson Ranch, Denton, but currently on vacation in Key Largo.

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      It depends on how long it takes you to take a step into the kitchen. If your stroke is complete, then you step into the kitchen, then it’s not a fault. However, if you make the stroke while you’re stepping into the kitchen, or if your momentum puts you into the kitchen, then it is a fault.

      I responded to this a while back but I had it wrong. I think I’m getting too wrapped up in the rule without considering if the ball has bounced or not. Must have been tired. But as Tom said below, since it bounced first it’s not a fault. Apologies for the confusion.

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  41. If a ball hit to me lands just past the kitchen and I hit it outside the kitchen, but my forward momentum takes me into the kitchen after I hit it, is that a fault?

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      No. Your feet have to land outside the kitchen first before you initiate a stroke. You cannot jump from inside the kitchen, volley the ball, then land outside the kitchen.

  42. If I play a ball that bounces in the kitchen while I am standing in the kitchen must I get out of the kitchen before I can play another ball that bounces in the kitchen?

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      In that case, you don’t have to get out of the kitchen since the ball has bounced once. However, if you’re still in the kitchen, your opponent will probably just drive the ball at you. If that happens, you’re toast! Does that make sense?

    2. No, you can stand in the kitchen all the time you want, as long that you don’t hit a ball in the air, you can hit any ball that bounce first and then hit it

      1. My question is this…Can anyone stand in the kitchen. ? any time? As long as they do not volley ball they are fine. If the ball bounces in kitchen or outside kitchen and they hit it while in kitchen after a bounce in or outside kitchen; the play is fine. Can they again, stand in kitchen while balls are going back and forth and not hit a volley; just let ball bounce in kitchen or out of kitchen and being in there for a while; does not matter; they let the ball bounce and all is okay? Bottom line okay to stand in kitchen; but cannot hit volley. I hope this is not confusing. LMK It came up today.

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          Yes, you can stand in the kitchen all you want. As long as you don’t volley the ball or initiate a volley of any kind. But you never want to be standing in the kitchen. The reason is that if you have to volley the ball while you’re in the kitchen, you have to get completely out of the kitchen first before you initiate that volley, else it’s a fault. Also, if someone drives the ball at you and you’re standing in the kitchen, it’s a vault no matter what if it hits you. Hope that helps!

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