Squash has competition. New discipline conquers the world
Say it: Marcin Potrzebowski, President of PFP, Paulina Krzywicka, leader of squash and fell in Decathlon Poland.
A lightweight racket as in badminton, a comfortable squash court and a ball as in tennis and similar rules - this is how we can briefly describe the latest star among the disciplines that came to us from South America. The padel conquers the hearts of both professional and amateur athletes, and some even claim that it may soon be even more popular than squash. What is the secret of this discipline?
A combination of racket sport with a touch of Latin temperament - this is how a scavenger can be described in a few words. This very addictive and dynamic game provides a lot of fun, as evidenced by the ever-growing number of its supporters. There are many sports stars: Gaël Monfils, Novak Djoković, Maria Sharapova, Juan Carlos Ferrero, the Rochus brothers, Jeremy Gala, Henri Leconte or even the Barcelona players. In Poland, apart from Mariusz Fyrstenberg, the amateurs of the fallen are among the amateurs: Agnieszka Radwańska, Alicja Rosolska, Dawid Celt, Dawid Olejniczak and Zbigniew Boniek.
Padel comes from Mexico and his father is Enrique Conquera, who played him for the first time on a specially prepared court in 1962. The game, popular in the Latin New World, has reached Europe through Portugal and Spain. Its rules and scores are similar to tennis. The ball has to be punched on the other side of the court and touch the court. It can then bounce off any of the surrounding walls. It must be punctured again before the second fall to the ground. Interestingly, the ball can also be pierced using the back glass walls of the court.
You play in teams of two, so it's great, integrating fun and a way to have fun with your friends. This sport is not as demanding in terms of fitness as tennis and can be learnt after the first training, so it can be successfully practiced by the whole family.
On the other hand, the ever-increasing level of international tournaments and the Olympic ambitions of the fallen victim testify to the professionalisation of this sport. Poland has just established a national representation. Our team will play for the first time at the upcoming European Championship in Portugal, and participation in it is announced by the well-known Polish tennis player Mariusz Fyrstenberg, one of the best doubles in the world, Grand Slam finalist, Masters tournament participant and Polish representative in Davis Cup.
The scavenger court has dimensions of 10 by 20 m and is divided by a grid. Its sides are protected by a metal fence, so you can forget about the tedious chasing of the ball. On the other hand, at the two ends of the pitch there is a concrete wall or glass pane, which is crucial in the game. A paddle, like tennis, consists of breaking the ball through the net, but like in squash, the ball can also bounce off the court walls. Special pitches are now available in larger cities. It is also worth looking for places that popularize this sport, making the courts available for free.
The paddle racket is entirely made of plastic and resembles a slightly punctured table tennis racket. Its lightness (about 30 dkg) makes it easy and comfortable to manoeuvre while playing, unlike a tennis racket. Before buying, it is worthwhile to test different rockets and check how they fit in your hand and whether they meet our individual needs. The key is the material they are made of. Handiness, high comfort and strong rebounds are guaranteed by rockets with carbon fibres in the head.