The pickleball group at Multyfarnham Community Centre had a representative from Pickleball Ireland with them last week as they prepare to host the Irish Open Pickleball Championships later this month.
Marian Mooney, a member of Bunbrosna, Multyfarnham Ballinafid Active Retirement Association, who runs the pickleball group in Multyfarnham, said it was established in 2012 and currently has about 45 members playing regularly.
“They’re aged from their mid-50s to over 80, all enjoying themselves, playing three times a week," said Marian.
“It’s an excellent sport to keep you fit and active and can be enjoyed by all age groups. The ball and the paddle are very light, so it’s not too strenuous on anyone.
“You can play between different groups as well, older people and younger people together and it works well.”
Marian said the Multyfarnham group are hosting the Irish Open Pickleball Championships here at the community centre in Multyfarnham from April 25 to 28.
“We have about 40 players from the USA, England, Scotland and Wales coming as well as Irish players. The total number is 140 over four days.
“On the first two days we run the Irish Open Seniors, and on the second two days the intermediate and open championships.”
At a training morning last Wednesday, Michael McDaid of Pickleball Ireland, said: “We’re here in Multyfarnham to help coach the local group in advance of the Irish Pickleball Open Championships.
“The particular group we’re working with here are established players, but like with any sports people, there’s always room for improvement, so we’re here today to tweak things, to help them with the strategy, to clarify some of the rules, the more quirky aspects of the game – at their invitation.
“Some of them weren’t that confident that things were being done right or that they were playing the game in the right way.”