Not just a spectator

How do you analyze a pickleball video and not just become a spectator? Many times I find myself watching a video and just enjoying the point. How does one go about breaking down the point and what to watch for?

Does anyone ever analyze a whole game or match to see an overall strategy and maybe how the team adjusts?

This is such a good question, Stan :raised_hands:

I’ve never even considered how I watch pickleball videos. But I’m def a spectator!

With the number of pickleball videos that I watch, I probably should be more deliberate about the way I’m watching.

On another thread, @frankanthonydavis mentioned that he does “video analysis/visualization every day.” I’m guessing this is common among top pros. I bet they can’t watch a game or a video without instinctively analyzing each point. I wonder if all pros brains are wired like that.

I’m looking forward to the other comments here. I need some good advice on this!


So for me it can go either way- sometimes I watch simply for the pleasure of watching great points. sometimes I put on my thinking cap and really analyze the player’s mechanics, strategy and how they adjust throughout a match.

With anything- go into it with a purpose and if watching deliberately is something new to you- just pick 1 or 2 things that you are observing. Watch a favorite players mechanics or only watch one of the teams and see how they are strategizing. It is hard to watch everything all at once so pick what is most important.


I will share a few quick tips as I analyze video pretty much every day.

  • Sound OFF, always no exceptions.
  • Use a video player that allows double click to auto rewind 10secs and triple click to auto rewind 30secs
  • TAKE NOTES (You are wasting your time otherwise, seriously)
  • Stop watching the point, points as a whole are far too dynamic and unique to learn anything from. Isolate one shot at a time and fixate on only that shot. Sometimes I will let myself watch one shot 20+ times focusing on different aspects each time.
  • Analyze video of yourself before and after implementing changes (consider paying a pro coach to review as well)
  • Listen to @suzeeanderson13

@frankanthonydavis Those are great tips. Just a follow up for you. Do you analyze video from mainly your competitors to look at their trends and weaknesses or anyone? Sounds like because you are taking notes then you would have a good library for all your competition. What would you say would be your split between analyzing your competitors vs yourself?

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Hi Stan. I’m Stan too! As a senior head Referee in my HS football officials association, I use film study to help evaluate our officials (including me). It’s a challenge to focus on a few items when the play is happening because we get caught up in watching the whole play. During theses current times, I have started to look a pb games more closely to selfishly observe positions, movements, and shot selections of the players that I would like to do and/or improve on. I look for video on 3.5 and 4.0 matches over 50 most of the time. I also am helping a new player coming over from tennis and I’ll ask her to watch the video in full as a spectator and then I will provide her time marks to watch in more detail. I ask her to write some questions and observations down and then we discuss the situations in more details. I get to learn so much from doing that and hope that it will help both of us improve. Trying to observe and absorb!


Hey Stan! That is such a great idea to work on it with another person. I think when you have to verbalize your thoughts then it really makes the idea clearer and you can both learn from the observations.

Yes, it is good to take note of an opponents tendencies. I do a bit of that but it’s definitely not my main focus. I don’t really look for my opponents “weaknesses” definitely for their preferences but it’s going to be hard to find true weaknesses at the top pro level.

My main focus (in everything really) is based in self improvement. I find perfect examples of shots I want to hit better, setups I want to execute better, etc. I would say I am analyzing a 50% split on average. But it’s important to note that around 75% of the matches have me in them while I am analyzing the opponent. So only 25% of the matches I analyze don’t have me in them because that lowers the relevance factor quite a bit. :slightly_smiling_face:


This is what I was talking about. This is the exact type of benefit someone can get from hiring a pro coach to analyze their footage. :raised_hands:


I really like that. I was just starting to play in the open division this year. I had a bunch of tournaments lined up. What I learned pretty quickly is that the top players have their shots they like, but there really isn’t a weakness. You have to focus on your shots and make sure you do your part. The rest comes to not pushing a particular shot you want, but take what is being given to you.


@frankanthonydavis You are right, preferences is a better word to describe it. I am going to try and really focus on one aspect of the game at a time and take notes, then have those notes handy while I play. Maybe I can have a notebook in my bag so I can refer to them throughout the day so I don’t forget what I was working on. Keep me focused on what I want to work on for the day. Now I need to get with someone (coach, partner, friend, wife :man_shrugging:) to bounce ideas off of for the video analysis. I would be up to collaborate with just about anyone just to get their perspective. This has been great to get a better idea on how to do this. I have never done a sport where I have done any video analysis let alone on my self.


Thank you for your point of view it’s very helpful to hear from other players and you top players. I’ve been watching my videos a little lost. I like what you and Suzee said about only picking a few things to focus on.