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What’s padel tennis? Padel is essentially a hybrid of tennis and squash, played on a smaller version of a tennis court with rebound boards on every side to allow the ball to bounce off and still be in play. Padel tennis originated in Mexico in 1969 and has since grown in popularity across South America and Spain, and now in the UK. It’s billed as a more accessible version of tennis, suitable for beginners and pros alike, and is most often played in doubles which brings a social aspect to the game.
Padel tennis is most often played on a sand-based astroturf court, but can also be played on hard (macadam) or synthetic rubber. Padel tennis rackets are a lot sturdier than regular tennis rackets, with perforated holes instead of strings and a short handle, making it more compact. The ball is also bigger and heavier than a standard tennis ball which makes it easier to hit and extend rallies.
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With its increased popularity in the last 10 years, there are now plenty of padel tennis courts in London to choose from. Here are some of the best:
Will to Win Hyde Park is a great place to play padel tennis in London. The sport is played on sand-based astroturf, and padel bats can be hired from reception on an hourly basis so there’s no need to bring your own. The central location makes it very easy to access and the venue is very welcoming to first-time padel players. The facility even runs drop-in sessions for beginners with a qualified coach.
There’s no better place to play padel tennis in West London than Rocks Lane Bishop’s Park. The venue is located a short walk from Putney Bridge station and is home to an immaculate sand-based astroturf padel tennis court. The court also has floodlights so you’ll have no problem playing in the evening.
If you’re looking to play padel tennis in North London, Hazelwood Sports Club is the place to be. The sand-based astroturf padel courts are available to hire for members and non-members alike. The club also hosts padel leagues and tournaments, and padel racquets can be hired from reception so you don’t need to worry about bringing your own.
Like its Hyde Park equivalent, Will to Win Regent’s Park is home to excellent padel tennis facilities. The sand-based astroturf courts provide the perfect conditions for beginners to the sport as very as seasoned professionals. Qualified padel coaches are on hand to show you the ropes at weekly drop-in sessions, or you can book a court and play with friends at the weekend or after work.
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