The Third Shot Drop

The third shot drop (or drop shot, in general) is basically a long dink that allows you and your partner to get from the baseline to the non-volley zone (NVZ) line and sets your team up for success. The drop shot is considered by most players to be both the most difficult shot and the most important shot in pickleball. Because the advantage lies at the NVZ line, it is crucial for pickleball players to master this skill. In this video, Dave “The Badger” Weinbach explains the proper technique and shares some tips for success.

The keys to an effective drop shot are as follows:

  • Light grip pressure – Grip pressure should be 3-4 on a scale of 1-10.
  • Low to high motion – The proper arm motion is low to high.
  • Forward momentum – Don’t fall backwards. Your weight and moment should be taking your forward.

It takes a lot of practice to be able to execute this shot consistently. Don’t feel discouraged if your drop shot isn’t perfect. Remember that it’s better miss high or long than miss your shot into the net, which immediately ends the rally. If your drop shot misses high, simply prepare to defend against an attack and attempt a fifth or seventh (and so forth) drop shot to allow you to get to the NVZ line.

I hope you find this video helpful for explaining and mastering the third shot drop. Please let us know in the comments if there are other shots that you would like to learn more about. See you on the courts!

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