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How to Play Racquetball

Why PlayHow to PlayServe LinesBasic StrategyAdvanced Racquetball StrategyCourt PositioningComing Soon!
Complete Detailed Official Rules
The information below and tabs above give you the "basics" of how to get started playing racquetball. It should give you enough information to have a "friendly" game of racquetball. For more detailed information, the complete rules of racquetball can be found here: Official Rules of Racquetball
3 Types of Racquetball Games
Racquetball Vocabulary You Need to Know:

Handout - in doubles, where one team member loses serve and it is the other team member's turn to serve.
Sideout - in all types of games where the player and/or team loses serve.

  • Singles - 2 players
  • Doubles - 4 players - played identically to singles with both team members getting an opportunity to serve before a sideout occurs. The first team serving, however, gets a sideout after only one team member serves. After that, both players for both teams always get to serve.
  • Cut-Throat - 3 players - This game rotates players with one player serving at a time. The two non-serving players are temporarily teamed up against the server. When a sideout (serve is lost) occurs, the next player gets their turn with the player who lost serve moving into the vacated position in the back of the court. The 3 players do not rotate in a circular fashion as that results in you always having the same opponents in the same positions behind you. So, the server simply changes places with the player whose turn it is next to serve.
The Object of the Game of Racquetball
The object of the game is to get to 15 points (winning by one) first. Only the server can earn points. Points are earned when you hit the ball so that it strikes the front wall and bounces on the floor twice before your opponent can get it. Points are also earned when your opponent hits the ball, but it strikes the floor before reaching the front wall.

A Racquetball Match is 2 games to 15 and a tie-breaker to 11 if necessary.
  • In Pro and Open divisions, the server has one chance to put the ball in play.
  • For all other divisions, the server gets 2 chances to serve unless there is a "Out Serve". An "Out Serve" (loss of serve) happens when any of the following occur:

    the ball strikes the server on it's return
    when the server allows the ball to bounce twice or more
    when the server completely misses the ball
    when the server hits the ball with the handle of the racquet, double hits the ball, or carries the ball.

Instructions Table of Contents
Introduction Divisions Racquet Technique Shots Training Other
Why Play Racquetball Novice Racquet Grip Shot Selection Game Training All Videos
How to Play Racquetball D Division The Forehand Serves Fitness Training Racquetball Links
Serve Box Lines C Division The Backhand Shots Collegiate Racquetball
Basic Strategy B Division Local Club Racquetball
Advanced Strategy A Division
Court Position Open Division
Pro Division