2-person dinking drills to improve your pickleball game

The key to consistent pickleball dinks & speed-ups.

Danea Bass & Barrett Bass



March 13, 2024



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If you want to have the most consistent and aggressive dinks in pickleball, it’s important to work on your drills as much as possible. It's really hard to show up at a pickleball court and not jump immediately into a game, but if you're looking to level up your skills quickly then you need to incorporate drills into your routine. Here are some of the best two-person pickleball dinking drills to help you get more control and offense at the kitchen line. 

If you're just beginning your pickleball journey, check out one of our other videos: Pickleball Dinking 101 to learn the fundamentals of dinking.

Pickleball Dinking Drills to Gain Control

The drills are to teach you control, which is extremely important at the kitchen line. The person or team in control at the kitchen line is the team that dictates the point, and part of being able to control your shots at the kitchen line is being able to direct and maneuver the ball with angles.

Drill #1: Figure 8 Drill

The first drill is called the Figure 8 Drill, which will teach you control and how to maneuver the ball in different directions. You will want to create a pattern that's a Figure 8: Player 1 will hit crosscourt, and Player 2 will hit forward — creating a Figure 8 pattern.

The point of the Figure 8 drill is to help you hit good dinks, letting your dinks bounce when they need to, or taking them out of the air.

Next, you will want to create a little bit of pressure and have a game scenario so you will want to introduce points into the drill. To do this, keep the pattern — and whoever messes up the pattern first loses the point. The first player to get to seven points wins the game.

Drill #2: Battleships Drill

For the Battleships Drill, set up your court with four different cones: at your inside foot and your outside foot. Your opponent should set up the cones in the same positions on their side of the net. 

You will be hitting the ball crosscourt to your opponent. The point of the Battleships Drill is to try to hit your partner's battleships (ie their cones).

There are two ways you can get points: 1. Win the rally, and 2. Hit your opponent's “battleship.”

If you're looking for something a little bit more advanced or intermediate and want to add another element, you can introduce speed-ups to the drill. You will still get a point if you win the rally, but now you can also allow speed-ups and attacks whenever there's a high ball or high dink.

Continue dinking crosscourt and adding speed-ups when you can. Work on moving your opponent around and attacking high balls. If you win the rally or hit the cone then you get one point — the game is played to seven.

To follow these drills step-by-step, watch the video above.