‘Crazy Pickleball Lady’ Goes Global

–by Mary Helen Darah

Sylvanian and pickleball enthusiast, Betsy Kenniston, has hit one out of the court…and she is thrilled. Kenniston has played in pickleball tournaments both locally and internationally. She has had a blog called the “Crazy Pickleball Lady” since 2017. “I was inspired to write the blog as a way to educate players about the game of pickleball and bring awareness to the sport,” stated Kenniston. “Pickleball became a passion for me and others and I truly enjoy writing about the game and my experiences, especially concerning playing locally and in Europe. I want to show people that you don’t have to have a high-level skill to play, just the willingness  to get out there on the court.”

Pickleball enthusiast and blogger Betsy Kenniston hits the big time.

Kenniston’s blog was recently featured in an article in the New York Times. “I have absolutely no idea how my blog got mentioned by the New York Times,” she said. “ Of all the blogs out there,  I couldn’t believe it. My blog doesn’t have a huge viewership. But, since the mention, my blog has also appeared in the London Guardian, the London Times and I was interviewed on Times Radio London with John Pienaar. What a thrill!”  Following the media mentions and radio interview Kenniston’s blog readership has increased by 30 percent. 

The blogger said her posting is not consistent but she has noticed they coincide with her increased time on the court. “I don’t write that often. It goes in spurts,” she said. “I didn’t play in the summer because of a back issue, but currently I’m in Florida and playing regularly. I’m getting a constant source of ideas for things to write about. For example, I play on the 4.0 team. Some of our teammates are tennis players. I was noticing things they were doing on the court that are more ‘tennis-like,’ such as hitting the ball hard. Things that work for tennis don’t necessarily work for pickleball.”

Kenniston recalled “Another idea came from the identical twins I have the pleasure of knowing who organize group play sessions that I take part in. Off the court, they were telling me how nervous they are now that they have begun to participate in tournaments. I related that to my own experience. I wrote a blog about how I played in 6-7 tournaments and never won a game before things started to improve. They said it was exactly what they needed to hear.” 

Kenniston encourages everyone who has been contemplating heading to the pickleball courts to give it a try. She stated, “Just get out there. Pickleball is so fun. It is great exercise and there is a wonderful social aspect to playing the game as well. Pickleball can be addicting. I bet if you give it a try, you will be back for more.”

You can find Betsy Kenniston’s blog at crazypickleballlady.com. To hear her radio interview, visit John Pienaar of London Times Radio.

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