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Padel Terminology 101: A Beginner’s Guide to the Sport’s Jargon

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Padel Terminology 101: A Beginner’s Guide to the Sport’s Jargon

Padel is a fun and exciting sport that has taken the world by storm. It is a combination of tennis and squash, but with its own unique rules and language. If you’re new to padel, you might be wondering what some of the terms people use on the court mean. That’s where this padel glossary comes in. Let’s dive in!

The Court

First things first, let’s get familiar with the court. Padel courts are smaller than tennis courts, but still have the same basic layout. The court is divided into two halves by a net, and the court is surrounded by glass walls.


One of the most basic shots in padel is the bandeja. This is a type of volley where the ball is hit in a high arc, landing near the back of the opponent’s court. The idea is to put the ball in a difficult position for the opponent to return.


The smash is another basic shot in padel. It’s a powerful overhead shot that’s meant to end the point by hitting the ball down into the opponent’s court. To execute a smash, the player jumps up and swings the paddle down.


The vibora is a more advanced shot that requires a lot of precision. It’s a backhand volley where the ball is hit across the court at an angle. This shot is often used to surprise the opponent and create an opening in their defense.

The Serve

In padel, the serve is an important part of the game. There are two types of serves: the underhand and the overhand serve.

Underhand Serve

The underhand serve is the most common serve in padel. It’s a simple, relaxed motion where the ball is hit with an open hand below the waist. The goal is to get the ball over the net and into the opponent’s court.

Overhand Serve

The overhand serve is a bit more advanced than the underhand serve. It’s a powerful serve that’s meant to catch the opponent off guard. The ball is struck with a closed fist and a lot of topspin.

The Scoring

In padel, the scoring is similar to tennis. A game is won by the player or team that reaches 6 games and has a lead of at least 2 games. If the game is tied at 6-6, a tiebreaker is played.


The tiebreaker is a special game that’s played if the players are tied at 6-6. The first player to reach 7 points wins the tiebreaker, but they must win by a margin of at least 2 points.


Congratulations, you are now well-versed in some of the most important padel terminology. Of course, there are many other terms used in the sport, but this padel glossary should give you a solid foundation to build on. Don’t be afraid to ask your fellow padel players for clarification on any terms you don’t understand. That’s the best way to improve your knowledge of the sport and become a better player.

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