The Padel would be born, according to Sanchez-Alcaraz Martinez[1], in Mexico in 1969, and invented by the businessman Enrique Corcuera. The latter, who wanted to build a tennis court around his house and having not enough room, would have built a pitch of 20 meters on 10 with walls with a height of 3-4 meters. He would have adapted the rules and equipment. He decided to continue playing with a rebound on the ground after the ball hit a wall, and changed the tennis rackets with a string through a wooden racket.

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Before that, tennis took other forms and moved closer to the paddle invented by Enrique Corcuera. The first form, called "Paddle Tennis" was invented by the North American Reverend Franck Beal, who made changes on a field to teach tennis to children. Thus, he reduced the size of the field by half, introduced a foam ball and a wooden racket. This version was very popular in Michigan and especially in smaller families who could not afford to build a tennis court. In 1922, a Paddle tennis tournament was born and the following year, the rules were approved by the United States Paddle Tennis Association (USPTAC). This sport has become so practiced throughout the country.

At the same time, at the end of the 1920 years, Freseddenn Blanchardy and James Cosswell made some modifications to improve the practice and to be able to practice in winter. Thus, the "platform tennis" was born in the district of Scarsdale in New-York. The goal was to allow neighborhood youth who can not afford to go to indoor clubs to play sports even in winter, even in the snow. For this, they have set up a platform system to be able to remove more easily accumulated snow. Very quickly, modifications were made: the contribution of a fence around the field, a doublet game, a rubber ball and smaller snowshoes. This practice has made it possible to replace tennis in many states in the United States during the fall-winter periods.

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However, the version that has been accepted by the International Paddle Federation is that of Enrique Corcuera, the first mentioned in this section. This sport was then imported into Spain by one of his friends, Asfonso de Hohenlohe, who took a liking to it. The first Spanish pitches are born at the Marbella Club, and are very quickly very successful.

In 1975, the Argentinean millionaire Julio Menditengui, diligent visitor of Marbella, witnessed the success of the padel and decided to import it in Argentina. In a few years, the padel becomes in Argentina the 2st most practiced sport of the country, with more than 4 million practitioners and 10 000 course. This sport has expanded rapidly in Brazil, Uruguay, Chile and Paraguay.

[1] SANCHEZ-ALCARAZ MARTINEZ Bernardino Javier, "Historia del padel = History of Padel", Materials for the Historia del Deporte (11 number), 2013

https://www.upo.es/revistas/index.php/materiales_historia_deporte/article/view/800

Pierre Lemonnier

Pierre studied STAPS, and validated a master's degree in sports management, after studying in Reims, Frankfurt and Lille. I discovered padel in 2014 during my Erasmus year in Frankfurt thanks to a Spanish friend. Damn, how good the padel!