What Is A Drop Shot In Pickleball?

Pickleball Drop Shot is one of the important shots in a pickleball game that every pickleball player should know. In the game of pickleball, there are many shots to be mastered out of which the Drop Shot pickleball is the hardest yet not impossible. The drop shot is a crucial skill in any pickleball player’s arsenal.

There are mainly three main purposes of the drop shot in pickleball. Firstly, a proper Pickleball drop shot gives your team net control. Secondly, it ensures your opponent’s return shot is an error. And the third one is to set yourself up in order to hit an attackable ball.

If you want to improve your game and become a better pickleball player then surely you should master the drop shot. The drop shot pickleball is mostly hit from the baseline which goes over the net and lands in your opponent’s non-volley zone where they cannot attack.

What Is a Pickleball’s Drop Shot?

It’s a very strategic shot that should be executed correctly. The ultimate goal of any drop shot pickleball is to either force an error by your opponent or set yourself up for an attackable ball. It is also considered one of the most challenging shots to master. 

If we talk about lower-level players, they will rarely attempt this shot in part because, while it’s a critical shot, and also considered the most difficult shot to master. The ultimate goal of any drop shot in pickleball is to either force an error by your opponent or set yourself up for an attackable ball. This shot is also regarded as the most difficult shot to master.

Pro players use the drop shot to set themselves above the level and put points away with an overhead smash or baseline passing shot. But, it requires patience to set up. You can also use a drop shot to neutralize your opponent’s advantage of already being at the net while giving you and your teammate time to strategically position.

Types of Drop Shots in Pickleball

Flat Dropshot

It is very easy to execute the Falt Drop shot as it requires a very less amount of motion of your paddle.

With the minimum amount of motion of your paddle, you can hit this drop shot in pickleball. The chances of making a mistake are less while using flat shots. In this shot, the paddle should contact the ball with an open paddle face and aim to land in the opponent’s non-volley zone.

For hitting the flat drop shot pickleball you should do the following:

  • Place your foot in such a manner that you can see clearly.
  • Need to position your knees so that you can create a higher arc for your shot.
  • The ball should reach the apex on your side of the non-volley zone. 
  • You need to move your weight backward to your front foot and you can do this with the help of your hips and legs in order to push yourself up and forward.
  • To get a soft touch on the ball, use a light grip pressure on a scale of 1to10.
  • While striking the ball make sure your arm is widely open.
  • Ensure your swing path motion that it moves slightly up and forward with no sideways or rotation so that the ball doesn’t get spun.
  • Aim your shot in such a manner that it directly lands in the non-volley zone of your opponent.
  • If you hit the ball with a good amount of arc on it so that it reaches its apex in the air on your side of the net and starts dropping before crossing the net.

In this kind of shot, the commonly made mistake is when the ball hits too high and bounces above the height of the net, potentially giving the opponent a good return shot.

DropShot in Pickleball

Slice Dropshot

Slice drop shot need more skills. However, beginners can still achieve great success hitting such shots.

  • A slice drop shot is a drop shot in pickleball with a backspin. Use a chop motion when the paddle connects with the ball to create a backspin.
  • A sliced drop shot has a lot of backspin and forces you to hit the ball with much less arc than a shallow drop shot. Backspin usually bounces the ball as soon as it hits the ground, which often makes it harder for your opponents to fight back because in most cases it doesn’t bounce as high as a flat kick.
  • First, cut drop shots require a smaller bow.

Compared to flat pitches, slice pitches require more skill. But even beginners can succeed with these photos. If you keep practicing regularly then your chances of making mistakes will be less.

Here are a few changes we need to make, discussed below:

Deploy your triceps: Apply pressure to your triceps as if you were cutting wood with your hand. The ball must be in contact with the ground before this step can be taken.

Alter your swing path: You should move forward slightly and upward less. As compared to Firing Drop Shot this shot is slightly different from it.

What Is Drop Shot in Pickleball

TopSpin Dropshot

A topspin drop shot is a forward spin drop shot.

The topspin dropshot has the highest risk of error because it requires the most paddling action, which is why it is also considered the rarest type of dropshot. As the topspin drop shot pickleball is much more difficult to execute, you should only attempt it in situations where you can safely plant both feet. It’s not ideal cushioning to hit while running unless you’ve practiced a lot.

Follow the steps below to perform TopSpin capture:

  • Make your swing path mostly upwards with little to no forward movement of your racket.
  • Bend your knees further and use your legs to create a powerful push-up movement.
  • Use your biceps to bend your arm hard and quickly as you lift your legs to create a quick vertical movement of your line.
  • A closed finishing trowel is required at this stage. Between the racket and the net, there should be an upward angle.
  • Your next swing height should be carefully considered. It should end at or near your head level.
  • The ball must then be directed so that it lands in the center of the opponent’s non-volley zone. With the right amount of forward spin, he was able to eliminate the opponent’s attack chances.

A common mistake is not being in a stable and ready position when you are holding the paddle. As we can technically see, shooting is the most difficult, so it is the least used. However, proper configuration and monitoring will increase your success rate.

How to Drop Shot in Pickleball?

Drop shots tend to drop lower when folded higher. If you hit too low, he can be thrown into the air. You run the risk of hitting the net if the depth is too shallow.

The following four factors are important for a successful airdrop:

  • The pickleball must reach the top of its trajectory before crossing the net.
  • The ball must land when it crosses the net.
  • The ball must bounce in or near the opponent’s non-volley zone.
  • The ball must force a low point of contact for your opponent and be difficult to attack.

Your posture when setting up the Drop Shot

Generally, the basic forehand drop is easiest to reach when the ball used most of its momentum when you hit it. You want to do this because it’s easier to time your contact on that slower, more consistent shot that requires a lot of precision.

If you intend to hit the ball, make sure you do so when it starts to drop past the spike after the initial bounce. This lets you control the speed of your damping as you fire it.

You should bend your back knee and bring the racket down, more to the side, instead of reaching behind your body. Stand behind the incoming ball so you can get in and advance a bit when hitting the ball.

Taking Split Steps

When you feel that the ball is going back at you then take a split step and prepare for the drop shot. Whether moving forward or backward, the split step is accomplished by making a small hop or step. This allows you to spread your legs shoulder-width or more apart. When your feet touch the ground, you do not land and remain static.

When you land, you are able to bounce off the ground, which gives you the ability to spring into any direction in which you need to go. This allows you the best opportunity to quickly move into position for your drop shot. 

Your Grip and Arm Position

Using a continental grip helps you to position the paddle face up while your arm is pointing down toward a point on the ground just ahead of your feet.

You won’t be able to able control your paddle with a loose grip or with the tight one. Use a paddle with a firm grip with only a gentle squeeze and your drop will be easier to control.

Reach forward and engage the shoulder rather than swinging at the elbow. This allows you more control in pushing the ball where you want it to go.

Frequently Asked Questions

How are drop shots and dink shots different?

When making a shot, the distance from where the player stands makes all the difference between a pickleball drop shot and a dink shot due to the angle at which it’s taken. The opponent’s non-volley zone is the site of both drops and dinks, but the drop shot occurs near the baseline, while the dink shot occurs in the non-volley zone.

How To Practice Drop Shots alone?

The absence of a pickleball partner does not stop you from practicing drop shots. The kitchen is an ideal place to practice pickleball if you want to learn it on your own.

How do you hit a third-shot drop-in pickleball?

When the next shot is hit by the serving team, the receiver is usually standing near the baseline. Next, the receiver hits the ball low and slow-moving arc so it lands softly into the non-volley zone.

How do you hit a pickleball harder?

In order to create a top spin, you should snap your wrist immediately after making contact with the ball. Downward spin is achieved by doing this. Using a hard strike and spinning the ball in a particular direction will allow the ball to go further without going too deep.

When To Use The Drop Shot In Pickleball?

The correct time to hit a drop shot is when you and your partner are placed near the baseline which ultimately allows you to move forward to the net. This shot is generally used by professional pickleball players as this is one of the advanced shots in the game of pickleball.


Of all the shots to master in pickleball, a drop shot is the most crucial and challenging. While challenging, it can be achieved by a beginner and used recreationally if you know the right technique and drills to work on.

You must have also heard practice made man perfect. So, if you keep practicing with the use of the right techniques then surely you will be able to master the Drop Shot.

It can be found in this post you can find more information and tips about pickleball drop shots. With the help of this guide, you will discover how to hit different types of pickleball drop shots that will help you improve your game. You can also ask any questions by commenting below. Thank You!

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