Rule Review: When does Out mean Out
A ball is not out until it touches the court outside of the boundary lines. Any call made by any player before the ball touches the ground is not a valid call. A premature call is considered player communication and can be helpful to alert your partner to let it go. But no player should stop playing just because someone yells “out” until the ball actually lands.
Playing Tip: Controlling the Kitchen
When your team is at the kitchen line, you are in the offensive position. You control the game. So, what can you do to prevent the other team from getting to or staying at the kitchen line? You have to place your return of serve to the back of their court. A high return takes longer to land than a passing shot, so that’s even better. Hit at the feet of opponents who are approaching but not yet at the kitchen line. And once they get positioned at the line, you can try the lob shot. It’s risky and it is difficult to execute, but when done well it is very hard to return effectively and it usually gets both opponents out of position.