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How to Become a 4.5 Pickleball Player? | The Ultimate Guide

Nobody likes to be trapped in the same place in their life, which is true in pickleball. Everyone, like you and me, wants to better their game. Now that you’ve mastered the skill levels of 2.5, 3.5, or 4.0, it’s time to take your game to the next level.

However, achieving the talents necessary for the 4.5 level might be difficult. This article is for you if you have problems with the 4.5 skill set or have recently mastered 4.0 skills and want to learn how to become a 4.5 Pickleball player.

In this essay, we’ll explain how to become a 4.5 pickleball player and the typical blunders you should avoid along the way. So, if that sounds fascinating to you, let’s get started.

What is a 4.5 Pickleball Player?

If you’re not sure what a 4.5 Pickleball player is, here’s a quick rundown. Pickleball players are rated from 1 to 5.5+ depending on their abilities.

A 4.5 level player is regarded to be a skilled player. A player who can do all of the abilities from 2.5 to 4.0 but additionally knows how to play volley and third shots, poach, and regulate stroke placement qualifies for a 4.5 player rating.

Furthermore, a 4.5 player should identify and communicate with their partner’s vulnerabilities.

What are the Skills Required for 4.5 Rating?

To get a 4.5 skill rating, you must first master all of the skills of a 4.0 player. Following that, you must hone the talents listed below.

Serves and Return of Serve

You should practice serving and returning serves with speed, spin, and placement. You should also master methods such as pickleball stacking.


Depending on your opponent’s location, you should consistently hit the volley to the correct area on the court instead of employing a backswing, block and push the ball while playing volleys.

Block Volley

To advance to the 4.5 level, you must block a volley and set it in the kitchen. This ability comes in useful when your opponent hits the ball hard. Several videos on YouTube may assist you with this.

Third Shot

You’ll need to practice several third-shot methods, most notably the third-shot drop.

Power in 3rd Shot

After you’ve mastered the basics of pickleball strokes, learn how to add force to your third shots and how to utilize your forehand drives efficiently.


If you’re a 3.5 or 4 player, you’ve probably heard about drinking. To get to that 4.5 level, you should practice drinking and utilize it as an aggressive shot.


To acquire the 4.5 ratings, you must learn when to poach and when not to poach. Though contentious, poaching might help you gain extra points if you’ve discussed it with your spouse ahead of time. In case you didn’t know, poaching is the act of snatching a shot aimed at your partner.

Common Mistakes made by 3.0, 3.5 and 4.0 Players

Popping Up

This is one of the most typical blunders players make while transitioning from 3.0/4.0 to 4.5. It would help if you avoided dink pop-ups. Instead, push it forward at a lower angle, directly over the net. Because a competent player may strike or flick the popped-up ball and take a point if you are playing against one.

Lack of angle

To gain points, you must generate angles rather than shoot straight shots. Remember that diagonal images need your opponent to reach longer than consecutive shots. Always strive to hit the pickleball at the proper angle, based on your and your opponent’s locations.

Repeating the same Shot repeatedly

When acquiring new 4.5 abilities, you usually attempt to practice them with the same person and neglect to switch them up. You’ll become predictable, allowing your opponent to take advantage of you.

How to Become a 4.5 Pickleball Player?

You’ll need a lot of work and patience to become a 4.5 pickleball player. Only through constant practice and matches will you perfect the abilities required to become a 4.5 player. It is advised that you attend one of the pickleball clinics or camps. You should invest in a high-quality pickleball paddle made for intermediate players if you want to enhance your game.

However, to achieve the 4.5 level, you must master these components of your game.


If you want to be a 4.5 player, you must first perfect your forehand since you will be using it often. You may produce more incredible speed on the serve by utilizing your forehand, which increases the likelihood of your opponent making a mistake. Then, on the third Shot, you may earn a point.

Serve / Return 

It would help improve your serving and returning skills to become a 4.5 pickleball player. It will help improve your control and placement of the serve and second Shot. Furthermore, 4.5 players are supposed to deceive their opponent by using power, speed, order, and spin during serves.


Creating and implementing a good game strategy is necessary for becoming a 4.5 player. You should communicate and move effectively with your partner, have decent footwork, and respond to your opponents’ playing style. It is essential to have distinct techniques for your second and third shots to improve your game.


Most pickleball players readily award their opponent an accessible point by not perfecting their backhand. This is one of the most prevalent blunders. At a higher level, players may readily identify your weakness, in this example, the backhand, and continually attack it to win points. You must perfect your backhand to attain the 4.5 or even 5.0 level.

Third Shot

The third Shot is always a game-changer for both you and your opponent, and you must learn how to secure a point with it. As a result, practice several techniques to play the third Shot. Though you must understand the third shot drop, could you not get too reliant on it?


Finally, it would help if you worked on hitting and blocking volleys. Learn to strike swinging volleys and block hard-struck volleys to position them in NVZ.

The Bottom Line of 4.5 pickleball player

It takes time, patience, and effort to become a 4.5 pickleball player. You will acquire this rating by mastering the talents listed above. Furthermore, you should be aware of and correct any errors you make when playing pickleball games. Finally, if you want to improve your game, you must acquire a high-quality paddle, such as the Gearbox GX5.