In Focus: Sports Skills

To celebrate the launch of the Human Kinetics Sports Skills collection, you can read a selection of free-to-access content highlights from the titles below.
Click here to find out more about the new collection.

Book cover for Scuba Diving: Fifth Edition by Dennis K. Graver (Human Kinetics). Select image to read ebook.

"Diving Skills"

Scuba Diving: Fifth Edition

Book cover for Mastering Mountain Bike Skills by Brian Lopes and Lee Mccormack (Human Kinetics). Select image to read ebook.

"Wheelie, Manual, and Hop Like a Boss"

Mastering Mountain Bike Skills

Book cover for Wrestling Tough by Mike Chapman (Human Kinetics). Select image to read ebook.

"Building Confidence"

Wrestling Tough

Book cover for Advanced Marathoning: Third Edition by Pete Pfitzinger and Scott Douglas (Human Kinetics). Select image to read ebook.

"Race-Day Strategy"

Advanced Marathoning: Third Edition

Book cover for Hockey Plays and Strategies by Mike Johnston and Ryan Walter (Human Kinetics). Select image to read ebook.

"Attack Zone"

Hockey Plays and Strategies

Video still from Softball Skills and Drills video collection (batter taking position at base)

"Hitting and Baserunning"

Softball Skills and Drills [Video]

Sport in Focus: Pickleball

Learn more about the fastest-growing sport in the United States and improve your play with the Human Kinetics Library’s curated Pickleball content.

The Origins of Pickleball

Belonging in the net and wall games category, pickleball is a divided court game whose primary intent, as for all net and wall games, is to get the ball in the court area more often than the opponents do. Pickleball was invented by two families via a recursive process of adjusting equipment, rules, and areas of play until this dynamic and exciting sport was born. Discover the history of pickleball in this chapter from the ebook Playing Fair.

King of the Court

How can playing pickleball help cultivate new and existing skills among students? In his chapter from Playing Fair, Tim Hopper provides an in-depth explanation of the techniques and benefits of pickleball for young players. The author outlines how developing an understanding of the tactical concepts and strategies behind the sport, as well as learning how to apply these concepts in game-based scenarios, allows players to engage in a form of negotiation and collaborative problem solving that reaches beyond the lines of the court.

Pilates for Pickleball

Pickleball is a sport that requires flexibility and mobility. For pickleball players who wish to improve their fluidity of movement, the Lateral Glute Walk is a pilates exercise to help develop the glutes and hip abductors. Learn the correct technique in this chapter from Pilates and Conditioning for Athletes.

Executing the Perfect Volley

A volley is a shot hit in the air before the ball bounces. It is used as a return of a ball that travels close to the top of the net and that is usually hit with force. This could be a groundstroke, another volley, or a missed hit by the opponent. The volley is executed from a position just behind the non-volley zone, and it can be either offensive or defensive in nature. The ability to volley with strength and confidence is crucial to your success as a pickleball player. This chapter from Pickleball Fundamentals, provides a number of volleying drills to help your game become more well-rounded – such as the Toss and Volley drill.

Defending Against the Drop Shot

A drop shot is hit off of a bounce from deep in the court. The object of hitting a drop shot is to give the team deep in their court – usually the serving team – the opportunity to follow up the shot to the non-volley zone line. When hit correctly, the ball will drop just over the net and land in the opponent’s non-volley zone, making it a challenge to return. This chapter from Pickleball Fundamentals provides a series of drills for players to practice performing and defending against drop shots, including the Throw and Drop Shot drill.