Bala Cynwyd Facility Hosts Popular Racquet Sport: Not Pickleball, Not Squash, Not Tennis


AFC Bala in Bala Cynwyd has opened the first public, indoor courts for padel (pronounced pah-del) in the Philadelphia region, giving gym-goers a chance to try the popular international sport that has been slowly making its way to the U.S. John George racked up the details in the Philadelphia Business Journal.

The three newly opened courts are part of the gym’s sports complex. Currently, there are just around 120 padel courts nationwide, but there are more than 30,000 across the world.

The sport was invented in Mexico in 1969 and is played in close to 60 countries. Ed Garno, a U.S. National doubles champion in squash, describes padel as a bland of squash and tennis with some pickleball thrown in.

“This sport is going to blow up in the United States,” said AFC Bala CEO Matt Littman. “But nobody is going to have a cooler place to play than this.”

The padel courts had a soft opening in January and an official grand opening event on April 1, 2022. Since the January opening, around 300 people used the courts to play the new game, and 80 became members.

Read more about the fun new sport, padel, at the AFC Bala in Bala Cynwyd in the Philadelphia Business Journal.

Editor’s Note: This post ran originally in MONTCO Today on Apr. 6, 2022; it has been verified for accuracy.

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