2020 OMG Pickleball Club Survey Results & Responses

The results of the 2020 Touch Base Survey are in. A total of 94 out of 185 members responded.

The summary graphs for each survey question can be viewed by clicking
here.

 

The OMG Pickleball Club's Steering Committee wants to respond to some of the comments that were given by members on the survey. While most comments were positive, there were some concerns expressed. It is those concerns that we want to address as best we can. We know we cannot make all members happy all the time, but we can try! These member concerns are outlined below.

Responses to Member Concerns

OMG Member Comments:  New Members & Member Interaction

  • As new member, it was a little hard to get to know people.

  • Make people feel more included. It’s very much a clique. Help others grow.

  • Facilitating meeting other players, getting connected with people of our skill level.

  • Members could be more open to playing with the newer members. Some are welcoming but others, not so much.

  • Treat the people that don’t belong to the Club better. You never know they may become a member later sometime non-members are not treated very nice by the OMG Club.

  • I am new and it’s great! I like being taught strategy and what I can do to better my game.

  • I find most club members are very friendly and helpful.

  • I think the Club is great! Very inclusive and makes us feel welcomed.

Steering Committee's Response

Unfortunately, COVID has put a damper on many of our plans this year. We had planned to schedule lunches after the early sessions and happy hours after the evening sessions. In addition, we normally have a family picnic and family Christmas Party. All are great ways to get to know the other OMG members. 
 

With the new courts, our Club has grown rapidly this summer. While you may think that some members are unfriendly, it may be that they are just as new as you are and are also just learning the game. We think you will find most players are willing to play one or two games with new players, but it is unreasonable to expect anyone to spend their whole session with new players. There are lessons, skills and drills sessions, and a mentoring program designed to help new players.
 

For our longer time members, please be on the lookout for newer members. Introduce yourself, help them understand the rules of the game, use paddle stacking during play time, etc.  We want everyone who comes to play to feel welcome and comfortable.

The OMG Code of Conduct is posted on the OMG Pickleball Club website and explains the guidelines that we expect all OMG members to follow. Unfortunately, we are all individuals and have bad days from time to time. The following points are from the Code of Conduct guidelines:

  • Open play is for everyone. If non-OMG Club players show up, welcome them. Invite them to rotate in with the group

  • It is everyone’s responsibility to make new players feel welcome and to help them learn the game.

 

OMG Member Comments:  Activities/Events 

  • Bring back ladder league play by skill levels; more competitive play to improve your game.

  • Last year it was more fun with the ladder league.

Steering Committee's Response

The ladder league was thoroughly enjoyed by members last year. COVID put a crimp in our plans for this year. We plan to restart the league next summer.

OMG Member Comments:  Activities/Events 

  • Continue offering educational activities and exercises to improve play and cohesiveness

  • Continue to offer opportunities to improve skills. I want to attend at some point when it better fits my schedule.

Steering Committee's Response

There were several comments like the above requesting more Skills and Drills sessions. Although these sessions probably will not be offered over the winter months due to a lack of sufficient indoor court time, we plan to offer the Skills and Drills sessions again next Spring. In addition, we will try to add Skills and Drills sessions for intermediate and advanced players.

OMG Member Comments:  Activities/Events 

  • Offer a day of the week for women only

 Steering Committee's Response

This is something that the Steering Committee will consider for next year.

OMG Member Comments:  Open Play & Private Play Concerns

  • Members should all play in open play. Private group play gives the impression that you are too good to play with other members.

Steering Committee's Response

There are several reasons that members might want to reserve a court and not play in open play. Due to COVID, some players feel better playing on a court with the same four players and not rotating with everyone. Others may be playing in tournaments and want to practice against certain other teams. And yes, there are groups who prefer to play with others at their same level; and yes, they are normally better players. You should not take it personally. Many of them will come out and rotate in during open play just not every time. Also, if you want to schedule a game outside open play with the higher skill level players, just contact them via a text, an email or a phone call to let them know that you and perhaps others would like to schedule play with them.

OMG Member Comments:  Ratings & Skill Level

  • Realize that many of our players are in it for the social enjoyment and have no desire to get rated. That does not mean they do not want to improve their game.

Steering Committee's Response

There is no requirement to be rated, and one should not feel pressured to do so. However, there will be Club activities (skills and drills, ladder league, tournaments) that will require a rating to participate. Ratings in these type events are necessary to ensure that the session is beneficial to all participants.

OMG Member Comments:  Ratings & Skill Level 

  • Don’t pigeonhole people into levels. I love when I see a couple higher level player get into a game with a couple newer players (not against the new players- but a higher level playing with lower on both sides of the net). I am also fine with people of a matched higher level playing games amongst their own group. Nothing wrong with that. Keeping it fluid to help all levels is a good thing in my mind.

  • I prefer being able to play with all players. I would like to see teams competitively matched so when Players A & B play Players C & D, the match is fairly even according to skill level.

  • I think there should be skill levels but I do notice that most players do not want to play w anyone on court 1 and 2 because they think they are better. The level 3 and above play with the same people every time only rotating in from their group.

  • Encourage open play for all....not just 3.5 and below.

Steering Committee's Response

Unfortunately, not all of us advance at the same rate. There are always going to be players at different levels.  Often better players will oblige if you ask to play a game with them. At the Plummer Family Park, we have courts designated by skill level. Everyone is welcome to play on any court. However, if you play on the 3.5 to 4+ courts, do not expect players to play down to your skill level. Conversely, if you are a 3.5+ player playing on a lower skill level court, tailor your play to the levels of your opponents. Be willing to play with players of all skill levels during open play.  Keep in mind the guidelines from our Code of Conduct which is:

  • At the Plummer Family Park, we have courts designated by skill level. Everyone is welcome to play on any court. However, if you play on the 3.5 to 4+ courts, do not expect players to play down to your skill level. Conversely, if you are a 3.5+ player playing on a lower skill level court, tailor your play to the levels of your opponents. Be willing to play with players of all skill levels during open play.

  • It is everyone’s responsibility to make new players feel welcome and to help them learn the game. Be flexible. We may need to designate a court for new players, depending upon the number of players. Try to get into a game with new players. Remember, we were all there once. A game with new players is a good time to practice shot placement skills.

  • Avoid overly aggressive play towards beginner or lower skill level players. Consider tailoring your play to the levels of your opponents.

  • If you play one or two games with higher level players and find you cannot compete, do not continue to jump into those games. You will find everyone has a better time playing with other players at the same skill level.

  • Do not target players. Do not hit continually to the weaker player; do not hit continually to the better player. All four players on the court want to play!

OMG Member Comments:  Play Times

  •  Sometimes it feels as if those people who are still working regular jobs are treated as second class members of OMG. I wish there were the same kind of skill training opportunities available to working people as there are for those who can play during the daytime.

  • More indoor courts for winter.

  • Push for more evening play for those who are still in the workplace.

  • With the weather getting cooler, I'd like to see more afternoon play this Fall.

Steering Committee's Response

The Edwardsville Parks & Recreation Department is generous with the amount of court time it allows the Club to reserve for open play. We must be mindful that weekends and evenings may be higher use times for families or non-club members who want to play. This is where putting together a foursome of your choosing, that has similar free time as you, might work best. Just get a group together and reserve a court. As far as evening training sessions go, we can investigate that next spring. If there is enough interest, we will try to set it up. During the winter, we constantly request more evening and weekend play time at the Meyer Center YMCA. The courts on the skate rink are multi-use and are often booked for hockey, skating, or parties.  

Please be aware that OMG does not control the amount of time courts are made available to us. That is determined by the Parks & Recreation Department for Plummer Park, the YMCA for the Meyer Center, the Tri-Township Activity Center in Troy, or other entities that have pickleball play.  We work closely with all of them to maximize our open play schedule.

 

 OMG Member Comments:  Social Events

  • I would like to see more social events outside of pickleball, but I know that’s not possible with COVID. I think the drills were excellent and very beneficial. Thank You!!!

  • Social events (We have heard that you do this in non-COVID years).

Steering Committee's Response

We are looking to resuming social events next Spring, dependent upon the COVID situation.

 

 OMG Member Comments:  COVID Concerns

  • May want to consider offering pods/bubbles of 6 to 8 players who don’t mix up except between these players, due to the pandemic. Although, I don’t really want to do this. It just does make sense.

  • Practice social distancing.

Steering Committee's Response

We believe that by now everyone is aware of the risks associated with COVID-19. It is each individual player's responsibility to decide their level of comfort and decide if they want to play in open play.  You always have the option to reserve a court for your select group.

 OMG Member Comments:  Concerns on the Court

  • Use the paddle system rotation.

  • Reduce the self made court bosses.

Steering Committee's Response

The Steering Committee will try and address this for next season.