Pickleball is a paddle sport which combines the elements of lawn tennis and badminton. But compared to tennis, Pickleball is played on a much smaller court, which also demands more spontaneity and movement on the court. The rules of the game are also designed to synchronize with the court dimensions. Based on these rules, multiple shots or strategies are given a name for better identification of the game’s aspects. One such shot is the flapjack.
Flapjack is usually said in reference to an oat bar. However, in pickleball, the terminology is used to describe the two-bounce rule in Pickleball. According to this rule, when a serve is made, the returner has to allow the ball to bounce once before hitting the return. When the return is made, the server also has to allow the ball to bounce once before sending it back to the other side of the net. These first two bounces are a mandate in Pickleball. During this phase of a rally players are not allowed to volley or hit a shot without letting the ball bounce.
The exchange of shots made during the first two bounces is called flapjack. It is called so because the shots played during this phase are played with a straight face of the paddle and rarely can a player win a point during this exchange. The word flapjack is coined for the only reason that shots played with a flat face of the paddle resemble the flat face of the oat bar.
After the flapjacks, players can openly display their pickleball skills by volleying and picking up the ball earlier. This results in players gradually increasing the level of offensive shots during a rally.
Even though flapjacks are used as a slang in pickleball, it sets a good communicative tone for newcomers who are beginning to understand the basic rules of the sport.