“Paddle” was invented in 1962 at Las Brisas, a house owned by Mr. Enrique Corcuera in Puerto de Acapulco, Mexico. Enrique Corcuera added a 3-metre wall facing the original wall at the other side of the fronton court, a net at the centre and two low walls on the sides of the playing field or “court.”
The size of the court was approximately 10 metres wide and 20 metres long, reflecting an idea that Mr. Corcuera had devised at his house in Estipac, Jalisco, where he used to organise big duck hunts with his friends. In the afternoon, before lunch, they would play in this traditional fronton court that he modified with walls and a tennis net, and already had the current official size.
However, the “official story” (shared by Enrique himself) ignored the fact that the wall facing the original one was built to avoid the small black ball used in the game to bounce into the neighbours’ house after crossing the defensive line, turning it into an annoying game. It was funny and witty to see that, after the ball crossed the defensive line and bounced off the second wall, the players would keep playing, which became the origin of the game. It was Enrique’s idea to add the net, thus creating this new sport. Therefore, we can claim that this game called Paddle Corcuera or Paddle-Tennis is what is currently known as padel.
The first rulebook was put together by Enrique’s wife, Viviana, former Miss Argentina,
who gave it to her husband as a birthday present.
Enrique’s Spanish friend Alfonso of Hohenlohe-Langenburg tried this new invention at Enrique’s home and instantly felt in love. Immediately after, he decided to create the first two Padel courts in a Tennis club in Marbella (Spain), this was 1974.
Nevertheless Alfonso included few modifications from Enrique’s original designs to make it more competitive, being this the first of many iterations Padel will have in the following 20 years in Spain.
In the meantime in 1975, Julio Menditeguy an Argentinian member of Alfonso’s Tennis club in Marbella felt the same passion and decided to import the sport to Argentina.
Since the first courts in Spain, Padel took nearly 25 years to be extended all over the Spanish geography. Finally in the early 2000s there were more than 500 Padel clubs and many Spanish hotels already included as sport activity Padel Courts.
In 2005 Padel was already well-established in Spain with more than 1000 Clubs. It is when the most important Padel Associations decided together to establish an International Championship played fully in Spain. This was the beginning of Padel Pro Tour, which lasted until 2012.
Specially since 2010 this sport has been constantly growing and blossoming all over the world and it is now for many people considered the fastest growing sport around the world as you can read in this article from the British newspaper The Telegraph.
In the professional sphere, World Padel Series was founded in 2013 as the most important, prestigious and professional Padel Championship worldwide in replacement of Padel Pro Tour gathering the Padel elite around the world, the equivalent of ATP & WTA for Tennis.
This new Championship since 2014 has included Tournaments outside Spanish geography and traveled to Andorra, Argentina, Monaco, Portugal, United States and United Arab Emirates.
World Padel Series is currently holding the international ranking of best male and female players. It consists of 15-20 tournaments per year plus a final Master Series by end of every season.