Erik Lange on his MLP dominance, fatherhood, and pickleball paddle advancements — The MaryGoRound Podcast on Selkirk TV
In the newest episode of “MaryGoRound,” Mary Brascia welcomes fellow professional pickleball player Erik Lange to the podcast. The two discuss Erik’s MLP dominance, how he balances his career with being a father, and how paddle advancements have changed the game.
An introduction to Erik:
Erik is a premier-level MLP player for the Chicago Slice. He is a father of two who just made the switch to full-time pickleball in May, and he’s also one of the “kindest and most genuine people on tour,” according to Mary.
Erik’s recent amazing plays:
Mary jokes that from 1:30-2:15 p.m. on September 23, Erik was the best pickleball player on the planet. Erik was playing alongside the No. 1 ranked player in the world Ben Johns during an MLP match, and he dominated the competition.
Erik has been competing against Ben for seven years. He discusses what it’s like to play with him as a partner and shares the secrets to their MLP success.
Looking forward to the next MLP event:
Erik and Mary look forward to the next MLP even in Los Angeles. Erik shares that the Chicago Slice stayed in a house together at the Atlanta event to help with team chemistry, and he can’t wait for more team-building events.
Erik’s pickleball journey:
Erik worked for HEAD Penn Racquet Sports as a regional sales manager for the last 10 years. About seven years ago, he got involved with pickleball as the company began developing pickleball paddles.
It began as a competitive hobby as he learned more about the paddles for his job. However, as he progressed in the sport, he realized that the sport could become his career, even at 42 years old.
Erik’s son, the next pickleball star:
Erik says one of the things that helps him balance his pickleball career and home life is that his family is all invested in the sport. When home, he regularly plays with his kids, and his son is interested in playing competitively — though Erik jokes his temper needs some work first.
BTS of paddle technology:
Erik and Mary discuss the evolution of paddle technology and how those evolutions affect players. Just like new shots evolve the gameplay, so too do new paddle technologies such as grit, topspin, and power.
Favorite shot in pickleball?:
Erik’s recent favorite pickleball shot is the lob, particularly when lobbing a dink out of the air at the kitchen line. He discusses the finer points of the lob and how players can use it to elevate their game.
Erik and Mary have been successful mixed doubles partners before, but they discuss the possibility of taking their partnership to a karaoke joint. Erik shares his song of choice — a Tom Petty classic.
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