How To Select the Best Pickleball Paddle in [2021]

Looking for pickleball paddles? Before you buy check out this comprehensive guide and FAQs explained to help you buy the correct paddle.

If you are in the market for a new pickleball paddle, then there are several things that you need to consider. You could be looking for a paddle for many different reasons. Some people will want budget-friendly pickleball paddles whereas others will be seeking out the best pickleball paddles for spin or good pickleball paddles for control. Whatever your desires are, it will be a lot easier to find what you want when you make use of this guide.

Many people find it difficult to understand which paddles are going to be right for them. It is not always clear what the advantages of certain paddles are or what they are truly capable of. This guide is going to solve your problems by highlighting all of the information that you need to know. You can learn about all of the different technology that goes into making these paddles and will have a much greater understanding of pickleball paddles after going through the guide.

In this guide, you will be able to get all of the information that you could possibly need about pickleball paddles. These paddles will be covered thoroughly and you will come out of everything with a great understanding of exactly what is needed to take your pickleball game to the next level. Keep reading to learn about the different types of paddles, sizes, their uses, and everything else. You will be able to make an informed decision about your next paddle purchase and will certainly have the confidence to make the right choice for you.

Key Factors Before Buying a Pickleball Paddle

Before moving forward, there are certain things that you absolutely need to know in order to buy the best pickleball paddle. There is a lot of information out there about these paddles and what they have to offer. You need to be able to narrow your focus just a bit in order to understand what you need to concern yourself with initially. There are three basic things that you need to think about when selecting your new paddle.

  1. The weight of the pickleball paddle
  2. How well the grip size suits your hands
  3. The shape of the pickleball paddle and whether it matches your playing style

Understanding these factors is going to be crucial when you want to find the right paddle for you. You need to have a pickleball paddle that you can feel perfectly comfortable with. You need the paddle to feel natural in your hands and it needs to suit your size. It is not unlike a tennis racquet when it comes to sizing your paddle.

Things to Know When Buying a Pickleball Paddle

You need to be able to feel normal while playing the game. Using a paddle that is too large for your hands is not going to give you the best control while you’re trying to play. Pickleball is a rousing game and it can get pretty rigorous. If you cannot play to the best of your ability due to not having a well-suited paddle, then you will be playing from behind right off the bat.

Thankfully, finding the best pickleball paddle for you is very possible. Below you will see the three main factors above examined in more detail. This should give you a better idea of what to look for and you will be able to find the perfect paddle to suit your needs. This discussion starts with what might be the most important consideration of them all; the weight of the paddle.

Weight of the Paddle

The weight of the paddles will really play a huge role in how they feel in your hands. Most pickleball enthusiasts will agree that weight is the most important thing to keep in mind when choosing a new paddle. For the most part, pickleball paddles range in weight from six to 14 ounces. The weight of the paddle will change how it feels when you are holding it and when you’re swinging it. It will also have an impact on how you are able to control the ball.

Pickleball Paddles Weight Ranges

TextText1
Lightweight PaddlesUnder 7.3 oz
Mid-weight Paddles7.3 to 8.4 oz
Heavy Paddles8.5 oz and over

A heavier paddle is going to make driving the ball easier. It will also wind up giving you less control over the ball than a lighter paddle. Some people prefer either heavier or lighter paddles. Oftentimes, it is best to find a paddle that falls somewhere in the middle. This will give you adequate driving capabilities while also allowing you to control the ball well.

It is also important to consider your physical condition when picking your paddle weight. People who have suffered injuries in the past may wish to pick lighter paddles as they will be easier to handle. Those who are not in great shape may want to stick with lighter paddles too. After playing the game for a long time, it is possible that you could get really fatigued and wind up hurting your elbow. Keep this in mind when choosing your paddle.

Grip Size of the Paddle

You definitely want to play with a paddle that has the proper grip circumference for your hand. If you play with one that is too difficult for you to grip, then you are not going to have good results while trying to play the game. When you play with a grip size that is too large for you, it can lead to several issues. Your hand may slip when you are trying to make contact with the ball and this could lead to elbow injuries over time.

Grip Size of the Pickleball Paddle

It is usually recommended to try a smaller grip size first and then move up from there. The advantage of using a smaller grip size is that it allows for greater action. This can aid you when it comes to controlling the ball and you will also be able to put spin on the ball far more easily. If you want to be able to serve powerfully and change hands when necessary, then a smaller grip makes a lot of sense.

Of course, you do not want a grip that feels too small for your hands. A lot of your choice will boil down to your hand size and what feels comfortable. There are also some specific advantages to using a larger grip that many players tout. For example, a larger grip may have improved stability when compared to a smaller grip. Finding the right size will take a bit of experimentation so please take the time to hold many paddles and see what feels right to you.

Most paddle grips are going to have a circumference somewhere between four and four and a half inches. The grips will go up in size at one-eighth of an inch increments. This is the same type of measuring system that tennis grips use. You should be able to find a paddle that feels just right in your hands as long as you keep looking.

Measuring Grip Size

Some people like to determine their perfect grip size by measuring their hands. Others simply gauge which grip size they should be using based on their height. Measuring your hand size is going to be a more accurate way to determine the right size of grip for your hand. Even so, many people just like to go with the grip size that feels most comfortable to them. It may not entirely come down to the size of your hand as some of it is going to be your preference.

Measuring Grip Size of Pickleball Paddle

People who are under 5’2” are said to be best off using a grip size of 4”. Those who are between 5’3” and 5’8” tall will be better-suited for 4-1/8” grips or 4-1/4” grips, generally speaking. People who are 5’9” and taller may want to use grip sizes that are 4-1/2”. This is the simple way to measure things but you can use the more accurate version mentioned earlier.

Easiest Way To Measure Grip Size

Your HeightGrip Size
Under 5'2"4" Grip
5'3" to 5'8"4 1/8" to 4 1/4"Grip
5'9" and taller4 1/2"Grip

You can also check out this video which is explaining the more precise way to measure the grip size. The video is for Tennis grip but the same process goes for pickleball paddles as well.

You may want to go ahead and measure your hand by using a ruler. Use a ruler to measure the distance between the tip of your ring finger and the middle of your palm. The number that you come up with should be your desired grip size. You can see if this is accurate for you by gripping your paddle with your natural stance. Take your index finger from your other hand and see if you can snugly fit your finger in the gap between your thumb and other fingers. If so, then the sizing was accurate.

Power or Control?

Now that you know more about how weight and grip size play a role in paddle selection, you will have some big decisions to make. Your choices are going to wind up making a difference when it comes to the overall power and control that you will get out of your paddle. Which is going to be more important to you? Do you want to be able to drive the ball powerfully or is it more important to have precise control of your shots?

Some of this is going to be determined by what type of player you are. Depending on your own specific playing style, lighter pickleball racquets with smaller grips may be better for you. This will give you increased control but your shots may not be as powerful. A heavier pickleball paddle with a larger grip may give you great power but it could be lacking when it comes to extremely accurate shots.

You need to think about the way that you play the game in order to make a good decision. This is going to allow you to find a paddle that has a good balance. Some people really do like to keep things somewhere in between heavy and light. There is no right or wrong answer as much of it comes down to your physical characteristics and the way that you want to play the game.

Tennis Elbow Issue

You may or may not have heard of tennis elbow injuries in the past. These injuries can be very painful and you will want to avoid them if possible. It is actually an injury known as epicondylitis that has become commonly known as tennis elbow due to how often tennis players get injured in this way. It is an injury that involves small tears forming in your tendon that surrounds your elbow. This can lead to inflammation of the elbow and that is where the pain comes in.

For the most part, tennis elbow injuries occur due to repetitive motions. The injuries are not exclusive to tennis players as this is a common injury that is suffered by those who play golf, pickleball, and many other sports. It is even possible to suffer from tennis elbow after gardening too much. You can see how playing pickleball might wind up causing you to have this issue if you are not careful about selecting the right paddle.

When you are swinging a paddle or racket constantly, there is a danger of you encountering tennis elbow problems. This can be fixed by ensuring that you are swinging with the proper form, though. When you swing wildly or if your swing is slightly off, it can put some unnecessary tension on your elbow that will be problematic. This is often the case with tennis elbow injuries that occur during playing certain sports such as tennis, golf, and pickleball.

People also have tennis elbow problems due to using paddles that are too heavy for them. If you are using a pickleball paddle that is heavier than you are comfortable with, then you may be straining your elbow. Every shot that you take may be pushing you one step closer to a tennis elbow injury. Thankfully, you can alleviate these problems by switching to a more appropriate paddle and being mindful of how you are swinging.

If you do suffer a tennis elbow injury, then you should know that the condition is treatable and that it will improve over time. You will need to rest your elbow and should avoid the motions that caused the injury in the first place. Icing the injury can help to alleviate the pain and doctors typically recommend that you take anti-inflammatory medications in order to combat the problem. If you suspect that you are suffering from tennis elbow, then you should take the time to go see your doctor to get help.

Shape and Build of the Paddle

The shape of the paddle also has a lot to do with how it is going to feel to you. There are many different styles of paddles and several of them are made out of different materials. The shape and build of a paddle is going to make it more or less desirable for certain things. Some paddles are really good for some people but will be laborious to use for others. Below, you will see information about the different materials that paddles are made out of in order to help you find the perfect paddle to buy for your situation.

Different Materials in Paddles

The three main materials that are used to create pickleball paddles are wood, composite, and graphite. All of these different materials have their advantages and their disadvantages. Below, you will be able to learn a bit more about each of them. You can see which one is likely to appeal the most to you.

Wood

Wood pickleball paddles are among the most common that you will come across. These paddles are going to be good options for people who want to buy paddles without spending a lot of money. They are easy to produce and this leads to lower prices at retail. You can find these at the wooden pickleball paddles Walmart section if you are looking to get one today.

If you consider yourself to be a beginner when it comes to pickleball, then it is probably going to be best to go with a wooden paddle. You will be able to get one of these at a very affordable price and they are readily available. You will not have to go out of your way to get one of these, making it a good option to consider for most people. The only problem with these paddles is that they are the heaviest paddle that you can buy.

Depending on your needs, a heavy paddle may or may not work out for you. This is going to be a good paddle type for those who want to have good drive power. As mentioned earlier, heavier paddles often mean that you have to sacrifice a bit of your control. If you want to be able to make really precise shots, then you may want to consider going with one of the other options.

It should also be said that wooden pickleball paddles are the original type that people have been using for a long time. These paddles have been improved over the years but they are not quite as sophisticated as the other styles. If you are buying these in bulk or you are simply looking for extra paddles for guests to use, then these may be ideal. Otherwise, if you have some money to invest, looking into other paddles is going to be worthwhile.

Composite

The composite pickleball paddles are becoming more and more popular every year. These paddles are constructed using a composite core and will usually have a fiberglass or carbon fiber surface. The composite core could be made out of many different things. Sometimes the cores are made out of polymer or aluminum. Other times, the cores may be constructed using Nomex (rigid nylon).

There are actually many things to consider when talking about the cores of these paddles. More information about paddle cores will be discussed later on in this guide. For now, it is important to focus on the positive features of the composite paddles that you will want to consider. For instance, the textured surface allows players to get more spin on their shots.

If you like being able to spin the ball and complete some impressive shots, then a composite paddle is going to be one of the best types for you to consider. These paddles feel very good and are significantly lighter than the wooden models mentioned above. There are also many different price ranges to consider so you can find composite paddles that will perform well while still being very cost-effective.

When you are in the market for a good paddle, looking for the composite paddle options is highly recommended. It has the advantage of being easier to control than the heavier wooden paddles. You will be able to put a spin on your shots while avoiding fatigue. Take a look at the available composite options and you just might find the perfect paddle for you.

Graphite

Graphite paddles are almost always going to be the most expensive. Even the low-end graphite paddles are going to be more pricey than composite paddles, generally speaking. These paddles are well known for being very lightweight and easy to control. If you want to make precise shots while playing pickleball, then you will love owning one of these fine graphite paddles.

Most of these paddles are going to weight somewhere between six and nine ounces. Similarly to the composite paddles, these are also going to be constructed using a core. The cores will be made out of aluminum, polymer, or a Nomex honeycomb core. The thing that makes graphite paddles stand out the most is the graphite face that is on both side of the pickleball paddle.

Most competitive players prefer to use graphite paddles. The graphite on these paddles is very thin but it is still incredibly strong. It gives players the chance to make great shots and it has incredible performance across the board. If you are simply looking to find the most desirable paddle that professionals would recommend, then you will likely want to look at the available graphite options.

The problem is that these are kind of expensive and they may be outside of some people’s comfortable price ranges. If you need to buy a paddle that is more cost-effective, then there are really not going to be any graphite paddles out there that will meet your needs. You will be better off turning to the composite models and seeing what is out there. Graphite pickleball paddles mostly appeal to people who are big pickleball enthusiasts.

Core Construction

Core construction is going to play a role when you are choosing your paddle as well. As mentioned earlier, there are three basic core styles that you will encounter when purchasing pickleball paddles. They are aluminum cores, Nomex honeycomb cores, and polymer cores. Take a look at each of these styles below to see how they impact the paddles.

Aluminum Cores

Pickleball rackets with aluminum cores are among the most popular types. The reason why people like these so much is that they are very light in weight. If you want to keep the weight low in order to give yourself the most control possible, then seeking out a paddle with an aluminum core is a good idea. If you consider yourself to be a player who needs to be able to control the ball well for your style to work, then this is the option for you.

Of course, the negative aspect of this is that paddles with aluminum cores may lack power. They will be very easy to maneuver and are practical for many styles of play. You just shouldn’t expect to have the same driving power as someone who is using a heavier core type. Keep these in mind as you will be able to find an aluminum core paddle for a fairly cost-effective price if you know where to look.

Nomex Honeycomb Core

The Nomex honeycomb cores are also incredibly popular. This technology is improving all the time and has become one of the best options in recent years. Pickleball rackets that are made with these cores are very durable. Making these types of paddles involves using a material that somewhat resembles cardboard. This material is dipped in a special resin to add durability and it is arranged in a honeycomb pattern to finish things off.

Nomex Honeycomb Core

This material was the first type that was used to make composite paddles. There are a large number of different pickleball enthusiasts who prefer the feel of a paddle with a Nomex core. This is also going to be the loudest and hardest paddle on the market. When you make contact with the ball, you will wind up hearing a very loud popping sound each time.

These cores are very popular for people who want to be able to enjoy both power and precision. You can enjoy a very fast game of pickleball while feeling in control when you have a Nomex core paddle. These are readily available and will have many advantages. If you prefer your paddle to be quiet, then you will want to use one of the other options.

Poly Core

These polymer cores are different from the aforementioned core types. These are made out of a special blend of plastic and are rapidly gaining a huge following. Of the three core styles, polymer cores are the most recent. This technology is still evolving but polymer core paddles are definitely going to be the most silent paddles that you can buy.

If you get annoyed by hearing a loud sound every single time that you make contact with the ball, then getting one of these is smart. You will make the least amount of noise when using these types of paddles, making them perfect for people who live in gated communities. One of the reasons why these paddles are so much quieter is that they are softer. When compared to the Nomex cores above, you will see that poly cores are significantly softer.

This does come with a few downsides. The biggest problem is that poly cores are going to lack power when compared to a Nomex core. You will wind up dampening your shot somewhat due to the soft nature of the paddle. There are really good polymer core paddles on the market that have better power than average but they will still not be as powerful as the Nomex options. This makes polymer core paddles a good pick for players who prefer to have great control over their shots rather than relying on power.

Noise in Paddles: What You Need to Know

After looking at the information above, you may be curious about noise in paddles and if there is anything else that you need to know. Basically, the harder a paddle is, the noisier it is going to be. This can create a bit of a problem for people who live in gated communities or those who are trying to play the game using shared gym space. If you want to keep things quiet, then some types of paddles will need to be avoided.

The Nomex core paddles will be the loudest types that you will encounter. Their trademark loud popping noise will be heard by all once you make contact with the ball. Some communities are going to have a problem with you making too much noise. The specific rules are going to be largely dependent on your situation and where you live so you may want to look into things before deciding on a paddle.

If noise is a factor for you, then choosing a paddle with a polymer core is the best thing that you can do. You will be able to enjoy playing pickleball without being a nuisance to others. Many private clubs will have certain rules in place that require quiet paddles so it is likely a good idea to consider becoming familiar with poly core paddles. Don’t be afraid to ask questions to your community managers, country club managers, or any other authority figures if you have questions about noise rules.

Edge Guard vs. Edgeless

One thing to know about these paddles is that there are two style variations that you should consider. You can buy a traditional paddle that has an edge guard or you can decide to purchase an edgeless paddle. Normally, the protective guard protrudes from the paddle ever so slightly. This exists to help prevent the paddle from becoming chipped or damaged due to being dropped or smacking something really hard.

There are many competitive players who actually prefer the edgeless models, though. There are some advantages to not having to worry about the edge guard being there. It gives you a greater surface area to work with when you are playing the game. Many of the edgeless paddles do have a type of thin tape around the edges for protection but it is not as noticeable as a traditional edge guard.

The problem with this is that your paddle will not be nearly as protected as it would be if you had a normal edge guard. It is all about whether or not you are willing to sacrifice durability for having a greater surface area to work with. Edgeless paddles do commonly suffer more chipping damage along the edges of the paddle. Take this into consideration when thinking about which style you would like to pursue. Read the complete guide and six top edgeless pickleball paddle options from here.

Wide Body Paddles

Widebody paddles are the most typical type of paddle that you will come across. These paddles are the standard regulation dimensions that you should expect when playing competitively. They are also the ones that you will most likely see in stock at stores. Most of these wide-body paddles will measure in at eight inches wide by 15-3/4 inches long.

For the most part, the official regulations are going to be standardized across most clubs. Generally, pickleball paddles are measured by taking the length and multiplying it by its widest point. This width should not be greater than 24 inches according to most standard rules. Anything longer than this is going to be considered an oversized paddle.

Oversized Paddles

Oversized paddles are not typically allowed by many clubs where serious games are played. Many people who purchase oversized paddles are just going to be using them for fun. These paddles will be a bit larger and longer than usual. It may provide players with a greater surface area, giving pickleball games a new dimension.

It should be noted that some paddles that would normally be oversized have ways of skirting around the rules. For example, some manufacturers of these paddles will shorten the handle while lengthening the face of the paddle. This helps to keep the paddle technically within the rules of many clubs. The loss of paddle length may negatively impact your play, though. Paddles like this are mostly recommended for people who want to have fun at their own homes.

Elongated Paddles

The elongated paddles mentioned above have started to become more popular among many people. This has caused elongated pickleball paddles to become their own special category in their own right. Most major pickleball racket manufacturers offer some type of elongated paddle. This involves a longer face and a shorter handle than usual.

Paddles like this are a lot harder for novices to use due to the shorter handles. The face of the paddle is narrower as well and this can make it tougher to make contact with the ball. It is a challenge that is welcomed by some experienced pickleball players. Even so, there are many people who prefer the traditional paddles to this style.

Remember to note that not all leagues or clubs are going to allow certain types of paddles. Elongated paddles could potentially be a good fit for those who want to compete in singles matches. Those who can become adept at using this type of paddle will like how nimble it is. Regardless, you need to check with any officials ahead of time to ensure that any paddle that you plan on using falls within the right guidelines.

Price of Paddles

Price is going to be one of the primary concerns that most people will have in regards to choosing a paddle. Your budget is going to play a role in what types of paddles are going to be available to you. If you are just now starting to get into playing pickleball, then you may want to stick with an option that is a bit more affordable. If you are interested in something that is a bit more high-end, then you are likely going to have to pay quite a bit for it.

Thankfully, there are great pickleball paddles that will work for just about any budget. If you are a beginner, then you will be able to find paddles that are low in price so that you can get used to the sport. Those who are interested in something that is just a slight step up from a beginner level will find many cost-effective options too. Take a look at the pricing information below so that you can get a better idea of what pickleball paddles will fall into certain pricing categories.

Cheapest Pickleball Paddles

If you are looking to get a new paddle for the lowest price possible, then you should consider buying a wooden paddle. The wooden paddles are the cheapest ones to make and this means that you can buy them at a low price. You should be able to find a wooden paddle for somewhere between $10 and $25. The prices may vary somewhat depending on where you live but you will always find that wood paddles are the most affordable.

It is also possible to get everything that you need to play the game by buying an inexpensive pickleball paddle set. This is going to allow you to purchase several paddles that will also come with balls. If you need to buy paddles and balls so that your family will be able to play the game together, then these sets are very appealing. It will give you what you need for everyone to have an enjoyable time playing the game. The paddles that come in these sets will almost always be wood.

Some people might want to get something that offers slightly better performance than the traditional wooden pickleball paddles. When you want something a bit nicer, you should start looking into the low-end composite models. These composite paddles are typically going to feature the polymer cores. We also have an amazing guide comparing 10 best cheapest pickleball paddle options here so check it out which might suit your needs.

There are some affordable composite paddles on the market that will feature other cores too but polymer is the most common. These will often be able to be purchased for around $35, making them very affordable for those on a budget. There is some merit to going with the composite paddles instead of the wooden ones too. The composite models are much more durable than the wooden ones, allowing them to be used for longer periods of time without having to be replaced.

Expensive Pickleball Paddles

The most expensive pickleball paddles on the market are the graphite paddles. There are also going to be certain high-end composite paddles that will be priced high. If you are looking for a high-end pickleball paddle, then you should expect to pay at least $100. There are many paddles that will cost quite a bit more than $100 as well. It really just depends on what types of features you are going for and which brands you are deciding to buy.

Some of the high-end graphite paddles may cost as much as $150. You will also be able to find some graphite paddles for $125. There is a significant amount of variance when it comes to the price. There are so many retailers offering these paddles that it is difficult to say exactly what the price ranges will be. Even so, you should expect to pay over $100 and go from there.

Most people who just want to play pickleball for fun will not want to spend this much money on a paddle. Those who take it a bit more seriously might enjoy the enhanced performance and action of these paddles. Take the features into consideration before moving forward. There are many composite paddles that are priced reasonably on the market. If you do not need to spend this amount of money on a paddle, then you may be better off with some of the mid-range composite models.

Color of Paddles

Of course, the color of your paddle is not going to impact the performance in any way. This does not mean that it isn’t a fun option to consider. There are actually a large number of different colors and patterns that you can enjoy when choosing a pickleball paddle. People like to pick their paddles based partially off of the overall aesthetic appeal.

If you like to own sporting equipment that has a certain flair to it, then you will want to gauge your options. You can find many composite and graphite paddles on the market that look absolutely beautiful. They may feature exotic colors or really interesting patterns. Some of them will even have graphics that will make them stand out from the pack.

Keep in mind that most wooden paddles on the market are going to be tame. You will not see too many interesting colors or crazy patterns when buying one of the more affordable wooden paddles. The color variations and stylish paddles are going to be pricier sometimes. The overall design of the paddle will be part of the pricing structure.

You may even want to consider matching your outfit with your paddle. If you are a very fashion-conscious individual, then this could be very appealing. With so many colors to consider, it would not be hard at all to buy a paddle that matches the color of your playing clothes to a tee. Keep this in mind if the aesthetics of your paddle make a difference to you.

Other Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Now that you know all of the basics of what the best pickleball paddles are all about, you may still have some questions. There is a lot to consider when it comes to this fine sport. If you are new to pickleball, then you definitely are not going to know every little thing off of the top of your head. Take a look at some of these frequently asked questions below. You can find answers to your burning questions and will have a better understanding of pickleball, paddles, and several other pertinent topics.

How Do You Properly Hold a Pickleball Paddle?

Properly holding a pickleball paddle is actually very simple. You just reach out the palm of your hand toward the handle of the paddle. Wrap your hands around the handle of your paddle. Now, you need to grip the paddle so that your thumb and index finger are creating a “V” that is pointing toward you. This is the standard type of grip that is recommended for playing pickleball.

There are other ways that you can grip a paddle that will appeal to some people. For instance, the way that you position your wrist can help you to gain more power if you are looking to drive the ball. These are advanced techniques that you can worry about more once you have learned the intricacies of pickleball. For now, just make sure that you can use the standard grip and that it feels comfortable to you.

How Long Does a Pickleball Paddle Last?

Pickleball paddles do not come with any type of an expiration date. How long you are going to be able to use a particular paddle is dependent on several factors. If you take care of a paddle very well, then it may be able to last you for many years. Conversely, if you are rough on your paddle, then you may wind up chipping it and breaking it over time.

Some paddles are going to be more durable than others. For example, paddles that have an edge guard are likely going to last longer than paddles that are edgeless. Composite paddles and graphite paddles are also typically longer lasting than the wooden paddles. Just remember to take care of whatever paddle you decide to buy and it should last you for quite some time.

If you are playing pickleball outside, then you should try to take your equipment inside when you are done. Some people will leave a net up at all times but you should take your paddles indoors in order to preserve them. This prevents them from getting harmed by the elements and will help to prolong their lives.

Where Can You Buy Pickleball Paddles?

Learning where to buy these paddles is not as hard as you might think. If you have just heard about this sport, then you might not know where to go in order to buy the necessary equipment. You can actually find pickleball equipment at most major sporting goods stores. It is continuing to increase in popularity so it is not uncommon to find pickleball equipment at major retail chains.

You can go out to buy a tennis racket Walmart and you will wind up seeing many pieces of pickleball equipment as well. There are many Walmart tennis racket options that will be shown right alongside all of the pickleball paddles. You should even be able to find ones with the tennis racquet grip size. Being able to go to the department store to buy your equipment may be one of the most convenient options for some. You can even find some on the Walmart seller portal online.

You do not have to rely on department stores or specialty sports goods shops to get your pickleball fix, though. You can also find this equipment by shopping online. There are various online retailers that offer some of the best pickleball equipment around. Some of these online retailers are specifically meant for pickleball equipment and others are large online marketplaces.

You can go look for golf grips and wind up buying a pickleball set from the same source. No matter what, you will not have to look too hard to find pickleball equipment to buy. If you are in the market for this stuff, then you will have it available to you. Finding a fantastic deal should be possible and you will be able to start enjoying the game soon enough.

Any Advice for Buying My First Paddle?

The best thing to remember when buying your first paddle is to buy one of the standard models. You do not want to buy an oversized paddle or an elongated paddle right off the bat. These paddles can be more difficult to handle and will likely not be as fun for a beginner. Getting one of the standard wide-body models is going to be your best bet.

Aside from this, you need to make sure that you are purchasing something that is going to work well for your needs. You do not have to buy the first paddle that you see just to get something. Some people are better off with certain types of paddles. Depending on your body size and strength, you might want a heavier or a lighter paddle.

Taking the time to test out a paddle can also be beneficial. If you can get an idea for how a paddle feels in your hands, this is going to help you to make a purchasing decision. Stick with a paddle that is easy to use and make sure that it feels comfortable to hold. If you can do this, then you should have a good first experience when purchasing a pickleball paddle.

You could also buy something inexpensive in order to learn the game. Wooden paddles are very cheap and they will work well enough. If you want to take the time to see how well you like playing pickleball before spending more of your money, then the wooden options are very easy to find. It could be a good choice and you can always upgrade later when you gain some experience.

What Is the Difference Between Fiberglass and Graphite Paddles?

Some people make the mistake of assuming that fiberglass and graphite paddles are pretty much the same things. This is not the case and there are many noticeable differences between the two. Firstly, fiberglass paddles are going to be heavier than graphite paddles. For this reason, fiberglass paddles might be more desirable for those who are looking for power.

Graphite paddles are the perfect option for players who want to achieve perfect control. They allow players to make use of their finesse and can be very technical. Both of these options are still considered to be lightweight and powerful. One is just lighter than the other while the other offers slightly improved power. Which one will appeal to you the most comes down to your personal preference.

Why Do Composite Paddles Have an Overlapping Edge Guard?

The overlapping edge guard is there to help players keep their paddles safe. It is not uncommon for players to drop their paddles or to smack them into something hard during a match. The edge guard can protect the paddle and will keep it from chipping or cracking in any way. If the edge guard is not present, then the paddle is far less protected than it would otherwise be.

There are edgeless types of pickleball paddles on the market. Some people like these because they want to have more surface area to use on their paddles. Even so, these paddles are going to be more prone to chipping. Paddles without edge guards will be less durable so try to decide if it is going to be worthwhile to keep your edge guard or if you prefer enjoying the increased surface area of the edgeless models.

How Do You Find a Paddle with Power?

Many paddles on the market have fantastic power. If you are looking to hit the ball powerfully, then you need a heavier type of paddle. One of the best options for power will be Nomex core paddles. A composite paddle with a Nomex core is going to be very powerful overall. It will improve your ability to hit off of the drive and you will be able to feel the heavy contact with the ball.

Graphite paddles with Nomex cores are also a great option. This is going to allow you to enjoy a lighter paddle that still has power. Most of the powerful pickleball paddles will be heavier but that is not the case with the graphite options. Of course, graphite paddles are more expensive so you need to take that into account before making a decision.

Being that weight has a lot to do with power, it is also possible to buy a powerful wooden paddle. Many of the wooden options are going to be quite heavy. They can be great for driving the ball due to their weight and if you can swing them adeptly enough, they can be a good choice. Wooden paddles are cheap too so they can be appropriate for power players who do not want to have to invest a lot of money. It can be laborious to swing a large paddle though so try to make sure that you can handle it before purchasing.

How Do You Find a Quiet Paddle?

Keep in mind that the quietest paddles on the market are going to be the softest. Making use of the polymer core paddles will be your best bet if you want things to be quiet. These are much softer than other paddle styles and will make only minimal noise when making contact with the ball. If you want to find a quiet paddle, then starting off by searching for a polymer core paddle is highly recommended.

You want to avoid Nomex core paddles due to their loud nature. The harder a paddle is, the more noise it is going to make. Wooden paddles are also going to be fairly loud. You’re going to have to turn to composite and graphite paddles in order to find quieter options. Thankfully, there are many great quiet paddles on the market. You’ll find many pickleball paddle reviews that tout how good both the composite and graphite options are so you’ll find the perfect fit without too much trouble.

What Is a Sweet Spot?

You might be familiar with the term “sweet spot” from playing other types of sports. One good example is the sweet spot on a baseball bat. When you are able to make contact with the ball and you find that sweet spot, then you will be able to enjoy maximum power. To put it simply, hitting the ball directly with the center of your paddle is going to give you the best possible shot.

The reason that the sweet spot exists simply comes down to physics. You always want to hit the ball using the center of the hitting surface whenever you can. Becoming used to using your paddle will allow you to make use of the sweet spot more often. This is going to work the same way when you are using a tennis racquet or a ping pong paddle too.

Indoor or Outdoor Paddles?

The paddles that you will be using are not specifically meant for indoor use or outdoor use. These pickleball paddles can be used by anyone no matter where he or she is going to be playing the game. If you plan on playing outside, then you will be able to do so without worries. You need to take care of your paddles the same way no matter where you plan on playing.

There are specific types of pickleball balls that are meant for indoor or outdoor play, though. If you are playing outdoors, then you will want to buy a special outdoor ball to have the optimal experience. Likewise, there are specific indoor balls available that you can buy. Neither of them will be very expensive so you should be able to buy either type of ball very easily.

Are Men’s and Women’s Paddles Different?

There are no specific paddles that are meant for men or women. A pickleball paddle is simply a pickleball paddle. The only difference is that some sizes of paddles are going to be better for certain people. For example, the average woman may want to use one of the smaller sizes due to having smaller hands. There is nothing to worry about when choosing a paddle aside from the normal grip sizing that you would have to go through anyway.

It is true that there may be certain types of paddles that are designed to appeal to some people more than others. Regardless, paddles are going to be gender-neutral no matter what. If you want to buy a paddle of any color or style, then it is not going to be specifically meant for a woman or a man. Just buy whichever paddle appeals to you the most and suits your needs.

Which Paddle Should a Former Tennis Player Choose?

People who are entering the pickleball realm from a tennis background will have some unique things to consider. One thing that is worth noting is that tennis rackets are significantly heavier than pickleball paddles. This means that tennis players can probably get away with using a heavier paddle without it being a big deal to them. They will already be accustomed to playing with a racket that has a greater weight than a typical paddle.

It can also be said that some tennis players may like using a paddle with a longer handle. It will wind up feeling more natural to start as it will be more familiar to those who like the traditional tennis grip size. If you have a paddle with a longer handle, then it will allow you to use a two-handed backhand shot. It also makes it easier to switch hands when you want to so it will be more familiar for people with a tennis background.

Does Handle Length Make Any Difference?

Handle length makes quite a bit of difference. Handles that are five inches or longer will be great for getting more reach. You will also be able to enjoy improved leverage when serving the ball and will be able to get more power. There are many players who play competitively that prefer paddles that have longer handles as it simply feels more versatile.

Shorter handles may make things more challenging for certain people. There are several paddles on the market that offer shorter handles for those who prefer them. Which one is going to feel right for you is going to be up to you to decide. You may want to try out several handle sizes and lengths before making a commitment.

What Is Paddle Deflection?

You may have heard a pickleball pro talking about paddle deflection. If you do not know what paddle deflection is, then you should think of it simply as the “flex” of the paddle. Depending on how rigid your paddle face is, your paddle is going to have more or less flex. The flex of a pickleball racket can be determined by placing weights on it in order to measure how much it bends under the weight.

How Can I Check the Fit of My Paddle?

Checking the fit of your paddle is actually very simple. You can simply reach out with your palm and grip it as you normally would. For newcomers to pickleball, it is not unlike holding a tennis racket with one hand. Once you have it gripped, you need to insert the index finger from your other hand between your thumb and other fingers. If your index finger fits comfortably, then you have a good fit.

It is very important to get a good fit when you are choosing your paddle. You want to be able to feel natural while holding the paddle so it is best to take your time to get this right. If you can manage to get a good fit, then it is going to ensure that you will have good playing experience. It does not take long to figure this out and you will have an easy time seeing whether the fit is good from a visual perspective.

Is Pickleball a Good Workout?

Pickleball has the potential to be an absolutely stellar workout. If you like to play pickleball multiple times per week, then this could be a great source of cardiovascular exercise for you. Most pickleball matches are going to involve moving around quickly. All of that movement is really going to get your heart rate moving.

Singles matches may be a bit more taxing than doubles since you will be doing all of the work. No matter how you decide to play pickleball, it can be a good part of your fitness routine. Many people like to incorporate sports into their fitness regimen. Pickleball is just one of many options available to you and it can be a lot of fun if you have a few friends to play with.

One potential benefit of using pickleball as a source of exercise is that it is low impact on your joints. Unlike many other sports, you will not be putting yourself in a position where you can injure your muscles or joints. If you are playing using proper form, then it should be a very good way to get aerobic exercise. Give it some consideration if you would like to lose weight or promote muscle health.

When Was Pickleball Invented?

Pickleball was invented way back in 1965. Interestingly, it was simply a group of three dads who decided to invent the game one summer. It was invented on Bainbridge Island, which is a very short distance from Seattle, WA by ferry. Joel Pritchard, Bill Bell, and Barney McCallum are credited with inventing the sport. They might not have ever imagined how popular it would become over the course of several decades.

It has become one of the most beloved summertime activities that many people enjoy. It has many similarities to other sports such as tennis but is still a distinct game with its own flavor. Depending on your preferences, pickleball may indeed be preferable to tennis. It is a fast-paced and strategic game that will get your blood pumping. It has grown a lot since its humble beginnings in 1965 and will likely continue to reach more people over time.

Where Is Pickleball Played?

Pickleball is played in many different locations. This is a sport that people can play both outdoors and indoors. Similarly to tennis or squash, there are indoor playing areas and outdoor playing areas. Many people who want to play pickleball wind up finding a place that offers games locally. There are actually many gym areas where pickleball is played. Some gyms may even have league games with a competitive nature.

You will also commonly find pickleball being played at various country clubs. It is a popular pastime for many people who are involved in the country club culture. Some clubs may have specific tournaments and leagues set up for the sport. Other clubs may simply have an area where residents or members can play pickleball when the mood strikes.

This is also a game that many people play from the comfort of their own homes. It is not uncommon at all for people to set up dedicated pickleball areas in their backyards. In fact, this may be the most common way that pickleball is played. It is hard to say what the most popular place to play pickleball is but you can certainly find many places to play the game.

Is Pickleball Good for Kids?

Pickleball is something that the whole family can enjoy. If you are wondering whether or not children will be able to play the game safely, then you should set your worries aside. Many parents and grandparents have a great time playing this game with the children in their lives. The rules of pickleball are fairly easy to understand and it can be an engaging game that will help the kids to have fun.

Kids wind up falling in love with pickleball very easily. You do not need a ton of room to set up a pickleball playing area so it is a practical idea for those who are looking for something to keep the kids occupied. Of course, pickleball is played on a badminton-sized court and can be played with two or four players. It is great for getting a group of kids involved in something physical and fun.

There are also some paddles that are made specifically for children. Many children or young teenagers can make use of adult paddles as well. It is simply best to try to give them the smallest grip size possible. The grip size of a child can be measured in the same way that an adult would measure his or her grip. If you are in need of a smaller paddle, then you may wish to look into specific child-oriented paddle options.

Are Expensive Paddles Always Better?

Many people ask about whether or not it is always going to be better to buy an expensive paddle. You honestly do not need to buy an expensive paddle unless the features are going to be important to you. Many paddles offer different features that will improve your overall experience. A graphite paddle may be the perfect mix of power and precision that you need when playing competitively. If you don’t need that competitive edge, then you may be better off with a more cost-effective paddle.

Some of the affordable paddles on the market are actually fantastic. Many of the composite paddles are going to be priced at around $35. They can offer you fantastic performance and great control of the ball. They have many different core styles and will suit several styles of play. This means that good paddles are available that do not cost an abundance of money.

There are paddles in so many different price ranges for a reason. This is designed to help consumers find paddles that will suit their playing style and needs. Buying the priciest paddle that you can find is not always going to lead to success. Some power players will prefer a heavier paddle and may not take well to the expensive graphite options. Likewise, an inexpensive wood paddle may not be good at all for a player who needs to be able to have fine control of the ball.

Take the time to consider what you want out of your paddle before you even move forward. If you don’t understand what you want out of a paddle, then it is hard to make any sort of an informed decision. After reading through this guide, you should have much more information about what you need and what will work best for your style. Use this information to the fullest and pick a paddle that works for you, regardless of the price.

In Conclusion

After learning everything about pickleball paddles that you need to know, it should be a lot simpler to go out there and buy what you need. It can be intimidating at first to try to figure out what the differences between the various styles of paddles are. Thankfully, it is not that tough when you dig into the details and start to see all of the particulars about what makes each paddle type special.

This is a fun sport that is popular among so many people. It is even known as one of the fastest-growing sports around. Many people are discovering just how entertaining this game can be. Whether you are looking for something fun to do with the family or you just want to get a workout, pickleball may very well be right for you.

Just remember that you do not want to buy the first pickleball paddle that you see. It really does pay off to take the time to find a paddle that is going to work for you. If you can find a paddle that suits your needs just right, then you are going to feel very natural while playing. It can make pickleball so much more fun and that is what it is all about at the end of the day.

Remember that you need to find a weight that suits you. Some pickleball paddle options are simply going to be too heavy for some people. Finding a paddle that weighs a reasonable amount and is easy to use makes sense. Even so, heavier models do offer increased power. Just make sure that you can handle the weight of the paddle that you choose.

Pick a paddle that is within your budget range as well. Some paddles are going to be incredibly cost-effective and others are more likely to be expensive. You have to decide whether you are interested in a budget paddle or if you want something that is in a higher tier. Some paddles will be better than others but you can find a suitable option no matter how much you would like to spend.

Measure your grip size before proceeding too. If you buy a paddle that is not the right size for you, then you will feel clumsy while trying to play the game. Look at the methods for determining the fit of your paddle above. It is easy to do and you will have a much better time playing when the paddle feels good in your hands.

It might be good to think about the length of the handle too. Remember that longer handles will be more similar to tennis grip size, making it a good option for former tennis players. Longer reach is always nice too so you may prefer a handle that is five inches or longer. Whatever feels comfortable is going to be ideal.

Above all else, just have fun. The sport of pickleball is all about having a good time. Pick out a good paddle and then get out there to enjoy yourself. It will be a good way to gain some muscle without having to buy weights and you’ll burn many calories.

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1 thought on “How To Select the Best Pickleball Paddle in [2021]”

  1. I have friends who use a plastic honeycomb style paddle. This Yellow paddle has holes in a honeycomb form which lets air through and when contact with the ball is made, they are almost silent. Additionally, they can impart an unbelievable amount of spin. Also of note they are shorter and more closely resemble a ping pong paddle but not that small.
    Are these legal and where did the paddles originate? I cannot find evidence of any manufacturer. Said paddles were obtained at a thrift store. Friend tells me it is a legal paddle.. Thank you in advance for any info!

    Reply

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