What Is a Pickleball Paddle? (Explained)

What Is a Pickleball Paddle?

A pickleball paddle is a small, lightweight racket used to hit a plastic ball over an indoor or outdoor net. Pickleball Paddle is used in a game that combines elements of badminton, tennis and table tennis called Pickleball.

Pickleball paddles are usually made up of wood or composite materials. The face of the paddle is often composed of rubber and has a long handle attached to it with a hinge that acts as an attachment between the head and the handle.

Pickleball Paddle: Other names

A paddle is also known as:

  • Pickleball Bat
  • Pickleball Racquet
  • Pickleball Racket
  • Pickleball Paddle
  • Paddle

Types of Pickleball Paddles

There are many types of pickleball paddles for different players on the market. The most commonly used ones are:

  1. Composite Paddle
  2. Fiberglass Paddle
  3. Graphite Paddle
  4. Aluminum Paddle
  5. Wood Paddle

Composite Pickleball Paddles

Composite pickleball paddles are made up of carbon fibers that make them light, strong and flexible. Composite paddles come with different layers of materials.

They are designed to provide good control over the ball and also to absorb power generated by an opponent’s shot which makes them ideal for players who want to play at a higher level.

The composite pickleball paddles also come with sweet spot technology that provides more power and better control than traditional pickleball paddles.

Fiberglass Pickleball Paddles

Fiberglass racket or paddle is made up of fiberglass and resin which makes them durable, light weight and less expensive than the carbon composite pickleball paddles.

The fiberglass pickleball paddle is good for players who are just entering the game and want to practice more before moving on to high performance rackets.

Graphite Pickleball Paddles

Graphite paddles are made up of graphite material which makes them strong, durable and also provides more power to the player.

The graphite pickleball paddle is an excellent choice for intermediate players who are looking for a lightweight racket that has good control over the ball.

Aluminum Pickleball Paddles

Aluminum pickleball paddles are most commonly used in outdoor pickleball. The aluminum paddles are made up of aluminum, graphite and plastic which makes them light and durable.

The aluminum pickleball paddle is a good choice for outdoor play as it is very durable, provides more power to the players and also has good control over the ball.

Wood Pickleball Paddles

Wooden paddles are made up of Ash wood which makes them heavy, durable and provides players with a lot of power. The wooden paddles are great for beginners because they provide excellent control over the ball and help in learning games easily.

Pickleball Paddle Sizes

There are different types of pickleball paddle sizes available on the market that you can choose from depending on your height and weight. The most common pickleball paddle sizes are:

  • Small
  • Medium
  • Large

Pickleball Paddle Sizes – Small:

Small pickleball paddles are made for youth, seniors and lighter players. They measure 7″ to 8″ wide by 15 1/2 ” long. This paddle size is good for children as well as women.

Small paddle is also used by tall and heavy players who find it difficult to play with a full size paddle.

Pickleball Paddle Sizes – Medium:

Medium pickleball paddles are ideal for recreational players and junior players. The paddle size measures 8 1/2 ” to 9″ wide across the face by 15 3/4″ long.

Medium paddles are good for both men and women with medium height and weight.

Pickleball Paddle Sizes – Large:

Large pickleball paddles are most commonly used in competitive games as they provide more power to the players.

The paddle measures 9 1/2″ wide by 16 ” long which makes them ideal for tall and heavy players. Large pickleball paddles are also used by men who are 5′-8″ or taller as they find small paddles difficult to control their shots due to their height.

Large paddles are a good choice for players who play in competitive games.

Pickleball Paddle Weight

The weight of the paddle determines how much power is delivered to the ball. A lightweight paddle makes it easier for players to redirect and place their shots on target while a heavier paddle provides them with more power and momentum.

Paddle weights vary depending on paddle size and materials used in manufacturing paddles. Smaller and lighter pickleball paddles are used by children, seniors and lighter players while heavy pickleball paddles are preferred by taller and heavier players.

Paddle weight also depends on the age of the player. Young players prefer lightweight paddles that help them get better control over their shots without exerting too much force. Older players look for rackets that provide more power and momentum.

The best pickleball paddle weight should be determined by your height and strength. Lighter players should choose lightweight paddles while heavier ones should opt for heavy pickleball paddles.

Pickleball Paddle Surfaces

Pickleball paddles are available in different surfaces depending on the type of game you play. The following are the popular pickleball paddle surfaces:

  • Smooth Face
  • Sandpaper Face

Smooth Face Pickleball Paddles

Smooth face pickleball paddles have a smooth surface which allows players to control their shots and provides them with excellent touch. The downside of the smooth face pickleball paddles is that they can’t provide as much power as sandpaper faces.

Sandpaper Face Pickleball Paddles

The sandpaper face pickleball paddle has a rough surface made up of small granules of sandpaper. This surface creates more friction which allows players to impart more spin and power on the ball. Sandpaper faces pickleball paddles provide excellent control and help in learning games faster than smooth face paddles.

Best Pickleball Paddle Brands

Pickleball paddles are manufactured by different companies and finding the best pickleball paddle can be a difficult task.

Here is a list of some popular pickleball paddle brands that you can choose from:

  1. Paddletek
  2. Wilson Sport
  3. ProLite Sports 
  4. Onix Sports
  5. niupipo
  6. Engage
  7. Gamma
  8. Armour

How to Choose Best Pickleball Paddles

The best pickleball paddle should be lightweight, provide good grip and balance, spin well and generate enough speed. The following are some factors you need to keep in mind before purchasing the best pickleball paddle:

Size/Weight of Paddle

The size of the paddle determines how powerful your shot will be. Paddles come in different sizes and choosing the right size is important.

Pickleball Paddle Face

The paddle face should provide a good grip and be made up of composite materials such as graphite, aluminum, or fiberglass. A harder face provides more power while a softer one adds more spin to the ball. It is better to choose paddles with a grippy face.

Handle

The handle should provide a tight grip and be made up of durable materials such as fiberglass, aluminum, or composite material. A thicker handle allows you to have better control over the shot while a thinner one provides more power.

Weight/Balance

Pickleball paddles should be well-balanced to help you maintain better control over the game. You need to hold the pickleball paddle in your hand before purchasing it to check its suitability.

Price

The best pickleball paddle should provide excellent grip, power, and spin without costing too much money. It is advisable not to buy the most expensive pickleball paddle available in the market. You can buy a mid-range priced pickleball paddle that is worth your money.

Conclusion

Pickleball paddles are available in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and surfaces that help players in achieving their desired playing style. You should look for a pickleball paddle that suits your height and strength. 

A lightweight pickleball paddle with a good grip is ideal for young players while heavier ones provide more power to older players. The face of the paddle should provide good control and spin.

However, you need to keep your skill level, playing ability, and experience in mind before selecting the best pickleball paddle that will suit your game style.

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