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Home > Pickleball Paddle Selection Guide

Welcome to Pickleball Paddles Plus .com Paddle Selection Guide


Trying to figure out which Pickleball paddle is best for you?
Just started playing? Looking for another paddle? Help!
We know it can be difficult in deciding which Pickleball paddle is best for you and your playing style. There are many factors to consider when selecting a paddle that suits you best.
Below, we've put together some short segments to help you decide on the best pickleball paddle for you.
Enjoy!

How do I know which Pickleball Paddle weight to select?


A few things to consider when selecting the proper Pickleball paddle weight are: Age, Strength, Paddle Head Speed.
Age Consideration:
Older players tend to prefer a heavier paddle. Seems backwards... but it's not. This takes into consideration paddle head speed. A heavier paddle will allow you to use the paddles weight when returning the ball. A heavier paddle doesn't require a harder swing... a lighter paddle will require a faster and harder swing to return the ball.
Take this into consideration with placement. It's harder to "place the ball" if your concentrating on hitting the ball harder to get it over the net or keep it in play.
A Players Strength:
A heavier paddle may require more arm strength. In turn, a lighter paddle will require less arm strength.
Paddle Head Speed:
The speed in which the paddle is moving when hitting the ball. Hard Hitters/Bangers prefer a lighter paddle. Light hitters prefer a heavier paddle.

How do I know which grip is best for my hand?


A few things to consider when selecting the proper Pickleball paddle handle/grip are: Handle Length and Grip size/style.
Handle Length:
A longer handle length will shorten the paddle face. Former tennis players that are prone to using two handed back hand returns may consider playing with a longer handle paddle. Some players state the longer handle gives them more paddle balance.
Handle Grip:
There are two types of grip styles - thick and thin. A thin grip handle paddle is best for smaller hands... taking into consideration control and comfort. A thick grip handle offers more comfort and may offer more control. Also, a thicker grip handle is normally cushioned... this helps to absorb some of the shock from hitting the ball. A thick grip may be best for those who are susceptible to tennis elbow or arthritis.
How to decide which grip size is best for your hand size:
1. Hold the paddle like you normally hold it while playing.
2. With your opposite hands index finger, place it between the meaty part of your hand just below the thumb and the longest finger of the hand that's holding the paddle. It should fit comfortably in this gap.
If your finger doesn't fit then your grip may be to small.
If there is a very large gap, your grip may be to large.

If you don't have a Pickleball Paddle handy, you can also measure your grip size using a ruler. With your hand open and fingers extended close together, align the ruler with the bottom lateral crease of your palm and measure to the tip of your ring finger.

Keep in mind, it's easier to increase handle size on most paddles. In fact, the majority of today's paddle handles cannot be reduced in size. If you're between grip sizes, go with the smaller size and add an overgrip to arrive at the ideal fit. A typical overgrip will increase a grip by 1/16 inch.

We also recommend you replace your grip regularly. A fresh, properly wrapped grip provides you with better paddle control and increased confidence.

Select the best grip that gives you the best control when hitting the ball. The paddle should not slip/twist in your hand when hitting the ball.
If you do select a thick grip handle that is cushioned, you may also want to "overwrap" the handle. This may help in keeping sweat from absorbing into the grip and causing it to slip in your hands.

Graphite or Composite? Which is which and how to select?


Hitting Surface - Graphite or Composite:
Depending on the manufacturer, graphite paddles tend to weigh slightly less. The weight difference is so small it isn't even noticeable in most of the paddles. Some players state that a graphite paddle offers them more control. Some players state the ball pops off the paddle faster with a graphite paddle. Some players prefer the composite paddle because of the popping sound that comes from the paddle when hitting the ball.
When comparing graphite and composite paddles... it's best to compare the same brand paddle side by side, ex. stryker composite with stryker graphite. It's hard to compare a graphite and composite paddle from two different manufacturers.
Aluminum Core Paddle:
Most paddle cores are made of a composite material. A composite core paddle material is made of varying material... which may include: reinforced cardboard, carbon fibers, fiberglass and resins.
Aluminum core paddles are made of aluminum. Depending on the manufacturer... aluminum core paddles vary in weight and size. Aluminum core paddles are within the USAPA paddle standards.

Now what do I do with all this information?


Try it:
Ask to borrow a paddle from another player. Feel free to ask why they are using that particular paddle, but it may not help you in selecting the paddle that's best for you.
Remember... everyone is different.
Here's a sure way to know you've found the paddle that's best for you.
1. Borrow a paddle that is closest to what you're looking for.
2. Play and lose 2 games with that paddle.
(It's best to play against someone you hate losing to.)
3. If you still love the paddle after losing...
Congratulations! You've found your paddle!
4. Now search and select your Pickleball Paddle:
CLICK HERE to find your paddle now!
Pickleball Paddle Selection Guide