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What are the best pickleball paddles for 2023? What should I look for when buying a pickleball paddle? What is the best pickleball paddle to buy? If you have asked any of these questions recently, you need to read this guide before buying a paddle.
Players that got into the game of pickleball a long time ago are familiar with its history. They know that the first generation of paddles were simplistic. The paddles back then came from plywood pieces cut using a saw. But the case is different today because advancements are inevitable.
If you are just getting into pickleball game and want to find a good pickleball paddle, this can be a challenge. Even veteran players who already have a couple of paddles look to buy a pickleball paddle. You might fall into any of these categories which is the reason that you are reading this pickleball buying guide.
Pickleball is fast gaining popularity around the world, especially in the United States. As the number of pickleball players continues to increase, different producers are now in the business of selling a plethora of pickleball paddles. Rest assured that you will continue to see even more selections pop-up in the nearest future.
As a pickleball player, the media wave surrounding the sport is good because it helps you access various options. You have different choices regarding what your pickleball gear should contain. However, there can be a downside to this as making a choice may become difficult.
The evolution in materials and tech involved in producing pickleball gear can complicate the situation even more. That is why I have put together this guide that is focused on the 10 best pickleball paddles.
If you are a newbie in the pickleball arena looking to get your first paddle, there is nothing to worry about. Even if yours is the case of a veteran looking to replace your current paddle, this detailed guide will help you to find the best pickleball paddles right now.
Our Top Pick Pickleball Paddles
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Our Reviews Of The Best Pickleball Paddles
Check out this list of the top-rated pickleball paddles to buy.
These reviews will give you a breakdown of 10 premier models that I recommend for any player.
Let’s get right down to business as I tell you all you need to know about the latest pickleball paddles in the market.
While there are popular paddles, I consider some to be elite and such is the case with the Onix Z5. Onix paddles are well known because of how the producer fuses ball control with superb touch.
The paddle has USAPA’s approval and weighs about 8 ounces which is relatively high. This means that you should expect this paddle to bring more power than your average equipment.
The Z5 is an ideal pickleball paddle for beginners. Its body is wide which should be very comfortable for rookies and everyone else. A wide paddle means you should expect a large sweet spot and, since its head weighs 8 inches, mishits won’t occur frequently.
Let’s also talk about its core which is normally a Nomex core. If you imagine resin-soaked cardboard material, that’s what the Nomex core looks like.
What you get is a hard and stable core that is lightweight and all of this is down to its honeycomb shape. Lots of power is packed into this honeycomb core. All you have to do is put some confidence into that power. This should give you a paddle that is ready to explode.
Graphite covers the core of the Z5, unlike other paddles that have composite or fiberglass material as their faces. A lot of producers use graphite to avoid making paddles that are heavy. The fusion of a Nomex core together with a graphite face means that your ball gets more pop. When I talk about pop, I mean how much force your paddle can take on connecting with the ball. The Z5 does not soak up too much force which means that you get a boost in playing power.
- Its sweet spot is wide
- It is a good paddle for beginners
- Top-notch feedback with a nice feel and grip
- Packs a lot of power
- The paddle depreciates at the handle quicker with heavy use
Our handy guide to the best Pickleball Sets features more great products like this.
This paddle deserves its place in my top 10 pickleball paddle reviews. When it comes to the category for lightweight paddles that pack so much power, give it up for the Selkirk 20P. Just like the 200p, the 20p comes with similar characteristics but is not as heavy.
The core build of this paddle is made up of a polymer honeycomb. Then, a premium composite surface serves as its covering to enhance topspin and backspin while providing a sleek touch.
The finish is something I considered to be super cool and professional which is down to its screen-printed graphic work. The 20p has the approval of USAPA and is manufactured in the United States. you might want to keep that in mind.
The Selkirk 20p weighs between 7.1-7.6 ounces which qualifies it as a middleweight paddle. This means that it is sure to supply good touch and can be maneuvered with ease. You also get top control combined with power, thanks to its polymer core.
The handle length of the paddle is 5¼ inches and it comes with a medium grip. You should also know that its side to side measurement gives a width of 8 inches and a length of 15¾ inches. The Selkirk 20p also sports an edge guard that is so thin which helps to lower the frequency of occurrence of mishits.
One feature that I love concerning Selkirk products is fantastic graphics. They are always there among the elites in terms of great design. This honeycomb core paddle comes with stunning graphics with dual-vibrant colors.
- The Paddle is manufactured in the United States
- It has an ultra-thin edge guard that lowers the frequency of mishits
- Durable and lightweight with comfortable grips
- Exceptional graphics that give the paddle a professional appearance
- Premium surface to enhance topspin and backspin as well as soft control
- The sweet spot is quite small
- Rookies may not enjoy using this paddle
Make sure you also check out our guide to the best Pickleball Strategy.
Another exciting product that is among the best pickleball paddles 2019 is the Gamma Poly Core. It is also called the Gamma Needle and lots of players like the paddle.
One reason that it stands out is its stellar features which set it above most of the competitors. Once you feel this paddle, its honeycomb cushion grip immediately draws your attention. The feeling that it creates as you hold it is superb and it puts you in total control at once.
In terms of length, the handle is somewhere around 4.25 inches. No matter how tough a game is, it provides you with a great grip. If you are a serious pickleball player looking to improve how much grip you have in long sessions, the Poly Core is a great recommendation.
When you look at how the producers craft the handle, you see why it is among the best pickleball paddles.
Your ball control during games is elevated with the Gamma Needle. Players who are looking to employ control, as well as accuracy to get victories, can rely on this equipment. The Gamma poly makes this possible through its Sensa poly core tech.
So, if your style is more control than power, you can count on the Gamma Poly Core to help you keep things that way.
Weighing about 7.6 ounces, this middleweight paddle comes in an elongated form which should offer you comfort and ease of use. That is why anyone from newbies to veterans will find it beneficial. Even if you are just in for a casual play, the Gamma Needle has what it takes to give you a natural and enhanced feel.
This model also has the approval of USAPA as it is in compliance with every standard. So, if you are looking to go into serious competitions with this pickleball paddle, you have no problem whatsoever.
Let me also draw your attention to the face of the paddle which is made of graphite to improve how much touch and control you have. This is what makes the Gamma Needle effective for beginners and veterans alike.
It is built in a way that allows you to maintain your style without sacrificing it during play. It also comes in a wide range of colors and simply gives you a brilliant performance.
One area that you might want to give attention to is its sweet spot which seems quite narrow for a few players. Do you enjoy playing with a sweet spot that is wider? Then, you may want to check out a different option on my 10 best pickleball paddles list. That aside, the Gamma Poly Core is a great option that I recommend without much debate.
- Both beginners and veterans can use this pickleball paddle
- The handle is built with comfort in mind
- The approval of USAPA
- Greater ball control with a well-designed core
- Not too light or too heavy
- In contrast with other paddles, it seems to have a fairly narrow sweet spot
Be sure to check out our list of the best Pickleball Bags for more great items like this.
The conversation about top-rated pickleball paddles in 2019 won’t be complete without the Selkirk Maxima. Selkirk is a premium brand that produces premium paddles. With the Maxima, your experience is sure to become even better.
When you look at this pickleball paddle, the first thing that grabs your attention is the large design of its sweet spot. You should have no problem with making good contact and pulling off great shots as well.
The Selkirk Maxima also has approval from the USAPA. This makes it a great choice if you’re looking to get into competitions or tournaments. More than 200 pro players in the world use this model and they find it to be a fantastic fit.
One reason that I love this paddle is its core design which is made of X5 polypropylene polymer. As a player, you get to enjoy total control, as well as great power during gameplay. The paddle has superb balance and is adaptable to various styles.
Some amazing piece of engineering is put into the fiberglass face. The reason for this is to improve the experience during matches while helping the paddle to perform better. You will notice the stylish design that is remarkable about the Maxima. There is a plethora of colors to choose from and they are all fabulous.
One aspect that I consider to be a problem for some players is that the paddle might be on the heavy side. With a weight of 8.0-8.4 ounces, the Amped Maxima is a middleweight paddle. A lot of people do not find the weight to be a problem. However, it is worth mentioning that it is not still among the category of lightweight paddles.
If you want to enjoy using this paddle, playing a singles game is more preferable than doubles. Veteran players find the Maxima to be more comfortable than beginners. For me, it all depends on what you need from a pickleball paddle. I advise that you consider your style to determine whether the weight will be a problem or not.
- The maximum has an incredible style
- A great choice for singles games
- It meets all the standards and has approval from the USAPA
- The sweet spot is large
- It gives players a balance in control and power
- Some players feel it is on the heavy side
- Best for advanced players only
- It’s not as effective in a doubles game
Before you leave, why not check out our Best Pickleball Shoes guide – and see what our top picks are.
Next on my list of top-rated pickleball paddles to buy is the Kanga paddle. This equipment is typically made from wood and the face of the paddle is printed.
I think this is what makes it appear even more unique. When you first come across the Kanga paddle, you might mistake it for a graphite paddle. It may also come off as a composite paddle too and this down to the bright colors.
7-ply hardwood is the material from which the producers carve the paddle. The objective is to make it durable so that it lasts a long time. Apart from the color which I find interesting, another strong point for this paddle is its price point.
If you’re looking for an affordable pickleball paddle to buy in 2019, look no further than Kanga Wood.
Concerning its weight, the paddle measures between 9 ounces to 10.6 ounces. It comes with a cushion grip that has ribs and perforations to give you comfort. The length of the handle is about 5¼ inches which is great for larger hands.
You can get this model as a bundle from Kanga. The bundle package comes with double paddles and four balls, as well as four paddles and six balls. Community centers, as well as camps and schools, can take advantage of the opportunity by opting for the larger option.
- It is made of 7-ply hardwood
- You can get it in bundles that come with paddles and balls
- It doesn’t have a natural wood finish
Check out our review of the best Pickleball Sling Bags for our top picks.
This is one of the first choices that many pickleball players point to when choosing their best pickleball paddle. And it deservedly makes it into my list of 10 top-rated pickleball paddles.
Whether you are an amateur or veteran player, this is a good pickleball paddle to buy. One benefit that comes with the XSPAK is soft play and enhanced strength. It might be a high-end graphite paddle but it is worth every penny spent and has a high rating.
Its counter gamma grip is refined and it has a width of 4¼ to give you even better control. The paddle has a prominent sweet spot that packs lots of power behind every hit and provides a natural spin.
The material used to make the XSPAK is graphite which tells you to expect a high performance at all times. The paddle also comes with a wide-body design to enhance hitting.
The XSPAK has the approval of the USAPA and meets the requirements for use in tournaments and competitions. Consider also its graphite surface which gives you more precision in how you control the ball.
There is so much to love about this premium pickleball paddle manufactured from polymer honey grain. Among all the paddles in the market at this time, this is one product that is quiet and soft.
The design of the paddle serves to protect it from surface bumps, as well as track damage. You have nothing to worry about if you buy this elite equipment for your pickleball gear.
However, if you make a purchase but are not satisfied, you get a refund of your money – no questions asked. This is the company’s way of ensuring that its customers stay satisfied. But I doubt that you will have any reason to return the XSPAK.
- Its counter gamma grip is upgraded
- The paddle has a prominent sweet spot
- Comes with a while body design to enhance hitting
- The material used to make the XSPAK is graphite for high performance
- Can be used in green zone communities as it does not generate noise
- Comes with a polymer honeycomb core to make it lightweight and powerful
- The XSPAK is relatively expensive in contrast with similar pickleball paddles
We have also reviewed the best Graphite Pickleball Paddles, so check them out as well.
Here, you have another premium option which deserves to be among the best pickleball paddle review. PaddleTek Horizon is unique in its way because its handle is quite different from others.
The handle is shorter which enlarges the strike zone of the paddle. Many players take a liking to it as the paddle is built to be a good shock absorber. Maintaining control with your wrist is then seamless.
Something else that I consider to be advantageous is the large sweet spot that you see when you look into the paddle. For players who loved paddles with large sweet spots, the PaddleTek Horizon is a great choice. With its elongated look, your chances of hitting your shot right are higher and you can add finesse and technique to your game.
If you are a control style player, the PaddleTek Horizon is worth giving a try. Even if control style players like shorter paddles to exercise more control with precision, this model holds up perfectly. You have the luxury of deciding where you want to put the ball and the effect is natural.
In general, this paddle has a nice extended reach which should allow you to take shots that may be possible with other models. When it comes to advantages, this model does not disappoint. Then, there is also the case of its lightweight feel, with the Horizon weighing between 7.2-7.4 ounces. What you have here is a paddle that is light enough to help you enjoy your game.
If what appeals to you is balance perfection, you may want to check out other pickleball paddles on this list. Some players also feel that the PaddleTek Horizon is a little bit on the heavy side. However, most players do not think that this is an issue in any way. But this is the only dent that a few critics manage to cite about the Horizon.
For some players, they may find that the shorter grip does not give them a natural feel. Normally, not everyone will find this pickleball paddle to be perfect. In this case, what matters is your taste. Also, keep in mind that this paddle has the approval of USAPA and can be a great addition to your pickleball gear.
- Players have an extended reach with this paddle
- With its large size, the sweet spot is generous
- It is a superb shock absorber
- Control players will love the elongated paddle
- The paddle is not heavy
- Not everyone will like the shorter handle
- If you people think it is a bit on the heavy side
Find more great products like this by checking out our guide to the best Indoor Pickleball Shoes For Women.
Let me draw your attention to a production company that continues to release quality pickleball paddles. Amazin’ Aces might be a new name in the industry but it does not compromise on quality.
The company does not only produce entry-level and advanced paddles. You will find other accessories like bags amongst its products.
Its paddles have the same materials and quality that put it head-to-head with other premium pickleball paddles on this list. 7 ply maple is the premium material that brings these wood paddles to life. Amazin’ Aces may be on the heavy side for some players as it weighs more than 10 ounces.
Apart from the fact that these paddles are not any different from other top-rated paddles, there is one aspect that sets the company apart. The Amazin’ Aces set comes with bonus items which make the product attractive. You will find 2 paddles in the set together with 4 balls.
The set also comes with a mesh bag that is free for holding the balls. It doesn’t end there as you also get an e-book that you can download. The e-book gives beginners a guide to the game of pickleball.
One other thing that I feel you would love about Amazin’ Aces is how well it treats customers. It offers very prompt services and its customer care reps are courteous. With its affordable price, rest assured that you have premium paddles that come with extras.
- It is sold as a set with 4 pickleball balls and other bonuses
- The paddle is made of 7 ply maple
- Customer service is top-notch
- Affordable prices with Amazin’ Aces
- This model is heavyweight for some players
Our handy guide to the best Outdoor Pickleball Shoes features more great products like this.
I have a thing for paddles that sport a variety of graphic themes on their faces. This is one reason that I instantly fell in love with the Upstreet paddle.
I found that many players choose this paddle because of its aesthetics. But that is not all as it is a graphite paddle which boasts a composite core. The best part is that it is affordable which is one reason that pro players love with. Let’s also talk about how brilliant it is at creating spin shots.
On the average, the Upstreet paddle weighs about 8.6 ounces and produces fantastic shots during gameplay. Having this paddle is a great way to boost your pickleball performance.
The product has a unique level of quietness and strength which is down to its polymer core. This paddle is also ideal for use in competitions and tournaments being 15.75 inches long and 7.75 inches wide.
If you have a normal hand, the grip should be comfortable and easy. However, if you have long hands, the handle might come off quite small for you.
Now, let’s take a look at its construction. When looking for the best pickleball paddle to buy, you need to put the manufacturing into consideration.
The Upstreet packs a lot of strength, thanks to its graphite paddle that has a composite core. The material that makes up the core is polypropylene honeycomb which gives off shots that are smooth and perfect.
- Great at controlling shots
- Has a good enough weight for most players
- The paddle is easy to hold
- Made from premium materials
- Sports a polypropylene honeycomb core
- Quite small for players with longer hands
Make sure you also check out our guide to the best Court Shoes For Pickleball.
The last on my list of 10 best pickleball paddles 2019 is the PaddleTek Tempest Wave. It lives up to its name as it is making waves since the time of its release.
This is one pickleball paddle that many players want to have. The likes of Dave Weinbach and Aspen Ken have entered into tournaments with the Tempest.
The Tempest Wave has the approval of USAPA and meets all of the specifications for competitions and tournaments. It has specs that are okay and many professionals take a liking to it.
You might wonder what makes this an ideal pickleball paddle in 2019. Although there is no straight answer to that question, the paddle is known for its spectacular performance. This is all down to the fusion of top grade materials, as well as superb engineering.
Another reason that the PaddleTek Tempest stands out is its size and core. The Wave is about 8 inches wide which is a good fit for different players on different proficiency levels.
It also comes with a polymer core that is known as a standard in the pickleball industry. One thing about paddles that are made from the polymer is that they help players to exercise greater control. They also provide power when needed.
One quality that people who want to buy the best pickleball paddles look out for is the weight. Never underestimate the importance of this quality because it could be what makes or breaks your game. At 7.6 ounces, the Tempest Wave has just the perfect weight.
This middleweight paddle is beautiful because it is neither heavy nor light. You can maneuver easily and produce power at any point in time. If you are a control player, you will love this paddle as it supplies finesse and control to your game.
This is in addition to the ease with which you can hold the paddle. This is a top 10 pickleball paddle.
- It can produce great power
- A light paddle that is easily maneuverable
- Made from premium materials that give you great control
- It is quiet and produces a fantastic pop
- This is a high-end paddle that is relatively expensive
Be sure to check out our list of the best Pickleball Paddles For Beginners for more great items like this.
Pickleball Paddles – Buyers Guide
As a pickleball player, the publicity surrounding the sport is good because it helps you access various options. You have different choices regarding what your pickleball gear should contain. However, there can be a downside to this as making a paddle choice may become difficult.
If you are a newbie in the pickleball arena looking to get your first paddle, you have no worries. Even if yours is the case of a veteran looking to replace your current paddle, this detailed guide will help you to find the best pickleball paddles right now. Here are the important factors to consider while looking to buy the best pickleball paddle:
Many pickleball players make the mistake of focusing only on the price before choosing an ideal pickleball paddle. It is important to have a budget but keep in mind that price points do not offer the solution. That a paddle has a relatively higher price does not mean it is best for you. Pro players who have been in the game for a long time believe that you should consider the paddle weight first.
A pickleball paddle can weigh anywhere from 6 to 14 ounces. Lightweight paddles weigh from 7.3 ounces and under. Middleweight paddles weigh from 7.3 to 8.4 ounces. Heavyweight paddles weigh from 8.5 ounces and above.
Lightweight paddles put less stress on your joints, increase your ball control, and help you to maneuver better. However, they reduce your power and need a stronger swing. It can also be difficult to hit long, hard shots. On the other hand, heavyweight paddles offer you more power and make it easy to hit deep balls. You also need less effort to drive your shots. However, they can put stress on your joints and reduce your control. They also make your swing slower and cause you to tire out faster.
The weight of the paddle determines how it feels when you hold it. It also plays a role in your performance during games. There is no generally recommended weight but it is more of a personal choice. This is something you should consider based on how fit you are.
Another factor to consider when looking for the best pickleball paddle 2019 is your playing style. If you are a power player, you can opt for heavier paddles. This is because they make it easy to power your shots. Then again, if you are a control player that just wants to enhance how much control and touch you have on the ball, a lightweight paddle is what you need. This will help to give you more precision and help you to place sleek dink shots.
Before you go ahead to buy a pickleball paddle, find out what your weaknesses are, as well as your strengths. You also want to be sure that you are a control player or a power player. This can be tough for beginners but after a few sets, it should be easier to determine your playing style. I recommend that you begin with a middleweight paddle that weighs somewhere between 7.3 and 8.4 ounces.
If you are the kind of player that wants more and more power as you play, go with a heavyweight paddle. However, when the playing style is more about control, go for a lightweight paddle. Should you be in doubt about what playing style you have, you can start out with a middleweight paddle and work your way around that.
Your grip size
As soon as you can determine what paddle weight is best for your playing style, the next thing to consider is your grip size. Playing pickleball games with a paddle that you have the right grip over can be the difference in your performance. You need to find a grip circumference that is perfect for the size of your hand. No matter how simple this sounds, it is something you should never overlook.
Can you imagine what it feels like to run in shoes that do not size your feet? This is the same thing that happens when you play with a wrongly sized pickleball paddle. Pickleball paddles that have a smaller grip let you carry out more action with your wrist. You can easily spin the ball and exercise more control. Better wrist movement makes it easy for you to drive more power into your ball.
The experience is different if you go for a large grip. This kind of pickleball paddle increases your ability to stroke the ball while relieving joint strains. But when you use a much larger grip size, it puts strains on your elbow. These strains eventually cause pains in the joints or elbows and happen often with extended games. It is for this reason that I emphasize the need for you to know what grip size is perfect for you. You should take a grip size measurement before choosing a pickleball paddle.
A good idea is to use an overgrip to customize your pickleball paddle to align with your grip size. High-end pickleball paddles most times come with quality grips. Companies like Gamma usually make premium grips that improve comfort while absorbing sweat. In the event that your paddle has a grip that is inferior or that depreciates after some time, you need to replace it.
As the wave of the pickleball sport continues to expand, more production companies will get into the business of selling new and enhanced pickleball paddles. Rest assured that you will continue to see even more selections pop-up in the nearest future.
It can be confusing to select a pickleball paddle that is the right fit for you. This is because so many options are now available on the market. If you also consider the technology and materials that go into the production process, you are left with many choices. This is the reason that I put together the 10 best pickleball paddles to simplify that process for you. Now, you can easily make a decision on the best pickleball paddle in 2019 that is right for you.
Remember that a paddle’s cost is not a determinant of its quality. That a pickleball paddle is expensive does not also mean that it is the right paddle for your style. You should focus on finding the right weight and grip size that will fit your playing style. You can then apply the knowledge in this comprehensive guide to help you choose the best pickleball paddle.