How to Choose a Pickleball Paddles

How to Choose a Pickleball Paddle? Ultimate Beginners Guide

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Pickleball is a sport that anyone can play, regardless of age or fitness level. It is a simple and fun game that combines tennis, volleyball, and badminton elements. The pickleball paddle can make the game even more enjoyable for players of all levels. Many types of pickleball paddles are on the market, so deciding which is best for you can be difficult.

However, with many different pickleball paddles to choose from. Here are some tips on how to choose a paddle for you: 

  • 1) Choose a paddle that is comfortable to hold. 
  • 2) Find a paddle that fits your size and strength. 
  • 3) Consider the type of ball you will be playing with. 

However, a harder ball will require a harder paddle, while a softer one will require a softer one.

Let’s read below to learn more about the types of pickleball paddles and how to choose them!

Types of Pickleball Paddles

Pickleball paddles come in various shapes and sizes, and there are many different types of paddles on the market. Some paddles are wood, while others are composite materials such as carbon fiber or fiberglass. Some paddles have a honeycomb core, making them lighter and more responsive.

When choosing the best pickleball paddle for men, women, or intermediate players from brands like Gamma, Niupippo, Joola, and other expensive paddles, it’s important to consider its weight, size, and shape.

You also need to think about the type of grip you prefer. Some grips are more comfortable than others, and some prefer a grip that is smaller or larger than average.

Several pickleball brands make paddles, so it’s important to research before buying the paddle.

1. Based on Core Material

a) Polymer Core: This is the most recent development in paddle technology and also the most popular. Paddles with a polymer core are soft and quiet, making them great for communities with noise restrictions. They also provide excellent control.

b) Nomex Core: One of the earliest materials used in pickleball paddles, Nomex is a cardboard-like material dipped in resin. When it hardens, it offers a robust and durable paddle core. Paddles with this core tend to be lightweight and powerful but can be noisier than their polymer counterparts.

c) Aluminum Core: Paddles with an aluminum core are known for their lightweight characteristics and high maneuverability. They offer a nice blend of power and control.

2. Based on Surface Material

a) Graphite: Paddles with a graphite face are lightweight and offer excellent responsiveness. They are often chosen by players who prioritize control in their game.

b) Composite: These paddles can consist of various materials, including fiberglass, carbon fiber, or vinyl. Composite-faced paddles are versatile and can cater to a range of playing styles, from power hitters to control players.

c) Wood: The original pickleball paddles were made of wood. They are the heaviest of all paddle types, but they are also the most affordable. They’re a great choice for beginners or for recreational play.

3. Based on Shape and Size

a) Standard (Wide-body): This is the most common shape, closely resembling a tennis or racquetball racket. It offers a broad face, maximizing the hitting surface.

b) Elongated (Blade): Elongated paddles are longer and narrower, resembling the shape of a blade. They provide more reach but have a smaller hitting surface, making them suitable for experienced players.

c) Oversized: These paddles provide a larger hitting surface by expanding the width without increasing the length, thus maintaining maneuverability.

4. Based on Weight

a) Lightweight: Paddles weighing between 6 to 7.3 ounces. They offer better maneuverability and are suitable for players seeking control over power.

b) Middleweight: These range from 7.3 to 8.4 ounces, offering a balance between power and control.

c) Heavyweight: Weighing over 8.4 ounces, these paddles deliver more power and are preferred by players who prioritize forceful shots.

How to Choose the Pickleball Paddle?

When you are looking to buy a pickleball paddle, there are a few things you need to keep in mind.

  • The first thing is the grip size. You want one that is comfortable for you to hold.
  • Consider the weight of the paddle. You don’t want it to be too heavy or too light.
  • Think about the grip. You want a comfortable grip that will not slip out of your hand.
  • Finally, consider the price. Paddles can range in price from $20 to $200.
How to Pick a Pickleball Paddle

Once you have considered all these factors, it is time to start shopping for a paddle. There are a few places you can buy them online and in stores. When you are looking at paddles, make sure to compare prices and features between different brands and models.

1. Grip Size

One important part of playing pickleball is selecting the right pickleball paddle. There are many different pickleball paddles for women and men on the market, so how do you know which paddle is the best for you?

One factor to consider is the grip size. The grip size refers to the circumference of the handle. Most paddles have a grip size between 4” and 5”. If you have smaller hands, you may want to choose a paddle with a smaller grip size.

If you have larger hands, you may want to choose a paddle with a larger grip size.

2. Height for Grip Size

When buying the pickleball paddle for spin and control, it is important to ensure that the grip size is correct. This can be done by using a height test. To do this, stand against a wall and put your hand on the wall at shoulder height.

If the middle fingertip of your hand touches the wall, then your grip size is correct. If your grip size is too small, the ball will fly out of your hand; if it is too large, you will not be able to control it well.

For people under 5’2,” tall, a grip size of 4 inches is appropriate, while those between 5’3” and 5’8” should use a grip size of 4 1 4”. Also, 5’9″ or taller persons should utilize the grip size of 4’2″.

3. Hand Measure Test

To play pickleball, you need a paddle and a ball. The paddle has a wooden or composite face and a rubber edge guard. The ball is about the size of a golf ball.

One way to determine which paddle is best for you is to measure your hand with a hand-measure test. This test will help you determine the grip size on the paddle that will fit best in your hand.

The objective of this test is to see if a person can use physical strength to grab a ball, swing it around, and throw it at a target. You can only score high marks on this test by having maximum physical strength. So, we must ensure that we use physical powers correctly.

4. Index Finger Test Method

Choose a Pickleball Paddles

If you have worn out different paddles, hold your hand out with your palm up and spread your fingers apart.

With your other hand, hold the paddle so that the blade is facing down and place it on top of your fingers.

If you can fit more than 2 fingers under the paddle (index finger and thumb), then the paddle is too big for you, and you should try a smaller size.

5. Materials

When you are looking for a pickleball paddle, the material of the paddle is an important consideration. Three main types of materials are used in pickleball paddles: Wood, Composite, and Graphite.

Wood paddles are the most traditional type and have been around since pickleball was first created. They are made from hardwoods, like maple or cherry, and they are heavy. This makes them great for power shots but can be a little difficult to control.

Composite paddles are made from various materials, including fiberglass or graphite. They are lighter than the best wood paddles and offer more control. However, they may not be as durable as wood paddles.

While the Graphite paddles are the lightest type of paddle and offer the most control.


By looking for a good wooden paddle to play pickleball with, checking the wood is a great place to start. Different woods have different properties that can affect your game. 

For example, some woods are heavier than others, making them better for hitting the ball harder. Other woods are more flexible, which can help you hit the ball with more spin. 

When buying the pickleball paddle, consider the type of wood it’s made from. Heavier woods like maple or oak can be great for players who want to hit the ball hard, while lighter woods like balsa or cedar can be better for players who want more control over their shots.


Graphite is an important material for pickleball paddles. This is because graphite helps with the paddle’s durability and ability to transfer energy. Graphite also makes the paddle more rigid, which is important when striking the ball. 

So, for a new pickleball paddle, it’s important to check if it has a graphite face. This will ensure that you get the most out of your paddle and that it lasts longer. Graphite paddles can be a little more expensive than others, but they are worth the investment.


Is it better to have a lighter or heavier pickleball paddle?

There is no definitive answer as to whether a lighter or heavier pickleball paddle is better. A lighter paddle will allow you to move the paddle faster, but a heavier paddle will provide more power. Ultimately, it is up to the player to decide what feels best and provides the most control.

Does Pickleball Affect Your Knees?

Some experts believe that the quick movements involved in pickleball can cause joint pain or other knee problems. 

However, there is no scientific evidence to support this claim. A study published in the Journal of Sport Rehabilitation found that playing pickleball did not cause significant changes in knee function or movement patterns.

What is the Best Pickleball Paddle for Beginners?

It is important to have the right paddle when you are just starting out playing pickleball. This will make your experience more enjoyable and help you improve your skills. So, what is the best pickleball paddle for beginners?

The “Onix Graphite Z5” is a widely regarded pickleball paddle often recommended for beginners. It is known for its balance of power and control, making it a suitable choice for players just starting out in the sport.

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