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5 Best Pickleball Paddles for Beginners

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Editor's Pick

9.7
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Amazin' Aces Pickleball Set (2 Paddles)

What We Liked
  • This beginner set includes 2 paddles, 4 pickleball balls, and a durable carrying case. High quality paddles and an included ebook with the rules of Pickleball to get you up to speed quickly.
What We Didn't Like
  • some prefer a different type of grip on the paddles and the weight is slightly above average.

Easy on beginners, this is the kind of paddle sport the more you play, the faster and more competitive the game becomes. Have you ever wondered how this sport for anyone old enough to hold a paddle ever got its name? In the beginning, the game didn’t have a name at all, it was just a fun way to smack a ball around for a while. Then along came a cocker spaniel named “Pickles” who loved to chase the balls as people were trying to play and so, at last, the game had a name.

A combination of ping-pong, tennis, and badminton it can be played indoors or out on the same size court as badminton using a modified tennis net. For double or single play, the only equipment needed is a paddle and plastic ball with holes in it. Due to Pickleballs popularity, there are more than 15,000 courts (indoors or out) available in the U.S. now with plans in the works for more. From middle school gym classes to retirement villages, this is a game for everyone.


5 Best Pickleball Paddles

Understanding Different Types Of Paddles

In 1965 when the game was invented paddles were all made of wood. Now the most popular are lightweight composites such as aluminum or graphite. You might be thinking a paddle is just a paddle, what’s the difference? Well, standard Pickleball paddles are not as large as a tennis racquet, yet are larger than a ping-pong paddle and using the right one is very important, especially if you’re the competitive type. There’s nothing wrong with losing but winning is a lot more fun and having the right equipment can help make it happen.

If you’re new to the game here are a few things you should keep in mind to ensure you get the right paddle for your game, not what works for everyone else.

  • Weight – Paddles typically weigh from 6.08 to 14 oz. Lighter paddles are best for serious maneuvering, but it takes a heavier one to put real power into slams or hard shots. Then again, the heavier your paddle, the more strength you need to control softer shots. In short, if you’ve ever played tennis your wrist is already accustomed to the moves and bulk of a racket. It all depends on the player and their experience. It makes sense anyone already familiar with the weight of a racket may find the heavier paddles more comfortable and effective.
  • Length – While it may be true that longer paddles have more reach to volleyballs, that extra reach will cost you in maneuverability at the net because they feel heavier. Experienced players (winners) would tell you stick to a more standard widebody or larger paddle head but skip the extra length unless you know exactly which part of your paddle needs to hit that ball and send it where you want it to go, every time. What it comes down is power or control, which do you value more?
  • Color – The color of a paddle can have more to do with its effectiveness than you might think for a very simple reason. For example, using yellow makes it very difficult for your opponent to see the ball when it bounces off the paddle. The color red would do about the opposite and give the competition a distinct advantage. Since there are no official rules on color why not take advantage of every chance you can to win or at least make the competition work harder for their victory.

Best Pickle Paddle Brands

If you’re a sports fan then you’ve heard the name “Wilson,” a sports equipment business that professional athletes trust their game too. When well-known company’s like Wilson introduce their own line of Pickleball paddles it’s safe to say this game is no passing fad. There are so many brands out there, choosing from among them isn’t easy, how are new players supposed to be able to tell trash from treasure? Buying and then trying can get expensive so take a look at this short list of 2018’s most popular company’s first, and then decide where to spend your money. There isn’t room here for every brand, but the effort was made to at least spot the two most promising.

  • Selkirk – This company is family owned and leaves all their competition behind them because their brand is pure quality. At least that’s what their happy customers say about them and if you can trust anything, it’s the word of a satisfied consumer. Selkirk’s focus is mainly pickleball paddles, they are not distracted by dozens of other products so producing perfection is not a problem for them. All it takes is one Pickleball game using their “Selkirk AMPED” paddle or any of their other equipment to know you made a good choice. The X5 polymer technology in their paddles is a large part of what got them to the top and keeps them there.
  • Paddletek – Next time you’re around other Pickleball players in action, look closely at the brands on their paddles and see how many of them carry the Paddletek brand. Known for extreme functionality and durability, their standard of quality never varies. Of all their creations the “Tempest Wave” is among their most popular, and many consider it to be the best currently on the market. Its polymer core and graphite face offer the control and power players need with no loss of control over the ball. Paddletek’s closest competitor is Selkirk, and it ought to be interesting to see what they come up with next to try and top each other.

Conclusion

According to recent data from the SFIA (Sports and Fitness Industry Association), there are at least 2.5 million Pickleball players in the United States alone. As of 2018, the SFIA is 112 years old, and any organization able to stick around that long is obviously worth paying attention too. From a game basically created to entertain a bunch of bored American kids on summer break 53 years ago, to the international game it is today one wonders what those children think of their summer pastime now and if they still play.

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