Buying a Pickleball Paddle

Choosing a paddle has become increasingly complicated. There are so many shapes, sizes, materials, brands and innovative technology that it’s confusing for both beginner and advanced players. Below is some basic guidance for buying a Pickleball paddle.

Pickleball paddles have a core construction and an applied surface material. Most paddles manufactured today have a honeycomb polypropylene plastic core construction. Paddle surface materials are usually made from Fiberglass, Graphite and Carbon Fiber.

Higher-quality paddles with the newest technology use a Raw Carbon surface material that produces greater control and spin.

Lighter-weight paddles (under 8.0 oz) are easier to swing and give you more control. Heavier paddles (8.0+ oz) will give you more power on your shots.

Expect to spend between $70 and $120 for a nice paddle. Paddles with the latest technology will cost between $150 and $225+.

The best way to find your next paddle is to ask other players if you can hit with their paddle. Next time you are on the court, switch paddles with someone and see how you like playing with that paddle.

Upstate Pickleball does not endorse one paddle brand over the other. However, the following two brands offer players in our group a significant discount: Engage Pickleball and Gamma Pickleball. (Email John Moore for the discount codes.)

In the Upstate area both Academy Sports + Outdoors and Dick’s Sporting Goods carry a limited selection of paddles. The best place to buy a Pickleball paddle is online because the selection is better. Upstate Pickleball recommends these online retailers:

Playing Strategy Resources

There are endless online resources for helping you gain new skills and knowledge to make you a smarter and better Pickleball player. One place to start your learning is to visit the “Learning to Play” section of the USA Pickleball (USAP) website. It’s also a good idea to brush up on the Official Rules (.pdf)

Coach Mo is a long-time tennis coach who now teaches people how to play Pickleball. His “Pickleball Strategy Guide” (.pdf) is a must-read for novice to advanced players.

One of the best ways to improve your game is to watch instructional videos on YouTube. There are lots of them. (Probably too many of them.) Below are quality videos that address important elements to improve your Pickleball game. Enjoy.

Hitting Serves

Returning Serves

Basic Dinking

Advanced Dinking

3rd Shot Drops

Drop or Drive?

Forehand Groundstrokes

Backhand Groundstrokes

Doubles Strategies

Mixed Doubles Strategies

Advanced Doubles Strategies

Respecting the X