If you’re one of the 3.5 million people who play pickleball—a fast-growing hybrid of tennis, badminton, and table tennis—it’s essential to have the best gear to maximize your performance. With so many companies hawking products that promise to turn you into a dinking, lobbing pro, it can be challenging to know which paddles to choose.
Fortunately, the best pickleball paddles can grow with you as your skill level improves from beginner to advanced. Top pickleball brands like Selkirk Sport’s SLK Latitude, Paddletek’s Tempest Wave Pro, and Joola’s Ben Johns Hyperion Swift offer affordable options for beginners, while their high-performance counterparts are ideal for intermediate players and beyond.
If you want to boost your accuracy, try an elongated paddle. This head-brand model’s durable design provides more surface area to make sure you’re hitting every shot squarely. Plus, it comes in five sporty colors to spark your joy on the court.
Another factor to consider when selecting a pickleball paddle is the grip size. Using a paddle that’s too big for your hand can cause elbow strain. To determine your grip size, measure the distance from the tip of your ring finger down to the middle crease in your palm.
For beginners, a light paddle can minimize fatigue as you get used to the game. This top-rated paddle from a respected brand is a great choice, thanks to its large sweet spot and well-cushioned grip. One downside: The kevlar material can take away from maneuverability, which isn’t a big deal for most beginners.