With more than a million new players joining the sport each year, pickleball is rapidly growing in popularity in the US.
To meet the growing demand, there is fierce rivalry among manufacturers to provide the best pickleball paddles.
Every paddle has some distinctive traits, but the difficult part is deciding which one is best for you.
The design, build, and cost of pickleball paddles varies. Understanding the characteristics of a paddle will provide you the information you need to make the best choice.
However, as there are some many pickleball paddles available, it can be overwhelming knowing which one is perfect for you.
In this article, we have collected together the best pickleball paddles that are perfect for beginners.
Best 5 Pickleball Paddles For Beginners
When you are new to pickleball, there are a lot of new rules and terms to get your head around. However, you also need to ensure that you have the right gear.
Therefore, you need to make sure you have the right paddle for you.
Below are our top 5 best pickleball paddles for beginners that you should consider.
OUR TOP PICK
For novices, the ONIX Stryker 4 graphite paddle is a fantastic option. Its 6.9 to 7.4 ounce weight makes it ideal for speed and agility when you are learning how to play the sport.
Anyone who is just starting out can use this paddle because it offers a broad hitting surface.
We liked the larger sweet spot, which allows you to have an increased hitting surface provided by the paddle's size.
It produces balanced power thanks to its polypropylene core and graphite face.
The ONIX Stryker 4 Graphite Paddle features a smooth finish and is reasonably quiet, which improves responsiveness and performance.
It is a durable paddle, which performs well for beginners. ONIX is a well known name when it comes to pickleball paddles, so they should be one of your top contenders.
Large Sweet Spot - The ONIX Stryker 4 Graphite Paddle has been designed with a larger sweet spot, which helps to hit the ball a lot easier.
Balanced Power - The power you can create with this paddle is very even and balanced due to the polypropylene core and graphite face.
Durable - The ONIX Stryker 4 Graphite Paddle is known for its durability. Making it a pickleball paddle that you can always rely upon.
Lightweight - This paddle is quite lightweight, making it easy to use.
Handle - While there are some elements of anti-slip grip on the handle, these aren’t always effective.
For new and experienced players, the HEAD Cyber Elite is ideal. It's built of high-quality materials, has a lovely design, and is simple to use.
For beginners, the HEAD Cyber Elite pickleball paddle is perfect because it is lightweight. The fiberglass hitting surface provides a great feel and plenty of power.
We liked the soft grip, which makes it possible to play for a long time.
You can prevent issues like tennis elbow thanks to its special Ergo Grip, which produces very little vibration.
Overall, this is one of the best pickleball paddles for beginners.
High Quality - The best and high quality materials are used to create this paddle, which makes it durable and simple to use.
Lightweight - The HEAD Cyber Elite Pickleball Paddle is extremely lightweight, making it easy for beginners to intermediate players to use.
Fiberglass Surface - The surface of this paddle is constructed from fiberglass to offer you lots of power.
Soft Grip - The soft grip found on the handle helps to prevent injuries and to play for longer periods of time.
Smooth Surface - The hitting surface is smooth, which some customers didn’t like as they found the ball would slide off the surface.
The Battle Pickleball Advance Paddle is a fantastic medium-weight paddle for beginners.
Perfect comfort, power, and control balance are ensured by the polymer honeycomb core and graphite plate surface.
It has a grooved, anti-slip grip for maximum traction and less vibration. Baddle's own Edgetech Protect technology guards against scratches.
An XT model is available, which has a longer handle (5.25 inches) than the regular 5-inch length.
You will feel at ease using this paddle as a novice. Yet it is sufficiently advanced to keep you playing well into your intermediate level.
Weight - The Battle Pickleball Advance Paddle is known as a medium weight paddle, which is ideal for developing your control and power in the game.
Anti-slip Grip - This pickleball paddle comes with a grooved grip, which helps you have a more secure hold on the paddle during a game.
Polymer Honeycomb Core - The polymer honeycomb core in this paddle helps you to make smooth and powerful shots.
Durability - Some customers have noted that grip may start to tear after many games.
If you are really new to pickleball and aren’t sure whether this sport is for you, then you should definitely consider the affordable Selkirk Neo Pickleball Paddle.
This paddle is designed with a composite paddle face and weights around 7.6 to 7.9 ounces.
Through our research, we discovered that the Selkirk Neo uses a layered face which combines the strength of graphite with the control of fiberglass.
The experts have created this technology to help boost your performance.
The polymer core gives you better performance, while being lightweight improves your speed.
Finally, the Selkirk Neo's 7.875-inch width offers a larger hitting surface. It incorporates an edge guard for safety and a narrow, soft grip for enhanced control.
Layered Face - The graphite and fiberglass face offers you more power and strength for attacking the ball.
Large Sweet Spot - This paddle has been designed with a large hitting and sweet spot to improve your speed.
Soft Grip - A soft grip has been included to help you control the paddle the better during a game.
Wrap Around Handle - The wrap around the handle isn’t completely secure and can become undone. Yet, you can easily rewrap it if this happens.
With its cutting-edge MaxGrit textured surface technology, the Franklin Sports Pro Pickleball paddle is the finest quality you can get.
This surface material has been given USAPA approval and can give the ball outstanding grip and spin rate for the best control.
This paddle was created by renowned pickleball player Aspen Kern to provide you with the finest performance on the court.
It's an excellent first paddle for new or experienced players looking to advance their skills.
Also, thanks to its high-quality build, it can withstand the rigors of competitive play.
Franklin Sports is another well known name in the world of pickleball, whether you are a beginner or professional player.
Thus, you should rest assured that you can reply upon a Franklin Sports pickleball paddle.
Professional Quality - The Franklin Sports Pro Pickleball Paddle has been constructed with premium quality materials for a durable and high performance paddle.
Grit Surface - MaxGrit technology has been used for the playing surface for optimal control and dampen vibrations during play.
USAPA Approved - The Franklin Sports Pro Pickleball Paddle has been approved by the USAPA to be used in tournaments and competitions.
Large Sweet Spot - A fiberglass face ensures a larger sweet spot for better contact and control.
Grit Wears Away - Some customers have noted that the grit on the surface begins to fade away after continuous use.
Best Pickleball Paddles Buying Guide
When you start playing pickleball, you must have the right equipment to help you to play the sport properly. Having the right paddle for you can help improve your game and technique.
Although, since there are so many pickleball paddles out there that claim that they will be perfect for beginners. It can be difficult knowing what you need to look out for.
We have created this easy guide, to point out all the factors of a pickleball paddle you should be looking out for, especially as a beginner.
Thus, you will be able to choose the right kind of paddle for you.
Weight is one of the most important things you should be looking out for when selecting the right paddle.
These paddles come in three different weights. They range from lightweight, to mid-weight and heavy. Each weight offers the player different benefits.
For a beginner, we would advise you steer away from heavy pickleball paddles.
Heavy paddles are good for strong people, but they lack control and can hurt your arm or wrist after extended use.
Ideally, you want a lightweight paddle, as it is easier to use and gives you more control.
Although, you could consider a mid-weight paddle, which will provide you with a right balance between control and power.
Usually, a lightweight paddle is between 6.5 to 7 ounces. With a mid-weight paddles weighing around 7.5 ounces.
You should choose a paddle that feels right for you, but most beginners will use a lightweight paddle to start off with.
Several core and face materials are used in pickleball paddles. The central component, or core, establishes the shape and weight of your paddle and ensures stability.
A lot of paddles will use a lightweight honeycomb design.
The exterior of the paddle, or the area which comes into contact with the ball, may be made of polymer, Nomex, or metal.
Nomex paddles are loud and aren’t as powerful, but they offer adequate control.
Paddles made of polymer are quieter, softer, and more powerful yet less controllable. Dense aluminum paddles provide better control but less power.
Then the face material found on paddles can be constructed from graphite, carbon fiber or fiberglass.
The most powerful and common material is fiberglass. Graphite is tough and allows medium control but little power.
Finally, carbon fiber is strong, long-lasting, and offers remarkable control and power.
The materials that make up your paddle is really important, as this will affect the power, balance and control you have while playing.
Pickleball paddles vary in both circumference and thickness. Thus, the best grip for you depends on the size of your hands.
It will be difficult to control and handle the paddle if the circumference is off. The most precise way to select the proper grip size is based on your height.
Anyone between 5 feet and 2 inches tall, should consider the small grip size, which is 4 inches.
If your height falls between 5 feet 2 inches to 5 feet 8 inches, you should use a medium grip size of 4 1/4 inches.
Finally, if you're over 5 feet 9 inches, select the bigger grip size of 4 1/2 inches.
Alongside choosing the right size, you also want to think about what type of anti-slip features the grip has as well.
This allows you to have better control and more power while playing.
It is down to personal preference if you wish to have an edge guard on your pickleball paddle.
While playing, if you drop your paddle, it will be protected. The biggest drawback is the edge guard takes up space on the surface.
While edgeless paddles use protective tape, an edge guard is more efficient.
We have provided you with a mix of paddles that do and don’t have an edge guard. Since, this feature isn’t for everyone.
Price Is always an important consideration when it comes to buying the right equipment. You should set yourself a budget, but don’t try to get the cheapest paddle possible.
This is because the cheapest paddles won’t provide you with various advantages that will help you improve your game.
Sometimes it is worth investing more into a paddle so that it will last longer.
Yet, also it will offer you more control and power while playing. Cheaper paddles are often made with cheaper materials that aren’t very durable.
While more pricey paddles are made with premium materials that host many benefits.
It is all about finding the right balance between your budget and quality. As we have mentioned, there are hundreds of pickleball paddles out there.
It is down to you, to do your research to find one that fits your needs and in your budget.
Whether you are new to pickleball or have been playing for many years, you will understand the importance of a sweet spot.
When you are a beginner, you should be looking for a pickleball paddle that has quite a large sweet spot.
Not only does this make contact with the ball easier, but it allows you to have more control while hitting the ball.
A smaller sweet spot, makes you restricted and can make precisely hitting the ball a lot more challenging.
As a result, the larger the sweet spot the better when looking for pickleball paddles for beginners.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is The Difference Between Square And Oval Pickleball Paddles?
The square design shifts the sweet spot a little closer to the paddle's tip. While the oval shape helps retain the sweet spot in the center of the paddle.
Thus, an oval paddle is sometimes considered a little easier to use due to the location of the sweet spot.
Does The Weight Of Your Pickleball Paddle Really Matter?
One of the most crucial specifications to take into account when purchasing a pickleball paddle is weight.
The weight of your paddle affects the force with which you can strike the ball.
In addition to the speed at which it travels through the air, your ability to control it and place it, and how easily your shoulder, elbow, and wrist get tired.
This is why heavy paddles aren’t recommended to beginners or anyone suffering from a sports injury.
Is There A Difference Between Cheap And Expensive Pickleball Paddles?
Generally, wooden paddles are the least expensive and graphite paddles are the most expensive.
This has an effect on the performance of your paddle in terms of both effect and experience.
Avoid buying a wooden pickleball paddle if you can, as they are awkward and provide less advantage than the graphite and composite varieties.
How Often Do You Need To Replace Your Pickleball Paddle?
The lifespan of a pickleball paddle is typically 1 to 5 years. Also, it depends on how frequently and aggressively you play.
Players that play for fun will receive the longest use out of their paddle.
While, professional athletes, tournament regulars, and people who frequently “drill” might only get three to six months out of their paddle.