Best Pickleball Paddle for Beginners: When you start playing pickleball one of the first pieces of gear you will need is a pickleball paddle. But how do you decide which pickleball paddle to choose? That’s why I have put together this Pickleball Paddle Buying Guide to help you choose the right paddle for you.
Finding the best pickleball paddle for you is the most important step in feeling comfortable and confident in playing pickleball. That’s why I have put together this list of the best pickleball paddles and the features you should take into account when looking for a pickleball racquet.
If you are looking for further info on pickleball products you can check out my other buying guides and reviews:
- 13 Best Pickleball Nets
- 10 Best Books for Pickleball
- 10 Best Pickleball Bags
- 10 Best Pickleball Paddles
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COMPARISON CHART: BEST PICKLEBALL PADDLES for Beginners
Compare BEST PICKLEBALL PADDLES FOR BEGINNERS in the following chart.
|Rally Graphite Power 5.0||Graphite||5.0||Check Price|
|Rally Flare Graphite||Graphite||4.75||Check Price|
|Onix Z5 Graphite||Graphite||4.5||Check Price|
|Rally Meister||Graphite||4.5||Check Price|
The Best Pickleball Paddles for Beginners
Rally Graphite Power 5.0
The Graphite Power 5.0 is Rally’s top end performance paddle and it’s even better than the PX Graphite. It has a lot of great qualities that makes it one of the best paddles out there.
In terms of its weight, it’s not Riley’s most lightweight paddle. In fact, it weighs 8.2 ounces and it is the heaviest in Riley’s range. Despite its weight, the paddle is still great and it won’t cause problems when you handle it during the game.
Its core is made of carbon black polymer, thus it’s quite thick and provides a great stiffness. As a result, it improves the overall feel and response of the paddle while eliminating vibration caused by impact.
The handle grip is also pretty impressive. You can choose between the two grip options: standard or thin grip. The standard grip gives you a stitched cushion that drives away sweat while you play and minimizes vibration. Meanwhile, the thin option gives a reduced grip circumference but doesn’t offer minimized vibrations.
Overall, this is one of the best paddles, and it is easy to control, has a large sweet spot, and enough power.
Rally Flare Graphite Pickleball Paddle – Best All Around Beginner Paddle
Weighing at 7.5 ounces, the Rally Flare is a well balanced light-middleweight paddle that is very adaptable and versatile enhanced by its weight and balance. And because it’s a bit thinner and lighter, you can make it quick to the ball for faster reactions and it allows swift strokes, thus putting more power into the ball.
In terms of its frame and construction, it has a universal size cushion comfort grip, smooth flared endcap, slightly elongated handle, and a standard head size. It really puts its attention on comfort and control during play so you can maximize your performance every game.
The paddle is made of high-end polymer honeycomb core and carbon graphite face that packs more punch and can resist wear and dead spots.
Overall, this is a great all around paddle for beginners because it puts emphasis on comfort and control, and it is built for durability and versatility.
Onix Z5 Graphite Pickleball Paddle and Paddle Cover – Best Higher Priced Beginner Pickleball Paddle
The Onix Z5 Graphite Pickleball is one of the most popular pickleball paddles that you can find in the market today. It isn’t just your ordinary paddle, in fact professional players are using this paddle which makes it a legendary paddle.
What makes this paddle even more legendary is its Nomex honeycomb, widebody graphite face which is a very important element for beginners. The broader and taller your paddle is, the more your paddle can have scope for the sweet spot. In other words, when your paddle has a larger sweet spot, the more your paddle will help you execute a shot with the exact center of the sweet spot.
This paddle also goes off with a bang. This means that, when you use it during plays, it does not absorb much of the force but instead it lets the ball spring back right off the face. Thus, every time you hit the ball, it gives you that great power shot right at the sweet spot.
If you are a newbie, this is the right paddle for you. Although it is a bit on the higher priced paddle, it is definitely powerful.
Rally Meister Pickleball Paddle Deluxe Bundle
This 4-pieces bundled paddle will get your whole family started with pickleball. This is one of the most popular paddles for beginners and perfect for new players who want good quality and durable pickleball paddles without hurting their pockets.
These paddles are very lightweight and have a high-end cushion grip which makes them incredibly strong. The grip of the paddle moves moisture away and it is cushioned for comfort even when you get a little bit sweaty during the game.
In terms of construction, these paddles are made of wooden materials. If you wanna get yourself a starter pack paddle to acquaint you with the sport, this one’s for you. You can just toss them and scrape on the ground and this will still give you maximum performance. Kids and teens alike can also use these paddles as they are made for budget and recreational purposes.
Pickleball Paddle Buying Guide: What you need to consider when buying a pickleball paddle as a beginner
- Pickleball Paddle Cost
If you are just getting started with this sport, buying a brand new paddle does not have to cost you an arm and a leg. There are many budget-friendly paddles out there that you can buy, as well as higher-priced paddles.
Usually, a pickleball paddle ranges from $10 to $200. The ones that are priced at $10 are the budget friendly paddles that are used for recreational purposes.
But if you want to go higher than $10, you can go for mid-range paddles that can go as low as $50, and as high as $100.
If you are looking for something cheap, a $30 priced paddle is already good, and anything priced above $120 is already considered expensive.
2. Pickleball Paddle Weight
Not all paddles are created the same and one example of this is the paddle weight. Paddle weight ranges from 6 ounces up to 13 ounces depending on the paddle material. And there is a slightly big difference if you choose between a heavy or lightweight paddle.
Lightweight paddles are ideal for better control and finesse. This also helps you play longer and minimize arm fatigue, especially if you love playing for longer periods of time.
Heavier paddles, on the other hand, are more powerful and can get you behind your shots. However, these paddles are prone to give you injuries especially on the joints or shoulders.
If you are after comfort and control, you should opt for the lightweight paddles, and avoid the heavier paddles. And also, lightweight paddles are highly recommended for beginners since you are still acquainting yourself with the ball and this can also prevent you any injuries. Eventually as you get more great with handling the paddle and ball, you can go for the mid-weight paddles.
3. What are pickleball paddles made of?
As mentioned above, not all paddles are created equally. And another example of this is the composition of the paddle.
Just a background, back in the good old days, paddles were made of heavier plywood. Today, paddle materials can be wood, polymer, Nomex, or aluminum.
The first type of paddle is Polymer Paddles. These paddles are perfect for beginners as these are generally the quietest. You can easily control the paddle and are softer to use.
Aluminum Cores, on the other hand, are stronger and lighter. This is best suited for players who prefer to play with intricacy and control.
Wood paddles are the cheapest paddles that you can find in the market, but at the same time they are also the heaviest. They are also the most traditional paddles and are durable as well. You can just toss and scrape them on the ground and they will still function as a paddle.
Nomex paddle gives you a noisier hit but it is the most powerful and quickest type of cores. It has a hard material and its shape can be likened from a honeycomb.
For paddle face materials, there are three types: carbon fiber, graphite, fiberglass, and composite.
5. Grip Size
If you are still new to this sport, it is understandable that you are still not sure about your grip size. If you are unsure between two sizes, always go for the smaller size.
If you want to be sure, you can measure your grip by holding your dominant hand flat and use a tape measure starting from the middle crease of your palm up to the tip of your finger.
6. Edge Guard
The edge guard basically protects and guards your paddle from incidental bumps during a game. Although this is not really necessary, but they can definitely be a big help especially if you want to protect your paddle and last them for a very long time.