Best Pickleball Paddles In 2023 – Your Ultimate Guide

We bring you everything you need to know about choosing a pickleball paddle and pick out five of the best options around

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Best Pickleball Paddles
(Photo: Adobe Stock)

Whichever way you look at it, pickleball is certainly very popular. Indeed, it was the fastest-growing sporting activity in the US in 2022 and it continues to gain popularity following an uptick during the pandemic.

Considered to be a more accessible and easier-to-pick up racquet sport than tennis, pickleball continues to go from strength to strength. Taking place on a smaller court than tennis, the technique is more focused on hand skill and involves less running than tennis.

You don’t need much to play pickleball – just a court (or some space to set your own up with a net and lines) and some paddles (and some opponents of course) – and that, its proponents claim, is one of the many reasons why it’s become so popular recently.

In this article, we’re going to take a look at they key things you need to know about pickleball and what you’ll need to get started. Most specifically though, we’re going to be focusing on paddles and bring you some of the top ones available on the market at the moment. We’re also going to focus on the things to look for when picking out the best paddle for you.

Pickleball Game

(Photo: Adobe Stock)

So, with the introductions out of the way, let’s begin taking a closer look at pickleball and just why it has soared in popularity in recent years.

What Is Pickleball?

Pickleball was first invented back in 1965 on Bainbridge Island, near Seattle, Washington. Three dads are credited with creating the game for their kids, who had become bored with their usual summertime activities.

Starting out with handmade equipement, the sport evolved rapidly and has become incredibly popular in the US and Canada in recent years.

At the most basic level, pickleball is a relatively new sport that many elements of tennis, badminton and ping-pong. Played with paddles and a plastic ball with holes, games take place on a badminton-sized court with a modified tennis net.

It can be played as both doubles and singles and is considered to be easier to pick up than tennis because the focus is more on hand skills rather than athletic court coverage.

Pickleball Paddle and Ball

(Photo: Adobe Stock)

Although it’s probably most often played on specifically-designed courts, pickleball can really be played wherever you have space to set up a court with a net (courts measure 20×44 feet, the same size as a doubles badminton court and about a third of the size of a tennis court). The net is 36 inches high at the sidelines and 34 inches in the middle.

The ball is made from plastic and has holes in it (the size of the holes vary depending on whether you’re playing indoors or outside) and during a point can only bounce once.

Best Pickleball Paddles 2023 – Our Pick

So, now that we’ve covered some of the basic things to know about pickleball as a sport, it’s time to reveal our pick of the best pickleball paddles around at the moment. We’ve selected a total of five paddles designed for a range of different abilities, so you should be able to find one that suits you.

1) Onix Graphite Z5

Where to buy:

Onix Graphite Z5 Pickleball Paddle


The first paddle on our list is the Onix Graphite Z5 pickleball paddle. Featuring a Nomex Honeycomb Core, this paddle is great for touch and ball control and has a medium weight of 7.5 to 8.2 lbs. The frame is made from Carbon Fiber and the paddle is approved by USAPA, making it suitable for competition play. It comes in a wide range of different colours to suit all tastes and has been reviewed more than 3,000 times on Amazon at the time of writing.

2) Head Radical Elite

Where to buy:

Head Radical Elite Pickleball Paddle


Next up is the Head Radical Elite. The Head brand have a long history in racquet sports and are one of the main manufacturers of professional tennis racquets. This paddle, which has a polypropylene honeycomb core and an ergo grip, uses a dynamic power shape for a larger sweet-spot and features a smooth fibreglass surface. This is a great paddle for beginner or intermediate players looking for an option from a reputable brand.

3) Selkirk Amped Epic

Where to buy:

Selkirk Amped Epic Pickleball Paddle


The next paddle on our list is the Selkirk Amped Epic. Made in the USA, this paddle has an advanced polypropylene honeycomb core optimised for a smooth feel. It has a long handle and a large surface area to provide solid power and control. The paddle uses ‘Amped’ technology to make for a larger sweet-spot. This is another highly-rated paddle which had more than 1,000 ratings on Amazon at the time of writing.

4) JOOLA Ben Johns Hyperion Pro

Where to buy:

Joola Ben Johns Hyperion Pro Pickleball Paddle


Next up is the Joola Ben Johns Hyperion Pro pickleball paddle. This paddle, which is Ben Johns’ signature paddle, has a carbon friction surface designed to help you maximise spin. It has a polypropylene honeycomb core and is an excellent option looking for a more advanced paddle. It’s been rated more than 400 times on Amazon and seems to be well-received by customers.

5) Wilson Echo

Where to buy:

Wilson Echo Pickleball Paddle


The final option on our list is the Wilson Echo pickleball paddle. Wilson have a long track history in tennis and provide racquets for a host of the world’s top players. The Wilson Echo is approved by the USAPA and has a polypropylene honeycomb core that’s designed to dampen vibrations and make for a smooth feel. The paddle surface is made from fiberglass composite and the face has a classic shape.

How We Chose The Best Pickleball Paddles

One thing is for sure, there are lots of options when it comes to pickleball paddles. And the number of paddles on the market continues to increase as the sport continues to grow. Varying in material, weight, grip and colour, finding the right one for you, especially if you’re picking out your first paddle, can be somewhat daunting.

We chose the paddles featured on this page by conducting extensive online research, checking out product pages, and reading lots of verified customer reviews. With that in mind, we very much hope that there will be a paddle to suit you on this page. The page will be kept up to day with the latest products and information regularly. It was first published in February 2023.

Pickleball Courts

(Photo: Adobe Stock)

Choosing A Pickleball Paddle – Things To Consider

There are a few things to be aware of when shopping for a new pickleball paddle, especially if this is going to be your first one. Here are some of the main things to bear in mind.

• Weight and Dimension – Two important factors to think about. Ideally, you’ll want a paddle that’s not too heavy but also not too light as to reduce power. Experts often recommend a paddle weight of around 210 to 235 grams, but it’s definitely worth popping into your local sports store to try holding a few paddles to get a feel for what weight will be best for you. The same goes for the dimension. Beginner players may wish to go for a paddle that fit into the ‘wide body’ category, which is roughly between 20cm wide and 40cm long. More experienced players may opt for a slightly longer paddle, but this will come down to personal preference.

Pickleball equipment

(Photo: Adobe Stock)

• Material – It’s also worth spending some time considering what material your paddle will be made from. Many of the top pickleball paddles feature polymer honeycomb cores for stability and have textured finished on the face to allow players to add spin to the ball. It’s worth reading up on the details regarding the material and checking the construction when shopping around for a paddle.

• Grip Size – Grip size (circumference) is also an important factor to consider, as the right size will vary depending on the size of your hands and personal preference. Generally speaking, there’s less choice when it comes to grip size for pickleball paddles than tennis racquets. Most pickleball paddles will come with a standard 4.25 inch (10.8 cm) grip size. If this is too small, players can then use overgrips to increase the thickness of the handle.

• Price – The price is always an important factor to consider. Generally speaking, as is the case with most sports equipment, the more you’re willing the pay, the higher the quality of the product. That said, if you’re just starting out playing pickleball, there’s no harm going for a slightly cheaper option that can then be upgraded further down the line.

• Style and Colour – Lastly, it’s worth thinking about the style and colour of paddle you’re looking for. Are you after something a bit flashy or a paddle that’s a bit more low-key? The look of the paddle you go for will really come down to personal preference, and most of the top pickleball paddle models come in a wide range of different styles and options.


(Photo: Adobe Stock)

Anything Else To Consider?

Especially if you’re shopping for your first pickleball paddle, it may be worth your time to pop into your local sports store and try out a few options for yourself to get a feel of a few different paddles and narrow down your selection.

Visiting your local sports store will also allow you to get some tailored advice from an expert to help you make your choice.

If it’s tricky for you to visit a physical sports store, then be sure to check the returns, refunds and exchanges policy of the website you’re shopping on so you’ll know exactly where you stand if you need to return your paddle for whatever reason.

Pickleball Shot

(Photo: Adobe Stock)

Wrapping Things Up – Our Final Thoughts

So, that brings us to the end of our detailed look at some of the best pickleball paddles around at the moment.

We’ve walked you through the key things to bear in mind when shopping for a pickleball paddle, including specifics such as the material, weight and dimension. We’ve also covered the basic things to know about the sport, as it continues to gain popularity.

We’ve also brought you our pick of five of the best pickleball paddles for all types of players on the market at the moment. We currently rate the Onix Graphite Z5 as the top all-round option, but all of the paddles featured on this page are excellent choices to help you step your game up.

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