We have all wondered at some point, what paddle tennis racket to buy? Choosing a paddle tennis racket can be difficult. In this complete guide, we work on all the concepts and differences between the different paddle tennis rackets.
Are you thinking of buying a new paddle tennis racket? There is a huge selection of paddle tennis rackets on the market and it can be difficult to know which one to choose. That is why Orven Sport has created this guide to help you make the right decision and decide which paddle tennis racket to buy.
What is a paddle racket?
A paddle tennis racket is the racket used to play paddle tennis or tennis. The racket is unstrung, thicker than tennis and squash, but smaller in size and is usually divided into three different types: round, teardrop, or diamond. It is easier to handle and provides better control than tennis.
Choosing a paddle tennis racket in 5 steps
There is no paddle tennis racket that suits everyone. The choice of racket should be based on your particular factors. Therefore, before you start looking at the different models, you should answer a few basic questions.
How often do you play? Do you play paddle tennis tournaments? For what reasons do you play? For example, if you like to play with friends one day a week, that's a completely different situation than if you play five days a week plus tournaments.
If you play a lot, it may be worth investing in a higher quality, more expensive racket as it will last longer and help you develop faster. However, if you only play occasionally, you won't notice a particularly big difference between a more basic racket and a high-end one.
What level are you playing? Have you just started playing padel or are you an advanced or even professional player?
A common mistake made by beginners is to buy a paddle tennis racket that is too expensive and often difficult to play. You may look great on court, but it won't help you win games.
If you are a beginner in padel, you should go for a padel racket that is easy to play and forgiving, regardless of your budget. Once you have become a more experienced player and have found your specific playing style, you can always change your padel racket.
Budget for the paddle tennis racket
How much money can and do you want to spend on a paddle tennis racket? Of course, with a limited budget, your options are fewer. However, a good paddle tennis racket does not have to be expensive, there are several models that offer great value for money.
We have also published a guide to cheap paddle tennis rackets. Take a look !
which is your playing style? Do you play on the right or on the left? Do you mainly play defense or do you prefer to attack?
One of the most important aspects when choosing a racket is your playing style. If you are a player who prefers control and precision, then obviously you should choose a racket with defensive characteristics. Similarly, you should look for a racket with more power if you play a lot of volleys and shots.
The general idea is that the player on the left side is supposed to be the most attacking and the player on the right side is the most defensive. However, there are many exceptions to this rule, with offensive players on the right and vice versa.
How much do you weigh? You are in good shape? Do you have any previous injury?
You must choose a paddle racket that suits your weight and your physique. Younger players and women tend to play with lighter racquets, while men, especially those with a good physique, often benefit from using a slightly heavier racquet.
If you suffer from injuries such as tennis elbow, choosing the correct paddle tennis racket becomes more important. In that case, you have to try to find a model that does not harm injuries, that has less weight and that absorbs vibrations well.
The shape of the paddle tennis racket
There are mainly three different shapes in a paddle tennis racket: round, diamond and teardrop. Each of them has its characteristics with its advantages and disadvantages.
Round padel rackets are suitable for beginners, as they are usually easy to handle and more forgiving when playing. They are also suitable for more advanced players who are primarily looking for control and precision in their game.
Diamond shaped paddle tennis rackets
Diamond-shaped paddle tennis rackets are suitable for the most aggressive players. They are more difficult to play and do not offer the same control as a round racket. In return, you gain much more power and speed on volleys, layups, and smashes.
Teardrop-shaped paddle tennis rackets
Players looking for a good balance between speed and control should look for a teardrop racket. They tend to be slightly easier to play than diamond-shaped rackets and offer more power than round ones.
The balance of the paddle tennis racket
An important aspect when choosing a paddle tennis racket is balance. It is determined by the distribution of the weight between the lowest and the highest point, more specifically the handle and the head of the racket.
The balance greatly influences the sensations of the racket on the paddle court. Balance can be divided into three main categories: low balance, high balance, and medium balance.
Padel rackets with a low balance are usually quite easy to handle and comfortable to play. They are adapted to players who seek security and maximum control in their shots. They are also softer to play on, which can help prevent injury. The downside of low balance racquets is that they don't generate the same power on offensive shots like volleys and smashes.
High balance paddle tennis rackets offer more speed in attacking play, but at the cost of less control and comfort. They generally require better technique and more experience than low balance rackets. If you are prone to injuries, you should be careful when choosing which high balance paddle tennis rackets to buy .
If you're an all-around player looking for a good balance between speed and control, a medium balance racquet might be a good alternative.
This process is one of the main services offered by Orven Sport. In fact, this was the first service developed by Orven, when it was created 10 years ago.
Hard or soft paddle racket?
The next important aspect to take into account when choosing your new paddle tennis racket is whether it should be hard or soft. They differ a lot in terms of sensations and playability on the paddle court.
Soft paddle rackets
If you are a beginner, a soft paddle racket can be a good choice, as it helps you get more speed. When, for example, you block an opponent's shot at the net or hit a looser shot from the defensive end of the court, the elasticity generates more speed.
Soft padel rackets also absorb vibrations better, which makes them a good alternative for those who want to avoid injuries. All these aspects are important when choosing which paddle tennis rackets to buy.
Hard paddle rackets
Are you a more experienced hard hitting player? Then look at hard paddle tennis rackets, since they generate more power. A good kick with higher exit velocity is the result of the ball not being absorbed by a soft material.
In addition to being more powerful, harder rackets also offer better control for players with good technique.
The best paddle tennis rackets of 2023
There are a large number of paddle tennis rackets on the market and new brands are regularly introduced. At Orven Sport we frequently test new models and post our reviews.
After reading this buyer's guide, we hope you have an idea of the type of racket you're looking for and which padel racket to buy.
What kind of material should I choose?
The choice of material is very important when buying a paddle tennis racket. The racket has a cover that is made of fiber. There are two types of fibers with different characteristics.
Carbon fiber is a very resistant and light material. These features offer superior handling feel and a harder touch on the ball. It is recommended for more experienced players, since it is a less forgiving and harder material. It is more expensive than fiberglass, which is justified by its high-tech components.
Fiberglass is the most used material in the world of paddle tennis and is usually found in basic level rackets. It is heavier than carbon fiber, but softer and more elastic. These features allow you to speed up the ball without adding extra force. The absorption capacity of fiberglass reduces the use of the player's arm and elbow, making it ideal for tendinitis problems.
Maintenance of a racket
Proper care of your racket is essential to avoid frequently having to buy a new one.
To keep your racket lasting and serving you (pun intended), follow these tips:
- Respect the racket and do not throw it carelessly.
- Use a bag and racket protector.
- Protect it from extreme weather conditions and store it well.
- Replace the grip frequently, rather than the entire racket.
- Master the continental grip to ensure flexibility of wrist movements and prevent the development of tennis elbow. Also known as the hammer grip, it's as simple as gripping the racket like a hammer.
As you gain experience, you can try slightly modifying the grip for specific shots, as well as varying the grip size if you find the standard grip uncomfortable.