Best Pickleball Paddles for Tennis Players – No ‘Love’ Lost Here!

Are you looking for the best pickleball paddles for tennis players? Now that we’ve hooked you on pickleball let’s dive into why choosing the right paddle is crucial for all you tennis fans looking to dip your toes into other paddle sports. 

Quick Picks - Best Pickleball Paddles for Tennis Players

Selkirk Amped S2

best power pickleball paddle
  • Features an 8-inch wide body,  large sweet spot.
  • Short 4.5-inch handle enhances consistency.
  • Utilizes proprietary X5 core and FiberFlex face for power and control.
  • Designed for advanced players, aiming to elevate game performance.
  • Considered a premium paddle for its price point

Onix Graphite Z5

best power pickleball paddles
  • Lightweight for easy maneuverability (8.2 oz).
  • Wide body shape for a large sweet spot.
  • Nomex honeycomb core and graphite face for power and touch.
  • Cushion comfort grip for improved handling.
  • Suitable for all skill levels, emphasizing control and durability

HEAD Radical Pro

best pickleball paddles for tennis players
  • Heavier design enhances power and block capability.
  • Polymer core and fiberglass surface for improved pop and spin.
  • Dynamic Power Shape for a larger sweet spot.
  • Comfort Grip system for better feel and control.
  • Offers great value for intermediate paddle.

Choosing a Pickleball Paddle as a Tennis Player

Skill Level Adaptation

When transitioning from tennis to pickleball, it’s essential to consider your skill level to find the right paddle. For beginners, it is advisable to choose a paddle with a larger sweet spot and more forgiving playing characteristics to aid in learning the nuances of pickleball.

Intermediate players may benefit from paddles that balance control and power, allowing them to refine their skills further. Advanced players can opt for paddles tailored to their playing style, considering specific weight preferences, grip sizes, and paddle materials that suit their game.

Playing Style Transition

As tennis players venture into pickleball, understanding how their playing style may adapt is crucial in selecting an appropriate paddle. If you prefer baseline play similar to tennis, a paddle with more weight towards the head can provide added power for groundstrokes.

For those who favor dinking and finesse shots at the net, a lighter-weight paddle with excellent touch and maneuverability may be more suitable. It’s important to experiment and adjust your equipment as you develop your unique playing style in pickleball.

Tennis to Pickleball Transition

best pickleball paddles for tennis players
best pickleball paddles for tennis players
best pickleball paddles for tennis players

While the transition from tennis to pickleball may seem seamless at first glance due to some similarities between the two sports (such as hand-eye coordination and court strategy), significant equipment differences must be addressed. It’s similar to going from table tennis to racquet ball.

Finding the best paddle for tennis players will enhance your performance on the pickleball court by giving you better control over your shots while adapting to the unique dynamics of this sport. So remember, folks – don’t underestimate the power of having the perfect paddle companion when venturing into pickleball!

Paddle Specifications

Grip Size: Finding the Perfect Fit for Comfort and Control

Regarding grip size, one size certainly does not fit all. The right grip size ensures comfort and control during your pickleball game, similar to those with a tennis background.

As a tennis player transitioning to pickleball, you may stick with the grip size you’re used to. However, it’s important to note that pickleball paddles typically have smaller grips than tennis racquets.

Similar to other paddle sports, a smaller grip allows for better maneuverability and wrist action. This is essential in executing precise shots on the court. Conversely, a larger grip provides more stability but may limit your ability to generate wrist snaps and finesse.

To determine the correct grip size, try different paddle sizes or measure your hand circumference using a sizing chart provided by paddle manufacturers. Finding the perfect fit will enhance your performance while preventing discomfort during long matches!

Weight Distribution: Unleashing Power and Maneuverability

The pickleball paddle weight distribution significantly impacts both power and maneuverability on the court. Tennis players accustomed to heavier rackets do not perform as well with a heavyweight pickleball paddle. So a light paddle may better suit these players. It important to understand that the ideal pickleball paddle varies from person to person.

Pickleball paddles typically range from 6-14 ounces. A paddle with more weight concentrated towards the head offers increased power for those aggressive shots at the net or when trying to put away a ball during overhead smashes.

On the other hand, paddles with weight distributed evenly throughout provide better maneuverability that can improve agility and quick reaction times. Finding an optimal balance between power and maneuverability is crucial for players adapting from tennis – experiment with different weights until you find one that complements your playing style while feeling comfortable in your hand.

pickleball balls


Paddle Material Options: Graphite, Composite, and Wood

Choosing the right material for your pickleball paddle can greatly influence your overall gameplay experience. There are three primary options: graphite, composite, and wood.

Graphite paddles have gained popularity due to their lightweight nature and excellent control. They offer a great blend of power and touch on the court.

These paddles are ideal for those with a tennis background as they mimic the feel of a tennis racket while enhancing control for precise shots. Composite paddles comprise various materials, typically fiberglass or carbon fiber-reinforced polymers.

These paddles strike a balance between power and control. They provide more forgiveness than graphite paddles and offer increased durability.

Wooden paddles, though less commonly used by professional players (think about a former tennis player using a wood racket), possess a traditional charm that some tennis players find appealing. Due to their natural material composition, wooden paddles offer excellent touch and feel.

They may lack the same power as graphite or composite options but make up for it with finesse. Consider factors such as feel, power requirements, durability expectations, and paddle thickness when selecting the right paddle material that complements your playing style, similar to tennis racquets, venturing into the exciting realm of pickleball!

Paddle Shape

The paddle shape of a pickleball paddle is typically rectangular, with a slightly elongated design compared to traditional table tennis paddles. These elongated paddle designs typically have a longer paddle length, effective for soft game play.

The elongated paddle shape gives players a larger surface area to strike the ball, enhancing their ability to generate power and spin while maintaining accuracy and control over their shots. 

best pickleball paddle for tennis players

Top Pickleball Paddles for Tennis Players

Graphite Paddles

Graphite paddles are often an excellent choice for tennis players transitioning to pickleball. These paddles are renowned for their lightweight nature, allowing players to maintain the agility and quickness they’ve honed on the tennis court. The reduced weight of graphite paddles also helps minimize fatigue during extended pickleball matches.

The Selkirk Amped S2 and the Onix Graphite Z5 are popular options. The Selkirk Amped S2 offers exceptional control and maneuverability, while the Onix Graphite Z5 perfectly balances power and finesse.

The Joola Simone Jardim pickleball paddle is a true game-changer in pickleball equipment. Designed in collaboration with the legendary pickleball pro Simone Jardim herself, it embodies precision and performance. The Joola Simone Jardim Hyperion, an upgraded version of this iconic paddle, takes it to the next level.

Composite Paddles

Composite paddles might be your best bet if you seek one that balances power, control, and durability. These paddles combine materials like fiberglass and polymer to offer impressive performance on the court.

The Engage Encore Pro is a highly recommended composite paddle known for its incredible power output without sacrificing control. Another notable option is the Head Radical Pro, which delivers exceptional ball responsiveness while maintaining durability over prolonged use.

Wood Paddles

Wood paddles provide just that for tennis players who appreciate a traditional feel and touch on their racket in pickleball. Wood paddles offer a unique combination of finesse and reliability that some players find appealing. Noteworthy wood paddle choices include the Pro-Lite Magnum Stealth, known for its solid construction and responsive feel, and the Amazin Aces Classic, which offers excellent control due to its wooden surface.

best pickleball paddle for tennis players

Two Handed Backhand

In pickleball, players use the two-handed backhand technique to effectively return shots hit to their backhand side. While most players choose a one-handed backhand due to the sport’s compact nature, the two-handed backhand, mainly used on tennis rackets, can offer certain advantages, particularly regarding stability and power. 

With this technique, the player grips the paddle with both hands, similar to a tennis racquet, usually with one hand placed near the top of the handle and the other hand slightly below it. This grip provides greater stability and control over the paddle, allowing players to generate more power and spin on their backhand shots.

Additionally, the two handed backhand can offer increased reach and versatility, enabling players to effectively handle balls hit wide to their backhand side or low balls requiring extra stability and strength to return accurately. 

While less common than the one handed backhand in pickleball, the two handed backhand technique can be a valuable asset for players looking to add variety and power to their game.


Choosing the right pickleball paddle as a former tennis player transitioning into this exciting sport is essential for maintaining comfort and maximizing performance on the court. Choosing lightweight graphite, versatile composite, or traditional wood paddles depends on your preferences and desired playing style.

Consider factors such as skill level adaptation and playing style changes when deciding. The wide variety of options ensures you’ll find a perfect match tailored to your needs as you confidently embark on this thrilling new pickleball journey!

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