The Differences Between Pickleball Paddles and Tennis Racquets

The Differences Between Pickleball Paddles and Tennis Racquets 1

The Basics

While pickleball and tennis may share some similarities, such as playing on a court, using a ball, and the objective of hitting the ball over a net, the equipment used in each sport is distinct.

The Differences Between Pickleball Paddles and Tennis Racquets 2

When it comes to pickleball, players use a paddle to hit a wiffle ball across the net. The paddles are typically made of lightweight materials, such as graphite or composite, and are shaped like oversized ping pong paddles, with a handle and a flat surface area.

In contrast, tennis players use a racquet, which is typically made of a combination of materials, such as aluminum, graphite, or titanium, and the frame is strung with synthetic or natural gut strings. The head of a tennis racquet usually has an oval or teardrop shape, and the handle is longer and thicker than that of a pickleball paddle.

The Differences in Size and Weight

A pickleball paddle is smaller and lighter than a tennis racquet. The surface area of a pickleball paddle can range from around 30 to 46 square inches, while a tennis racquet typically has a surface area of approximately 97 to 105 square inches. Additionally, the average weight of a pickleball paddle ranges from 6.5 to 9.5 ounces, while tennis racquets weigh in at an average of 10.7 to 11.4 ounces.

This difference in size and weight can significantly impact the gameplay, as it affects the speed of the ball and the amount of control the player has over the paddle or racquet. The smaller and lighter paddle used in pickleball allows for a faster reaction time, while the larger size and weight of the tennis racquet provides more power to the player’s swings.

The Grip

The grip on a pickleball paddle is typically shorter and thinner than that of a tennis racquet. The handle grip on a pickleball paddle is typically 4 inches or less, while a tennis racquet’s grip can range from 4 to 4 5/8 inches in circumference.

Additionally, the grip on a pickleball paddle is typically more cushioned, with materials such as foam or gel, as the smaller grip size necessitates more comfort for the player’s hand. In contrast, the grip on a tennis racquet is usually made from materials such as leather, which can reduce the chance of the player’s hand slipping while swinging.

The Playing Style

Due to the size and weight difference in the equipment used, the playing style in pickleball and tennis also differs. Since the ball used in pickleball is lighter and the paddle is smaller in size than a tennis racquet, the game typically involves shorter, quicker shots and less swinging motion. In contrast, a tennis game is usually characterized by longer rallies and more powerful swings.

Furthermore, the court size in pickleball is typically smaller than a tennis court, allowing for more close-range play and shots that require less power. While tennis courts are much larger, requiring more running and athleticism from players.

Which One Should You Play?

The choice between playing pickleball or tennis ultimately depends on the player’s preference for the game’s style, court size, and equipment used. While pickleball is typically easier for beginners to pick up due to its smaller court size and lighter ball, tennis is a more well-known sport that can be immersed in a deeper level of gameplay and technicality that takes more practice and skill to attain.

Ultimately, the best way to determine which sport you prefer is to try both out. Many cities have public courts for both games, and joining a local league or finding fellow players to practice and play with can enhance the experience even further.


Pickleball paddles and tennis racquets may share some similarities as sports equipment, but the differences in size, weight, grip, and playing style make each game unique. Both games offer their own set of enjoyable challenges and benefits, and the ultimate choice in which to play depends on personal preference. Give both games a try to discover which one suits your playstyle and taste. Access this recommended external website and discover new details and perspectives on the subject discussed in this article. Our goal is to continuously enhance your educational journey alongside us. Best pickleball paddle for spin!

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