Pickleball seemed to burst into the scene in 2009, but it proved not to be just a fad. In fact, the sport grew in popularity by almost 40% between 2019 and 2021, and it shows no signs of slowing down!
Pickleball is often described as being a combination of tennis, ping-pong, and badminton, and it has drawn a lot of athletes from those sports, too. Lots of Tennis players, in particular, have found a new home with pickleball for a variety of reasons.
Pickleball is easier on the body and requires much less sprinting than tennis while still offering fast-paced and competitive gameplay – this is a huge draw for many tennis players. Pickleball is also the more popular sport to play with doubles, bringing many tennis players over for that reason.
There are plenty of reasons to make the switch, but whatever your purpose for transitioning from tennis to pickleball, here you are, looking for the best paddle to suit your familiarity with a tennis racket.
Other Helpful Reviews:
Best Pickleball Paddles For Tennis Players – Comparision
|Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Invikta
|Weight Range: 7.7 – 8.1 ozGrip Circumference: 4 1/4″Handle Length: 5 1/4″Paddle Length: 16 1/2″Paddle Width: 7 3/8″Paddle Face: Hybrid Blend of Fiberglass and Carbon FiberCore Material: Polymer Honeycomb
|Pickleball Central ($249.99)
|Best For Power
|Franklin Signature Carbon STK
|Weight Range: 7.6 – 7.9 ozGrip Circumference: 4.25″Handle Length: 5.6″Paddle Length: 16.5″Paddle Width: 7.5″Paddle Face: Nitro Infused Carbon Fiber SurfaceCore Material: Enhanced Polymer Core
|Amazon ($159.99)Pickleball Central ($149.99)
|Engage Poach Infinity LX
|Weight Range: 7.5 – 7.8 ouncesGrip Circumference: 4.25″Handle Length: 5.25″Paddle Length: 17″Paddle Width: 7″Paddle Face: Omni-Directional 6-Layer Vibration-Dampening Textured CompositeCore Material: Proprietary ControlPro ‘Black’ Polymer
|Amazon ($169.99)Pickleball Central ($169.99)
|Best For Spin
|Electrum Model E 13mm
|Weight Range: 7.8 – 8.2 ozGrip Circumference: 4 1/2″Handle Length: 5 1/4″Paddle Length: 16 1/2″Paddle Width: 7 3/8″Paddle Face: Raw Carbon FiberCore Material: Whole Cell Polypropylene Honeycomb
|Amazon ($179.00)Pickleball Central ($179.99)
|Weight Range: 7.4 – 7.8 ozGrip Circumference: 4 1/8″Handle Length: 5 1/4″Paddle Length: 16 3/8″Paddle Width: 7 3/8″Paddle Face: Textured GraphiteCore Material: GAMMA Sensa Polymer Honeycomb
What Tennis Players Should Look For In a Pickleball Paddle
Coming to pickleball from a background in tennis can give you a few key advantages on the court, but these advantages can easily be wiped away if you start with the wrong paddle. You’ll want to pick a pickleball paddle that suits your needs and compliments the strengths you bring from your tennis gameplay.
If you’re a tennis player looking for a pickleball paddle that will suit your needs, here are some things to look for.
Tennis players are taught from early on how to apply spin when striking a ball, so when choosing a pickleball paddle, tennis players will want to land on one that has maximum spin capabilities. A paddle that is designed for increased spin action can be a deadly weapon in the hands of a tennis player.
Most pickleball paddles tend to have shorter handle lengths designed for one-handed swings, but tennis players coming into the sport will want to find a paddle with a longer handle. After all, tennis players transitioning to pickleball will usually implement their two-handed backhand. And why not? You should play a game that focuses on your strengths! A good two-handed backhand can give increased stability and power in pickleball.
A longer handle will often allow for a further reach on the court, too, and will cause the paddle to operate more similarly to a tennis racket.
A pickleball paddle can only be a maximum of 24 inches in total length and width. But the goal for a tennis player is to find a paddle that most closely resembles and tennis racket. This can be achieved by opting for an elongated pickleball paddle. An elongated pickleball paddle is a paddle that is narrower and longer than average. The more slender design gives the paddles a higher sweet spot, more power, and helps them operate more like a tennis racket.
The Top 5 Pickleball Paddles For Tennis Players
Here are some of the best pickleball paddles for tennis player converts.
Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Invikta
Selkirk declared Vanguard Power Air Invikta to be “the ultimate power and spin paddle,” it’s designed for maximum attacking power and movement speed, while still providing excellent touch and feel on control shots.
The face material is a unique blend of carbon fiber and fiberglass, giving it a seemingly perfect balance of pop, feel, and traction. The paddle is slightly elongated and a touch narrower than average, but it has a generous sweet spot and consistent reaction with the ball. The handle is longer than average, just enough to allow for a two-handed swing, but not quite ideal for it.
This paddle is a top-of-the-line, high-quality product that really doesn’t have too many downsides. It provides fantastic spin, power, and control while remaining easily maneuverable and highly durable. And although the handle may be a little shorter than most tennis players would prefer, it will suit their needs in just about every other category!
Fun fact: Tyson Mcguffin, the #2 Men’s Singles player uses this exact pickleball paddle.
For More info Check Out: What Pickleball Paddles do the Pros Use?
- Excellent Power
- Great for spin shots
- High-quality paddle
- Good touch and feel
- Unique face material blend
- Long enough handle for two hands
- Little less than standard sized handle
- White paint can chip easily if you don’t add electrical tape.
Franklin Signature Carbon STK
If you’re looking for a powerful pickleball paddle, your search may end here. This is a great choice for tennis players who are looking for a paddle that is powerful, balanced, and has a good, consistent sweet spot.
The Signature Carbon STK paddle from Franklin Pickleball offers an excellent balance between power and control. Its long 5.6-inch handle makes it ideal for tennis players who want to get both hands involved with their backhand swings, and its elongated design provides a good reach to cover more ground on the court.
The edge guard has been known to have some durability issues, but that’s an easy piece to replace if needed.
The face material on this paddle can produce some spin, but it’s not specifically designed for high-spin shots. It’s a super well-balanced, snappy, and powerful paddle that has a great feel for control shots.
Overall, this is a terrific option for tennis players entering the pickleball world. It’s a versatile paddle that won’t leave you disappointed.
- Good reach
- Great power
- Consistent pop
- Long handle
- Not designed for maximum spin
- Edge guard can have some durability issues
Engage Poach Infinity LX
The Poach Infinity LX is an elongated blade-like paddle that gives players maximum reach on the court. It’s 17 inches long, which is the longest allowable length USA Pickleball permits. The design is perfect for overhead smashes and can help generate a ton of power for a lightweight paddle, giving it a familiar feel for tennis players.
The 5.25-inch handle feels amazing in your hand; the grip has the perfect tackiness, it’s super comfortable, and it wicks sweat away from your hand so the paddle won’t slip around. The feel this paddle provides is ideal for touch shots and control, but it still has a snappy reaction on the ball.
Since it is so long, it does sacrifice some width on the paddle face – it’s only seven inches wide, which is pretty narrow. Because of this, it does have a pretty tight sweet spot, but once you figure it out, it yields a nice, predictable pop.
The Poach Infinity LX is a great pickleball paddle for tennis players. It has a handle that allows room for a solid two-handed grip and gives you maximum reach while not sacrificing touch and spin potential. It’s an amazing choice for anyone looking for a maximum-length pickleball paddle.
- Maximum length/reach
- Comfortable and moisture-wicking grip
- Handle is big enough for two hands
- Good touch and spin
- Very Narrow paddle
- Small sweet spot
Electrum Model E 13mm
The Model E 13mm boasts an elongated design that is ideal for power and gives added reach. The sweet spot is situated high on the paddle’s face, which gives an increased boost of power, especially on overhead swings. This paddle’s textured surface provides fantastic spin traction for all those tricky control shots on the kitchen line.
This Model E 13mm is a great option for tennis players, in part, because of its shock-absorbing properties that eliminate vibrations while still launching the ball at a powerful speed. This gives the paddle a similar feel to a tennis racket when striking the ball.
The handle is relatively long, so there is enough room for two-handed backhands, but it isn’t the longest of handles.
Although this paddle has a quality carbon fiber surface, it has been known to have its surface paint wear out rather quickly – this doesn’t affect its performance, but it can be frustrating because it can make the paddle look old even when it has plenty of life left.
Overall, the Electrum Model E 13mm pickleball paddle is a great paddle that has a similar feel to a tennis racket and offers excellent power, spin, and reach that will help you hit overhead smashes, control shots, and cover more ground.
Check out the full review of the Electrum Model E.
- Great spin
- Good power
- Good reach
- Long enough handle for two hands
- Surface paint is known to wear quickly
- Not the longest handle
The Gamma 405 is a large-faced versatile paddle that performs well all around the court, but it truly shines up at the net. It combines a wonderfully soft touch with a graphite face that gives a precise snap to the ball.
This paddle isn’t specifically designed for maximum power, but given its elongated shape and extended handle length, it does provide a considerable amount of power as well as a consistent whip-action pop.
Two-handed backhands are definitely on the table with this paddle. It’s also a great paddle for overhead smashes, quick resets, and added reach – all things that a former tennis player wants.
The balance on the 405 may feel slightly more foreign to tennis players than the other paddles on this list, but once you become adjusted to the difference, it will be a great tool, especially for those who want a good control paddle with a large face!
The Gamma 405 graphite paddle will help you maintain speed and power no matter where you are on the court. It has a great value and should last you a long time.
- Soft touch
- Large hitting surface
- Precise snap on the ball
- Good for two-handed backhands
- Balance can feel foreign to tennis players
- Not the most powerful paddle
Pickleball and tennis have plenty of similarities, but they are certainly different sports that will require some getting used to when making the transition. Any of the paddles on this list can be a good choice for a tennis player who is starting out in pickleball.
There are plenty of paddles out there that suit different needs and playing styles, but many of them will require you to learn a whole new set of mechanics and swings. The paddles on this list will allow you to build on your already established tennis mechanics and will help you excel early on in your pickleball journey. After all, we’re sure it’ll be a long one; pickleball has a way of hooking you in!