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Pickleball Widebody Paddles vs. Standard Paddles: A Comprehensive Comparison


As the popularity of pickleball continues to soar, the variety of paddles available in the market also expands. Among these, two types of paddle shapes have become increasingly prominent: widebody paddles and standard paddles. These two paddle shapes cater to different playing styles, and understanding their differences can help you make an informed decision about which is the best fit for your game.

Understanding the Widebody Paddle

Widebody paddles, as the name suggests, are wider than standard paddles. They typically measure around 8 inches in width. Their defining characteristic is the larger hitting surface or ‘sweet spot,’ which is advantageous for beginners or players who require a more forgiving paddle.

The extra width allows for more defensive play, as the increased surface area can more easily block shots. It can also be beneficial for shots close to the net, giving players a greater margin of error.

However, the downside of widebody paddles is they often lack the same level of control as their standard counterparts, particularly for precision shots. Additionally, they can be slightly heavier, which may impact swing speed and overall maneuverability.

Exploring the Standard Paddle

Standard paddles, often also referred to as ‘traditional’ or ‘normal’ paddles, usually measure approximately 7 to 7.5 inches in width. These paddles provide a more balanced profile in terms of power and control.

With a slightly smaller surface area, standard paddles allow for greater precision and can often facilitate more spin on the ball. These characteristics make them popular among intermediate and advanced players, who value control and accuracy.

On the flip side, standard paddles have a smaller sweet spot, which may be challenging for beginners or those with less consistent hitting accuracy.

Conclusion: Making the Right Choice

So, which is better: widebody or standard pickleball paddle? The answer largely depends on your style of play, skill level, and personal preference.

If you’re a beginner or if you prioritize a large hitting area for more defensive play, a widebody paddle might be your best bet. If you’re an experienced player who values precision and control, or if you’re looking to develop your skills and refine your shot accuracy, a standard paddle could be the way to go.

In any case, the most important thing is to find a paddle that feels comfortable in your hand and suits your style of play. Try out different types, shapes, and brands, and remember: the best paddle for you is the one that helps you enjoy the game to the fullest!

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