While they might all look the same, minor variations in shape, size and weight can dramatically impact the way a pickleball paddle performs. Some are built for power; some for spin. But the best pickleball paddles for beginners are more balanced. Since you don't know your preferred playing style yet and you may not even have a solid grasp of form and technique, you want a paddle that's a jack of all trades but a master of none.

With that said, recommend opting for a relatively lightweight paddle that's on the wider end of the spectrum. These tend to be easier to control and a little more forgiving of mishits -- which you'll have a lot of as a beginner.

If all of that sounded like jibberish to you, don't worry: We've rounded up our five favorite pickleball paddles for beginners to help you find the best fit for you.

Best pickleball paddle for beginners overall: Vatic Pro Prism Flash


The Vatic Pro Prism Flash is an investment, but it's worth it. Weighing in at 8 ounces, it's a midweight paddle that offers a good balance of power and control. Adding to that power and control is the carbon fiber face and standard 7.7-inch width.

All of this makes the premium paddle one of the best picks to help you feel confident in your swing from day one. With the balance of power and spin, you can use this paddle to start honing your technique by practicing hard drives and lobs, as well as dinks and spins.

If your end goal is to play pickleball casually with friends, the performance of this paddle will serve you well for years. By the time you do finally need to upgrade, you'll know exactly whether you're more of a power player or spin doctor.

Top features of the Vatic Pro Prism Flash:

  • The lightweight yet thick (16 mm) paddle is easy to control for beginners.
  • The wider carbon fiber face offers enough control and power to practice a wide range of playing styles.
  • The balanced design and premium construction will be just as enjoyable to play with as your skill develops, so you can use the same paddle for years. 
$100 at Amazon

Easiest pickleball paddle to control: Wilson Echo Energy     


Wilson's Echo Energy paddle boasts a wide paddle face (8 inches) to maximize control and create a larger sweet spot. That wide sweet spot is great for beginners as it means you have a better chance of landing the perfect hit for an accurate, powerful shot.

At 7.7 ounces, it's a lightweight paddle that's easier to control than bigger pickleball paddles. Add the softer fiberglass composite face that helps you add spin or accurately hit the ball from awkward angles, and this paddle becomes one of the best picks for beginners who want to practice spins and other tricky shots that throw off your opponent.

With that said, it's not as powerful as some of the other paddles on this list. But that can be a good thing for beginners who can get overwhelmed with a paddle that launches the ball at the slightest tap. While you're still learning the proper form and technique, a less powerful paddle can be easier to use for practicing both hard and soft shots.

Get it while it's on sale at Amazon for $70 (reduced from $120). If you miss the sale, you can also get it directly from Wilson for $120.

Top features of the Wilson Echo Energy:

  • The 8-inch wide paddle offers a similarly wide sweet spot so you can still pull off accurate shots even at bad angles.
  • The fiberglass face dampens the power but makes this paddle easier to control.
  • Short and lightweight, the Wilson pickleball paddle is easy to wield even if you've never played before.
$70 at Amazon $120 at Wilson

Best pickleball paddle for beginners with big hands: Rokne Curve Classic


With a 5.5-inch long handle that's 4.25 inches thick, this pickleball paddle is the perfect size for someone with larger hands or who prefers to do double-handed swings. It's also a good option for tennis players who are coming to pickleball as the longer, wider handle will feel more familiar.

Aside from the larger handle, the Rokne Curve Classic pickleball paddle offers a textured fiberglass face for better control and more spin opportunities. That's balanced out by a mid-range width of 7.5 inches and weight of 8 ounces -- both of which add some power to each hit. That makes it a balanced paddle suitable for beginners who want to practice different playing styles.

Get the versatile pickleball paddle on Amazon for $90. It's available in a wide range of colorways.

Top features of the Rokne Curve Classic:

  • The long and wide handle offers a comfortable grip for large hands or double-handed playing styles.
  • The textured fiberglass face makes it easier to control your shots and add spin when you want.
  • The standard width and midweight design help deliver extra oomph to each shot to make hard drives and lobs easier.
$90 at Amazon

Best pickleball paddle for beginners on a budget: Joola Essentials


Regularly priced at $60, the Joola Essentials is one of the best pickleball paddles you can find at this price point. The premium design includes a 7.9-inch wide paddle with a reinforced fiberglass face that's more powerful than a standard fiberglass paddle.

Other beginner-friendly features include the shorter 4.75-inch handle, mid-range 4-inch grip circumference and textured handle for a comfortable, confident grip on your paddle. It's an all-around well-balanced design that will let you get a feel for the game and different playing styles without feeling overwhelmed by explosive power or out-of-control spin.

Plus, you can get it right now for an even more beginner-friendly price of $38 while it's on sale at Amazon.

Top features of the Joola Essentials:

  • The handle is 4.75 inches long and 4 inches thick, making it easy to control and comfortable to hold for most players.
  • The 7.9-inch paddle width adds even more control to help beginners feel confident from day one.
  • At 8.2 ounces, this paddle is a good balance of controllable weight with just enough heft to add some power behind your serves.
$38 at Amazon

Best pickleball paddle set for beginners: YC Dgycasi


This pickleball set comes with two honeycomb polymer core paddles, which are lightweight and durable, four balls (two for outdoor use and two for indoor use) and a carrying case. These soft paddles offer a comfortable grip with a carbon fiber-based composite surface that reduces ball deflection and improves gameplay.

For beginners, we also love the shorter handle (4.9 inches long) and wider paddle (7.8 inches). Together, this shape and size are easier to control than longer paddles.

Even more beginner-friendly is the price. The budget set includes two paddles, four balls and a carrying case so you and a friend can get everything you need to start practicing for under $50, all in.

Regularly priced at $40 for the set, you can get it for just $32 after coupon at Amazon.

Top features of the YC Dgycasi pickleball set:

  • Weighing just 7.5 ounces per paddle, these are lightweight beginner-friendly paddles.
  • This is one of the best prices you'll find for carbon fiber pickleball paddles.
  • The wider 7.8-inch paddle and shorter (4.9-inch) handle give beginners better control of their swing.
  • Since everything you need is included, this set is a convenient, inexpensive way to get started with the game.
$32 at Amazon

Shop more top-rated pickleball paddles for beginners:

How do you pick a pickleball paddle for beginners?

The best pickleball paddle for beginners is one that's relatively easy to control and more forgiving when you hit at a bad angle. In practical terms, that usually means lightweight (nothing over 8.2 ounces), a thicker core (typically 13 mm or higher), and the shortest handle you can comfortably hold given your hand size.

If you're willing to spend more, opt for a carbon fiber or graphite face because these materials tend to offer more control and a wider sweet spot -- the area on the paddle face where you'll get the most power and accuracy in your shot.

If you'd prefer a more budget-friendly option, opt for fiberglass. It's not as stiff as carbon fiber or graphite so you won't get as much power and control, but it's still a reliable, beginner-friendly material. It usually comes at a fraction of the price of a carbon fiber or graphite paddle.

How do I know what size pickleball paddle I need?

Choosing a pickleball paddle size can be tricky, but in general, longer paddles will have more power while wider options have a larger sweet spot that makes it easier to get a good hit. If you're a beginner or just want a more forgiving paddle for casual playing, opt for a wider (closer to 8 inches) paddle.

The handle, which typically ranges from 4.5 inches to 5.5 inches long, should be as short as possible so your grip is closer to the paddle itself for better control of your swing. With that said, you also have to consider your hand size. For larger hands, a handle that's too short can make it hard to get a good grip.

Another exception to the short-handle rule is anyone who's coming to pickleball from tennis. You might feel more comfortable and more in control of your swing with a longer handle since you're used to handling a larger, longer tennis racket.