A paddle may be the most important piece of equipment you need when playing pickleball. While pickleball paddles are primarily unisex, there are a couple of features to remember when shopping for a female athlete. At JustPaddles, we don’t differentiate our paddles by gender, but our Paddle Experts get the question, “What’s the best pickleball paddle for a woman?” quite often. So, we put this article together to guide you in the right direction!
First things first, the best pickleball paddle for a woman is the one that will help improve your game the most. Unfortunately, there is no definitive answer or one-size-fits-all guideline. So, where do you start? How do you narrow down the hundreds of paddle options available to you? While we’re writing this for our female readers, these tips apply to anyone with a smaller hand and a strong aversion to heavyweight pickleball paddles or power pickleball paddles.
Top three things to keep an eye out for when shopping for the perfect paddle for women:
1. Grip Thickness
Paddle grips are categorized into “Thin” and “Standard.” A thin grip is best for smaller hands that prefer paddle control and grip comfort. A standard grip offers more comfort for larger hands and may offer increased control for players with more arm strength. While a standard grip tends to be the best fit for most players, a thin grip tends to be the best fit for female players.
2. Paddle Weight
Paddle weights are categorized into lightweight, middleweight, and heavyweight designs. Lightweight paddles are 7.3 ounces or lighter, middleweight paddles are between 7.3 and 8.4 ounces, and heavyweight paddles are 8.5 ounces and heavier. While the most common weight option and best fit for most players will be the middleweight class, lightweight paddles tend to be preferred by most female players.
3. Experience Level
Last but certainly not least is your experience level. At JustPaddles, we have youth, beginner, intermediate, and professional-level paddles. Beginner paddles are best suited for those players that are just getting into the game, and professional designs are considered to be some of the absolute best paddles on the market. For intermediate, those are the best of both worlds, so we tend to recommend intermediate paddles for most players.
3 Best Pickleball Paddles for Women
1. Prince Response Pro Lightweight Composite Pickleball Paddle
This is the signature pickleball paddle of Simone Jardim, a Prince pickleball professional. She used the Response Pro during her historic run at the 2018 US Open, where she won four gold medals and collected the "Triple Crown" by taking the top spot in Open Pro Women's Doubles, Mixed Doubles, and Women's Singles. This paddle provides a lightweight construction with a massive 8 ¼” paddle width which creates a big sweet spot. Other key features include:
- USAPA Approved
- Grip Length: 5.5"
- One-year manufacturer's warranty against dead spots
2. Franklin Christine McGrath Signature Middleweight Composite Pickleball Paddle
A professional paddle used by the one and only Christine McGrath of Franklin. This McGrath model was built specifically with a female athlete in mind and had input from one of the game’s best players. It’s a middleweight model with a standard grip thickness of 4.25 inches. Other key features include:
- USAPA Approved
- Comfort Grip™ Provides Supreme Cushion
- 90-day manufacturer’s warranty against defects
3. Selkirk VANGUARD 2.0 Epic AvaLee Lightweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle
AvaLee is Pickleball's first and only paddle designed exclusively for women, by women. The lightweight design of this model makes it more controllable. And as an all-around paddle with an extended handle, the ability for a two-handed backhand is enhanced (a popular technique among women). Other key features include:
- USAPA Approved
- Made In The USA
- AvaLee Special Colorway: Arizona Sun | Dragonfly Blue | Rose Purple
There you have it. Everything you need to know when looking for the best pickleball paddles for women. However, if you have any additional questions, please contact our Paddle Experts. They’re available via phone at 866-382-3465, email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or live chat on the website!