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05/20/2024

What Pickleball Paddles Are Pros Using?

Professional Pickleball Players and Their Pickleball Paddles

While many consider pickleball to be primarily a recreational activity, there are many who make a great living playing pickleball professionally. In fact, the Professional Pickleball Association (PPA) hosts annual tournaments where the biggest names in the sport dink it out for hefty purses. Not to mention the sponsorship opportunities available. As both amateur and professional pickleball continues to explode in popularity, the best pickleball paddles are also continuing to explode in popularity. 

One of the best things about pickleball and its gear is that professional pickleball players are oftentimes very involved with the development of their own pickleball paddles. Built to their preferred specs, these paddles are designed for optimal spin, power, touch, and feel. And as the sport continues to grow, so will the professionals and the paddles they use. In this article, the Paddle Experts at JustPaddles outline some of the paddles used in the pro ranks today. Let's get started. 

10 Best Pickleball Paddles In 2024

Best Pickleball Paddles

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Let’s be real, there’s no paddle out there that’s going to immediately leapfrog you multiple levels right onto the PPA Tour, or drafted to an MLP team. Although you might not morph into Ben Johns when you pick up his paddle, you might find that it does benefit your game the same it benefits his, or any pro player for that matter. With a slew of new professional players being signed to contracts, having their own signature paddles, and becoming more and more popular, we’ve put a list together of popular players and the paddles they’re using.  

But who are these professional players, and what kind of pickleball paddles are they using? How are they different from pickleball paddles for beginners? Why should you get a top-tier paddle when there are great pickleball paddles under $50? Our Paddle Experts answer all these questions and more. Let’s start with a breakdown of the top pickleball players in the nation and which pickleball paddle brands they use. 

TOP PICKLEBALL PROFESSIONALS & THEIR PADDLES

Ben Johns - JOOLA Perseus 3

First things first, you can’t talk about professional pickleball players without mentioning Ben Johns. He was a young prodigy and currently the most dominant pickleball player in the nation. One of the biggest pickleball stories in 2022 was when Ben Johns signed a contract with a new (to pickleball) brand, JOOLA Pickleball. In April, JOOLA announced the signing of one of the biggest names in the game and released his brand new paddle, the JOOLA Ben Johns Hyperion C2 CFS 16mm Middleweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle. Since then, Ben Johns and JOOLA have launched the latest iteration of the Ben Johns Perseus as a part of the Gen 3 paddle collection. Ben's involvement with the construction of this heavyweight paddle ensures this paddle is built for pickleball from its face to its core. 

 

Watch as Ben tells you why you should swing the JOOLA Perseus Gen 3.

Other notable features on Ben John's signature paddle include:

  • Elongated paddle shape
  • Standard grip thickness of 4 1/4”
  • Paddle length of 16 1/2”
  • A core thickness of 16 mm
  • Paddle width of 7 1/2”

Anna Leigh Waters - Paddletek ALW-C

One of the greatest ever to do it, Anna Leigh is riding strong with Paddletek through the 2024 season. Her signature Paddletek ALW-C is light, fast, powerful, and offers plenty of versatility at the net. Need a paddle to react to those bangers, let Anna’s paddle guide you to victory!

 

Tyson McGuffin - JOOLA Magnus 3

The most electrifying man in sports plays with a pink paddle, and you might want to, too! Tyson’s signature JOOLA Magnus 3 is one of the most powerful paddles ever created. With groundbreaking technologies, this true player’s paddle bangs balls and features stability for McGuffin-like blocks. 

 

Jaume Martinez - Six Zero Black Diamond Power JMV Signature

Yeah, you knew Six Zero was gonna get on the list! Jaume’s signature Black Diamond Power is a ball crusher with wild spin, a soft feel, and a unique purple design. Want the best of all worlds? If yes, then you’re looking at your next paddle.

Lucy Kovalova and Matt Wright

Top pros Lucy Kovalova and Matt Wright don’t only play with the same paddle, they play on the same court with the same paddle! These absolute legends of the mixed pro draw share a lot of gold medals together but also share a love for the Onix Evoke Premier Pro Power. This big hitter features a composite hitting surface, a poly core, and plenty of beef averaging in around 8.4 oz. (Just about half the weight of a gold medal!) 

SHOP Matt and Lucy's Paddle

 

Jessie Irvine

Jessie Irvine

Jessie Irvine battles her way to the podium with the Engage Pursuit Pro MX Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle - one of the most popular paddles of the year that was built by one of the most well-known brands in the game. The MX model features a longer 5 3/4" handle length compared to the 5" handle on the EX model. This model also features the 1/2" thick core and middleweight design, which provides similar control and feel to the 5/8" core, but you get increased power.

SHOP Jessie's Paddle

Catherine Parenteau

A steady top performer you’ll find atop the PPA Tour rankings for the last several years. Her paddle of choice, only one of the most popular paddles in the history of Selkirk! The Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Invikta optimizes from the first generation Project 002 providing additional control from the SuperCore, enhancing control 360 degrees and out-of-this-world aerodynamic and edge durability with Aero-DuraEdge Edgeless technology. A powerful paddle with a surprising amount of touch and a unique design, you’ll find the Vanguard Power Air Invikta in several pro players’ hands this season.

The long-time Selkirk Pro now has her own signature paddle with the Selkirk Catherine Parenteau VANGUARD Power Air Invikta Middleweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle! Packed with power and performance just like her game Catherine Parenteau now has her special edition colorway which makes her paddle stand out from the rest of the players! 

Shop Catherine's Paddle

 

 

Collin Johns - JOOLA Scorpeus 3

Collin Johns, the best doubles partner ever to step on the court so far sits down with our Paddle Expert Ben Croft to talk all things JOOLA Generation 3 Pickleball Paddles! He chats with us and tells us why you should be swinging the most technologically advanced paddle yet - the Scorpeus 3. 

 

 

Chris Haworth - Babolat STRKR+

Babolat’s newest pro pickleball player, Haworth, is swinging the Babolat STRKR+ on tour. Babolat’s best series yet, the STRIKR+ offers a unique shape that offers extended reach, plenty of power, and max grit to control your spin from anywhere on the court. Don’t pass on the STRKR+ this season.
 

Parris Todd - Selkirk SLK Parris Todd Halo Control XL Middleweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle

From tennis prodigy to pickleball pro, Parris Todd has made her way through the ranks as one of the most dominant forces on the pro pickleball circuit. Now featuring her own signature pickleball paddle from Selkirk, the Selkirk SLK Parris Todd Halo Control X! Add Style and performance to your game with Selkirk SLK Parris Todd Halo Control XL! 

SHOP Parris's Paddle

 

Hurricane Tyra Black - PIKKL Hurricane Pro 16mm

The PIKKL Hurricane Pro is a force to be reckoned with! This light-playing, quick to the ball paddle offers plenty of spin, pop, feel, and is available in both a 14mm and 16mm option to maximize power or feel.

Allyce Jones - CRBN 2X 14mm

An electric paddle for an electric player. Allyce Jones has chosen the CRBN 2X 14mm as her paddle of choice to fly around the court this season. Known as one of the most powerful paddles on the market with a soft side but offering a standard shape with a generous sweet spot, this paddle is one of the more popular paddles in the game for a reason!

Alix Truong - Engage Pursuit Pro1

This rising star has her sights set on the #1 ranking, and her Engage pickleball paddle is a great choice to get her there. Alix’s Engage Pursuit Pro1 was designed to overpower, out-spin, and dominate the touch game, giving you the big three characteristics you need to rise above your competition. 

Zane Navratil 

Zane regularly teaches pickleball clinics across the country and is known for a teaching style that is both efficient and methodical, as well as engaging and fun. He has helped thousands of players improve their game through his clinics and private lessons. Zane is a part of the ProXR family and uses his signature ProXR Zane Navratil Middleweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle. An extended handle at 6'' and a superior T700 Raw Carbon Fiber packed with a 14 mm core will have players on their heels the whole match.

SHOP ZANE'S PADDLE

 

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As mentioned earlier, the number of professional pickleball players will continue to increase over the years. And with that, more pro models will be coming out in the near future. Within the next couple of years, we expect to see more and more professional players with their own pickleball paddle and can’t wait to carry them all. If you’re on the hunt for a new paddle and aren't sure where to start, contact our Paddle Experts at any time. They’re available via phone at 866-382-3465, email at experts@justpaddles.com, or live chat. Don’t forget, we’re JustPaddles and we are here for you from Click To Court!

 

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