Top Pickleball Paddles For Spin Reviewed

Best Pickleball Paddles for Spin Reviewed 2019-08-12T06:38:16+00:00

paddle for spinning in pickleballPickleball is a fun, fast-paced game that is said to be the fastest growing sport in the world today. Pickleball is easy to learn and can be played by all ages. Played with a hard pickleball paddle and a whiffle ball on a badminton-sized court over a tennis-type net, pickleball is a favorite among young and old alike. It is now a hotly contested sport in many of the U.S. Senior Olympic games and is taught in schools from elementary age to colleges all over the nation.

Pickleball is easy on the joints and great for family play. It is an easy to learn, fun sport for all ages, but like any sport, learning specific techniques takes a little effort and practice.  One of these techniques or skills is Ball Spin. If you want to increase your chances of winning games, you will want to learn how to spin the ball to make it harder for your opponent to anticipate your shots.

When a pickleball player masters this technique, they are able to participate in much faster games, against more experienced players as they have an advantage over other players.  However, having the right pickleball racket is crucial to easily creating spin.

But which pickleball paddle is right for you? And which will help you get the most spin?  With hundreds of pickle ball rackets available from different manufacturers all offering something unique to the player, how do you choose the right one?

Best Pickleball Paddles for Spin

To help make life a little easier, I have reviewed the top pickleball paddles which are designed for spin, with pros and cons of each.  I hope this helps you find the right paddle quickly and improves your spin game.

amazon 45 star1. Engage Encore Pro

Engage Encore Pro Review

The Engage Encore Pro Paddle

Encore are a leading USA based brand who design paddles for both beginners and professional players, as such, they have created some excellent paddles, the Encore Pro being the best choice when it comes to maximising spin.

With its specialized fibreglass skin, which is designed to keep the ball on the face of the paddle for longer, you can transfer more effect, or spin on the ball.  The Encore Pro has the biggest ‘sweet spot’ of the entire Encore line and is specifically designed for spinners of the ball, to maximize their skills.

Under the fibreglass face of this paddle, The Encore Pro has a honeycomb poly core which uses Engage’s ControlPro™ technology to help control players boost the spin they can create on the ball.

More Details
The Engage Encore Pro is classed as a mid-weight paddle weighing around 8 ounces, and has a medium sized grip of 4 ¼ inches.  With four colour choices, available in, red, green, purple and black to choose from, this paddle is both approved by the USPA for use in official tournaments and used by several national champions, including Phil Bagley and Brian Staub.  So, if it is good enough for them, it will probably do for you 🙂

Engage Encore Pro Features

  • Paddle Style – Medium
  • Paddle Dimension – 15.5 L X 8.125 W
  • Paddle Weight – Around 8 ounces
  • Grip Size – Medium, 4.25 inches
  • Handle length – 4.75 inches
  • Grip Style – Gamma cushion contour. This grip has small holes which help absorb sweat.

Engage Encore Pro Advantages

  • Comfortable for extended play sessions
  • Excellent balance
  • Big sweet spot to maximize control and spin
  • Perfect for beginners and pros

Overall, this is a great choice for spin and the price is about right/the same as other choices.  The only thing to consider is the weight, as at around 8 Oz it might be a little too heavy for some.

2. Onix Composite Z5 – Wide Bodyamazon 4 star

Onix Composite Z5 review

The Onix Composite Z5 Paddle

The Onix Composite Z5 is a great paddle if you want to get a lot of power from baseline returns and as such is one of the best selling pickleball paddles available.

With a body width of 8.125 inches, it is ideal for both beginners and pros alike, helping you to get to balls at tight angles, that might ping off the frame of smaller paddles.  Much loved by professional players because of its lightweight large face and large sweet spot, which gives you powerful hits and perfect spin, the Z5 is the best selling paddle made by Onix to date, and you can see why!

The Onix Composite Z5 is classed as a heavy-weight paddle weighing in at around 8.4 t0 9.2 ounces, which also actually makes it the heaviest paddle in our list. With a Nomex, paper honeycomb core and a fibreglass face, this paddle does create a lot of ‘bite’ on the ball which is great for control and spin players who want a bit of extra baseline pop.

More Details
The grip is also on the thicker side, more akin to a tennis racket than a more conventional pickleball paddle, so switching to a backhand quickly can be a little more challenging but not something you can’t get used to.

Onix Composite Z5 Features

  • Paddle Style – Heavy
  • Paddle Dimension – 15.5 L X 8.3 W
  • Paddle Weight – Around 8.4-9.2 ounces
  • Noise – 90 dB
  • Grip Size – Medium, 4.25 inches
  • Handle length – 5 inches
  • Grip Style – Perforated cushion contour. This grip has small holes which help absorb sweat.

Onix Composite Z5 Advantages

  • Huge power and pop available for baseline hits
  • Big sweet spot to maximize control and spin
  • Perfect for beginners and pros

Overall, with the heavier weight and thicker grip in mind, this paddle might not be suited to everyone, but if you are happy with your arm and wrist strength, the Z5 can really power a ball, with the extra weight behind it.

The Z5 remains one of the most popular paddles used on the courts and is used by pro players like Tyler Loong, who really are able to put it to good use.  Are you the next Tyler Loong?

International pickleball champion, Steve Wong, introduces the Z5 and takes us through the features.

3. ProLite Crush PowerSpinamazon 45 star

ProLite CRUSH Power Spin review

The ProLite CRUSH Power Spin Paddle

The ProLite Crush PowerSpin is named after its textured PowerSpin™ paddle surface, which provides this paddle with the ability to grip the pickleball, helping you control your shots better and add spin to your hits.

Built to the shape of ProLite’s popular Magnum range of paddles, the Crush makes good use of the SPINtac™ fiberglass skin and QuadCore polymer honeycomb core to deliver and even, responsive surface which is perfect for control and ball spin shots.

ProLite are so confident in their product that the Crush PowerSpin comes with a 5 year no dead spot warranty to give you peace of mind that you are buying a quality paddle.

A powerful racket for both advanced and beginner players alike, the Crush weighs in at around 7.4 t0 7.8 ounces, has a body width of 7.875 inches and a medium sized grip width of 4.25 inches.

More Details
Approved for both USAPA official tournament play and noise restricted communities, the Crush is made in the USA and aesthetically looks great with its splashes of colour.

ProLite Crush PowerSpin Features

  • Paddle Style – Light/Medium
  • Paddle Dimension – 15.5 L X 7.875 W
  • Paddle Weight – Around 7.4-7.8 ounces
  • Grip Size – Small, 4.125 inches
  • Handle length – 5.5 inches
  • Grip Style – Non slip thin grip.

ProLite Crush PowerSpin Advantages

  • 5 year no dead spot warranty
  • Approved for USAPA competition and noise restricted communities with quiet zones
  • Big sweet spot to maximize control and spin
  • Light weight, perfect for beginners and fast players

Overall, if you are looking for a light to mid weight paddle that will enable you to play some wicked spin, the ProLite PowerSpin Crush is definitely worth a look.

4. Pro-Lite Rebel PowerSpin Compositeamazon 4 star

ProLite Rebel Power Spin Composite review

The ProLite Rebel Power Spin Composite Paddle

The second of the Pro-Lite PowerSpin paddles in our list is the Rebel PowerSpin Composite pickleball paddle.  Like the Crush, the Rebel also has the textured PowerSpin™ paddle surface which provides great grip for spin and control shots and is a solid choice for both beginner and advanced competition players.

But it is not all about finesse with the Rebel, as the name suggests, this paddle has attitude and with a paddle face measuring 16 inches, you have a bit of extra reach to really make the ball pop.

The Pro-Lite Rebel PowerSpin Composite is a little heavier than the Crush, weighing in at between 7.7-8.1 ounces, and has a grip of 4 ¼ inches, which is on the smaller size.  With a 5 inch handle, it is perfect for larger hands and allows for a bit of extra swing and power in your shots.

Aesthetics are pleasing, with four colour choices available in, red, green, purple and black to choose from, so something for everyone.

More Details
Approved for both USAPA official tournament play and noise restricted communities, the Rebel is made in the USA and aesthetically looks great with its splashes of colour.

Pro-Lite Rebel PowerSpin Composite Features

  • Paddle Style – Light/Medium
  • Paddle Dimension – 15.5 L X 7.81 W
  • Paddle Weight – Around 7.7-8.1 ounces
  • Grip Size – Small, 4.25 inches
  • Handle length – 5 inches
  • Grip Style – Non slip thin grip.

Pro-Lite Rebel PowerSpin Composite Advantages

  • 5 year no dead spot warranty
  • Approved for USAPA competition and noise restricted communities with quiet zones
  • Big sweet spot to maximize control and spin
  • Comfortable grip for extended play

Overall, another excellent pickleball paddle which makes the most of your spin an control skills but also gives you a bit of extra pop in your shots with its longer handle.  Comfortable to play with and great for beginners and pros, this is a solid choice for your next pickleball racket.

If you ever need to replace your grip, Neil Friedenberg from Pro Lite sports shows us how to do it.

5. Onix Graphite Z5 – Best if you have an Injury or Joint Painamazon 45 star

Onix Graphite Z5 review

The Onix Graphite Z5 Paddle

The Z5 Widebody pickleball paddle is one of the most popular paddles in the game of pickleball.

The Z5 paddle is very popular because the over size design ( 8.125 inches vs 7.75 inches ) which makes it closer to a tennis feel.

The Z5 widebody pickleball paddle is great for indoor and outdoor play.  This paddle is made of state of the art graphite material which allows it to be light weight, powerful, and easy to control.

Like its brother the Composite Z5 has a Nomex, honeycomb core, which is essentially paper dipped in resin, but unlike its sibling it has a lighter Graphite face, which is much better for those looking for a light weight pickleball paddle.

More Details
The Graphite Z5’s wide 8.125 inch body creates a huge playing surface and sweet spot, so you get less pings off the frame for tight or reflex shots.

Z5 Graphite Features

  • Paddle Style – Large
  • Paddle Dimension – 15.5 L X 8.125 W
  • Paddle Weight – 7.7 ounces
  • Noise – 85 dB
  • Grip Size – 4.25 inches
  • Handle length – 4.75 inches
  • Grip Style – Gamma cushion contour. This grip has small holes which help absorb sweat.

Z5 Graphite Advantages

  • Made from graphite waffle honeycomb material
  • Grip – gama cushion contour
  • Larger hitting area than the average paddle
  • Recommended by Steve Wong one of the top players in the sport
  • Cool Z5 logo graphic
  • Made in the USA
  • Top two most popular paddle across the USA

Overall, this is another great option for any player, regardless of if they are a beginner or advanced and is perfect for anyone who might be suffering from joint pain or have an elbow injury.  Personally, I have a Z5 graphite for when my elbow is playing up as it means I can still play and enjoy myself.

Pickleball Paddle Noise

For those of us playing pickleball, we love the sound of the “pop, pop, pop”, but for our neighbors, they are not so keen, which leads to complaints and problems for everyone. But all is not lost as there are several things that can be done to quieten things down a little and accommodate both us, the pickleball player and our wonderful neighbors.

One of the most effective solutions is to use a soundproofing material, like Acoustifence, which is placed all around the pickleball court and is proven to reduce noise by up to 50%.  This a great solution for new courts but what about those that we already playing on, perhaps where local cities or communities do not have the budget or funding to upgrade them?

Quiet Pickleball Paddles

As we said before, not all pickle ball paddles are made equal, and many are designed to actually be quieter compared to others, which keeps the noise levels low and makes everyone happy.  However, from my experience, the decibel rating of paddles is not hugely obvious, so with that in mind, take a look at the table below before choosing your next paddle.

 ModelCoreFaceWidthLengthWeightGrip (L)Grip (C)DF (6.6)DF (11.0)dB
Manufacturer: Onix Sports
SlammerCompositeGraphite7.7515.256.75Thin1388
Storm (comp.)CompositeComposite7.7515.57.64.5Med1390
Signature (comp.)PolymerComposite7.7515.57.94.5Med4.5887
StormCompositeGraphite7.7515.57.64.5Thick1289
Stryker (comp.)CompositeComposite7.7515.57.64.25Thin1392
Phantom Widebody (comp.)AluminumComposite8.1315.594.5Med1.5285
Z5 Widebody (comp.)CompositeComposite8.1315.58.94.5Med1290
ExtremeCompositeGraphite7.7515.57.94.5Thin1285
Slammer (comp.)CompositeComposite7.7515.256.55Thin3490
CORE-2 (comp.)CompositeComposite7.7515.584.5Med23.593
StrykerCompositeGraphite7.7515.57.44.5Med1287
Phantom WidebodyAluminumGraphite8.1315.584.5Med22.586
Z5 WidebodyCompositeGraphite8.1315.584.5Med11.585
Manufacturer: PAC Paddles
XP-100HFCompositeComposite7.75168.45.5Thin1282
XP-300HAAluminumComposite7.91695Med1185
XP-400HFCompositeComposite7.9168.35.5Thin1282
XP-100HAAluminumComposite7.75168.85.5Med1182
XP-200HFCompositeComposite7.9168.45.5Thin1284
XP-400HAAluminumComposite7.9168.45.5Med1183
XP-200HAAluminumComposite7.9168.755.5Med1184
XP-300HFCompositeComposite7.9168.55Thin1283
Manufacturer: Paddletek
Ultra Power PlayPolymerLaminate7.915.759.54.5Med82
Pro Sweet SpotPolymerOutdoor Vinyl7.915.757.44.75Med48.584
Ultra PhoenixPolymerLaminate7.915.7510.54.5Med2.5482
Pro Power PlayPolymerOutdoor Vinyl7.915.758.24.5Med85
Pro PhoenixPolymerOutdoor Vinyl7.915.758.64.5Med34.585
Ultra Sweet SpotPolymerLaminate7.915.7594.75Med3579
Manufacturer: Pickle-Ball Inc
LegacyCompositeComposite8.2515.7584.5Med1.52.588
EliteAluminumGraphite8.2515.56.55Thin11.588
Attack 2.0AluminumGraphite8.2515.757.94.5Thick86
VortexCompositeGraphite8.2515.758.54.5Med93
Champion (comp.)CompositeGraphite8.1315.757.34.5Med1.5292
AttackAluminumGraphite8.1315.756.74.5Med1.5286
VenomPFG2Composite8.1315.868.25Med86
ChampionAluminumComposite8.1315.757.94.5Med1.52.586
RevolutionCompositeGraphite8.2515.757.54.5Med1.5388
Elite (comp.)CompositeGraphite8.2515.57.55Thin1289
Vortex 2.0PFG2Composite8.2515.7594.5Thick87
Manufacturer: Pickleball Now
CompetitionAluminumComposite8.2515.758.54Thin85
Metalite ClassicAluminumAluminum81610.54.5Thin1.5287
Force LiteAluminumComposite7.751684.5Thin1.53.587
WhomperAluminumComposite8.88158.94Thin2291
Club Paddle (wood)7-Ply WoodWood7.515.5115Thin83
Galaxy Paddle (wood)7-Ply WoodWood7.515.510.754.5Thin83
Classic LiteAluminumComposite7.881685Thin3.55.591
XL LiteAluminumComposite8.88158.754Thin1.53.590
The EdgeAluminumCarbon Fiber8.1315.757.54.5Thin11.585
Manufacturer: PicklePaddle
T200PolymerAluminum8.2515.7584.5Med4.5784
W400PolymerAluminum8.2515.7584.5Med4.57.588
R1PolymerAluminum7.51685.5Med3.55.582
Manufacturer: POP – Brian Jensen
Graphite TriggerCompositeGraphite6.751784Thick1.5385
5.0 Dual Core TouchCompositeComposite7.7515.595Med23.585
Aluminum MagnumCompositeAluminum7.7515.58.55Thick23.587
Graphite MagnumCompositeGraphite815.575Med3490
E-GlassCompositeComposite815.585Med24.587
Graphite XLCompositeGraphite6.6417.2585Med1.5384
7.5 Dual Core TouchCompositeComposite7.7515.5105Thick1282
Aluminum XLCompositeAluminum6.6417.259.255Med1283
Manufacturer: Pro-Lite Sports
ClassicCompositeComposite815.585.75Thin1289
PowerCompositeComposite7.915.595.5Thin1287
ImpactCompositeGraphite8167.25Thin0.5192
Aero-DCompositeGraphite7.8815.757.25Thin1385
Magnum StealthCompositeGraphite7.7515.57.74.5Thin1285
EnforcerCompositeGraphite815.57.85Thin1284
Blaster 2 AlloyCompositeGraphite815.7584.5Thin2391
MagnumCompositeComposite7.915.57.85Thin1490
BlasterCompositeGraphite815.757.84.5Thin2387
Manufacturer: Wilson Sports
XCEL72495
BLXGraphite6.72496
ChampGraphite6.42.53.596
Manufacturer: ZZT Sports
EVO I (Classic)AluminumComposite7.8815.258.64.5Med1284
EVO IIAluminumComposite815.258.25Thick1283

How Does Having the Right Paddle For Spin Make a Difference

How do you put spin on a pickleball shot?

Putting spin on a ball is not as hard as many people think and having a pickleball paddle designed specifically to help you control that spin makes it even easier.

There are two simple methods to spin the ball.

  1. The first is topspin – You create topspin when you ‘roll the ball’ or move your racket from below the ball and whip it over the top of the ball using your elbow and wrist to ‘roll’ it.  This is a great technique to use on your serve, making the ball spin faster towards your opponent when it bounces, or even if you attempt a lob, making the ball run away from your opponent, so they can not reach it.
  2. The second is backspin or slice – This is the opposite of the topspin method, in that you move your paddle from the top of the ball to the bottom, hence slice or cutting the ball.  The beauty of this spin technique is that you can move the ball not only backwards but to either side or even make it stop where it bounces.

If you are still not sure, take a look at this great video which shows you exactly how to do this.

 

Both of these spins are great for giving you an advantage over your opponent as it makes it harder for them to anticipate your shots and having he right paddle can help you further in giving you an easier way to add spin to your shots.

Do I Need a New Paddle?

Playing with an old worn out paddle will affect your game. Your paddle has a distinctive sound. Do you hear new sound coming from your paddle? Is your paddle soft around the middle or the top edges? Here is how to check your paddle …

  • Place your hands on the sides of the paddle with your thumbs on the face of the paddle.
  • Press down hard with both thumbs around the paddle’s sweet spot and around the top edges.
  • If you detect soft spots it’s time to buy a new paddle.

Pickleball Spin Paddle Guide

Our paddle guide is lengthy but is broken up into three parts.  You can read our entire article on selecting a pickleball paddle or you can skip ahead to just the parts you want to read about.

Paddle Material

The Pickleball Mall carries pickleball paddles that are made out of wood, composite, and graphite materials.

Wooden Pickleball Paddles

Wooden pickleball paddles are generally used for institutional or recreational use.  Most beginners start out with a wooden paddle and then move up to a composite or graphite paddle.  Wooden paddles tend to be heavy.  While some players like a heavier paddle, others prefer something lighter so they can make a faster response.  Wooden pickleball paddles are also very affordable, which make them an attractive option for the pickleball player on a budget.

Advantages to wooden pickleball paddles:
  • Inexpensive
  • Strong
  • Good for conditioning
  • Heavier weight allows strong shots
Disadvantages to wooden pickleball paddles:
  • Weighted balance isn’t as good as graphite or composite paddles
  • Heavier weight doesn’t let you play as quick shots
  • Wood surface doesn’t provide a strong “POP” off the paddle

Graphite Pickleball Paddles

Graphite or graphite composite pickleball paddles are the most popular paddles in pickleball.  Most intermediate and advanced players choose these paddles because they are light and powerful.  The graphite surface gives a strong “pop” upon contact with the ball which adds to the power of these paddles.  Graphite pickleball paddles tend to be weighted to provide supreme balance.  Many of these paddles are also light to allow the player quick reaction time.

Advantages to composite and graphite paddles:
  • Durable
  • Light
  • Powerful
  • Most popular paddle in pickleball
Disadvantages to graphite and composite paddles:
  • Expensive
  • Some paddles might have too much “pop” for a player’s preference

Paddle Weight

The weight of the pickleball paddle can be a very important factor when selecting your paddle.  Although, some players find the difference in paddle weight imperceptible.  This guide will sort our pickleball paddles by those that are heavy and those that are light.

Heavy pickleball paddles are sometimes preferred because of their strength.  A strong pickleball player can make a shorter swing and still hit the ball with plenty of force if they have a heavier paddle.  Heavy paddles also have more strength, so overhead smashes or quick ground strokes can come faster if the player uses their paddle’s sweet spot.

However, heavier pickleball paddles also have disadvantages  It takes more effort to swing a heavy paddle than a light one.  This increases the amount of time it takes to get your paddle in position, which can decrease overall reaction time.  Because it takes more energy to work with heavy paddles, players can sometimes get tired more easily.  This also may make it more difficult for pickleball players to make finesse shots and subtle wrist movements.

Light pickleball paddles are sometimes preferred because of their versatility.  Pickleball players can hit hard with a lighter paddle and still get plenty of power.  Players can also make faster reaction shots because it takes less time to get their paddle in position.  Some pickleball player also note that they can play longer with a lighter paddle because their arm doesn’t have to work as hard.

Still, lighter pickleball paddles have their drawbacks as well.  Some players feel that they can’t hit as powerful shots with a lighter paddle.  Additionally, there are some pickleball players who simply like the feel of a heavy, solid paddle in their hand.

Ultimately, the player’s preference is the biggest factor in making a decision.  For those pickleball players who want more power and prefer a heavier paddle, heavy paddles are the way to go.  For those pickleball players who want more versatility and faster reaction times, a light paddle is recommended.

Paddle Size

The size of the pickleball paddle plays a very important part in your game.  The Pickleball Mall sorts our paddles by the following categories: oversized, standard and long-handle.

  • Oversized pickleball paddles have a large hitting surface a relatively short handle.  An advantage to these paddles is the fact that the front hitting area is larger, so a pickleball player has extra room to hit the ball.  Because these paddles have a larger face, they tend to be slightly on the heavy side, which can be an advantage or disadvantage based on the player’s preference.  Some players may prefer a longer handle and others may be quite happy with a shorter one — this also depends on preference.
  • Standard pickleball paddles (also called “Balanced”) have a hitting surface that’s slightly smaller than oversized but a longer handle.  Typically, standard pickleball paddles are designed to have the perfect amount of balance.  The handle should be proportional to the size of the hitting face, giving the player comfort and versatility in their strokes.  A disadvantage to the standard paddle is that it sacrifices the large hitting surface from an oversized paddle and has a slightly shorter handle than a long-handled paddle.
  • Long-handled pickleball paddles have longer handles and a slightly smaller face than an oversized paddle but a slightly longer handle than a standard paddle.  These paddles also tend to be on the lighter side.  The advantage to playing with a long-handled pickleball paddle is that there is a lot of room to establish your grip.  Some players prefer playing with their hand close to the base of the paddle face while others may prefer holding the paddle towards the end of the handle.  Whatever the player’s preference, the long-handled paddle has plenty of room to place your hand.

Pickleball Paddles Care

Paddle damageYou want your pickleball paddles to last as long as possible. Pickleball paddles are easy to maintain. Here are some tips to make your pickleball paddles last as long as possible.

Pickleball Paddles Care Tips

  • Don’t leave it in car or outside where your paddle is exposed to extreme heat or cold conditions.
  • Keep it from getting wet such as from the rain or snow.
  • Don’t throw it, drag it, or bang it.
  • Try not to scrape it on the ground as you go to pick up the pickleball.
  • Wipe it with a towel after every use.
  • Buy a cover and cover it when it is not in use.
  • If your grip is wearing out, put a new one on! One of the easiest ways to damage your paddle is when it goes flying out of your hand because you have lost grip.

With these tips your pickleball paddles will last longer and you will be able to enjoy the game of pickleball longer.

Conclusion

No matter what sort of player you are, if you are young or old, or a beginner of professional, there is a pickleball paddle which is right for you.  It might take a little research but you will find the perfect fit for your playing style and ability.

My hope in creating this guide was to help you narrow down the choices when looking for a no nonsense quality pickleball paddle.  It might seem intimidating when you first look at what is available, but hopefully the information and suggestions presented in this guide have shown you that it does not have to be.

Best of luck in choosing your next paddle and keep on enjoying pickleball.