Choosing a padel racket can be something as simple as drinking a glass of water or becoming your worst nightmare. Along this guide we will try to explain the differences between the various types of rackets existing and which ones adapt to one and the other style of player. What we want is that by the end of this article for you to be a little more empowered to make a right choice in terms of the racket that fits your profile and game style and also that you understand a little more about the features that define a padel racket.
It is important not to base your choice only on the exterior aspect of the racket, but rather in all aspects and features that we will indicate along this guide. Although we all like to wield a racket that we consider aesthetically attractive and that also counts, it is important to take into account all the other aspects that will fit or not in our profile as players.
Padel racket Features:
Padel rackets have some features that are important to know:
1. Shape, balance and “SWEET SPOT”:
The shape is a very important factor in a padel racket because it will by itself change the point of balance and the sweet spot of it. Despite some variations, there are 3 basic forms of padel rackets:
This racket model has the equilibrium point closer to the head, which means that the weight is more distributed along that area. This translates into a greater power in the coup, especially in the aggressive network game. The “sweet spot” is much smaller than in the other formats, which makes the racket a lot more technical, less easy to handle and as such fit for more experienced players who try to add power to their game. Due to its weight distribution towards the top of the racket, it becomes a heavier racket for the arm and harmful to those suffering from injury to the elbow.
This is an intermediate model between the other two formats. You can do with this racket a good compromise between power and control. The “sweet spot” is still not as broad as in the round model but it is a much more permissive racket than a diamond-shaped one. If you are a multifaceted player who wants to continue to have a powerful racket without neglecting control then this is the ideal choice for you. However, for those who identify 100% as right-wing player (more defensive) or left-handed player (more offensive), this racket may know a little, as many players claim that “neither is meat nor fish”.
This is the most “conservative” and usually preferred model of the typical right-wing players. It has a weight distribution directed at the handle, which makes it very manageable by giving the feeling of being lighter than the other formats, even if it has exactly the same weight. It is without a doubt the ideal model for those who are starting at the paddle, because the “sweet spot” is very wide, which makes the racket much more permissive due to having the ideal area of impact in a fairly extensive area of the face of the racket. This is the ideal racket for those who are now starting and for more experienced players who prefer control to power.
For a more effective choice of your racket it is important to pay attention to the weight of it. There is no ideal weight because it is dependent on many factors inherent in each racket and also for each player. The shape of the racket, as indicated previously, has enough influence on the feeling of weight, a diamond-shaped racket will always have a feeling of heavier weight than a round-shaped racket. The physical shape of each player will also influence whether you feel comfortable playing with a paddle with more or less weight. Usually women play with weights included between 340 and 360 GR, and men between 360 and 390gr. Despite the great variation in this issue, we can consider the following as the basis:
- 50-70 kg: 360-365 gr
- 70-80 kg: 370-375 gr
- 80-90 kg: 380-390 gr
- 90-100 kg: + 390 gr
- 40-60 kg: 330-355 gr
- 60-70 kg: 360 gr
- 70-80 kg: 370-375 gr
- 80-90 kg: 380 gr
- + 90 kg: 385-390 gr
A tougher racket will allow for greater control of the blow and will have less power. A softer paddle, usually called a “gentle”, will bring greater power but less control. It is important to mention that a racket with a more “soft” core is usually less durable. If you want the racket to have a harder tact, buy one like a high density EVA gum core. On the contrary, if you want something more soft, buy one with a core of gum EVA soft or ultra soft.
Knowing your level of play will allow you to make a much better choice. Most racket makers usually catalogue the various ranges of rackets they have available (initiation, intermediate, advanced, professional etc.). However the choice will always be personal at this level, you should always choose the racket that conveys the best feeling within the field.
- Initiation: A smaller, round-weight racket is recommended so that you can handle it easily. The balance should be low and the “sweet spot” to be able to learn how to control the force and direction of the hit more effectively.
- Intermediate: A round-shaped racket or tear with intermediate weight will be the most recommended in order to find the optimal balance between control and power.
- Advanced-Professional: For more experienced players with better physical condition, paddles with a higher weight are usually recommended, in order to achieve greater power in the beat easier without overcharging the arm, especially if Play very regularly. The form will be already at this stage a personal option, and the diamond-shaped rackets will be more suited to players with more offensive predominance, the round-shaped players to more defensive and tear-shaped players.
Having said this, and now having a little more in-depth knowledge about the various aspects to consider when buying a racket, the decision is always something very personal and will depend on what you feel within the field. It is very important, whenever possible, to try the racket before buying so that there are no surprises and do not spend money in vain. Good games!