10 TIPS FOR BUYING YOUR NEW PADEL RACKET
Choosing the right padel racket seems to be a difficult choice. Whether it concerns the purchase of your first racket or the replacement of an old racket. There may be more to it than you think. To ensure that you will soon be on the court with the perfect racket for you, we have listed 10 tips below in collaboration with PadelShop.com that can help you in your search for your new padel racket.
Before you buy a new racket, you should ask yourself at what level you are currently. A distinction is made between three levels: beginner, intermediate and advanced. As a beginner it is important to first choose an easy racket. The longer you play and the higher your level will affect the purchase of a new racket. You will then need a racket with a lot of power and less control. You can read further in this article to find out which racket is the best choice for each level.
Weight is an important factor to take into account. A lighter or heavier racket has both its advantages. A light racket provides more control. However, if you think power is more important than control, you should opt for a heavier racket.
In addition, there is a difference between the weight for women, men and children. The weight for women is usually between 350 and 360 grams, for men it is 355 and 360 grams. When looking at a children's racket, the weight differs between 240 and 280+ grams.
PAY ATTENTION! Do you use (over)grips or a protector in the frame of the blade? Both can add extra weight, so keep this in mind when looking at the weight of a new racket.
There are three shapes of padel rackets: diamond shape, teardrop shape and the round shape. As with the weight of the racket, each shape has its advantages:
This racket has diamond-shaped blades, which ensures that the blades have more power but less control. This shape is more suitable for experienced players.
A teardrop-shaped racket has a balance between power and control. The teardrop-shaped racket is suitable for semi-advanced players.
Blades with a round shape have mostly control and little power. This is the most suitable racket for the novice player. However, many advanced players still play with this shape, so round is not just for beginners.
Curious about how you can distinguish the different rackets? In the picture we show the difference in shape, control and power.
There are two types of rubber from which the core can be made. The first is EVA rubber, this rubber is completely smooth, hard, has more durability (lasts longer) and provides a better feeling when hitting the ball. The harder the racket, the more power goes to the ball. EVA rubber is the most commonly used rubber in padel rackets.
A softer version of EVA rubber has now also been launched on the market, this is EVA Soft. On the other hand, you have the FOAM rubber. This type of rubber is soft and has a shorter lifespan, but has a greater feel for the ball and has a greater absorption of vibrations compared to EVA rubber. Softer rackets, however, have more exit speed of the ball at lower ball speed, which creates a trampoline effect.
PAY ATTENTION! Rackets react to temperature. The warmer the weather, the softer the racket becomes. That is why it is also important when you choose a racket at which temperature you play. Cold temperatures require a softer racket as it gets harder due to the temperature. If you play with a soft racket in warm weather (more than 20 degrees), the racket becomes too soft and you lose control of the ball.
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Balance provides more or less control. The balance of the blade refers to the point where the weight of the blade is concentrated. There are three types of balances: high, centered and bottom.
A high balance means that the weight is concentrated closer to the head of the racket, this balance provides more power. High balance is common with diamond-shaped blades.
With a centered balance, the weight is in the middle area (between the head of the blade and your grip). This balance provides more control and better maneuverability. This form of balance usually occurs with teardrop-shaped blades, but it also sometimes occurs in round models.
When the balance is low, the weight is concentrated close to the handle of the racket, providing great control and manageability. Especially round tops have this type of balance.
Don't play too thin! The thinner the grip, the more you will squeeze. A padel racket has no grip size, but when you shake the racket your little finger must be able to get in between. Women have 0-1 overgrip, men 1-3 overgrips. According to the rules, the racket itself may not be thicker than 38 millimeters, this is also the most common thickness.
7. ADDITIONAL MATERIALS
When you look at the frame, a stiff frame provides more control on the ball (less deviation, so more precision). An example of a stiff frame is a full carbon frame. A rigid frame also lasts longer.
Do you want more grip on the ball? Then it is best to choose a racket with a structure on your head. Think of a Black Crown Koala Black Edition or a really baked-in structure such as the Starvie Dronos or Metheora. This gives you more grip on the ball and you can slice and control the ball more. This is also nicer for the smash so you can give more spin on the ball.
Do you also have sensitive arms? Then we recommend purchasing the Noene Undergrip. This lower grip provides 92% less vibration, which results in less fatigue and less chance of injuries.
Before you buy a (new) racket, ask yourself how often you plan to play. Are you planning on paddling only occasionally? Then think about how much money you want to spend on it. On the other hand, can you be found on the padel court several times a week? Then it might be better to invest more money and go for a racket with EVA rubber. These rackets are durable and therefore last longer.
The prices of a racket differ enormously. A racket suitable for beginners costs about 50 to 100 euros, but a racket for the real professionals can cost 250 to 400 euros. The price will therefore always influence the purchase of a new racket.
Among other things, you have to take into account the durability of a racket. When a new racket is currently at the price but will last a long time, it is a good investment for later. Are you just starting out with padel? Then it is smart to first purchase a cheaper racket for beginners.
10. LOOK AT THE REVIEWS
Do you want to be sure whether the racket you have chosen is actually as you have been told? Go online and read various reviews. Users who have already purchased the racket are your best friend, by reading about their experiences you know approximately what to expect when buying a new racket.
TRY BEFORE YOU BUY
Before you actually buy a new racket, we recommend that you try it out first so that you know that you are making the right choice. It is best for you to determine whether a racket suits you or not, but you must try it out first.
Racket test from Padelshop:
Besides the website, Padelshop has 6 physical locations throughout the Netherlands. Once you have made a racket test appointment at one of these locations, you can come to the location on the designated day and time. At the location, several rackets with a value of >€100,- are available for testing. Read more about Padelshop's racket test.