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If you are a veteran pickleball player who already owns one or two paddles, you may be ready to search for a paddle to fit your playing style needs.
For example, if you are a touch player, you will want to find a good pickleball paddle that improves your ability for touch.
So what’s the best pickleball paddle for touch?
With more people playing paddleball every day, there are so many options to choose from, and it can be difficult to know how to differentiate one paddle from another.
In this article, we’ll help you take into account some important factors you will want to consider when finding a good pickleball paddle for touch players.
What to look for in a good pickleball paddle for touch
When shopping for a pickleball paddle in general, there is one important factor to take into consideration: weight.
The weight should be one that you can most comfortably play with.
Many pickleball experts agree that the weight of the paddle is the number one factor to consider when choosing a paddle.
Paddles range in weight from 6 ounces (lightweight) to 14 ounces (heavy). A few ounces can make a huge difference when using it for a few hours.
If you have tennis elbow or any other arm injury, the extra weight could be an issue.
Weight ranges include:
- Lightweight paddles: Under 7.3 ounces
- Mid-weight paddles: 7.3 – 8.4 ounces
- Heavy Paddles: 8.5 ounces and over
Fitness level and playing style are the most important factors when choosing the weight of the paddle.
Pros of a lightweight paddle include:
- Increased ball control (perfect for a touch player).
- Better maneuverability
- Less stress on the arm/elbow.
Pros of a heavy paddle include:
- More Power
- Less effort to hit the ball harder
- Easier to hit the ball deep
Cons of a lightweight paddle include:
- Reduced power/drive
- Stronger swing needed
- Harder to hit long shots
Cons of a heavy paddle include:
- Stress on the arm and elbow
- Less control/slower swing
- Increased fatigue if playing for a long time
Two other important factors to consider after weight are:
- Grip: the grip size should fit your hand
- Shape: the shape and build should match your playing style.
As we mentioned above, the playing style should be taken into account after the basic factors are met (weight, grip, shape).
If you are looking for a paddle that fits your playing style, chances are that you are upgrading to a more advanced paddle.
Beginner pickleball players are just trying to learn the game, intermediate players are perfecting what they have learned, and advanced pickleball players are looking for paddle technology that will make a difference in and elevate their game.
When looking for a pickleball paddle that works well for touch, for example, the players looking are more likely to be intermediate to advanced players.
Pickleball is growing fast in the US
Pickleball is one of the fastest growing sports in the United States. Along with new pickleball players come many new pickleball manufacturers.
With the growth of the sport, many major sporting goods stores are carrying a selection of paddles.
The recent popularity of pickleball has been great for players because there are many new options for pickleball gear.
However, this also can make it difficult to choose a paddle with so many paddle options out there to choose from.
The technology and materials used are so rapidly changing that it is hard to keep up with all the different paddles.
In this article, we will focus on finding a paddle for touch players.
What is a Touch Player?
A touch player is one who focuses on precise aim and carefully placed dink shots.
It is a player who wants improved ball control in order to achieve the touch aspect of the game.
A touch player will also be considered a control player.
Trying to become a touch player, but not quite there yet?
You really need to play for quite a few sets and be comfortable in your game before deciding your style of play.
Before you establish your style of play as a touch player, we recommend a mid-range weight paddle that is 7.3 – 8.4 ounces.
History of Pickleball Paddles
The first pickleball paddles were as simple as a single piece of plywood cut in a garage with a band saw.
This brings up the question of what core material should you look for.
Wood, polymer, Nomex and aluminum are some examples of core materials.
Paddle face material can consist of carbon fiber, graphite, or fiberglass.
The texture of the material of the pickleball paddle will affect the way the ball plays off the paddle.
Therefore it is very important, especially to a touch player.
Best Pickleball Paddle for Touch
Players interested in pickleball paddles for touch or control will be considered finesse players.
To get control at the net, many finesse players opt for a lighter weight paddle with a graphite face.
The slow and soft dinking game of a finesse or touch player will be well served by this paddle.
It’s important to always consult an industry professional before selecting and using any new pickleball product, but the following product options may work well for use in your game.
Selkirk Amped Epic Lightweight Pickleball Paddle
Selkirk Sports’ paddles are made with high quality materials. With industry leading designs, the craftsmanship and performance of their paddles are second to none.
Achieving the latest in paddle technology is the company’s top goal.
Selkirk paddles are tested and approved for all USAPA tournament play and used by over 200 sponsored professional and ranked players worldwide.
View at Amazon to learn more about how this paddle could work for you.
Features of this paddle include:
- Power plus Control: the two most desired characteristics in a paddle are power and control. The Selkirk AMPED offers both.
- Glass Fiber Based Fiberflex Face: The AMPED series was engineered to amplify both aspects of power and control. Innovative glass fiber based fiber flex face and patent pending thicker polypropylene X5 core technology are best for the touch player who doesn’t want to sacrifice power.
- Thicker Paddle: The revolutionary thicker paddle core provides an unparalleled degree of control.
Lightweight is recommended for touch players.
Specs of this paddle include:
- Sweet Spot Index: 9
- Handle Length: 5.25”
- Lightweight Range: 7.3 ounces – 7.7 ounces
- Grip: 4.25” Circumference with standard grip
This lightweight paddle offers great touch and finesse, making it a great fit for a touch player. It particularly offers great feel for the ball and excellent touch at the net.
It is gentle on the arm, which can help for players looking to focus on touch and finesse.
Engage Pickleball ENGAGEPICKLEBALL Encore Pro 15.5″ x 8.125″ Paddle
The Encore Pro is the same paddle used by National Champions and professional Pickleball players Brian Staub and Marcin Rozpedski.
The Encore Pro provides players with advanced characteristics desired by the top pros and nationally ranked players in the world.
Optimized for optimum in control and power, the Encore has a large sweet spot.
The touch aspect of the Encore Pro is simply the enhanced feel when the ball makes contact allowing players to have a tremendous amount of control over the ball.
The Encore Pro maintains the specialized skin of the legacy Encore that maximizes the allowed limits of surface roughness.
Surface roughness means the skin works in conjunction with the core harmonizing and optimizing power, control and ball placement (touch player characteristics).
The engineering of the Encore Pro maximizes the amount of time the ball stays on the paddle enabling the soft feel you need in order to command your soft net game.
Pickleball matches can be noisy and bothersome to some neighborhoods.
The Encore Pro is optimized to meet stringent community noise requirements and makes no sound on impact.
View at Amazon for more information on how this paddle could potentially work for you.
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