The Killerspin JET200 Paddle is our best ping pong paddle, which has a PVC side tape to keep it sturdy on its side and the rubber is made out of jet basic material and comes in a mix of blue and black (but you can also choose red and green). The flared handle makes the paddle easy to carry.
Our step-up pick is the STIGA Pro Carbon and it has a good speed rating as well and is ideal for professionals. The S5 rubber provides an equal amount of bounce, control and power. The blade balance is good so that it gives a good contact with the ping pong ball. The handle is also designed for easy gripping due to the recess.
The budget pick is the KEVENZ 4-Star Pro and this paddle comes in a pack of two and the handle is made with concave Italian composite material. The light blade makes it easy to move around and the 2 mm sponge is also good for tournament use. There is also a carrying case included.
A Little Background
A ping pong paddle, also known as a table tennis paddle, is the paddle or racquet that is used in the racquet sport table tennis or ping pong. It is characterized by a flat surface that allows you to hit the ping pong ball across the table or field. Unlike the regular tennis racquet, the ping pong paddle is a solid paddle or racquet and can come in a variety of colors, but usually in red for visibility.
Hitting the ping pong ball with a ping pong paddle can be tricky and may take some practice. Because of the size of the ping pong paddle that is unusually smaller than that of a tennis racquet, the hit ratio of the paddle can be pretty small if you are inexperienced. It takes a lot of reflex and accuracy before you can learn to hit in rhythm and succession when you are playing table tennis or ping pong.
A ping pong paddle can be made of different materials depending on the requirement of your team or sport. The paddle is usually made out of wood for most high school and college gymnasiums and are coupled with rubber for better bounce and rebound. However, there are also some newer ping pong paddles today that are made out of carbon and polymer for added durability and lightweight feel for beginners. Some ping pong paddles are even made of titanium.
How We Picked
If you want the best ping pong paddle, here are some criteria to look at:
Material used: a ping pong paddle can be made out of wood and rubber as a usual combination for traditional table tennis paddles. This is because rubber has an excellent bounce capability and wood feels very traditional and authentic. There are also newer ping pong paddles that are made of polymer, carbon and titanium, mostly to save the lifespan of the paddle or to add to the lightweight feel. Titanium is for durability while polymer/carbon make the paddle lighter.
Where you will use it: the ping pong paddle can be used for any of the three things: for a recreational room, for home use or for professional use. Most rec rooms in offices need a ping pong paddle for the ping pong table. Most homes with a table can use it and even pros who compete in schools or official tournaments need to have a durable one. Make sure the paddle is sturdy enough to meet your needs.
Solo or pack: some ping pong paddles are sold in packs of 4 or more but some ping pong paddles are just one paddle in the pack. It depends on how many you want and whether you want to buy an entire set or just need to replace one in your set.
Included ping pong balls: the ping pong paddle can also come with a set of ping pong balls, usually in sets of 6 or more or even less. Having a set that comes with a ping pong ball set and not just the ping pong paddle can make it a complete package altogether so you don’t have to buy the balls separately. What’s more, you can ensure that the ping pong paddle is greatly calibrated together with the balls.
Color choices: most ping pong paddles are in red due to the rubber material and the visibility but some ping pong paddles also offer color choices like black, yellow, blue and the like, especially for kids and specific teams.
Durability: make sure that the ping pong paddle is durable and properly tested for lasting longer. A good practice is to know if the ping pong paddle has a good warranty policy so that you can return the item when you find out that it has been broken or defective beforehand.
Our best ping pong paddle is the Killerspin JET200 Paddle, which has a good amount of spin as well as speed and control. It is ideal for beginners who want more spin on the ping pong ball. The wood is a 5-ply material making the paddle very durable for many uses.
This paddle even comes with a memory book for recording your table tennis scores and the like and also acts as a case for your paddle when not in use. It has a 30-day warranty as well.
Flaws but Not Dealbrakers
While not a deal breaker, the Killerspin JET200 Paddle does lack a bit of power in terms of offensive hits but it is good when it comes down to control and spin on the ball nonetheless.
The STIGA Pro Carbon is our step-up pick that combines both power and speed with its carbon build. It is ideal for tournaments due to the fact that it is made with ITTF approved rubber. The sponge has a thickness of 2 mm and the blade is very light at 7-ply.
If you want good response, flexibility, power and speed then this is the ping pong paddle to count on. It allows for fast recovery due to the lightweight material.
Our budget pick is the KEVENZ 4-Star Pro, which is also a 7-ply paddle that uses S5 rubber for the pads. It has an equal amount of control, speed and spin on the ball as well. The carbon and wood combination for this table tennis racket makes it durable.
The padded rubber of this paddle is at 1.6 mm which is okay for tournament use. With a standard handle height of 4 inches, the lightweight material makes it easy to swing around.
Best Ping Pong Paddle that comes as a Complete Set
The JOOLA All-in-One HitSet has a fair amount of speed and spin and it is great for recreational or pastime play. It has a set of ping pong balls that are ready to be used plus four paddles for you to choose from. It comes with a carrying case and is made with wood composite.
Best Ping Pong Paddle with a Sandpaper Pad
The Champion Sports 5-Ply has a traditional sandpaper face and has medium ratings for speed and control. With a handle made of laminated wood for durability, it has a straight handle that is good for both beginners as well as expert players.
Best Ping Pong Paddle made of Wood
The Sport Game Pro is a wood paddle that has a good amount of spin, control and speed ratings and is made of high quality rubber with 2 mm sponges. It allows you to spin the ball regardless of your skill level and has a 5-ply wood structure with a flared handle for durability.
Best Ping Pong Paddle for Beginners
The Palio Expert 2 has a fair amount of speed but good control and spin on the ball for its rating. It is an ITTF approved paddle that can be used for tournament purposes. With CJ8000 rubber material, the blade is very lightweight and durable for better control for beginners. It comes with a case as well.
Best Ping Pong Paddle with a Shakehand Grip
The Butterfly 603 Shakehand has good control, speed and spin ratings and comes with a case. It has a shakehand grip and have Waka rubber for tackiness and easy spinning for beginners. It is also an ITTF approved racket.
Best Ping Pong Paddle for Professional Use
The PASOL 2-Player 7-Star is good for competitions with a high amount of spin, speed and control rating. It has a 7-ply wood paddle for better durability and the rubber at 2 mm adds more spin. The carrying case can also hold up to two rackets.
Best Ping Pong Paddle with a Hybrid Construction
The Caleson Professional Racket is made of hybrid material: wood and carbon fiber, and is good for offensive play. It has an open grip and has a fair rating for spin and speed but has a good rating with control. It has a heavy tip but to suffice, the handle is quite light for ergonomics.
Other ping pong paddles did not make it to our list because these paddles were substandard in materials and had reports of defects and dents on the paddle upon receiving. It is important that a ping pong paddle does not have any kind of cosmetic defects to ensure that it does not affect the game.
Other Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What are the different kinds of table tennis rackets or ping pong paddles?
A: The ping pong paddle or the table tennis racket can have a wide variety of types such as the following:
Old racket designs are the ones that were used in the former games of table tennis when the sport was first introduced. Let’s have a look at some of the types of ping pong rackets or paddles that they used to have:
• The hard rubber racket is considered one of the most popular choice back then when it comes down to racket design. The hard rubber ping pong paddle has a good bounce and makes the control of the ball easier in the long run. They can be used both by beginners and by advanced players alike. Hard rubber is also cheap and easy to produce for most manufacturers of table tennis rackets.
• The sandpaper ping pong paddle became the second type of racket. As the name suggests, the sandpaper racket makes use of sandpaper instead of hard rubber on the surface of the racket, making it quite uncomfortable for the ping pong balls, so they became obsolete anyway.
• The sponge racket became an instant favorite because of speed, ease of use and simple control. When the sponge racket was invented, hard rubber and sandpaper ping pong paddles were almost no longer in use. You can also customize for a specialty racket if you have a sponge ping pong paddle.
Offensive paddles are the ones that are used for attacking in any table tennis match. These are the different kinds of offensive ping pong paddles you can use:
• The pips-out racket is great for hitting the ball as hard as you can but does not cause a lot of ball spinning. It is mostly used for accuracy and “spiking” the opponent with a great offensive attack. A pips-out racket is characterized by a texture that feels rough.
• The inverted ping pong racket is similar to the pips-out racket but it has small protrusions that go inward instead of outward, the opposite of a pips-out offensive paddle. They are great for controlling the ball and for accuracy as well. They are just different in design with pips-out paddles but roughly with the same usage and purpose.
The defensive paddle or ping pong racket can be used if you want a good line of defense against an attacker in a game, and can be one of the following:
• The long pips paddle can be similar to pips-out paddles but the texture has thinner pips or protrusions. They are great for making surprise shots for defense and can change the course of the game due to the paddle design changing when the ball hits the paddle.
• The anti-spin racket is a sponge like paddle that is okay for defensive but obviously not good for making offensive attacks. The downside to this paddle is that it does not create ball spin due to the soft sponge surface, but it is sometimes depending on the technique and skill you have.
Q: In general, what are the two kinds of paddles based on how they are assembled or packaged?
A: The two kinds of paddles based on how they are made are the following:
The pre-assembled paddle is the most common type of paddle out there. It can be bought at your local sports center or shop and are good for beginners. Here are the advantages and disadvantages of these paddles:
• This paddle is good for beginners or those starting out with ping pong or table tennis.
• They can be easily bought on any sports store.
• You don’t have to do anything or to buy separate pads or blades for them.
• They don’t really last long compared to professional paddles.
• They are not meant for seasoned players who go and compete at tournaments.
The customizable paddle or the blank paddle usually requires you to add a blade or pad manually. This makes it more personalized and easier to make it customizable for your preferred rubber pad. The customizable paddle is more ideal for those who are professionals and want to change between different pads or blades and makes it more economical.
• This kind of paddle is good for professional players and seasonal table tennis athletes.
• You can change the pad to any kind of material that you want.
• It will last longer than the pre-assembled paddle.
• You have to buy a separate pad or blade for it, which makes it not ideal for beginners.
• They can be slightly expensive compared to built-in paddles or pre-assembled ones.
Q: What are the different parts of the ping pong paddle?
A: The different parts of the ping pong paddle are the following:
The handle is the part of the ping pong paddle that you grip when you use it in a game. The handle is one of the most important parts of the table tennis racket or ping pong paddle because it will be easier to hold the paddle to control the ping pong racket all in all. There are many kinds of handles out there for a ping pong paddle, such as the following:
• The straight handle is the most common type of ping pong paddle handle type. The width of the paddle handle is pretty much straight and the same from the blade right down to the base. This kind of paddle handle is ideal for defensive play. When it comes down to performing a backhand stroke, it is easier to do in a straight handled paddle.
• The flared handle ping pong is another type of handle that has narrow thickness near the blade but wider at the base. This is ideal for easily gripping the handle for most novice players. The only downside is that they are not very good with backhand strokes.
• The anatomical handles are also pretty popular and have a middle flare as well as on the base, making it more ergonomic to handle for most people.
• The conical handle is a type of ping pong handle that is more ideal for players who have difficulty with the other handles we mentioned, such as those with larger hands or don’t feel comfortable with straight handles.
Q: How do I properly choose the right ping pong paddle for me?
A: You need to have some criteria or factors to consider if you will shop for a ping pong paddle, such as the following:
You should know first whether you will go for a pre-made paddle or a custom paddle. As we mentioned above, a custom paddle is more for the professionals or the serious ones who want to value durability as well as the ability to change the pad whenever and wherever they are.
On the other hand, the pre-made paddles are ideal for those who won’t really play ping pong all the time or will just play it not on a professional level. The downside to pre-made paddles is the lack of durability, but the downside to custom paddles is that they can be hard to assemble.
Once you decide on a ping pong paddle type, you can choose the pad or blade you want to use. There are many kinds of blades or pads that you can install onto your ping pong paddle if it is custom or replaceable with the pad.
For beginners, you should go for a blade that is just right and not too speedy nor too slow to make it easy for you to grip. It’s best to ask around sports centers on what’s a good ping pong pad or blade for beginners.
You should also choose the grip type of your choice. Most players have their own preferences so it doesn’t really matter what grip type you choose, as long as you are comfortable with it, because you are most likely going to play it all the time, so you need a handle that is easy to grip, depending on the shape and size of your hands and your comfort level needs. Shakehand, seemiler and penholder are the most common grip styles.
Aside from the grip, you should also choose a good handle style for your ping pong paddle. You can choose from either straight or flared handle as well as the anatomic or conical handle (mentioned above). These different handle styles can affect your performance with backhands and forehands so be careful when choosing your preferred handle style so that it will feel comfortable in your hands as well.
It doesn’t hurt to ask the pros on what they are using. You can go to a local sports center, your school’s gymnasium or ask a friend who knows stuff about ping pong to get their opinion when it comes down to blade brands or paddle brands you may want to buy for durability and your playing style, so they can give you tips.
A good beginner’s paddle would be one that has two rubber sides. The pimpled sides are more for the professionals or the skilled ones because it can be hard to make spins with them. Rubber paddles are great for those who are starting in the game while the pimpled ones are ideal for those who need some extra challenge or for attacking or offensive shots towards the other player.
If you don’t know how to attach the pad or blade to your ping pong paddle, you can get someone who knows how to do it. In this way, the pad won’t go to waste with a mistake you might have committed in putting it together. It also saves you time as someone who is knowledgeable can do it within minutes.
You can also invest in a ping pong paddle cover to make sure it does not get covered in dirt or gets exposed to the elements. This makes the ping pong paddle more longer lasting if you are looking forward to practicing with it for longer periods of time.
Q: What are the different kinds of blade handles and how are they different?
A: The different kinds of blade handles for a ping pong paddle are the following and their properties:
The flared handle is the most popular handle type when it comes down to ping pong paddles. The profile of the flared handle is that its bottom is wider and the top is narrower. The flared handle is mostly used by both beginners and by experts alike, and can be easily gripped in a fair way.
The anatomic handle is the kind of ping pong paddle handle that also looks like the flared handle, but the difference is that it has a thicker middle part compared to that of the flared one. This makes the handle easier to grip for an ergonomic design and feel.
The straight handle is a bit hard to handle for a ping pong paddle but is quite challenging. It is also the easiest to manufacture out of all the handle types out there. There are three types of straight handles: round, square and flat. The rounded ones are the most common ones while the flat ones are best for both defensive and offensive paddles. Square ones are found on new and special paddles out there.
The Donic Dotec ping pong handles are one of the newest as well and are similar to the anatomic handles in terms of ergonomics. If you are a person who experience wrist and hand injuries in the past but still want to play table tennis then the Donic Dotec ping pong paddle handle is for you.
The special handles are made for those with handicap and also for adding twist and challenging game. These handles may not always be seen in professional tournaments depending on the rules but they are really fun to have.
Q: What are the different kinds of grips in ping pong paddles and how do they differ?
A: The ping pong paddle can have a wide variety of grips, such as the following:
|Main Type of Grip||Definition||Variations of the Grip|
|Shakehand grip||The shakehand is the most common type of grip that you can encounter in table tennis. They are meant for beginners and have two variations, the deep and the shallow. There are also many other small variations of this ping pong paddle grip.||Shakehand shallow grip|
|Shakehand deep grip|
|Penhold grip||The penhold grip is another popular type of grip for ping pong paddles. They are one of the most traditional as well and are also favored by beginners.||Japanese or Korean grip|
|RPB or reverse penhold backhand grip|
|Advanced grips||The advanced grips are the special types of grips that are mostly done by professionals or those who want to add a little style or spice to their game play of ping pong.||Pistol grip|
Q: What kind of ping pong paddle skills do I need to master depending on the playing style I prefer?
A: There are three main types of players in ping pong or table tennis, characterized by their favorite playing style:
Offensive: if you are an attacker or offensive player, you will most likely put speed into your shot. Being an offensive ping pong player means that you will have to be more flexible and also have quicker reaction time. Offensive styles also need to play with a proximity closer to the ping pong table. Adding power, aggression and spin means attacking precisely. You also need to have a lot of endurance if you want to play offensively in ping pong.
Defensive: if you want your playing style to be on the defensive, you should have more distance from the table in general. You should be able to observe the spins and the attacks of the opponent by carefully looking at them. Being on the defensive means keeping your eyes on the ball and concentrating on it to get an idea on what move to make next. In short, if you play defensive then the game would slow down for you.
Multi-skill players: these all-around players can do both attacking and defending. This is why they should employ both of the skills found in offensive and defensive play in order to be a successful player. They should adapt depending on the situation so that they can have strength in their offense and in their defense as well and prioritize which shots should be controlled and which should be put on offensive play.
Q: What are the health benefits of playing table tennis?
A: Playing table tennis has its many benefits including:
|Hand-eye coordination||You can increase your hand and eye coordination if you often play ping pong or table tennis. This is because the movements that go along with each strike or hit can only work well if you combine looking at the opponent’s moves and the ball and exercising your own moves to hit it back. It develops the hand-eye coordination for kids as well.|
|Calorie burning||You can be burning up to 272 calories when you go for the ping pong or table tennis game either as a sport or as a pastime. This is good news for those who are trying to look for a sport and at the same time try to slim down and burn calories.|
|Mental and logical practice||Because of the movements in ping pong, you can practice your puzzle solving skills as how to hit the ping pong ball properly so you can score against the opponent, as well as how to block or play defensively and look for an opening.|
|Doesn’t impact your joints||The game of ping pong or table tennis is less stressful to your joints which means that it is also good for all ages, even seniors. Having a sport that is low on joint impact makes it easier for you to lose weight, have fun and skip the likelihood of injuries.|
|It’s a social game||You can make more friends along the way if you keep playing ping pong or table tennis. Just like a team sport, having friendly competitions or rivalries with someone is a good thing for motivation as well as for constantly learning and practicing. You can also gain some tips from the experts you befriend.|
|Reflexes are improved||The reflexes of the human body are enhanced when you play ping pong or table tennis, since it is a very fast paced game. You need to have fast reactions to everything that is happening in the game, even faster than with regular tennis.|
|It’s good for memory retention||Playing table tennis can actually benefit those with Alzheimer’s or anyone with lack of memory retention due to old age or some other factors. This is important to keep you brain as sharp as possible no matter what age you are in.|
|A brain exercise||It works up many parts of the brain so it is a good mind exercise for those who need it, much like with memory retention and puzzle solving skills.|
|Balance and coordination||One of the pluses of using ping pong tables and paddles as a game or as a pastime is that you can enhance your balance and coordination. Having a good sense of balance is important as well as rhythm, so that you can precisely hit shot after shot.|
Q: Can playing table tennis really burn a lot of calories?
A: That depends on how much you have been playing, as well as your weight. A person who weighs 150 lbs or on the average weight may burn up to 270 calories more or less in a single game of ping pong at a high speed. This is because many of your muscles get worked up and the fast pace makes it more difficult as a workout. Therefore, it is also good for burning calories and slimming down.
Q: How does playing table tennis affect your mental health?
A: Ping pong or table tennis has many good effects for your brain, such as the following:
• It sharpens your mind because it will get you to think faster than ever before.
• You will also have better attention span for constantly playing at a high speed with high reflex needs.
• You also get more coordination with your brain and your hands so that you can be able to make moves that can add to the chances of a score.
• Compared to simple walking, running and aerobics, table tennis is a sport that involves the mind and the body, so it is challenging for your brain.
• While you may get dizzy at first because of the fast paced game play, eventually it will be normal for you if you really want to get used to the sport.
Q: What are the similarities and differences between table tennis and real tennis?
A: The table tennis sport can be similar and different with the actual tennis game in many ways, including:
|Criteria||Table Tennis||Real Tennis|
|Spinning recognition||You need to see the kind of spin that the other player is trying to do or pull off in order to counter that move.|
|Type of stroke or technique||You put less effort with table tennis and will be okay with most wrist actions.||In real tennis, you need to have a stroke with a unique follow through or loop style stroke.|
|Balance||You need to maintain a good balance while you are hitting the ball so that you have a rhythmic action while you are handling the ball against the opponent.|
|Stamina||You don’t need much stamina with table tennis, making it ideal for seniors and those with lack of physical training because it is a table top game.||Real tennis require more power because it is a land sport and much bigger in scale compared with table tennis.|
|Hand and eye coordination||You need to have a good eye on the ball so that you will be able to hit it with good accuracy.|
|Pace of the game||Table tennis usually faster because of the small scale table for the game play.||Real tennis is slower in pace because the field is larger and has more room for the players.|
Q: What is the usual weight of a table tennis racket?
A: The average table tennis racket can weigh somewhere from 75 to 95 grams, and it can also depend on the difficulty or level of skill that you have to pick the right paddle for you. Offensive and defensive rackets may vary in weight as well and it can also depend on the material of the ping pong paddle.
Q: How do I clean up a table tennis racket?
A: The table tennis racket or ping pong paddle can be cleaned with the following tips:
• Make sure you use approved solvents for cleaning your racket or paddle depending on the manufacturer’s instructions.
• Don’t put too much water, especially if the paddle is made of wood, so as not to ruin the quality of the wood.
• Wipe from the base to the top so that you do not spread all of the dust that gathered in the pad all over the racket.
• Make sure to clean both sides thoroughly and gently and then let it dry first before using or storing it.
Q: What is the typical thickness of table tennis pads?
A: The table tennis racket or ping pong paddle has a variety of thicknesses for the sponge to choose from. Here are the different common thicknesses of a ping pong paddle’s pad depending on your style of play:
|Thickness||Style of Play|
|2 mm or more||Offensive style|
|1.5 mm to 1.9 mm||Defensive style or all around style|
|1.4 to 1.7 mm||Regular players|
In addition to the value of thickness, here is a chart that compares the hardness of the table tennis pads, with lower values being soft and higher values being firm rubber:
|Value of Thickness||Style of Play|
|Below 30||Good for serving techniques|
|European style or playing a style of looping with a bent elbow|
|Spins more in lower speeds|
|30 to 45||Good for beginners when in doubt|
|45 and above||Chinese style or playing a style of looping with a straight elbow|
|Spins more in higher speeds|
|Great for advanced players|
Q: Which is better: having a thin core or thick core in a table tennis paddle?
A: The table tennis paddle or ping pong racket can have either a thin core or a thick core, which can have the following properties:
• A thick core is good for speed and also for adding more bounce to your ball. It can be harder to control for those who are not very experienced with ping pong in general.
• A thin core is ideal for beginners or those who want to have more control for the ball, yet it does not sacrifice the bounce that is needed for keeping up a good game of table tennis.
Q: How does the scoring work in table tennis?
A: In table tennis , you must win in a series of 5 games and must win 3 out of it. In each game, the player who reaches 11 points first gets the game’s victory and adds to his or her match victories. However, the winner of the game should have a margin of 2 points ahead from the opponent before they switch sides in the table.
Q: How do I ensure that I play safely in table tennis?
A: Any game of table tennis can be played safely with the following guidelines:
Like with any sport, spend about 5 minutes of warming up such as stretching so that your muscles will not get surprised or shocked during the game.
For practicing drills such as with a ping pong robot, make sure you don’t leave the balls behind or else you might slip on them when they fall to the ground.
Make sure you warn other players by looking at them if you’re passing by, or else they might not know your presence and can make a sudden move that can cause you to fall to the ground.
Table tennis doubles should be played with presence of mind so that you don’t bump into your partner or accidentally hit him or her.
Ask for help from a person when setting up a ping pong table for making it easier and less injury-prone.
Always check your blade and paddle before and after every match because a broken one can snap and potentially hit someone or yourself.
Rest if you feel that something is hurting within your body or if you are tired. In this way, you can prevent injuries from getting worse.
Q: Where should a table tennis be situated?
A: The ideal place to set up a ping pong table for table tennis is a floor area that is leveled properly and smooth to avoid injuries. All of the obstacles around should be kept away to keep the players moving safely around.
Q: How much calories can playing ping pong burn?
A: On the average , you can be burning from 200 to 350 calories per game, but it depends on many things such as your body weight, the length of time you play ping pong and many other factors like your diet and lifestyle.
Q: What clothing should I wear when playing table tennis?
A: Table tennis is a fast paced sport that can make you sweat inevitably. Good clothing to wear during the sport of table tennis include comfortable sports shoes, shirts, shorts, skirts or any kind of comfortable sport bottoms. Just don’t wear anything restrictive like jeans to make it easier for you to move around.
Wrapping It Up
In the long run, we think that the Killerspin JET200 Paddle is our best ping pong paddle due to its variety of color choices, PVC side tape for security, good spin and speed ratings and awesome ball control for beginners.