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Are Wood Pickleball Paddles Good? - PAKLE

Are Wood Pickleball Paddles Good?

Several new sports have been gaining massive recognition in the world today. One of such sports is pickleball. Pickleball has a long history and is fast-growing especially in the United States of America. Millions of individuals worldwide, including old and young folk, love playing pickleball to pass time. It is clear to everyone that the recreational sport has well-deserved recognition.

As pickleball continues to grow popular all over the world, so does the demand for good equipment. One of the most important pieces of equipment players need for pickleball is the pickleball paddle. When looking for the right paddle, it is crucial to take note of what material it is made of. Although wooden paddles are not the best pickleball paddles, they are quite popular in the pickleball world.

Wooden pickleball paddles offer players a special performance and feel that can’t be matched by other materials. Choosing the right pickleball paddle is the first step to being a great player. Other than wood, pickleball rackets can be made using graphite, carbon fiber, fiberglass, and even material combinations. Let's find out how good wooden paddles are for pickleball.

Handcrafted American Cherry Wooden Pickleball Paddle Durable  High-performance Professional Grade With Comfortable Grip Paddles - Etsy

Pros Of Wood Pickleball Paddles

Pickleball players often use different types of paddles for various purposes. However, wooden paddles have several advantages that make them better than other pickleball paddles. Here are some of the pros of a wooden pickleball paddle set.

1. Affordability

One of the biggest advantages a product will ever have over its competitors is affordability. The more affordable a product is, the better it is for the customer's purse. Wooden paddles are relatively more affordable than other paddles made with expensive materials like fiberglass.

Wood is a relatively cheap material, which makes the price of wooden paddles to be lower than other paddles. This is great for people who are just getting into the pickleball world. That way, they don’t have to be worried about your equipment being too expensive.

2. Durability

Durability is another key feature for a pickleball paddle. The more durable the material for the paddle is, the longer it will last without getting damaged. Wooden paddles are very robust and have great longevity if you take care of them properly.

Usually, pro pickleball players often have to change their paddles within 6-12 months. However, beginner players that utilize wooden paddles can often use them for several years. There are many cases where wooden paddles end up becoming objects of affection after serving a player for many years.

3. Suitable For Beginners

Not every pickleball paddle is suitable for beginners to use. Some pickleball paddles can even become a hindrance instead of a blessing. Wooden pickleball paddles are very durable and have a great feel whenever you use them to play. This is a great benefit for beginners.

Also, wooden paddles are more cost effective than other pickleball paddles. Hence, they are better for beginners, because they can easily replace them at any time. If you take care of your wooden pickleball paddle well as a beginner, you’ll probably have a great time with the paddle.

Some other advantages of wooden pickleball paddles include:

  • They have good aesthetics. Wooden paddles come in different colors and styles, so you can pick one that suits your taste.
  • They are portable or easy to carry around with you.\

Cons Of Wood Pickleball Paddles

Here are some of the disadvantages that can be associated with wooden pickleball paddles.

1. Weight

The weight of a pickleball paddle is very important when playing. The paddle’s weight determines how you will hit the ball. Hence, weight is a very crucial factor when it comes to pickleball paddles. Wooden pickleball paddles weigh more than other pickleball paddles. This gives it more power, but less control.

Control is a key factor in sports like pickleball and tennis. It influences where the ball will land on the opponent's side. Hence, the weight of wooden paddles is their main disadvantage. Some wooden paddles are light, but most of them weigh around 10 ounces or more.

2. Limited Features

Another disadvantage of wooden paddles is that they often have limited features compared to other paddle materials like carbon fiber. Wooden paddles are more suitable for beginners. Hence, not much attention is paid to the features of the pickleball paddle.

Most wooden paddles lack features such as edge guards, grip quality, and textured surfaces, which are vital for some players. Professional and advanced players mostly use paddles with good support features that help to improve their gameplay. Wood paddles usually don’t have such features.

3. Performance

Due to some limitations from the material, wood pickleball paddles often have reduced performance compared to other paddles. Wooden paddles usually carry more power with them when playing because wood is a heavier material. This can affect the player's direction or control.

Some pickleball paddles made using other materials possess both power and accuracy. Paddles like this have a natural advantage over wooden pickleball paddles. In addition, the surface of a wooden paddle might not be as textured as that of another material.

Some other disadvantages of wooden pickleball paddles include:

  • Poor shock absorption. Wooden pickleball paddles will likely bounce off water than cut through.

Comparing Wood To Other Materials

Here is a comparison of pickleball paddles made with wood and other materials.


Graphite Paddles

Graphite paddles are structurally different from wooden paddles. A graphite pickleball paddle has one of the lightest and thinnest surface materials when it comes to paddles. It is so thin that averagely, one of these paddle faces can only be a couple of millimeters. Many people feel graphite paddles are flimsy due to their light weight. However, that is a huge misconception; graphite is an incredibly stiff or rigid material.

When playing with a graphite paddle, there will be greater energy transfer between the ball and the paddle. Graphite paddles are moderate when it comes to power, which means you can hit hard shots, but you’ll have to apply more technique with the paddle. Graphite is the best material for touch-over-power players.

Carbon Fiber Paddles

The next best option for pickleball paddle materials after graphite is carbon fiber. Like graphite, carbon fiber is quite stiff and has minimal weight. However, it boasts more durability than graphite and wood paddles. Carbon fiber and graphite are quite similar because carbon fiber is technically a form of graphite.

The difference between the two is that graphite is simply more tightly packed layers of carbon, while carbon fiber is layered and interlinked in a way that forms fibers. Due to its structure, carbon fiber paddles have greater strength and rigidity. They also use less materials to make them lighter than wood paddles.

Many people describe the feel of playing with a carbon fiber paddle as refined. The reason is because the material is excellent when it comes to absorbing the ball’s impact as it strikes the paddle and redistributing that energy. The even energy distribution keeps players shots precise and you’ll enjoy better control and stability. Carbon fiber is also very durable.

An example of incredible carbon fiber paddles is the Pakle E3 pickleball paddle. It enhances friction and provides raw-spin technology for improved control. It is also light weight, has a comfortable grip and stable traction.

Fiberglass Paddles

Among pickleball paddle materials today, fiberglass is the most common. Fiberglass paddles are made by compressing fibers under intense heat and pressure. When it comes to durability, there is no better material for pickleball accessories than fiberglass. Although the durability is high, this doesn’t affect the weight of fiberglass pickleball paddles.

Fiberglass paddles weigh surprisingly little and aren't as stiff as wooden paddles. Hence, it is a more power-driven paddle. The energy of this paddle isn't evenly spread across the entire face, which means it has a smaller sweet spot. The pickleball sweet spot is an area on the paddle where it gets the best shot. For beginners, the bigger the sweet spot, the better.

Situational Preference

There are several modern alternatives for pickleball paddle materials other than wood. However, some individuals still prefer wooden pickleball paddles to those made using composite or modern materials. There can be several reasons for this. It could be that the player prefers the heavy hits of a wooden paddle surface, or they just prefer the general feel.

If you need help identifying the best pickleball paddles for sale, we at Pakle provide you information on the best pickleball paddles for beginners and pros.

Who Should Consider Wood Pickleball Paddles?

Wood pickleball paddles are most suited for beginners looking to purchase an inexpensive pickleball bag and paddle. The reason is that anytime the paddle experiences wear and tear, it can easily be replaced. Schools and community centers that need durable and cost-effective equipment for large groups can also use wooden paddles. Furthermore, pickleball players who prefer the traditional aspect of the sport also prefer wood paddles.

Check here to find out the USA pickleball regulations for paddles and equipment.

Maintenance Tips For Wood Pickleball Paddles

Here are some maintenance tips that can help you preserve the lifespan of your wooden paddle.

1. Storage

It is important to store your wood pickleball paddle properly after each use to avoid it getting chipped or damaged. It is best to have a pickleball backpack where you can store the paddle after use.

2. Cleaning

When you are done with your wooden paddle, it is important to clean it adequately. Dab a good varnish or polyurethane on the bare wood to help cover minor contours on your paddle.

3.  Regular Inspection

Always remember to inspect the body of your paddle after each use for dirt or damage. This will help keep your paddle in optimal condition.


Wood pickleball paddles are traditional for many pickleball players, and they have their own advantages over other materials. They are highly durable and provide enough power when hitting the ball. They are also very affordable. Wood paddles are best suited for beginners and centers looking to buy in bulk.

There are several things you should consider before getting a wood pickleball paddle such as your skill level, playing style, and budget. If you need a pickleball paddle buying guide, you can check out our page for more info.

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