Whether you are an expert or a starter of pickleball, the aspect of control is necessary. Power is undoubtedly a significant factor; however, control will boost your game. Any paddle can be powerful if you have control over it, so having the best control pickleball paddle is a wise choice.
How to know which pickleball paddle is for control? Pickleball paddles with features like thick centers, graphite surfaces, and cutting-edge technology that expands and maintains the sweet spot are preferred by players who want control.
We tested the best-rated pickleball paddle 2023 and selected the ones we found best for control. Even advanced pickleball players like to improve their skills so with power, control is also needed. These pickleball paddles for control will help you improve control.
Additionally, we found a few pickleball paddles for control that can give spin and power as well. Players who are curious and want to know the selection procedure can read the buyer’s guide for useful tips and facts. Let’s not delay anymore and get into the top pickleball paddle for control.
|HEAD Radical Elite Pickleball Paddle
15.5 x 8.25 x 1.75 inches
|GAMMA Sports PolyCore Pickleball Paddle||Material
16 x 8 x 1.5 inches
|SLK Evo Hybrid & Soft Pickleball Paddles||Material
|Rally Graphite Pickleball Paddle|| Material
|ONIX Graphite Z5 Graphite Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddles|| Material
18 x 11 x 3 inches
|HEAD Graphite Pickleball Paddle|| Material
16 x 8.5 x 2 inches
|GAMMA Sports NeuCore Pickleball Paddle|| Material
16.13 x 7.63 x 0.63 inches
|Gamma Legend NeuCore Pickleball Paddles||Material
HEAD Radical elite pickleball paddle is made for players who prefer a composite surface and elongated-shaped paddle. With only 8.1 ounces weight, not only is it comfortable to swing but also ensures stability. The material used in its composition is fiberglass with a polymer honeycomb at the core. Both of these combined can give an average player control over shots without any vibrations.
It’s comfortable to hold as it has an Ergo grip which is adequately covered with foam so slippage doesn’t occur. Whenever you hit the ball, the soft HEAD’S composite hitting surface (CHS) provides extra power to your shots. Furthermore, the usage of an optimized tabular core (OTC) makes the playing experience comfortable and gives a nice pop sound.
Talking about its core thickness, it’s only 13mm or ½ inches and its grip size is 4 ¼ inches which is suitable for medium-height players. For large hands, the size of the handle can go up to 4 ⅛ inches so that’s a convenience. The overall size of the paddle is 16 inches with 5 inches handle.
Thanks to such an elongated size, one can get a wide sweet spot that is easy to maneuver. Although the sweet spot is narrow in length, it has a width of 7 ⅞ inches which is enough for intermediate players. Regardless of your gender, you can play stress-free matches with the HEAD Radical Elite pickleball paddle. Furthermore, you can choose from a red, yellow, or orange color combination.
Its construction with elongated sweet spot is what stood out to us but its performance made it amazing. We have power and control in one package, but only for intermediate or beginner players. You will improve at a fast pace while using HEAD’s Elite pickleball paddle. However professional or advanced players who are used to pure graphite pickleball paddles may find it weak or not suitable.
Players who like graphite frames will love the Gamma Poly core pickleball paddle. The light weight of approximately 8 ounces and large width of 8 inches makes it highly responsive. Additionally, it’s quite long, almost 16.6 inches in length.
The Sensa Poly Core is made for people who have a hard time adding power plus it adds touch on the ball. Its composite face with graphite frame produces a textured fiberglass surface that enhances power. Additionally, the graphite face’s texture improves ball contact while boosting accurate baseline alignment.
There is a honeycomb cushion grip used in the handle however we don’t think everyone will like it. Also, as the paddle length is 16.62 inches with a grip size of 4.12 inches, you might find honeycomb tape unnecessary. But once you get used to it, you’ll find the power given by the handle unmatchable.
Even professionals can use it because it is USAPA-approved and even features a one-year warranty. After using this pickleball paddle for control for one year, we experienced a few dead spots so be wary of that. Aside from that, it’s great for controlled movements during long hours of pickleball matches without feeling fatigued. Lastly, Keep in mind that if you do not keep it with care then its edges fall off easily which makes it unusable.
Overall, Dink shots may be made with control and at specific angles by using Gamma Poly Core pickleball paddles. Although not many traditional players find its grip faulty. We found that the GAMMA Honeycomb Cushion Grip transforms the body of the paddle into a powerful partner. Dead spots mean less response of the paddle’s sweet spot to the ball. However, after long hours of use for one year, we found a dead spot notion which is to be expected.
Featuring a weight of only 7.6 ounces, SLK Evo Soft is the most powerful control pickleball paddle on the list. You get to choose between hybrid and soft options, for control soft one is a better option. The face of this pickleball paddle is made up of SLK G8-Flex Carbon Fiber which is great at providing a soft touch on the ball. Along with that, it delivers control.
Moreover, the core composition consists of Polymer Rev-soft material which absorbs vibrations so you don’t feel the impact. Additionally, it hits the ball back with power due to the large sweet spot and thick core.
The 4.25 inches grip circumference and 5.25 inches length make it easy to hold. And the full length of this paddle is standard 16 inches. While using this best pickleball paddle for control, we felt we were faster at swinging near-net. In addition to that, even the handle absorbs moisture and impacts as it switches between the paddle’s face and the hand. This enables you to play for extended periods without feeling worn out.
It’s five times stiffer than regular pickleball paddles which makes your shots extra powerful.
Also, the shape adds to control, so all types of players can use this. Moving onto its shape, it has a wide face and sweet spot, a soft feel, and extra reach. To get a warranty for a lifetime, you can register on the official website of the manufacturer.
Even if it’s expensive, it’s worth it as you get both power and control. Furthermore, this is durable and even offers a lifetime warranty with registration. Both professionals and novices will find this great for all types of matches. It may not have USAPA approval but you can practice for competitive matches with this pickleball paddle to grow your skills.
Finding spin in a control pickleball paddle is hard but the Rally Graphite pickleball paddle offers just that. As this has a textured graphite face and composite polymer honeycomb core, you get both improved control and spin along with power. Basically, you get a balanced form of all qualities.
With the extra-large paddle face, you get increased performance even on off-center shots. That is done by reducing edge guard impacts and hits whilst providing a larger sweet spot. There’s no need to worry about the grip of its handle as it’s non-slip and offers a tacky and strong feel.
Its specifications include weight ranging from 7.7 to 7.9 ounces, a width of 8.125 inches, and a length of almost 16 inches. The handle takes up a length of 4 ¾ inches and has a grip size of 4 ⅛ inches. Additionally, it is approved by USAPA so you can use it in tournaments.
Another thing we noticed is that this is so lightweight that elderly players can also play with this. It’s forgiving and the large sweet spot reduces the chances of missing the ball. No need to compromise your fashion sense, as this has four different colors that are blue, purple, red, and yellow. We do not recommend this for players who like quiet performance because the Polypropylene honeycomb tends to get loud while smashing. Besides that, it gives you a blend of power, spin, and control.
To sum it up, this is an awesome choice for pickleball players regardless of age. It’s cost-effective and has durability even if it’s lightweight. We selected this due to its non-slip grip, textured graphite face, and powerful core. You will see a drastic improvement in your game once you use it. Even though it’s a small issue, many players hate the sound of pop produced by this paddle. If you are one of them then we recommend a quiet pickleball paddle for control.
ONIX Graphite Z5 has a Nomex core which is sturdy and offers an all-rounder performance. It’s designed for intermediate players who want power, precision, and control. As the name shows, its face is constructed from graphite which means you get better control.
Features that we loved were its popping sound produced with the ball hitting its surface. Along with that, the bounce off of the face was also satisfying. Even with Nomex core, the graphite balances out the weight and makes sure you get a light pickleball paddle.
The specifications include 15.5 inches full length with a grip size of 4 ¼ inches and a weight of 7.5 to 8.2 ounces. Additionally, the length taken by the handle area is 5 inches long. This is heavier than others but the cushioned grip area helps in effortless movements.
Although its weight is heavy, the wide 8.3-inch sweet spot makes up for it. Moving onto its shape, ONIX has experienced and given a wide-body classic pickleball paddle instead. This type of shape with Nomex shows that you can easily hit powerful shots. In addition to all that, you can choose from up to 10 different colors of pickleball paddles. Summing it all up, this offers a lot for its affordable price.
Keep in mind that as compared to others this has a higher ratio of power than control. That is why we recommend this paddle for intermediate players, as this will help them improve their game. Overall, we can assure confidence in its bigger sweet spot, balanced feel, and powerful shots.
Professional players who already know the basics of spin shots and power will discover the HEAD Graphite pickleball paddle as a blessing. Not only does it have a graphite surface but also features an advanced spin texture core that grips the ball more accurately. This enhances both the speed and spin of your shots.
The graphite paddle makes use of the most cutting-edge technology from HEAD and offers a nice pop factor. Further, a genuinely great combination of power, comfort, and control is offered by the hybrid hitting surface. In addition to that, the handle stabilizer technology delivers superior dampening on powerful shots.
By using this best pickleball paddle for control, you can surprise your opponents during competitive matches. Talking about its materials, it’s a combination of polymer, Carbon fiber, and glass fiber. The core is quite thick with a size of 14 mm and a weight of 8.1 ounces. The design is nothing too flashy as it comes with an elongated shape in length and width of 15.75 inches and 8.1 inches respectively. No matter how small or big your hand is, the grip size of 4 ⅛ inches will fit nicely.
It only comes in two color combinations blue and grey, and another crimson. We did not find its graphics appealing but the performance made it hard not to mention this.
In short, the HEAD Graphite pickleball paddle is an option for professionals who want control. But it’s not as durable as it seems and there is no warranty either. Its lightweight graphite frame with a thick core enables players to utilize both spin and control without much hard work. So, we recommend this for practice and you can put extra tape on the handle to make it more durable.
Gamma Hellbender is one of the best pickleball paddles for control because of its wide cell size that leads towards surety and responsiveness.
It is 16.125 inches long with a width of 7 ⅝ inches. The handle comprises 4 ½ inches of the whole length. As the handle is quite short from the overall length, it’s hard to hit backhand shots with this.
Upon looking at it closely, it has a subtle teardrop shape which is a mixture of both elongated and wide types of pickleball paddles. With such shape and weight, it is highly forgiving with a wide sweet spot.
It’s lightweight with a weight of only 7.6 ounces and is designed for professional players yet intermediate players can also use it. Furthermore, the textured graphite frame and 166 mm thick polymer core enhance power, spin, and control. The distinct thing about this pickleball paddle is its core which is designed by GAMMA. The NeuCore Honeycomb Polymer core is 25% thicker than a regular core which helps in controlling aspects of the match.
You can use this for both attacking and defense game styles. The oversized sweet spot with an ergonomic handle ensures that you get control over the court. Another good thing is that it is USAPA-approved and can be used in tournaments! No matter what gender you are, you can make this your partner.
To sum it up, this is a nice pickleball paddle for tournaments as it takes away chances of errors. Also, it is forgiving but it might be too expensive for beginners. Also, we do not recommend using it to practice backhand shots. If you already know the skills then it’s easier to use and improves your performance. In competitive matches, you will find it effortless to block speedy shots at the net with the GAMMA hellbender.
Gamma Typhoon NeuCore uses the same core technology as the Hellbender one. But it’s heavier and more expensive than the early Hellbender model. As Hellbender made it hard to hit backhand shots, Typhoon has a 7.2 ounces weight which gives it more reach. The best thing about this is its quiet performance. Due to the 10 mm hexagonal cell opening in fiberglass, you get no noise during shots.
With Gamma gamma-thick NeuCore, honeycomb cushion grip handle, and textured fiberglass face, you get amazing control over your shots. Along with that, it offers extra power due to its weight and fiberglass material. The shape is similar to the Hellbender model but this one has more tackiness.
Furthermore, the tackiness makes this powerful pickleball paddle easier to control. You can easily generate power and spin with this pickleball paddle to hit dink shots. Additionally, it is USAPA-approved so take it with you to your tournaments. Unfortunately, there is no carrying case included but we recommend getting one to ensure the durability of your sports equipment.
Keep in mind that it is not forgiving and produces lots of bounce which at times can be hard to control. Aside from that, you can select from two color combinations Pink/Grey or Navy/Grey.
In short, we found its quiet performance useful in being relaxed and focusing during speedy matches. For power and control during shots, you will find this suitable. Also, it is not so forgiving as it’s heavy but you will find it useful in attacking. People who prefer defense types of game style will have a hard time adjusting to it. But after a few tries, you will be able to maintain defensive matches too.
In the above review, we have listed the advanced player pickleball paddle for 2023. Every pickleball paddle has a different material, structure, length, and thickness of the core. Along with making the list of the best pickleball paddles for control, we also made a list of features you should see. Now, let us tell you how we got to know that there are a few features that stood out to us. Read this guide to know which of the best pickleball paddles for control you should get:
The weight determines how the paddle will affect your game style. Usually, a pickleball paddle under 8 ounces is considered lightweight, and above 8.5 ounces are heavy ones. A heavy pickleball paddle will have a harder and more powerful impact on the ball. Whereas the lighter one will be easier to swing and control. For control, we recommend using a light pickleball paddle so that you do not have to put effort into swinging.
A pickleball paddle has various parts like the handle and the surface area. Here is a simple breakdown of parts and which one you should select according to your gameplay:
Wood, graphite, and a mixture of both are the basic materials of a pickleball paddle. Wood pickleball paddles are heavy so they are mostly used for powerful shots. Graphite pickleball paddles are the best ones for control and responsive shots. They are more pricey than the wooden pickleball paddles.
For both spin and control at an affordable cost, you can go for composite pickleball paddles. These have a blend of aluminum, graphite, and fiberglass for more advanced players.
- The Shape
When it comes to shape you need to make sure that balance is also perfect. All the above-mentioned pickleball paddles had ideal balance overall. However the shape may vary; there are edgeless, elongated, widebody, and classic shape variations. Classic shape(widebody) is like a rectangular paddle and is the most common one. You’ll get a blend of forgiveness and accuracy with these types.
We preferred a widebody shape great for controlling as they have a large sweet spot. For power and spin, elongated-shaped pickleball paddles are best as you get more spin through the small sweet spots.
- The Handle
In the handle, you need to see if it fits your desired grip size and if its length suits you. There are numerous handle lengths from small, and medium to long. We found that smaller handle lengths enable more wrist movements which will add power to your shots. A longer handle will help in providing spin effortlessly, so it’s all up to your skills. But keep in mind grip size should fit in our hand or else the length will not help.
You have to consider the core material and thickness of the core material to find how much control a pickleball paddle will give.
Polymer and aluminum core materials aid in giving control. Another material that is rarely used in the core of a pickleball paddle is Nomex. Aluminum core material is the most common, lightest, and most durable. The next commonly used material is Polymer, and we experienced that these are the quietest core out of all. By using plastic blends and advanced technology, they offer great control.
Nomex is light, flexible, and somewhat resemblant to honeycombed boards. Paddles with Nomex cores are sturdy, tough, loud, and hard. We do not recommend Nomex Core for beginners. This is not common and mostly we only see an advanced player use a pickleball paddle with a Nomex core.
A 16 mm thickness is considered a thick core, such paddles have better control. Additionally, they aid in stabilizing the paddle, reducing the amount of swaying. The most popular and user-friendly core size is 16 mm. Paddles with a thinner core, which can range in thickness from 10 to 14 mm, are considered to have more power but they are not as stable.
The skill level aspect is self-explanatory as you have to know what type of player you are. As you search for control pickleball paddles, just look at factors that enhance that. When changing style, you can read this guide to get a better knowledge of spin and power game styles.
Everyone has their budget limit set before shopping and this is understandable. You can get various budget-friendly options on the market. We have listed many affordable and expensive pickleball paddles. You get advice from your coach or get the one you prefer most suitable. Beginners should go for budget pickleball paddles instead of expensive ones.
Here is a breakdown of how paddles tell if they are made for power or control:
- A thick core offers control whereas a thin core provides power.
- Aluminum or Polymer core material is best preferred for control. However, power is given best by Nomex core.
- Power pickleball paddles have fiberglass material and carbon fiber or graphite material has control.
- For control go for light or medium-weighted pickleball paddles as heavy ones offer power.
- The handle for control should be small because you can add power easily by wrist movement.
Frequently Asked Questions:
1. Which material is best for the pickleball paddle for control?
Graphite or composite materials are preferred best when it comes to controlling.
2. Is a thicker core necessary in pickleball paddles?
It depends on your preference, a thin core is better if you like power, and a thick core is the best option for having control.
3. What is the ideal weight of a pickleball paddle for beginners?
A beginner can go for lighter weights ranging from 7.5 to 8.1 ounces.
4. Which pickleball paddle face is best; graphite or carbon fiber?
In comparison to fiberglass, carbon fiber has a higher strength-to-weight ratio. It is also stronger than graphite, which might not be durable when used to hit powerful shots regularly.
Having a control pickleball paddle will not immediately get you accurate shots. But when you play with these you will feel the difference in your control at first use. Also, it might vary from player to player, so select the one you find most compatible. Keep in mind to practice, again and again, to get used to the paddle and skills.
Players who incorporate spin and control can go for the best spin pickle paddle. Similarly, if you prefer power and control then opt for a powerful or advanced pickleball paddle. We have tested researched and compiled this list after many pickleball paddles so you can trust us. Overall we have our three favorite best pickleball paddles for control which are given below:
- HEAD Radical Elite Pickleball Paddle-Best Elongated pickleball paddle for control: First place is HEAD Radical Elite due to the advanced technologies used in its construction.
- Gamma Poly Core Pickleball Paddle-Best spin pickleball paddle for control: In Second place, we liked Gamma Poly Core perfect for all types of players. Its graphite face texture and honeycomb cushion grip improve the overall game.
- SLK Evo Hybrid & Soft 2023 Pickleball Paddles-Best powerful pickleball paddle for control: Lastly our favorite is SLK Evo Soft as this has the best core which is soft and thick enough to provide control and power consistently.