Top 10 Pickleball Necessities
Whether you’re about to step onto the pickleball court for the first time, for the 10th time, or even the 100th time, here is our Top 10 Pickleball Necessities for you to bring along with you.
First things first, you won’t get very far in pickleball without a paddle. Pickleball paddles are unique compared to other racket sports, such as tennis or squash. They come in 3 general classifications: control paddles, power paddles and all-court/hybrid paddles. Follow along with this table displaying the benefits of different types of paddles.
Pickleball paddles also come in a variety of shapes, each with its own benefits. Take a look below to see which style or shape may be best for you.
If you know a child that is interested in getting into pickleball, there are specific paddles meant for them. These kids paddles will have smaller grip circumference and lighter weight, making them much easier to handle at a young age. You can even find kids paddles with fun designs that can excite and motivate a child to invest time in the sport.
The design of the paddle may be more important to some than others. If you prefer something with “pizzaz,” you can find tons of designer paddles perfect for you. Match it to your bag or cover, your favorite color or simply any design that attracts you.
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Even with a proper paddle, the game won’t begin without the proper pickleball balls. There are only two types of balls for the sport. One type for outdoor play and another for indoor play. But what’s the official difference between the two types? Shop all our indoor pickleballs here! Shop all of our outdoor pickleballs here! If you're not sure which pickleball you want, don't worry you can shop all of our pickleballs here!
Picking a pickleball bag truly comes down to preferences. No one bag is necessarily “better” than another. The main focuses of purchasing the right bag for you comes down to: types & number of compartments, size & shape, how it’s carried, and additional features.
Some bags have extra pockets for water bottles or your keys and wallet. Others are very simple and merely have a single slot for your paddles and balls.
Some bags are bigger than others. As said before, there are bags that are shaped specifically to carry just paddles and balls. Others are built more like a traditional backpack where you can cram many things into the pockets. Some though are built like a small duffel bag, giving you plenty of space for paddles, balls, water, even a sweatshirt or change of clothes.
How it’s carried tends to be a big selling point for pickleball players. There are folks who find the two-strap backpack style to be most comfortable. This variety comes with typical backpack-like straps or in drawstring form. Others lean towards a one-strap duffel bag style that can be kept over your shoulder or held in your hand.
Lastly, there are certain pickleball bags that possess unique features. You can find bags that have separate netted compartments strictly to carry your balls. Others have reflective patches and strips for those who may walk or bike to the courts at dusk or dawn. Depending on your lifestyle or playing habits, these features may be for you.
A cover can protect your paddle and make it last longer. Using a cover to eliminate the risk of any scratches or chips while you’re not playing is a smart way to increase the lifetime of your paddle. Nobody wants to buy a new paddle sooner than expected, so a cover is a perfect form of protection. You can find covers with simple to unique designs that perfectly match your game and personality.
For some, owning a personal portable pickleball net is necessary to play the game. Others may be blessed to have access to local indoor or outdoor courts that have permanent nets. Even if that’s you, it never hurts to own a portable one in case you find yourself in a pickle at a court without nets (heh, see what we did there).
Portable indoor and outdoor nets are widely available. We suggest ensuring 5 major factors when purchasing yours: durability, portability, ease of setup, adjustability and price. The portability factor is one of the most important, as nobody wants to be lugging around a bulky net to every court they visit.
Pickleball is a movement-based sport, and not only are you moving a lot, but you’re moving quickly. It’s important that one is able to bend, stretch, jump and swing without being constrained by their shirts or bottoms.
For men, a looser but well-fitting pair of shorts that don’t fall off of you is best. For women, a comfortable sports skirt tends to provide the best movement ability and comfort. Tops, so long as they aren’t overly tight, are up to the player. Shirts made out of polyester or spandex, which wick away sweat and keep you cool, are always a best choice.
While we all wish the weather was always perfect for pickleball, it sadly isn’t. Owning a sports caliber sweatshirt for those colder and gloomier days is a smart decision. This added layer will keep you warm and your muscles loose as you play your matches.
We all enjoy soaking up the sun, but not many like too much sun. Bringing a comfortable and aerodynamic hat or visor to play pickleball in can help prevent unwanted sunburn. Depending on where your court is and the time of day you’re playing, a hat can also keep that pesty sunlight out of your eyes. Nobody wants to be blindly swinging during a pickleball match!
As most sports go, pickleball is all from the ground up. Wearing the proper pair of socks can drastically affect your game. A thicker pair will help prevent any tears in your socks, which if not avoided can lead to painful blisters on your heel or foot.
A proper pair of socks will feel more comfortable overall as well. They can help your performance by eliminating excess sweat or itchiness. When you’re moving back and forth throughout the entire game, this extra comfort could be all you need to play your best.
Towels are a key accessory to have on hand whether you play indoors or outdoors. You’re bound to sweat a lot in either environment, so have a towel with you to dry your hands or keep the sweat out of your eyes.
Most importantly, you have to stay hydrated. Packing a bottle and drinking water before, during and after pickleball is detrimental to your body’s health. This is especially true when playing outdoors. It may also be beneficial to include some sort of electrolytes in your water. You can do this by using a wide variety of powders, premade electrolyte drinks, or through chewable tablets as well.
1 Extra: A Good Attitude!
No matter how corny it sounds, come to play pickleball with a good attitude! Your opponents, teammates, nor yourself will enjoy playing otherwise.
Whether you’re playing well or not, continue to stay positive and enjoy yourself. If you find yourself aggravated for any reason, step back and take a deep breath to relax. Try to figure out where you may be struggling in your play. If your team is losing by a lot, just continue to give it your best and forget the rest.
Remember, this is about having fun, and win or lose you can always have fun!