cheap pickleball paddles

Top 5 Best Cheap Pickleball Paddles

Barrett Kincheloearticle, Basics, beginner, Gear 5 Comments

Are you a new player looking for a cheap pickleball paddle to get started with? Are you also a new player who was looking at a list of nice paddles and then proceeded to get sick to your stomach while you looked at the prices? I know. Pickleball paddles can be expensive. But there are plenty of cheap pickleball paddles out there. You just have to find them. Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered!

I’ve got a list of my top 5 picks for the best cheap pickleball paddles. If you want to see some of the best pickleball paddles currently available head on over to my recommended gear page where you can see more.

Before we begin, there’s one important thing I need to mention. I have not tried these paddles like I try the others that I review on this site. This is not a paddle review article. However, I have seen some of these on the court and have seen people play with them. Before we get started, let me give you a few tips on how to pick a paddle.

Quick tip: picking a paddle

I have to mention a quick tip before I get started talking about these paddles. Since you’re most likely a beginner or someone who is new to pickleball, I’m going to keep this brief and simple. The most important factor in picking a paddle from the list below is weight! It is easily the most important factor because it’s going to dictate whether you can wield the paddle easily or not.

The bottom line is if you have issues with your wrists, have pre-existing injuries, or your arms are weak in general, then you need to pick a lighter weight paddle. Try to avoid paddles over 8oz, and absolutely avoid wooden paddles.

Here is a convenient table I put together showing the paddles that I’ll be talking about.

Amazin’ Aces Graphite Pickleball Paddle

This paddle is great for power players and people who have the strength to use a very heavy paddle.

The first paddle on the block is the Amazin’ Aces Graphite Pickleball Paddle. Amazin’ Aces is a small company that makes great entry-level paddles. They have a few paddles that are for advanced players, but their cheap ones are great for players who want to get started but aren’t completely committed yet.

What sticks out to me about this paddle is the graphite face which is exclusive to this list. Like I said in other articles, graphite faces tend to make the ball pop off the face quicker. Basically, it feels really great when you hit the ball in the sweet spot. If you’re new to pickleball, that feeling will give you a great introduction to the game and will boost your confidence.

In terms of the size, the paddle is very standard. The widebody width of 8” gives you plenty of room for error which is perfect for beginners.

The big downside of this paddle is how heavy it is. The average weight is ~9.2oz which is very heavy. Do not use this paddle if you are weak in the arms or wrists. It will fatigue you quickly. It only comes in one color but is available on Amazon.

  • Core: polymer
  • Face: graphite
  • Grip circumference: 4 3/8”
  • Grip type: perforated cushion
  • Weight: ~9.2oz
  • Paddle length: 15 3/4”
  • Paddle width: 8 1/8”
  • NOT USAPA approved!

Rally Tyro 2

This paddle is very well rounded and can be used by anyone, but stronger players may want to consider the Selkirk NEO instead, listed below.

This cheap paddle by Pickleball Central is a popular option among deal seekers. You get a lightweight paddle with a forgiving face for pretty cheap. Obviously, it won’t be as high quality as the vast majority of expensive paddles out there, but that’s not the point. Like most of the paddles on this list, the Rally Tyro 2 is meant to get you used to a composite paddle so that you can get a good feel of what it will be like. This paddle does that in spades.

I’ve seen someone use this paddle before, and he played with it extremely well. It was very interesting because the individual is a big, strong guy who could easily use an 8oz paddle instead of the feathery Rally Tyro 2. But he still uses this paddle instead. It’s a solid choice if you’re on a budget, but it’s not USAPA approved.

You can find it over here on Pickleball Central.

  • Core: polymer
  • Face: polycarbonate
  • Grip circumference: 4”
  • Grip type: perforated cushion
  • Weight: ~6.6oz
  • Paddle length: 15 5/8”
  • Paddle width: 7 3/4”
  • NOT USAPA approved!

Selkirk NEO Composite Pickleball Paddle

This paddle is best for competitive players, experienced racquet sports players and young people.

If you’ve been reading my content for awhile, then you know that I’m a huge Selkirk fan. I promise they’re not paying me! They make excellent products and I’m always excited to talk about their paddles. They make some of the most expensive paddles, including the one that I use. But they also have the NEO Composite which they consider the “starter paddle” of their paddle line.

And indeed it is.

I know someone personally that used to play with this paddle. In fact, he’s an advanced player and it took him awhile to upgrade from this one. It’s the most expensive option on our list, but easily the highest quality.

In general, the NEO composite will give you great power due to its weight, but you must have the strength to wield it comfortably. If you don’t have a lot of arm strength, then this paddle may wear on you after awhile. Your wrist can fatigue then you may have to stop playing earlier than you expected. And believe me, that’s no fun.

If you’re a competitive player and you know you’re going to be playing pickleball a lot, this paddle is going to be one of your best options. It comes in the blue color that you see above, or you can get it in red.

  • Core: PowerCore™ polymer
  • Face: composite
  • Grip circumference: 4”
  • Grip type: thin wrap
  • Weight: ~7.8oz
  • Paddle length: ~15 1/2”
  • Paddle width: 7 5/8”
  • USAPA approved!

Paddletek Ranger

This paddle is excellent for people with pre-existing hand and wrist injuries, seniors and children.

Paddletek is an extraordinary pickleball manufacturer that makes some of the most popular paddles in the sport today. They’re known for making paddles that are consistent, comfortable and reliable for all levels of play.

Based on the specifications of the paddle, the Paddletek Ranger is designed for seniors, people with small hands, and children. In fact, it’s very similar to the Rally Tyro 2 above, but has a slightly wider face which gives you more forgiveness.

I’ll be talking about this in a future article, but if you’re looking to get a great starter paddle for a young child under the age of 11, this will be a great option for them. The biggest concern for kids and pickleball is, of course, the weight of the paddle. They have a hard time swinging 8oz paddles, but 6.5 – 7oz paddles should be perfectly fine for them.

This is also a great option for seniors with wrist and arms issues. The lightweight nature and small grip circumference of the paddle will keep you at the court for longer! As usual, they’re available at Pickleball Central.

  • Core: polymer
  • Face: composite
  • Grip circumference: 4”
  • Grip type: ultra cushion contour
  • Weight: ~6.7oz
  • Paddle length: 15 1/2”
  • Paddle width: 8”
  • NOT USAPA approved!

Diller Wooden Pickleball Paddle

This paddle is best for people who need the absolutely most inexpensive option available, regardless of the heavy weight of the paddle.

As usual, I want to be upfront and honest with you. I have never played with, nor have I ever seen this model before. The reason why I have it listed is because it’s very inexpensive.

Out of all the wooden paddles that I’ve seen, this was the best option that I could find. You have to be careful though, wooden paddles are not for everyone. People typically don’t use them because they’re extraordinarily heavy. This paddle is a whopping 10oz.

That’s heavy.

Really heavy.

I would never recommend this paddle to anyone unless you had absolutely no other option. I found this one on Pickleball Central that you can purchase.

  • Wooden paddle
  • Grip circumference: 4 1/4”
  • Grip type: thin wrap
  • Weight: ~10oz
  • Paddle length: 15 1/2”
  • Paddle width: 7”
  • NOT USAPA approved!

So there you have it. That’s my list of the top 5 best cheap pickleball paddles. I may update this list as things progress, but for the most part, this is what it is.

Out of all the paddles on the list, the one that I recommend the most is the Selkirk NEO. Assuming that you have the budget, this the absolute best starter paddle out there at the moment. But if you don’t have the money to spend on a paddle like that, check out the Rally Tyro 2. Although you won’t be able to play with it in USAPA sanctioned tournaments, it will certainly be great for you on the casual pickleball court.

Thanks so much for checking out the list and feel free to let me know what you think. If you’re an advanced player, what paddle did you use when you first started?

Comments 5

  1. You could give an estimate or range. (or do you make your money when we click to find out???)

    Also, with the exception of the first one (~$30), these aren’t what most people would consider a cheap racket. The others you list are $40, and $50+.

    1. Post

      Hey Adam, thanks for the comment.

      Yeah, you’re right. I’m going to be updating this soon with better information.

      Let me know if I can help you find anything.

  2. You didn’t mention prices!!!! Very important- I’m a senior and a beginner-!
    Don’t want to spent a lot/ like the sound of
    Paddletek Ranger

    1. Post

      Hi Ursula, I can’t mention prices on here because sometimes they change.

      Hmmm, I would check out the Paddletek Phoenix LTE. I think that would be a great paddle for you.

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