Paddle Care Guide
Some people are absolutely anal about their paddle and preserving it in pristine condition. Others may take care of their paddles, but don’t really care about the dings and marks that are going to naturally come on a paddle that is well loved. And then there is a third group who are lucky not to buy a new paddle every year because they take such poor care of it. Working as a customer service manager for Selkirk Sport I have spoken to many customers in each of these categories. Here are a few easy steps you can take to keep your paddle looking new, and performing at its prime.
- Clean Your Paddle. The face and edge guard of your paddle can be cleaned with any glass cleaner and lint-free towel. The graphics are going to wear over time, but that’s the nature of any sport where you make contact with a ball. So do not worry if that happens to your paddle; it is a sign of a well-loved and well-used paddle.
- Preserve & Replace Your Grip … The handle is going to build up grime from your sweat and dead skin. Just take a moment to wipe it off with a towel or damp cloth after play. This will help to preserve the life of your grip. At some point though, you may want to replace the grip. Depending on your particular grip, you will be able to tell over time if the grip has lost its tackiness or cushion and should be replaced. How often you replace it really depends on how much you play and how much it matters to you.
- Mange Your Paddle Temperature … Try to keep your paddle from extremes temperatures. If you live in colder temperatures, try not to keep your paddle in the trunk of your car or in your garage, unless it is heated. Cold air can make objects more brittle, and therefore more likely to break. You also do not want to leave your paddle sitting out in extreme heat. The paddle face can become softer after laying on a searing hot court in the sun. It is also not a great idea to submerge your paddle in water or any liquid for that matter. Most paddles have a honeycomb core that could trap water inside of your paddle.
- Paddle “TLC” … The key to caring for your paddle is to be gentle and give it TLC. Take a moment to look at your edge guard. The amount of wear and tear along your edgeguard is indicative of how often you hit the ground with your paddle. Most paddle manufacturers have lifetime warranties for their paddles, but these typically just cover manufacturer defects, not user error.
- AND FINALLY … If you are about to take a tumble, treat your paddle like you would your wrist. In other words, don’t land on it. Paddles were not designed to prop up 140+ pounds of dead weight. Sometimes in the heat of the moment, someone, not you of course, but someone may get a little hot-tempered. Paddles were also not designed to be smashed against the ground in fits of fury. Maybe try to find another, less destructive way of cooling off. Be mindful of the wear you place your paddle when not in play. Is it in your bag? Make sure your keys or metal water bottle are not scraping against it. This can cause undue wearing down of the graphics. Is your bag laying somewhere where other players can step on it? Or is it where people might just toss their own bags right on top of it?
Just add a couple of these suggestions into your daily Pickleball routine to keep your paddle looking and feeling pristine. And if you ever do have an issue with your paddle, just contact Selkirk. They are more than happy to help you with any issues.