Control in pickleball refers to the ability to manipulate the ball to achieve desired outcomes. While control can be subjective, there are common traits typically associated with control paddles, including a thicker core, shorter length, wider body, and heavier weight. While these traits are not exclusive to control paddles, they are frequently found in pickleball paddles designed with control as a priority. Let's explore these characteristics in detail.
Control paddles usually have a thicker core, measuring 16mm or more. This thickness allows the ball to be absorbed into the paddle, providing a plush, softer feel. It facilitates resetting hits, executing drop shots into the no-volley zone, and slowing down the game. Although these actions can be achieved with a power paddle and a thinner core, a thick core offers a greater margin for error.
Shorter Length and Wider Body
A shorter paddle length combined with a wider body is another key characteristic of control paddles. The shorter length brings the point of contact with the ball closer to your hand, making it more comfortable and theoretically easier to control. The wider body, along with the shorter length, provides a larger hitting surface and sweet spot, enhancing your blocking and resetting abilities.
Shorter / Wider (Epic & S2)
Longer / Narrower (Invikta)
Paddle weight plays a significant role in control. While power paddles are often associated with added weight, a heavier paddle also contributes to control. A heavier paddle offers stability and comfort, preventing twisting in your hand and reducing mis-hits. Additionally, it helps absorb shock and vibrations, minimizing their impact on your execution.
A thicker core, shorter length, wider body, and heavier weight are characteristics not exclusive to control paddles but are commonly associated with control paddles. Hope this article has been informative about control paddles. To learn about power paddles, check out our video on that topic. Remember, finding the right paddle for your game can significantly improve your performance.