Over the past couple of years, pickleball has become an extremely popular and world-famous game! For those who don’t know, pickleball is similar to tennis when it comes to the equipment that you need to play. Just like tennis, pickleball needs a net, a court, pickleball paddles, and of course, pickleball. If you’re newer to pickleball life you may know that there are a lot of pickleball paddles available. However, it can be difficult to know where to start.
In this article I’m going to take a look and discuss the differences between composite and graphite pickleball paddles. Here is composite vs graphite pickleball paddles.
Composite vs Graphite Pickleball Paddles – Reviewed
I’m going to start out with cost because let’s be honest, one of the first things that comes to mind when we make any purchase is how much it’s going to cost. The good news is when it comes to composite and graphite pickleball paddles, there isn’t much of a difference in price.
If you want to get technical, composite pickleball paddles are considered the cheaper of the two. Cheaper composite paddles that are one the low end of the range usually cost around $45. On the other hand, a low-end graphite pickleball paddle doesn’t cost much more. They cost around $60. If you’re looking to buy a higher end model made out of either material you’ll be happy to know neither one is going to cost you more than $145.
I suggest, if possible, that you don’t let cost be a huge factor in your decision-making process. If you’re looking for a very budget-friendly option I wouldn’t suggest composite or graphite. There’s wooden paddles that come in well below the $50 price range so they’re great for anyone that really can’t or doesn’t want to spend a lot on a pickleball paddle. However, I should mention that wooden paddles won’t give you the same experience that a graphite pickleball paddle would. I don’t recommend them if I can help it.
So, what even is the difference between these two paddles in terms of material? And most importantly, what are graphite and composite?
Composite pickleball paddles are made from a variety of materials. They’re made from a hybrid of materials instead of one single material like graphite paddles.
Cores like Aluminum, Nomex, and Polymer are most common cores but polymer cores in both composite and graphite pickleball paddles are by far the most common core because of the response they give to pickleball players.
The combination of materials used in composite paddles create a foam-like body that is easy on the hands, smoother, softer, quieter and very responsive. Overall, just very comfortable to hold.
I prefer composite paddles over graphite paddles because of the additional power they provide. They have just the right amount of texture to “grab the ball” to give it that extra oomph and put some spin on the ball.
Graphite paddles are made of one single material, graphite and they generally use the same paddle cores as composite paddles (Aluminum, Nomex, and Polymer) but they’re most known for their airy lightweight feel.
Graphite paddles are usually lighter than composite paddles, you can find that some graphite paddles are a full ounce lighter than composite paddles. However, for the most part graphite paddles are going to be around 7.5oz while composite paddles are usually around 8.0 ounces.
You may be wondering “can you actually feel the difference”? Yes actually, you can! Many players that play with graphite paddles claim they can feel how lightweight and comfortable a graphite paddle is. They say it gives them a play experience that a composite paddle just can’t give them.
A lot of pickleball players are also attracted to graphite paddles over composite paddles because when graphite pickleball paddles are combined with a nice honeycomb polymer core you can get an elite level of touch and feel.
It is said that graphite is more durable when it comes to the face of the pickleball paddle, however, you also need to think about both the paddles surface as well as the core when it comes to which materials are going to last.
Whether or not you choose to go with a paddle face of composite, graphite, wood, or plastic. I want to stress to you to make sure to choose a pickleball paddle with a face that includes ultraviolet inhibitors in it to minimize sun damage as well as discoloration.
This will give you the best chance of preserving the face of whatever pickleball paddle you’ve chosen. Of course, the key when you’re buying anything, is to make sure you’re getting value for your money.
If you’re trying to choose between Composite vs Graphite pickleball paddles, the decision can be a difficult one. Despite the similarities between both, the two are starkly different when it comes to gameplay.
No matter whether you choose composite or graphite, you’re bound to improve the way you play overtime. Both paddle options offer an ideal way to improve both striking power and grip strength.
Looking for more? Here are some other articles I put together:
Learn: About Pickleball, Why is it Called Pickleball?, Basic Pickleball Rules, Pickleball Court Dimensions, What is Pickleball?, Pickleball Singles vs Doubles – Strategies and Rules, Pickleball Strategy – Advanced, and What is the Most Aggressive Shot in Pickleball!
Equipment: What Type of Pickleball Paddle is Best?, Best Pickleball Shoes, Learn More About Pickleball Equipment and Where to Buy It, Best Pickleball Clothes for Men and Women, Best Pickleball Accessories And Must-Have Gear, and Best Pickleball Paddle.