Top Ping Pong Paddles for 2016 (New Review Guide)

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best-ping-pong-paddle-review-guidePing pong is one of the easiest and most versatile games in human history – universally beloved, easy to learn, and requiring very minimal setup or commitment. You can play it at home or at a gym, and you don’t even require a net to play it properly. All you need is a solid pair of ping pong paddles and a ping pong ball.

Beat the heat and stay indoors with a solid game of ping pong with your friends or the whole family! This game is the perfect way to stay active during the summer without making yourself uncomfortable in overly hot or humid weather.

A Guide to Ping Pong Paddles

A ping pong paddle – also referred to as a table tennis racket, a paddle, or a bat – is utilized by those who play ping pong or table tennis to hit the ball back and forth. Paddles are often constructed from laminated wood as the handle, and rubber on either just one or both sides. The actual paddle area is round in shape. Advanced or premium paddles for professionals occasionally come built with special rubber grips to enhance spin techniques and speed. In contrast to formal tennis rackets, ping pong paddles are not made of strings or mesh stretched across a frame; instead it is a solid bat. In the United States, it is referred to as a “paddle,” while in Europe it is called a “bat.”

What are the benefits of playing ping pong?

Playing ping pong comes with a host of positives. For one, it is truly a family sport; people across all age demographics can play with little difficulty.

There are the multitude of health benefits too. Due to the little stress it places on joints and bones, its risk of injury is extremely low, making it the perfect alternative to many other sports for older sports and those seeking a method of exercise that isn’t overly strenuous. Table tennis is also perfect for increasing hand-eye coordination, as well as heightening your quick thinking abilities and quickening reflexes due to the high-speed nature of the game. In professional ping pong tournament settings, players must be able to run five feet, perform an almost 180-degree turn, and perfectly shoot back the ball in less than half a second!

The best part is, you don’t need much to get a game started! No matter where you are, as long as you have some space to move, a table, and a pair of the best ping pong paddles, you are well on your way to getting a tournament started in no time.

See Also: What Is The Best Air Hockey Table?

What are the different types of paddles?

When you are looking for a ping pong paddle, a lot depends on your experience and expected time spent enjoying the sport. There are many different types of paddles that address different needs.

Anatomic handled paddles

Anatomic ping pong paddles are very similar to flared handles. They contain a small bump in the center, creating a makeshift ridge on the handle for you to place your index finger and your middle finger between. This provides you with a grip crafted specifically with your hand’s security and shape in mind. The primary purpose of the anatomic handle is to offer maximum comfort to the player, more so than to offer technical advantages in play. Anatomical handles are perfect for those with large hands or who want a solid, firm grip on their handle without danger of slipping too much.

Flare handled paddles

A flared ping pong handle is the most common shape of ping pong handle you will find. These paddles simply have a thin top and larger bottom, fitting snugly into your hand, and are primarily constructed for players who do not change their grips between the forehand, backhand, and the short game. This makes flare handled ping pong paddles the perfect paddle for strong forehand players.

Straight handled paddles

Approximately half of all professional table tennis players use straight handles in their game. Straight handles come in three subcategories: rounded, square, flat, and flat. Rounded handles are the “default” that you see when looking up straight handled paddles; square paddles are a relatively new development in the ping pong paddle industry, and are utilized by such blades as Butterfly’s Timo Boll ALC. Flat straight handles are often utilized by blades that are defensive or even oversized. Straight handles are designed for players who have slight or even major changes in their grip when switching from their forehand to their backhand to their short game.

DONIC Dotec paddles

DONIC Dotec handles are handles that are built primarily with your comfort in mind; they go one step beyond the anatomic handle to craft a very smooth wooden blade but without the painfully sharp edges. DONIC blades are all rounded, and are often found to be very comfortable for players with injured wrists.

Miscellaneous special paddles

Aside from the paddles listed above, there do exist a number of special paddles that one can use for different purposes. Many are gimmicky or simply aesthetically pleasing, but still others specially accommodate the requirements of players with special needs or disabilities.

Choosing a Ping Pong Paddle

Before you purchase a ping pong paddle, there are a few things to keep in mind. Are you buying for kids or adults? Players with a disability or wrist injury? Beginner, intermediate, or advanced or professional players? All of these will determine the type of paddle you buy, as well as the amount that you should pay.

Top 3 Contenders

Kettler Advantage 4 Player Table Tennis Set

This particular set of table tennis paddles is crafted for recreational purposes. It is perfect for the whole family! It arrives with four racquets with concave (flared) wooden handles, as well as pip-in rubber. The set even includes eight one-star ping pong balls and arrive neatly wrapped in a convenient blue carrying case for when you want to take your ping pong game outside. The paddles retain a sponge layer between the wood and the playing surface, and the paddles are black and red on alternate sides.

Killerspin JETSET 4 Table Tennis Paddle Set with Balls

The Killerspin JETSET is a little on the pricier end. Featuring four paddles with alternating red and black colors, it features an inverted rubber surface measuring 1.5 millimeters thick to offer high levels of spin and control for professional players. Each blade is 5.6 millimeters thick and made with five-ply wood, and arrives with an ergonomic flared handle for maximum comfort for players across all levels of advancement.

STIGA Pure Color Advance Table Tennis Racket

The STIGA offers performance-level concave (straight) handles and incredible control with their ACS technology, as well as higher levels of speed through blades hardened by crystal. The 1.5-millimeter sponge, five-ply wooden blade, and three-star rubber all contribute to high levels of performance at a reasonable price. You can purchase the racket in one of four vibrant colors, including green, pink, yellow, or blue.

Factors to consider when choosing

Price – Usually the most important factor in purchasing the best ping pong paddle, you will need to consider whether you are willing to shell out more money for professional-level paddles or are fine with staying on the lower end. Fifty-dollar pro sets from name brands will usually last you a very long time, but if you are not willing to invest the money upfront, cheaper family recreational sets are likely better suited for you.

Handle and Grip – Research the different kinds of handles, grips, and casings out there before making your purchasing decision. Of course, there are the standard anatomic, straight, and flared handles, but many paddles come with rubber or synthetic casings and handles that may create a different balance than you are used to, or even offer various levels of protection against slippage.

Weight – Many players don’t put much stock into the weight of the paddle, but this is important. Lighter, recreational paddles are better for first-time players, while heavier paddles – such as the STIGA Pure Color – are more aimed at pros who prefer weight behind their swings.


Kettler Advantage 4 Player Table Tennis Set

This is the cheapest of the three sets, and is aimed at casual players who aren’t willing to spend much.

Killerspin JETSET 4 Table Tennis Paddle Set with Balls

It is the most expensive, but you receive four professional-level paddles and six balls. When you calculate in the number of items you receive, the price appears very reasonable.

STIGA Pure Color Advance Table Tennis Racket

It is definitely the most expensive paddle, but aesthetically pleasing, performance-level, and highly rated for the price.

Handle and Grip

Kettler Advantage 4 Player Table Tennis Set

With a straight wooden handle, these rackets may be prone to slipping in inexperienced hands.

Killerspin JETSET 4 Table Tennis Paddle Set with Balls

Its ergonomic flared handle is perfect for strong forehand players!

STIGA Pure Color Advance Table Tennis Racket

Its concave handle makes it perfect for players who shift their grips in play. It is definitely the best ping pong paddle for professional grips.


Kettler Advantage 4 Player Table Tennis Set

Each paddle weighs 0.3 pounds, and they are extremely lightweight and durable for recreational players.

Killerspin JETSET 4 Table Tennis Paddle Set with Balls

At 1.7 pounds, this is a more heavyweight paddle designed for pros who like some “oomph” behind their playing.

STIGA Pure Color Advance Table Tennis Racket

While the weight is not specifically listed, many reviews refer to it as very lightweight and flexible.

Ping Pong Paddle Reviews

Best Inexpensive: The Kettler Advantage 4 Player Table Tennis Set

Kettler Advantage 4 Player Tennis SetThis lightweight paddle set is a great choice for beginner to mid level players and comes at a mid level price. Amazon customers are happy with the high quality.


You receive 4 paddles and 8 balls for an extremely low price. Discounting the balls, the price per paddle is extremely affordable.


Unlike the other two sets, this one isn’t publicly ranked for power, spin, or control.

Best for the Money: The Killerspin JETSET 4 Table Tennis Paddle Set

Killerspin JETSET 4 Table Tennis Paddle Set with BallsBuilt primarily for comfort for pros, it cost a lot but for someone who takes the game seriously, it is ultimately a great investment.


It is professional and comfortable.


Some customers report issues with the paddles’ lifespan.

Best Overall: STIGA Pure Color Advance Table Tennis Racket

STIGA Pure Color Advance Table Tennis RacketAvailable in one of four vibrant colors, including green, pink, yellow, or blue, this is one of the best-selling ping paddles on the market.


It is extremely highly rated and well-suited for professionals.


It is the most expensive single paddle of the three.

Final Thought

No matter which brand or set you end up choosing, you can’t go wrong! With a little bit of research, price evaluation, and reflection over what sort of player you are and the best paddle that for you, investing in a set will bring you tons of fun and healthy exercise.