Jim Yang is our site founder. As a pro ping pong player in the past, he's also our main expert consultant. In his spare time, Jim teaches kids table tennis, goes hiking, and read more
Last updated: August 30, 2023
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Did you know that ping pong isn’t just for having fun in your basement? It’s also an Olympic sport! In fact, it’s been an Olympic sport since 1988.
If you’re looking to get serious about ping pong, or just want to up your game, you’re going to need a good paddle. We carefully examined 38 products and chose the 10 best ping pong paddles the market offers these days. The Killerspin Impact D9 PowerGrip beat them all. When making our picks, we considered the construction, design, and materials of the paddles since they form their fundamentals and determine how they function. We also took into account control, speed, and spin. We kept player level in mind and reviewed ping pong paddles of all different levels. Lastly, we included whether the paddle was ITTF certified. So, let’s dive in!
The Killerspin Impact D9 PowerGrip is designed for all styles of play. It has great pop as well as spin and control. It is made of two carbon layers which increase the power of the ping pong paddle. It is made of composite wood with carbon fiber layers which give it extra accuracy in aggressive play.
This ping pong paddle is great for people who are starting to move from intermediate to advanced play. Its pop will force you to gain greater control of your play, while its accuracy will help you grow from average to excellent at aiming the ball. It is a powerful paddle that will keep you advancing.
Why did it make our list?
We loved playing with this powerful intermediate ping pong paddle. We felt so in control of the ball and our play. We tried it out on intermediate and advanced players, and everyone agreed it was a great paddle to use. Its construction is top-notch, and it is great for any style of ping pong. Its PowerGrip handle lets your index finger grip the curve of the handle while your thumb rests on the forehand side curve.
What is not ideal about it?
This ping pong paddle may be too powerful for some players. With great power comes great responsibility. We found that our beginner players had a lot of trouble with this paddle because they didn’t know how to control it properly. Also, the PowerGrip is designed for people who use the shake-hand grip and is great if that is your grip but doesn’t do much if you use any other grips.
This ping pong paddle comes in a beautiful gift box. It is made with Butterfly Wakaba 2.1 rubber on the front and Flextra 2.1 rubber on the back. The Wakaba rubber creates less spin and speed in return for more control. The Flextra rubber is very well-rounded and has a good balance of everything.
This is the perfect ping pong paddle for people who want to work on their accuracy. The Wakaba rubber lets you slow down the ball and really focus on where you want it to go. This will let you master your accuracy so you can eventually move onto paddles that are both accurate and fast.
Why did it make our list?
We had so much fun with the combination of the Wakaba rubber and the Flextra rubber. It was great to have so much accuracy on the forehand and great spin and speed on the backhand. It really let us utilize all of our strokes efficiently and choose which one to use more wisely. We love the little travel bag that the paddle comes in, which is perfect for taking to a friend's house.
What is not ideal about it?
If you’re looking for speed, this isn’t the paddle for you. With this ping pong paddle, you trade speed for accuracy, and some people might not want to make that sacrifice. This is a good ping pong paddle for beginners who are trying to get a grip on their accuracy, but if you have good aim or engage in more advanced play, this isn’t the paddle for you. We still had fun using it and would recommend it for accuracy training.
This ping pong paddle is ITTF regulation size. It has an inverted surface and flared grip. It is made of two layers of carbon-kevlar, which lowers vibrations and creates a large sweet spot. It also has PVC side tape. It has great control, spin, and speed. It is an advanced ping pong paddle.
This ping pong paddle is for people who have trained hard and are ready for something new. Made of Hinoki, Koto, Ayous, and Carbon Kevlar, this paddle has extreme speed, spin, and control. If you have mastered your accuracy and different grips as well as forehand and backhand, this might be the paddle for you.
What stands out?
We had so much fun pushing the limits with this paddle. With such high speed, spin, and control, we were really able to play an intense game of ping pong with this advanced ping pong paddle. It really is the best ping pong paddle for control. We could make the ball go exactly where we wanted it to and do it with speed on top of that. This is the paddle for you if you are ready to up your game.
What cons did we manage to find?
This ping pong paddle was too powerful for some of our players. When you try to use a ping pong paddle that is more advanced than you are, it can overpower you. Some of our players had a lot of trouble keeping up with this paddle. So, you really have to know what you’re doing in order to use this paddle and have any fun with it. If you aren’t ready for this paddle, it won’t be enjoyable. But if you are, you will have a great time.
This professional ping pong paddle is made of extremely high-quality wood as well as Sriver rubber. It is made for the competition. It also comes with two ping pong balls. It has a flared grip design for comfort. It is ITTF approved, so you can use it in tournaments.
This is the ping pong paddle for you if you are looking for speed and spin and are willing to let accuracy slip a bit. The thick layer sponge makes for fast and hard shots, the rubber increases speed and spin, and the handle is flared while being both stylish and practical.
What makes it special?
We loved how much speed we were able to get out of this ping pong paddle. It is ITTF approved, so it is of tournament quality, ready to compete. The shakehand style grip was incredibly comfortable. The Rubber really does its job increasing the spin and speed of the ball, and we could tell the difference from the other rubbers of other paddles. Combine that with the thick sponge layer, and you have a very strong paddle.
What cons did we find?
We struggled a lot with the lack of control that this paddle has to offer. While it is a heavy hitter, we often miss the table or hit the other side of the table by accident. In addition, its speed and spin were hard to control if you weren’t ready for that kind of play. If you don’t use a shakehand grip, this paddle is a bit uncomfortable to use. But if you are willing to sacrifice some control for power, this is the paddle for you.
This intermediate to advanced ping pong paddle has good control, speed, and spin. It has great balance and a comfortable flared grip. It has a thin sponge that helps you feel the ball so you can have a better feel and more precise shots.
This is great for the intermediate player who is nearly advanced. Its well-rounded speed, control, and spin make it a great paddle to take that leap with. Its sponge will help you learn to feel the ball and the five-layer wood and Nitrx-4Z rubbers bring some serious power.
What do we love it for?
We were blown away by how much we could feel every hit with this ping pong paddle for intermediate players. We could feel the ball better with this paddle than with any other paddle we tested. This is thanks to the thin 1.8 mm sponge. Since it is ITTF-approved, it is ready to use in competitions, and we could see why someone would want to use it. This is the paddle for people who really want to feel the ball.
What were we disappointed with?
While this paddle is well-rounded, it is not particularly exceptional at anything besides how easy it is to feel the ball. With spin at a 9, control at an 8, and speed at a 7, this paddle doesn’t stand out from the rest. Unless you know how to utilize the skill of feeling the ball, this paddle won't help you win. The storage case doesn't have a handle, so it isn't useful for transportation. But we think the amazing ability to feel the ball makes this paddle worth having in your collection.
This ping pong paddle comes from an Olympic brand. It has incredible balance and is made of durable five-ply wood. It has a flared handle with Power Grip Sponge technology which controls the vibrations you feel and is comfortable.
The JOOLA Attack is great for people who love and are familiar with the JOOLA brand. Anyone who is a huge follower of table tennis knows about JOOLA and how reputable they are and would love to have one for their own collection.
Why are we impressed?
Playing with a JOOLA paddle felt incredible, knowing the legacy that the brand has. We loved playing with a well-rounded ping pong paddle and could engage in offensive, defensive, or mixed play using this paddle. Its rubber is ITTF approved, and the paddle is USA Table Tennis approved. The 2 mm sponge is the perfect size to both be springy and let you feel the ball when you hit it.
What negatives must you be aware of?
This ping pong paddle is pretty run-of-the-mill. Although it comes from an incredible brand, its speed, control, and spin are nothing to write home about. It is great for a fun game of ping pong but is not really made for a competition. We had a lot of fun playing lighthearted games with this paddle, but when we wanted to increase the heat of the game, this paddle couldn't keep up.
The Butterfly Lin Yun-Ju CF-1 ping pong paddle is an ITTF-approved paddle that is specifically designed to bring maximum control to new players. It helps beginners learn the basics of the game and have fun while doing so.
If you are new to the game and are looking for the first paddle to buy, this is the paddle for you. The incredible control offered by this paddle will help you learn to aim, learn different strokes, and help you try out different styles of play.
Why is it special?
We found this to be the best ping pong paddle for beginners. We loved how easy it is to learn with this paddle. It is great for learning the foundations or just for having fun with family and friends. No matter what level of play you’re at, you’ll be able to appreciate how fun this paddle is. Everyone who is learning how to play should use this paddle as a starting point.
What are the flaws?
This paddle just isn’t designed for competitive play beyond the beginner level. If you’ve already learned how to play the game and are looking for something to bring you high speed and spin, this isn't the paddle for you. This paddle is very slow. While that is great for learning, at some point in your journey with this sport, you will have to upgrade to another paddle besides this one.
The AC Hero was created for players looking for good speed and spin but also wanted to still feel the ball and have good control. It has an Arylate Carbon blade and a hard lacquer finish. It is incredibly light and perfect for people who want a lightweight paddle.
This ping pong paddle has updated the use of Arylate Carbon blades by creating a unique bond between the Koto outer ply along with the Arylate. Compared to their other paddles, it has a larger head and is lighter weight.
What makes it stand out?
We couldn't get over how lightweight this paddle is. The construction is so high-tech, and it really shows. We didn't feel weighed down by the paddle at all, but it was surprisingly powerful for being so lightweight. It has a very quick settle-in time, and you will be used to the paddle after just a few minutes. It has a 2.1 mm sponge which lets you really feel the ball while still being strong.
Which disadvantages must you keep in mind?
This paddle isn’t for you if you like a heavier paddle. It is very fast and has a lot of spin, so if you are still learning to control the ball, this paddle may be difficult for you to use. It is not a paddle to learn on. We found that some of our team had a lot of trouble using this lightweight ping pong paddle because a lightweight paddle just wasn’t for them. But if you want a lightweight paddle, this is a great choice.
This ping pong paddle is perfect for beginners who are looking to train and get better at the sport. It has well-balanced speed and control, so you can practice aiming without being too slow. It is made of five layers of wood and a coating of rubber.
The Killerspin JET is made for the beginner who wants to get better. If you want a paddle to train with, this is the paddle for you. It will help you improve very quickly and is incredible for doing drills and practicing techniques.
What are its best features?
In our short time using this paddle, some of our team got better! It really is that good for training. We loved the feel of the flared handle and how durable the wood is. We also think it’s great that you can customize your colors: BluVanilla, Mocha, or Lime. This is a great paddle for beginners and will quickly move you from beginner to intermediate. This is an astounding training paddle.
What could be improved?
If you aren’t looking for a training paddle, this isn’t the right paddle for you. Some of our teams were bored with this paddle because of its speed rating of 60. You really can't play a fast game with it. While some beginner paddles are fun for anyone, this one doesn't really make the cut because it is too slow unless you are training. In addition, the storage box doesn't have a handle, so it isn't easy to travel with.
This ping pong paddle is designed for hobbyists or beginner competitions. It was created alongside Olympian Christian Sub. The GEWO Powerspin rubber is ITTF approved and has great control. It also has an anti-vibration system.
The GEWO CS Energy Control was designed for people who want good spin and tempo while also being controllable. It is made of extremely high-quality materials, and Christian Sub was an expert consultant in order to make this a great beginner’s paddle.
What are its best features?
We loved how much fun this paddle was. Its speed, spin, and control are all relatively matched, so it is a great all-around paddle. We felt great knowing how well designed this paddle is. It has an anti-vibration system, and it really worked. The veneers were hand-picked to make the best beginner ping pong paddle possible. It can be used for fun at home or in low-level competitions.
What could be improved?
This paddle won’t really take you to the next level as it isn’t designed for training. It is also a bit fast for a true beginner and is designed for the sweet spot of people who aren’t quite intermediate yet. Some people may not like the concave handle. If you are looking for your first paddle, although this is labeled as beginner, it might be a bit too advanced. It is not designed for the true beginner.
Things to Consider
It’s important to invest in a ping pong paddle that is right for you. If you are picking up a paddle for the very first time, a training beginner, a competitive intermediate, or a professional expert, there is a perfect paddle out there for you. There are many things to consider when trying to find the right paddle, like speed, control, spin, weight, construction, and even aesthetics. Investing in the wrong paddle will just leave you unhappy with the game, which defeats the purpose. This is why you must know what is important to you and do your research before buying a ping pong paddle.
Why Do You Need to Invest in a Ping Pong Paddle?
Investing in a ping pong paddle means investing in how much fun you are going to have. Without the right paddle, you will never have any fun. It is vital to shop around, learn about the different features, and think about what you are looking for in a paddle.
Although ping pong paddles may seem simple, there is actually a lot of engineering that goes into them. They are specifically made for a certain level of player and to accomplish certain things. This takes a great deal of care. There are many features of a ping pong paddle that you should be familiar with before shopping for one.
First off, you need to know about different constructions and designs. Most paddles are made of wooden ply, a sponge, and rubber. They can have flared bases, and the paddle can be different shapes. There are many different materials that can be used, including kinds of fibers.
Control is how easy it is to aim the ball. Speed is how fast the ball will go. Spin is how many spins you can put on the ball.
Player levels range from beginner, intermediate, advanced, and professional. The International Table Tennis Federation can approve the rubber on a paddle to make it legal for competitive play.
Construction and design
The construction and design of your paddle are extremely important. If your paddle isn’t well-constructed, it’s not going to last. You want a paddle that you know a lot of thought went into. There are also different designs for the base and for the handles depending on your grip.
There are lots of different materials that can make up a ping pong paddle. The types of materials used depend on what the manufacturer wants the control, spin, and speed to be. It also depends on if the ping pong paddle is meant for beginners, intermediate players, or experts. The Butterfly Nakama S-6 w/2 Balls have a thick sponge layer. The Butterfly Lin Yun-Ju CF-1 has 5-ply wood and 2-ply carbon.
Control is how easy it is to aim where you want the ball to go. When you are first learning control, you will probably trade high control for lower speed. As you get better as a player, you will be able to have high control as well as high speed.
Control is rated differently depending on the brand. Some brands go up to 10, and others go up to 100. This is why you can compare control among one brand but not compare it to another brand.
Spin is how much rotation you are able to put on the ball when it is hit by the paddle. The amount of spin that each paddle has depends on its shape and material. Spin is usually rated out of 10 or 100, depending on the brand. You can compare spin between the same brand but not between different brands. Spin is important because it makes the ball unpredictable to the person you’re playing against and will help you make special plays.
The speed rating indicates how fast the ball will go when it is hit by the paddle. Speed ratings are usually lower when you are a beginner and are learning how to control the ball. As you get better and buy more advanced paddles, the speed rating will probably go up.
Speed is more important for offensive players than for defensive players because offensive players are trying to score a point with their hit, whereas defensive players are trying to just let the other player miss.
When choosing a paddle, it is important to identify what your player level is. There are competition leagues for every level of player, so even if you are a beginner, you can still compete. A beginner is someone who has just started playing and is mastering things like a backhand, forehand, and control. An intermediate player has a grip on the basics. An advanced player is someone who has nearly mastered all the aspects of the sport and can engage in very competitive play.
The ITTF, or International Table Tennis Federation
Trusted SourceInternational Table Tennis Federation - Home of Table TennisThe latest Table Tennis news and results can be found here on the official ITTF website.
, requires a certain level of performance and quality of equipment when playing in tournaments. This is to keep the playing field as even as possible and to keep the level of play high. They only approve a product if it passes a strict set of requirements. If a ping pong paddle is ITTF approved (or, more specifically, if its rubber is), then you can legally use it in formal ping pong competitions and tournaments.
The List of Authorized Racket Coverings (LARC) is updated twice a year. To double-check if your ping pong paddle is approved, look for the ITTF logo on the paddle’s rubber and also check the most recent LARC.
It is important to keep your ping pong paddle clean. If it is dirty, the spring and spin will decrease. If you take good care of your paddle, you will need to replace it less often. You don’t want to use harsh cleaning products. They will damage the rubber. Also, don’t use abrasive scrubbers. You can use a cloth or soft brush to clean it, but never scrub hard. Use warm water, dipping your sponge or cloth in the water and gently rubbing it on your paddle. Let it air dry. You can also get specialized rubber cleaner.
When your ping pong paddle reaches the end of its days, you can either get a new one or simply replace the rubber to avoid buying a whole new one. Most rubber lasts 50-90 playing hours. For most competitive players, their reverse or long pimple rubber will have to be changed within a year. Short pimples and anti-spin rubbers will last longer than that. But the longer you go without replacing your paddle or your rubber, the worse your spin and speed will be. Only you can know when your paddle needs to be replaced. If you feel that its performance is starting to go downhill, it is time for a replacement.
Our ping pong paddle review covered 10 excellent ping pong paddles ranging from beginner paddles to professional paddles. But three stood out from the pack: our Editor’s Choice, Best Value, and Premium Pick. Our Editor’s Choice, the Killerspin Impact D9 PowerGrip, is an outstanding paddle. It is made of 7 ply wood with carbon fleece. It will help you upgrade from an intermediate to an advanced player in no time. Our Best Value, the JOOLA Infinity Overdrive, has an inverted surface and flared grip. It has excellent control, spin, and speed, and has professional performance. Our Premium Pick, the Butterfly Bty 802 FL Racket Box Set, is an intermediate paddle with two kinds of rubbers on it so you can customize your front-hand and backhand hits. These are the three best ping pong paddles you can buy. So, pick up a paddle and start playing!
International Table Tennis Federation - Home of Table Tennis
The latest Table Tennis news and results can be found here on the official ITTF website.