One of the most important pieces of pickleball equipment, if not the most important, is the pickleball paddle. Its prohibitive costs, however, implies it’s not easy to keep replacing your paddle as regularly as you would but what you could do to bolster the feel is change the paddle grip as and when needed. In this piece below, we look at pickleball paddle grips, its types, how often to change it and the brands associated with pickleball paddle grips.
Let’s start with the various pickleball accessories.
Pickleball Paddles, Balls and Accessories
You will find a wide range of Pickleball paddles and balls and of course, all the accessories that go with them, paddle covers, clothing, shoes among other things either online or in a sports store.
We suggest you buy a paddle that is good quality, simply because a good Pickleball paddle will last you for years, even a lifetime. Here’s information on how to choose a good pickleball paddle you can use to start things off with.
The only thing that may need changing from time to time, is the grip.
Pickleball Paddle Grips
When your grip becomes worn, which can happen when you play a lot, it’s a good idea to replace it. A threadbare grip will leave your hand blistered, and it will also affect the quality of your game. You really shouldn’t need to replace the grip often, but when you do, you have a choice:-
- Replacement Grip: A replacement grip replaces your entire grip. When your grip is starting to feel thinner than it should, you need a replacement grip.
- Overgrip: An overgrip goes over the existing grip that you have. It may be that you want some extra cushioning, or that parts of the grip are starting to wear.
You can learn how to do these grips on your own, or you can take your Pickleball paddle to a specialist store that will do it for you. If you are used to replacing your own tennis racket grip, it’s really easy to do a Pickleball grip too.
Here are a few basic tips:
- Don’t wait too long to replace your pickleball paddle grip.
- When you do change it, give yourself space, time and patience.
- Have a flat surface to work on.
- Have a spare replacement grip, or overgrip, just in case you make a mistake.
- Make sure you have electrical tape handy.
- You will need a pair of sharp scissors.
We suggest you buy couple of overgrips – they are not expensive – and keep them for when you suddenly need them.
You can tailor-make your overgrip and you make it as big or as thick as you want. You take the overgrip, which is like a thick tape, and start at the bottom of the paddle handle, sticking it on and then winding it around the grip until you come to the base of the paddle itself.
You do need to pull it pretty tight as you go along (it’s really simple) and when you’ve done enough, use your scissors, cut and push it down. It’s now that that you will use your electrical tape, just at the top, to keep it down.
Step-by-Step Process to Change Your Pickleball Paddle Grip
- Clear a surface.
- Get your overgrip, scissors and electrical tape.
- Remove the overgrip from the packaging it comes in.
- Start at the bottom of the paddle handle, sticking the overgrip down.
- Wind it, around and around, until you are at the base of the actual paddle.
- Use your scissors to cut the grip down.
- Press it hard to ensure it sticks.
- Use electrical tape around the final part, to stick it down well.
- Test it out.
Use this video to help you with your overgrip:
It is pretty simple to do an overgrip. If you mess it up, don’t worry, you can unwind it and do it again. If it loses its stickiness, use the electrical tape to stick it down. At the very worst, if you make a mess, use a new overgrip. It’s literally thick tape that goes over your existing grip.
One tip is to cut the grip at an angle when you are finished. It’s easiest that way to stick it down. Remember to wrap it pretty tightly, as this will fit well in your hand.
It is important to remember that many players will use overgrip on a paddle grip that is still good. They like the grip to feel a bit thicker and to be a bit more cushioned. You can add a layer or overgrip and if this is still not enough, another layer. You can always take the overgrip off.
This is when you replace the entire grip of your pickleball paddle.
You need to strip the old grip off your racket. Most people will do an overgrip first, and only when this wears away or it is no longer feasible to do an overgrip, will they do a replacement grip. A replacement grip is a bit more costly than an overgrip, but it is still not an expensive process.
A replacement grip may feel like better quality than an overgrip. If you are a professional or competitive player, it’s absolutely fine to use overgrip but you may prefer a replacement grip for the benefit of your game. Replacement grips, and it does depend on the brand, may give you a firmer hold on the paddle.
You need to remove all aspects of your original grip, which is pretty easy if it’s worn down. Once you have the old grip off, you are going to take the whole new replacement grip and work it from the tip of your paddle handle up to the top of the handle, stopping when it reaches the actual paddle.
Here is a video that will help you re-grip your pickleball paddle:
Replacing your Pickleball Paddle Grip, in Steps
- Clear the surface
- Remove as much of the old grip as you can.
- Wipe down the bat of your paddle, using an old warm cloth.
- Dry it well before putting on your new Pickleball paddle grip.
- Take the new grip out the wrapper.
- Slide the grip up and over the handle.
- Smooth it out as best you can.
- Use electrical tape at the top, to hold the grip well.
- Snip the tape at an angle when you are ready to cut it off.
- Test it out.
Once you have a new replacement grip on, it should last you for a long time.
Some say that a good grip will last about 150 hours of playing the game, but this depends on the intensity of how you play, the brand of grip, the way you hold the paddle and how you treat your paddle.
It is easy to put overgrip on top of your replacement grip. Some players do this to protect the grip too.
Your Pickleball Paddle Grip is Important
It does not matter if you choose to do the overgrip or the replacement grip, but you do need to know that your grip is important.
It is what keeps you playing strongly and it is what keeps the paddle firmly in your hand. A grip that is old or worn won’t give you confidence in your paddle or your game.
A grip that is worn out may also cause the paddle to fly out of your hands – and you do not want this. (Neither do your opponents, frankly!)
A new player, especially a younger player, should start off with a decent pickleball paddle.
A decent paddle inspires confidence and will help the younger player to feel good about their game and want to play more. Having an old or a worn grip can lead to frustrations in a player, and nobody wants this.
Pickleball Grip Brands
As we said, there is a wide range of paddleball paddles and grips on the market. Take a look:-
- Coast Athletic
- Head Manta
- One Shot
- Pickle Ball Inc
- PickleBall Central
These are not the only brands on the market. Each brand comes with accessories – extra grips, cover grips, covers for the racket, balls, and even, the Pickle Ball Court that you can lay out.
Choose your pickleball paddle according to your budget, but also, choose the one that feels good in your hand. If you are buying online, read the reviews and maybe check out the size depending your size and weight. A good online store should have a chatline and offer support.
Paddles come by weight and grip.
- Small grip
- Medium grip
- Large grip
If you are unsure what to buy, watch the videos, get demonstrations, read the blogs or books out there, and then make a selection. Or, just take a drive to the store!
Lastly, before you kick-start playing pickleball, we have an excellent guide on the best ways to hold your pickleball paddle here.