5 Best Pickleball Paddles for Intermediate Players

Last updated:
This post contains affiliate links and we will be compensated if you buy after clicking our links.
Best Pickleball Paddles for Intermediate Players
Best Pickleball Paddles for Intermediate Players

Ready to elevate your pickleball skills? You’re not alone. Join the rising tide of 4.8 million pickleball enthusiasts who are also seeking the best pickleball paddles for intermediate players. Welcome to the intermediate league—where your spins have more zing, your power shots make more impact, and your game becomes a symphony of agility and strategy. But let’s face it, even Mozart needed the right instrument. That’s why we’ve put our paddles to the pavement, scouring through endless options to find you the 5 best pickleball paddles for intermediate players.

Now, for the moment you’ve been waiting for. Our number one pick for the best pickleball paddle for intermediate players is the CRBN² X 16MM Power Middleweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle. This paddle isn’t just a mouthful to say; it’s a handful of awesomeness on the court. Crafted from high-quality T700 carbon fiber and sporting a honeycomb polypropylene core, it perfectly balances power and control. Its massive sweet spot is like a magnet for pickleballs, making every hit feel like a home run. So, why settle? Unleash your inner pickleball pro with a paddle that matches your ambition. Onward and upward, fellow paddle warriors!

We’ve burned the midnight oil, delved into countless reviews, and even hit a few pickleballs ourselves (all in the name of research, of course) to bring you a comprehensive guide to the crème de la crème of intermediate paddles. Whether you’re a spin wizard, a power-hitter, or a little bit of both, we’ve got you covered. Let the paddle hunt begin!

Our Top Pick
CRBN² Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle
$179.99

Foam-injected walls up the ante on your sweet spot and minimize vibration, making each hit feel like a dream. A carbon-reinforced handle delivers ultra-responsiveness and an ergonomic grip. It’s the perfect mix of power and control, whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner looking to dominate.

Buy Now on Amazon Buy Now on Just Paddles
03/06/2024 04:39 am GMT

5 Best Pickleball Paddles for Intermediate Players at a Glance

Product Name / Product ImageDescription / Primary Rating / PricePrimary Button / Secondary Button
  • Description:

    Foam-injected walls up the ante on your sweet spot and minimize vibration, making each hit feel like a dream. A carbon-reinforced handle delivers ultra-responsiveness and an ergonomic grip. It’s the perfect mix of power and control, whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner looking to dominate.

  • 4.4
  • $179.99
  • Description:

    You can easily control the ball whether you’re spiking it or finessing a dink. And let’s not forget about the grip. With a handle length of 5 3/4″, you’ll have the flexibility for those killer two-handed backhands. 

  • 4.3
  • N/A
  • Description:

    Engineered to feel lighter than air (well, almost), this paddle defies its actual weight of 8.3 ounces to give you exceptional balance. That means you can swing, slice, and serve without feeling like you’re lifting a dumbbell. 

  • 4.3
  • N/A
  • Description:

    With its bold colors of red, gray, and white, you’ll not only play like a champ but look like one too. The smooth fiberglass surface delivers that extra ‘zing’ to your serves, keeping your opponents on their toes.

  • 4.5
  • $69.95
  • Description:

    Engineered with state-of-the-art materials like a polypropylene core and a composite face, the Engage Poach Infinity MX Middleweight Composite Pickleball Paddle offers a balanced playstyle, packing just the right combo of power and control.

  • 4.5
  • $169.99$152.99
Our Pick
Description:

Foam-injected walls up the ante on your sweet spot and minimize vibration, making each hit feel like a dream. A carbon-reinforced handle delivers ultra-responsiveness and an ergonomic grip. It’s the perfect mix of power and control, whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner looking to dominate.

4.4
$179.99
Description:

You can easily control the ball whether you’re spiking it or finessing a dink. And let’s not forget about the grip. With a handle length of 5 3/4″, you’ll have the flexibility for those killer two-handed backhands. 

4.3
N/A
Description:

Engineered to feel lighter than air (well, almost), this paddle defies its actual weight of 8.3 ounces to give you exceptional balance. That means you can swing, slice, and serve without feeling like you’re lifting a dumbbell. 

4.3
N/A
Description:

With its bold colors of red, gray, and white, you’ll not only play like a champ but look like one too. The smooth fiberglass surface delivers that extra ‘zing’ to your serves, keeping your opponents on their toes.

4.5
$69.95
Description:

Engineered with state-of-the-art materials like a polypropylene core and a composite face, the Engage Poach Infinity MX Middleweight Composite Pickleball Paddle offers a balanced playstyle, packing just the right combo of power and control.

4.5
$169.99$152.99
03/06/2024 04:39 am GMT

Best Overall Pickleball Paddle for Intermediate Players

CRBN² X 16MM Power Middleweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle
Our Top Pick
CRBN² Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle
$179.99

Foam-injected walls up the ante on your sweet spot and minimize vibration, making each hit feel like a dream. A carbon-reinforced handle delivers ultra-responsiveness and an ergonomic grip. It’s the perfect mix of power and control, whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner looking to dominate.

Buy Now on Amazon Buy Now on Just Paddles
03/06/2024 04:39 am GMT

Ready to transform your pickleball game? Meet the “CRBN² X 16MM Power Middleweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle,” your go-to for becoming a court legend. Crafted with high-quality T700 carbon fiber and a honeycomb polypropylene core, this paddle is the best pickleball paddle for control and power. It weighs just the right amount (7.8-8.1 ounces) to give you stability at the net, and its redesigned, shorter, and wider face expands the sweet spot for better shots.

Choose your style with two core thickness options: go thin for more power or thick for a softer touch around the net. Foam-injected walls up the ante on your sweet spot and minimize vibration, making each hit feel like a dream. A carbon-reinforced handle delivers ultra-responsiveness and an ergonomic grip. It’s the perfect mix of power and control, whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner looking to dominate.

Bottom Line

So, why settle for less when you can have the best? The CRBN² X 16MM Power Middleweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle is USAPA approved and ready to elevate your game to the next level. Experience the winning combination of touch, power, and durability that only CRBN can offer. Your court domination starts here!

Features

  • Weight: 7.8 oz
  • Paddle surface material: Carbon fiber
  • Paddle core material: Polypropylene
  • Core thickness: 16mm
  • grip size: 4″
  • Handle length: 4.75″
  • Paddle length: 15.75″
  • Paddle width: 8″

Benefits

Pros

  • Extremely versatile and plays as if lighter than it is.
  • Massive Sweet Spot
  • Immense Spin

Cons

  • Some players reported the handle length was too short


Grip Size Chart

HeightGrip Size (Inches)Grip Size
Under 5’2″4 inchesSmall
5’3″ to 5″4 1/4 inchesMedium
5’9″ & Taller4 1/2 inchesLarge
This table can get you in the ball park! When it comes to grip size it’s all about what feels best.

Things to Consider: Top 10 Tips for Buying the Best Pickleball Paddles for Intermediate Players

Pickleball, anyone? If you’re an intermediate player scratching your head about which paddle to pick, look no further! Let’s ace this together.

1. Paddle Size: Choose Wisely, Grasshopper

Size really does matter when it comes to pickleball paddles. Square paddles have larger “sweet spots,” which are great for beginners. On the flip side, narrower paddles are nifty but require more accuracy. Choose based on your play style and experience.

2. Paddle Weight: Light as a Feather or Heavy Hitter?

Weight is a big deal! Heavier paddles pack more punch but are a bit clunky. Lighter ones offer better maneuverability but might lack the oomph. Aim for something between 5 to 8 ounces for the best of both worlds.

3. Grip Size and Length: Hold On Tight!

A grip that’s too tight or too loose can spell disaster. The standard grip size is around 4 ¼ inches wide by 5 ½ inches long. If you’ve got big paws or tiny hands, consider a custom grip.

4. Material Matters: Don’t Go Barking Up the Wooden Paddle

Whether it’s graphite, aluminum, or fiberglass, the material can make or break your game. In 2023, wooden paddles are as out of style as mullets. Choose a modern material that complements your playing style.

5. Paddle Design: Look Good, Play Good

Hey, the design isn’t just for show! A paddle that boosts your confidence can also boost your game. Choose one that makes you feel like a pickleball rockstar.

6. Price Point: Don’t Break the Piggy Bank

Quality matters, but you don’t have to sell a kidney. A good paddle can be found between $80 and $200. Remember, it’s an investment in your pickleball future!

7. Define Your Style: Are You a Finesse Player or a Powerhouse?

Some paddles are built for finesse and control, others for sheer power. Knowing your style will help you pick the perfect paddle for your game.

8. Special Needs: Tennis Elbow, Anyone?

Got issues like tennis elbow or need an elongated handle? Some paddles offer features that can help. Look for these if you’ve got special needs.

9. Test Before You Invest: Try It Before You Buy It

If possible, borrow a few paddles and give them a whirl. There’s nothing like a test drive to know if it’s true paddle love.

10. Seek Expert Advice: Coaches and Peers Know Best

Don’t be shy! Talk to coaches or fellow intermediate players about paddle choices. Their feedback could be the tiebreaker you need to make your decision.

And there you have it! Happy playing!


Pickleball Paddle Comparison Chart

Paddle NamePaddle WeightPaddle Surface MaterialPaddle Core MaterialCore Thickness (mm)Grip Size (inchesHandle Length (inches)Paddle Length (inches)Paddle Width (inches)Check Out Pricing
CRBN² X 16MM Power Middleweight7.8 – 8.1Carbon FiberPolypropylene1644.7515.758Check Out Pricing
Selkirk SLK Parris Todd Halo Control7.5 – 8.0T700 Raw Carbon FiberRev Core Control Polymer Core1645 3/416.47.4Check Out Pricing
Vulcan V720HT MAX8.2 – 8.4V-Skin Carbon Fiber & HiTract Surface GritStatera Core Polypropylene134 1/84 3/4168Check Out Pricing
HEAD Radical Elite8.1Fiberglass CompositePolymer Honeycomb154 1/45167.78Check Out Pricing
Engage Poach Infinity MX7.58 – 7.8Proprietary Omni-directional friction-based 6-layer CompositeProprietary Polymer Composite134 1/4616.57.5Check Out Pricing

Best Pickleball Paddles for Intermediate Players:

You’re now ready to serve up some smart choices and pick one of the best pickleball paddles for intermediate players.

Selkirk SLK Halo Control XL Middleweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle
Selkirk Parris Todd Halo Control XL

You can easily control the ball whether you’re spiking it or finessing a dink. And let’s not forget about the grip. With a handle length of 5 3/4″, you’ll have the flexibility for those killer two-handed backhands. 

Buy Now on Just Paddles

Step onto the court with confidence wielding the Selkirk SLK Halo Control XL Middleweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle, one of the best pickleball paddles for intermediate players. This paddle is your ultimate sidekick whether you’re a seasoned pro or a newbie still learning the ropes. With its T700 Raw Carbon Fiber face and 16mm core, get ready for killer control and spin. The paddle’s elongated shape of 16.4″ in length and 7.4″ in width gives you that extra reach and power, and it comes wrapped in a luxurious SLK Faux Leather Grip, ensuring you have a firm yet comfy hold. It’s versatile, effective, and stylish!

What sets this paddle apart? It boasts a Rev-Core Control Polymer Core, designed for a gigantic sweet spot and minimal vibrations. That means you can easily control the ball whether you’re spiking it or finessing a dink. And let’s not forget about the grip. With a handle length of 5 3/4″, you’ll have the flexibility for those killer two-handed backhands. So go ahead, grip it and rip it, and show ’em what you’re made of.

Bottom Line

Selkirk has got your back with a Limited Lifetime Warranty, sealing the deal on why this paddle should be your next court companion.

Features

  • Weight: 7.5 – 8.0 oz
  • Paddle surface material: T700 Raw Carbon Fiber
  • Paddle core material: Rev Core Control Polymer Core
  • Core thickness: 16mm
  • Grip size: 4″
  • Handle length: 5 3/4″
  • Paddle length: 16.4″
  • Paddle width: 7.4″

Benefits

Pros

  • Performance Control
  • Delivers nice spin
  • Generous sweet spot

Cons

  • Some players reported the surface was too small

Vulcan V720HT MAX Pickleball Paddle
Vulcan V720HT MAX Heavyweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle

Engineered to feel lighter than air (well, almost), this paddle defies its actual weight of 8.3 ounces to give you exceptional balance. That means you can swing, slice, and serve without feeling like you’re lifting a dumbbell. 

Buy Now on Just Paddles

Say hello to the Vulcan V720HT MAX Pickleball Paddle, the paddle that’s got it all! Reimagined for 2024 with an innovative oval shape, this paddle is the forgiving friend you’ve always wanted on the court. Its oversized sweet spot is the MVP, ensuring your shots stay on point whether you’re playing doubles or flying solo. With a HiTRAC Surface Grit for that extra spin and a CHAN-LOCK Edge System, this paddle promises consistency and control, making it a jack-of-all-trades in the best way possible.

But wait, there’s more! Engineered to feel lighter than air (well, almost), this paddle defies its actual weight of 8.3 ounces to give you exceptional balance. That means you can swing, slice, and serve without feeling like you’re lifting a dumbbell. Plus, it’s got style for days—available in a sleek Gradient Circuit design with snazzy red and blue hues.

Bottom Line

Handcrafted in the USA and backed by Vulcan’s Limited 1-year Manufacturer’s warranty, you’re not just getting a paddle; you’re investing in a game-changer. So, ready to up your pickleball game?

Features

  • Weight: 8.2 – 8.4 oz
  • Paddle surface material: V – Skin Carbon Fiber & HiTract Surface Grit
  • Paddle core material: Statera Core Polypropylene
  • Core thickness: 13mm
  • Grip size: 4 1/8″
  • Handle length: 4 3/4″
  • Paddle length: 16″
  • Paddle width: 8″

Benefits

Pros

  • Extremely versatile and plays as if lighter than it is.
  • Massive Sweet Spot
  • Immense Spin

Cons

  • Some players reported the handle length was too short

Vulcan V720HT MAX Pickleball Paddle (1)
HEAD Radical Elite Pickleball Paddle,Orange/Black
$69.95

With its bold colors of red, gray, and white, you’ll not only play like a champ but look like one too. The smooth fiberglass surface delivers that extra ‘zing’ to your serves, keeping your opponents on their toes.

Buy Now on Amazon Buy Now on Just Paddles
03/06/2024 03:38 am GMT

Looking for the best budget pickleball paddles for intermediate players? Look no further than the HEAD Radical Elite Middleweight Composite Pickleball Paddle—it’s the superhero of pickleball paddles! Armed with Dynamic Power Shape for a larger sweet spot, this paddle is your trusty sidekick, ensuring you don’t miss a beat—or a ball. The Extended PowerCore further amplifies its playability, making this paddle your go-to for both power and control.

But the awesomeness doesn’t stop at performance; this paddle also scores major style points. With its bold colors of red, gray, and white, you’ll not only play like a champ but look like one too. The smooth fiberglass surface delivers that extra ‘zing’ to your serves, keeping your opponents on their toes.

Bottom Line

When a Pro Player like Sarah Ansboury vouches for the Radical Elite, you know you’re holding a winner. Step onto the court with confidence and elevate your pickleball prowess with our team’s top pick!

Features

  • Weight: 8.1 oz
  • Paddle surface material: Fiberglass Composite
  • Paddle core material: Polymer Honeycomb
  • Core thickness: 15mm
  • Grip size: 4 1/4″
  • Handle length: 5″
  • Paddle length: 16″
  • Paddle width: 7 7/8″

Benefits

Pros

  • Great for Power & Playability
  • Generous Sweet Spot
  • Super Comfortable Grip

Cons

  • Some players reported lack of power

Engage Poach Infinity MX Middleweight Composite Pickleball Paddle
Engage Poach Infinity MX Pickleball Paddle
$169.99 $152.99

Engineered with state-of-the-art materials like a polypropylene core and a composite face, the Engage Poach Infinity MX Middleweight Composite Pickleball Paddle offers a balanced playstyle, packing just the right combo of power and control.

Buy Now Our Review
03/06/2024 08:30 am GMT

Meet the Engage Poach Infinity MX Middleweight Composite Pickleball Paddle, the top-tier weapon of choice among the best pickleball paddles for intermediate players. This isn’t just any paddle; it’s your new sidekick on the court. With an elongated shape measuring 16 1/2” in length and 7 1/2” in width, this paddle gives you the extra reach to dominate every corner. Even better, the paddle boasts a 5 1/2” grip that adds even more reach, making it a dream-come-true for those who’ve moved on from tennis and are on the hunt for something elbow-friendly yet effective.

But wait, there’s more! This high-performance paddle is more than just a pretty face; it’s backed by a Limited Lifetime Manufacturer’s Warranty from Engage. So, you can swing away knowing that quality and durability have got your back.

Bottom Line

Engineered with state-of-the-art materials like a polypropylene core and a composite face, the Engage Poach Infinity MX Middleweight Composite Pickleball Paddle offers a balanced playstyle, packing just the right combo of power and control. It’s versatile and ready for action!

Features

  • Weight: 7.58 – 7.8 oz
  • Paddle surface material: Proprietary Omni-directional friction-based 6-layer Composite
  • Paddle core material: Proprietary Polymer Composite
  • Core thickness: 13mm
  • Grip size: 4 1/4″
  • Handle length: 6″
  • Paddle length: 16.5″
  • Paddle width: 7.5″

Benefits

Pros

  • Elongated with tons of reach
  • Perfect blend of power and control
  • Great for two handed strokes

Cons

  • Some players felt it was too pricey.

Bottom Line

You’ve done your homework and practiced your swings; it’s decision time. While the CRBN² X 16MM Power Middleweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle may be the star quarterback of the paddle world, don’t forget there’s a whole team out there. From paddles optimized for control like the Gamma Neutron 2.0 to powerhouses like the Selkirk Amped, you’ve got options. Each paddle has its own special sauce to cater to different styles and skill levels. Be sure to check out our article on On How To Serve Pickleball And Dominate The Court,

However, if you’re ready to make a game-changing move, look no further than our number one pick—CRBN² X 16MM Power Middleweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle. It’s like the Swiss Army knife of pickleball paddles, versatile enough for any intermediate player to wield like a pro. Ready to commit? Click here to snag your CRBN² X 16MM Power Middleweight Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle and elevate your game to the next level. Your new paddle is waiting; don’t let it gather dust!

When you want to elevate your strategy to stop your opponents dead in their tracks, check out our article on stacking techniques, to stack the odd in your favor!


How does paddle shape impact my playing style at the intermediate level?

The shape of your paddle can significantly influence your playing style: traditional shapes offer a larger sweet spot for easier ball contact, while elongated shapes provide better reach and maneuverability. Choose based on your preferred style of play.

What’s the price range I should consider when buying a paddle as an intermediate player?

Consider investing between $80 to $200 for a high-quality paddle that matches your intermediate skill level. This price range generally offers good value for performance-enhancing features.

What weight paddle should I use as an intermediate player?

As an intermediate player, aim for a paddle weight between 7.0-8.5 oz for a balanced blend of power and control. This weight range offers good maneuverability while still packing enough punch for effective play.

Is a graphite paddle better than fiberglass?

Graphite paddles are known for their lightweight feel and precise control, while fiberglass paddles offer a bit more power and pop; it’s not about “better,” but what suits your style of play.


Photo of author

Author

Ken Kochman is the founder and chief editor at mypickleballauthority.com. His aim? Very simple. Cut through all the hype and misleading advertisements so you can make the best decision for your pickleball needs based on your level of play.