One of the things that make Pickleball what it is, is the ball. Soft, light, full of holes like cheese, the pickleball sometimes drifts through the air like a feather and sometimes bounces down hard and angry on your opponent’s side of the court.
What is the best pickleball in 2017?
Can you even compare pickleball balls?
What makes one ball different from – or better than – another?
These are some of the questions that we hope to answer here. We have also taken a look at some of the best pickleball balls of 2017, and listed our verdict. Indoor play or outdoor play, our list will help you find the balls that will make your Pickleball game always fun, and friendly, competitive or both.
List of 7 Best Pickleball Balls of 2017:-
|Best Pickleball Balls||Editor Ranking||Review||Price|
|Pickleball Now Ball||#1||Read Review||Check Price|
|Tourna Pickleball||#2||Read Review||Check Price|
|Epic Pickleball||#3||Read Review||Check Price|
|Jugs Pickleball||#4||Read Review||Check Price|
|Pure P7 Pickleball||#5||Read Review||Check Price|
|Onix Pure 2||#6||Read Review||Check Price|
|Dura Fast 40||#7||Read Review||Check Price|
Why won’t just any Pickleball do?
You could always get the cheapest pickleball available online or at a sports shop near you. You could also get a ball that your friends talk about, without really thinking much about specific features.
But try shopping for balls and you’ll see why it’s not an easy choice. To begin with, there are so many types out there. Dura balls, white balls, Top balls, Onix balls, bright pink balls, multicolored balls, neon green balls, balls with big holes, those with small holes. The options are endless, and it can be confusing especially when you’re just starting out with the game.
You can use any paddle you like in Pickleball, indoors or outdoors. But you’ll enjoy the best game only if you also use the right ball. This means, the right ball for indoor or outdoor play. Also, you need to make sure to use a good quality ball that doesn’t crack or break after a few hits from your paddle. The last thing you want while you hit your cheap plastic ball with a spin is to have it burst its seams – which, by the way, a USAPA-approved Pickleball ball will not always have.
What kind of ball is used for Pickleball?
A Pickleball is a molded plastic ball with holes on it. It doesn’t have any seams. If you’ve ever seen a Wiffle ball, you might see the similarities. The Wiffle ball is always white – the Pickleball is not. But both are plastic balls around 3 inches in diameter (the Wiffle ball is a little smaller and lighter). The main difference between the two is that the holes in the Pickleball are round while those in the Wiffle ball are oblong.
The Pickleball plastic can be as thick as the manufacturer wants. But the size is always 2.75 to 3 inches in diameter, and the ball weighs between 0.8 ounces and 1.02 ounces. The round holes on the pickleball don’t have a fixed number or size. But official tournament balls will have 40 holes.
The size of the hole depends on where the game will be played. Balls with larger holes are used indoors and balls with smaller holes are used outdoors. Originally, this difference probably didn’t exist. But the game is constantly evolving. As people started playing Pickleball in new locations, such as in recreation centers and schools, balls came to be designed differently to suit the location.
What types of Pickleballs are used for Outdoor Play?
Balls used in outdoor locations are made of harder, smoother plastic. There are a few brands of outdoor balls that you may have heard of, such as Dura, TOP, and Onix. These seamless balls are molded in a single construction process, out of molten plastic. When the balls cool, holes are drilled into them.
Outdoor balls have smaller holes for maximum wind resistance. These balls are also harder to control because of the hardness of the plastic. But they are designed for powerful, hard and fast play. If you play with an outdoor ball indoors, the high bounce and speed may cause injuries.
What types of Pickleballs are used for Indoor Play?
Indoor balls are usually softer so that they don’t cause injury. At the same time, the softness makes the ball bounce less. This is because indoor spaces are usually smaller. You don’t want a lot of play length or bounce. The soft plastic prevents the ball from bouncing too high or too far.
Indoor balls also have larger holes. The size of the holes makes these balls more flexible and easier to control indoors. If you were to take an indoor ball outdoors, you’d find out just how hard it can be to make an indoor ball fly in the wind.
There are certain brands that make balls specifically for indoor play, like Jugs, the Big Hole Dura, and the PickleballNow Indoor Ball. The Onix PURE Indoor ball is also made for indoor play but it’s not used in indoor tournaments because it doesn’t meet the official rules and regulations. It is good enough for a friendly game.
Can I use Indoor Balls Outdoors?
Clearly, using outdoor balls indoors can give you injuries. But what about the reverse? Many players prefer to use indoor balls outdoors because there is no practical reason not to. However, the softer ball can be harder to control in the wind. It’s still preferred by many players for the outdoors because it lets them enjoy longer rallies. With the outdoor ball, rallies are usually shorter because the balls are harder to control.
How to Check for Roundness?
If your ball is not perfectly round and has irregularities, it can become hard to control. So, when you buy your pickleball, you should check for roundness. A simple trick to do this is to hit the ball up in the air with the paddle face parallel to the ground, with some spin. If there’s no wind, a perfectly round ball will fall straight back to you again. A ball that’s not perfectly round will fall a little way away from you.
How often will the balls wear out?
Your indoor pickleball is likely to last longer than your outdoor ball. The outdoor ball is more vulnerable to weathering from the sun. These balls will eventually crack with heavy use. Weather can also make a ball go out of shape, so it doesn’t fly straight anymore. You’ll have to replace outdoor balls a lot more often than indoor balls.
Quiet practice balls
If you play in a community with noise restrictions, you can still practice. There are paddles designed for noiseless play. Many balls for practice (you can’t use them in official tournaments) made of materials like foam can come in handy. You can also use kids’ tennis training balls. These will be heavier and handier for practice on windy days.
What colors to choose?
The color is entirely up to you, depending on where and in what conditions you play. Balls meant for outdoor play are available in various colors, including white, orange, yellow and green. The yellow is the most popular, as it is highly visible. You want to be able to see the ball clearly while you play.
If you tend to schedule your practice games in the evenings, in low light, you may prefer the neon green balls. These balls are more visible in low light.
What about cost?
Online stores like Amazon carry pickleball balls of various prices. You can get a dozen balls for as low as $12 or you can buy large packs of 60 balls for a budget price.
There are new balls being released ever so often because the official rules keep changing as the game evolves. Here is a look at some of the newest and best balls that can make your game enjoyable.
Best Pickleball Balls 2017
The Pickleball Now balls are designed for indoor use and they come in bright neon green colors. The pack of three balls is going to last you a long time, so it is worth the price. These balls are built for better flight, so you can enjoy longer rallies. They bounce well on wooden floors. The balls weigh 5.6 ounces, which is just the right weight for long rallies.
Some players have found the ball too hard for indoor play, while others have been happy with it. You will have to try it out and see whether it suits your particular playing style.
These Tourna balls are designed for outdoor use. They are available in four cost-effective packs. You can get them in boxes of 6, 12, 36 and 200 balls.
These balls are designed with 40 small holes each for maximum air resistance. They are slightly larger than indoor balls and the yellow color is easy to see outdoors.
The Epic balls come in a convenient mesh bag of 25 balls. They are a great value. They are highly recommended if you’re an active player and tired of chasing down errant balls all over the court.
Epic balls are available in both indoor and outdoor variations. The indoor balls are softer, as they should be. The bright green color is great for visibility.
Overall, you get what you pay for with the Epic balls. They are great for practicing slams and volleys. You may not find them very good for serving drills or improving your spin.
The Jugs balls are always designed for indoor use. But their high-quality construction makes them great for use outdoors as well. Jugs balls are highly durable, and these particular balls have a nice bounce in comparison to outdoor balls like Dura.
The balls come in lime green and white colors, and some people may prefer one over the other depending on where they are playing. In an all-white gym, for example, the green balls may be easier to see.
Note that if you’re playing outdoors in a group and mixing balls, you may find the Jugs ball reacts a little differently from typical outdoor balls. This will be normal. The balls will have lower wind resistance than outdoor balls.
Paddletek is a top brand in Pickleball gear. Most of their products are approved by the USAPA for official tournament use. The Pure 7 balls for outdoor use are no exception. These bright neon yellow balls are pricier than many of the others on this list. But you pay for quality.
The holes in the Pure P7 have been engineered to be symmetrical. Some balls tend to flatten or warp on extensive outdoor use. These Paddletek balls stand up very well to heavy use. They have been used for tournaments as well.
6. Onix Pure 2
Onix is one of the top brands in outdoor balls for pro-Pickleball. It’s not surprising that Onix uses its proprietary molded plastic to create a high-quality product for high performance.
These balls are not molded from a single mass of plastic. Instead, two ball halves are heat welded and the seams are smoothed out to perfection. This seam doesn’t by any means interfere with the ball’s performance or longevity.
What stands out in the Onix Pure 2 are the precision-drilled holes that give the ball a very balanced flight. These balls last a lot longer than many other outdoor balls. They come in orange and yellow colors.
7. Dura Fast 40
Dura is one of the original pickleball ball makers. The Dura Fast 40 was the official tournament ball for the 2016 USAPA National Tournament and other championships.
These balls are made in the legendary single molded process. They also have thicker walls, so they last really long. They come in four colors – Yellow, White, Orange and Neon Green.
They are so sturdy that Dura recommends them for baseball and softball drills as well.
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We hope you find your favorite ball on this list. Also keep in mind that with Pickleball balls, you get what you pay for. While it is possible to find premium balls at a steal on an online store, most cheap balls are going to end up broken and cracked sooner than the average-price ones from well-known USAPA-approved brands.