Table tennis, commonly known as ping pong, has gained much popularity as a sport in the last two decades, so much so that it is not restricted to sporting clubs only and has found their places in corporate offices as well. Once kept to serve as a stress buster for corporate officials, the sport turns into an addiction in almost no time and you will not even realize when it has become a part of your daily schedule. Above all, this sport doesn’t involve huge investments on expensive sport gears except the need of a ping pong paddle, a few ping pong balls and a decent partner to play with. You do not have to take extra time out to get involved in the sport. But once you are into the sport you will well know the importance of a good ping pong paddle and the difference that it can make to your game.
Let us guide you through some of the best ping pong paddles available in the market and how to zero in on the one that would suit you fine and improve your game many folds.
Best Ping Pong Paddle Reviews 2019
Stiga is a reputed and trusted name in the world of table tennis, manufacturing world class table tennis equipment since 1944. The Stiga Pro Carbon is one of its most successful tournament level paddles. It is approved by ITTF (International Table Tennis Federation) and has exceptional performance ratings to its credit. With a speed rating of 99, spin of 100 and control of 80 it is the perfect choice for an advanced player who is looking forward to taking his/her game to the next level.
The blade of the Stiga Pro Carbon is made of seven different layers which comprise of five layers of ultra light balsa wood and two layers of carbon. The seven layers are compressed together to form the base of the paddle and is responsible for its light weight. Though it may seem to be heavier than most pre-assembled rackets but the blade is lighter than most available in the market. The weight adds power to each stroke and reduces the reverb effect on the racket from ball contact. The Stiga Pro Carbon blade also boasts of a unique Crystal technology that hardens the surface of the blade increasing the speed, reaction time and control of the paddle. The weight balance of the racket shifts to the point of ball contact and turns out to be advantageous for attacking players.
The Stiga Pro Carbon uses S5 rubber which has been specially designed using ACS and Nano Composite technology to give the paddle high speed with maximum elasticity and control. The rubber is padded to the blade using a 2mm thick sponge that makes the black side harder than the red. The rubber generates regulated amount of speed and spin and enhances the control rating of the paddle.
The handle of the Stiga Pro Carbon features a metal rod within it that gives it the perfect balance and grip. It adds more power to each shot and is slightly lighter than the blade so that the momentum is directed more towards the centre of the blade and gives you the largest sweet spot in this paddle category. It may take some time to get accustomed to the weight but this ergonomically designed handle will take off any fatigue that would have otherwise settled in.
But this weight may create some problem for newbies who may find it difficult to control and is more suited for players at the intermediary level. So it takes time to adjust to the accuracy of shots with this racket. Also the handle is a bit rough and can be uncomfortable at times.
But if you are an offensive player and can adjust to the weight balance of the paddle easily then this Stiga Pro Carbon can work wonders for you. It will give you a perfect blend of speed and spin to complement your game.
One of the best pre-made paddles that the Chicago based company, Killerspin has in store, Killerspin Jet 800 has been a favourite of many Olympic players. It is ITTF approved and gives you an all round performance in terms of speed and spin.
The Killerspin Jet 800 blade is made of five layers of light weight wood and two layers of carbon. The carbon code enhances the overall strength of the blade while retaining the light weight character of the paddle. It also increases the area of the sweet spot that generates maximum speed and spin and also allows you to absorb the hat from opponents with ease. The carbon layers provide a higher uniformity recoil with less vibration, so your paddle never feels shaky while the light weight design eliminates any risk of fatigue. There is a wooden side tape at the edge of the blade that keeps the energy from each hit encased in the paddle and transfers it to return the ball to the opponent with greater accuracy and speed. Thus this wooden tape is responsible for optimal power and deflection and in turn for the control of the blade when it comes to performance.
The Killerspin Jet 800 has a 2mm thick Nitriz 4Z rubber on each side of the blade. This grippy high tension rubber not only provides an exceptional surface grip to tackle heavy spin but allows you to play your own ones too with perfection and enhances your defensive management skills.
The burnt wood handle adds on to the looks of this paddle with its sleek ergonomic design and will fit into your hand snugly without causing any cramps even after long playing hours and also adds an extra flare to your performance.
The weight of the paddle is evenly distributed for strong repetitive shots and you will never feel any imbalance when you finish the shot in any direction.
The blade along with the rubber has the ability to generate plenty of power and so the Killerspin Jet800 has a speed rating of 9.0 which is considered to be optimum for aggressive gameplay while it also boasts of an optimum spin of 4.7/5.
The only disadvantage that you may face while using this paddle is that it may require quite a bit of practice to get used to its speed and spin. But once you are in control, the Killerspin Jet 800 is a perfect tool for deception and you can easily fool your opponent with the ball rotation and with the ability to hit the ball away from the table.
You can hence well understand why this paddle has been approved and recommended by the top notch professionals.
One of the more expensive variants in our list of the best ping pong paddles, this paddle is again more suited for the intermediate level player. Made by the Chinese manufacturers, DHS, we can well assume the quality of the product will not be compromised owing to the fact that China has been producing some of the best table tennis players in the world.
The DHS Hurricane II has a seven layered blade just like the Stiga pro carbon or the Killerspin Jet 800 which comprises of 5 layers of wood and two layers of carbon. We have already mentioned the benefits of this blade structure in details and hence well know by now that this adds strength and power to each shot while enhancing the sweet spot area of the paddle.
The DHS rubbers have a world class reputation and the rubber of the DHS hurricane II needs special mention. The DHS Hurricane II has a different type of rubber on each side of the blade. One side features the Hurricane rubber which has been designed for offensive play. This not only helps you to generate massive spin that a DHS rubber is famous for but it will also help you hit the ball away from the table at extraordinary speed. On the other side is the G555 rubber which has a tackier surface that will hold on to the ball and will increase the overall control. This rubber is much slower than its counterpart. The rubber surface is dimpled to enhance the spin of the paddle and this is the sole reason why the spin of this paddle is way ahead of it’s competitors.
The Hurricane II has a long and slender ergonomic handle that provides a perfect balance and will help you defend against quick placements.
Approved by ITTF, it has a speed rating of 9.4/10, control of 9/10 and a spin of 8.4/10 and is slightly larger when compared to other paddles.
Butterfly has again been a very reputed brand manufacturing table tennis equipment for over 60 years. The Butterfly Balsa X5-FL carbo is one of the finest paddles made by butterfly in recent times and their first attempt at a balsa composite blade. It is one of the lightest paddles with a large sweet spot.
The blade comes with an extreme light weight owing to the balsa centre core. The blade is made of five layers which consists of three layers of Balsa wood ply and two carbon layers which enhance the speed and power of the blade. The blade is designed for a close to table play style and has an exclusive soft feel that will aid in the blocking technique. But at the same time it has sufficient power to meditate a topspin drive from a mid to far distance. The durability of the blade has been an issue and is considered to be a matter of concern in case of this paddle.
Though not one of the fastest blades available in the market the Balsa X5-FL carbo can generate a decent speed when coupled with soft to medium butterfly rubbers. The Butterfly fast rubbers like Bryce Speed Fx or Tenergy 80 are known for their unmatched quality and speed and complement the blade well.
The control of the blade is worth mentioning as its one of the most controllable carbon composite blades. It allows for world class effortless blocking along with counter top spin drive and loop. The soft blade offers longer dwell time and will assist you to produce a variety of topspin effectively.
The handle is soft to touch but a little thicker than the standard ones. This provides a better grip but may take a little time to adjust if you are more accustomed to long slender ones.
The Stiga Evolution is one of the top five paddles made by Stiga which also includes the Stiga Titan and the Stiga Supreme that are featured in this list. The Stiga Evolution is not as fast as the Pro Carbon but still packs a lot of power. The performance ratings of this paddle speaks for itself. The Stiga Evolution has a speed rating of 96, spin rating of 94 and control of 90. It is considered to be the shakehand paddle for an intermediate level player. Weighing just 6.4ounces it is lighter than others and comparatively easy to get used to.
The Stiga Evolution Blade is made of 6 layers of light ply wood. It features a unique SDT or Shock Dispersion Technology wherein the blade has a shock dispersion tube which is nothing but a hollow tube like extension of the handle that transfers the shock or vibrations created from the impact of the ball to the entire paddle blade. It may take some time to get used to this technology or the sound that is created as an effect of this technology.
The Stiga Evolution boasts of the Premium Stiga rubbers which is one of the most tackiest elastics and will enable you to produce more turn on the balls. The rubber also produces a considerable effect on the serves and chopping, flicking are better with the Evolution while the backhand may need a little adjustment to attain accuracy.
The blade speed is definitely slower when compared to the Pro Carbon but the area where this paddle excels is the control and precision and hence this ITTF approved paddle is highly recommended for an ALL to ALL player.
Though not particularly suitable if you are playing competitive table tennis or a league, because the color of the rubbers are not approved but it looks very attractive and you can always use it for recreational purposes or if you are using it as a spare paddle for practice. But that doesn’t mean that Killerspin has compromised on the quality of this paddle. The Killerspin Jet 200 is an ideal paddle for beginners and is perfect for learning basic strokes and gaining control over the ball.
The blade of the Jet200 consists of 5 layers of ply wood and has a thickness of 9mm. The blade is considerably light in weight and is accompanied with a 3-7/8” flared handle. The handle is ergonomically designed for a better grip. The oar is secured with an adjustable PVC side tape which protects the paddle from harm.
The 1.8mm Jet rubbers are pretty basic but will give you that brief hold to covey back the ball with accuracy and precision along with speed especially in case of topspin forehands. It has the right amount of turn to help you glide through your shots.
The Killerspin Jet 200 weighs around 175gms and has a decent performance rating. It has a handle rating of 8.5, a spin rating of 7.0 and a speed rating of 6.0.
The Killerspin Jet 200 comes in an attractive package with a memory book where you can record your matches and mark your daily progress.Overall, this beginner paddle enhances your control and accuracy but is not an ideal choice for intermediary or advanced level players.
The Stiga Titan is again a very basic level paddle particularly suited for beginners. Though designed for beginners, this paddle is ITTF approved and focuses mainly on speed and spin. It is not suited for advanced play but can be an ideal choice if you have just started off and are in the stage of perfecting your skills. The Stiga Titan paddle weighs around 0.35 pounds and has a decent performance rating. It has a speed rating of 80, a spin rating of 77 and a control rating of 82 while the execution rating of the paddle altofz7gether is 239.
The Stiga Titan blade comp rises of a 5ply system which is like typical of paddles of this calibre and with the superior Balsa technology to its credit, it brings in a light weight character to the paddle increasing the speed and the response time. The speed with which the ball gets deflected from the paddle is further enhanced by the Precious stone innovation that utilises a straight forward hydrophilic gel veneer to bring about strength and firmness from the edge to the surface.
The 5 ply blade is accompanied with a 2mm Stiga Stream inverted rubber on each side. The elastic is ITTF approved and is not tacky to say the least. The elastic is a matter of concern though it boasts of the Nano composite technology that is responsible for tighter bonds in the elastic. But when you consider the fact that this is a basic level paddle, the elastic scores pretty well.
Above all it has a curved Italian composite handle for a comfortable grip and has a weight balance to the point of ball contact, that makes it easy to play with and would not require any adjustment time like most advanced level paddles.
So the Stiga Titan can be considered to be an above average entry level paddle that would not pinch your pocket much.
The forth Stiga paddle to make it to our list of the best table tennis paddles available in the market, the Stiga Supreme is suited for beginners as well as intermediary level players. It has a high performance rating of 90 for speed, 92 for spin and 89 for control. The Stiga supreme is approved by ITTF and is extremely light in weight. It weighs around 4.6ounces.
The Stiga Supreme blade consists of 6 ultra light ply woods with tube technology that takes off the shock from the ball contact and disperses it into the entire paddle body so that the vibrations are not felt and can be transferred to the returning ball. The blade has the unique Crystal technology that brings about firmness to the blade and enhances the speed. There is a revolutionary middle veneer or Stiga tube that has micro-channels filled with a variety of materials that enhance the performance of the blade.
The light weight blade is accompanied by a 2mm sponge and inverted Stiga Future rubber on each side of the blade along with the ACS technology that we have mentioned in other Stiga paddles as well.
The Stiga Supreme handle has a anatomic Italian composite with the WRB system. This increases the blade balance, ball sensitivity and recovery rate of the paddle. These together give it an edge over just being a beginner’s paddle.
The paddle excels at not letting fatigue to set in and has a good level of spin and speed. But if you are looking for more performance then you have to settle for a heavier racket.
The Stiga Supreme lacks in the speed, spin and control of an advanced paddle but a beginner or an intermediary level player can not complain with the performance.
Best Ping Pong Paddels Buying Guide
A table tennis paddle essentially consists of 6 basic parts viz. blade, forehand sponge and rubber, backhand sponge and rubber and the handle. Choosing a perfect paddle for yourself depends on a number of factors which apart from the construction of the paddle also depends on the style of game play and the hold.
There are mainly two types of grip, the Shakerhand grip and the Penhold Grip. The handle of the table tennis paddle should be chosen in accordance with your grip. Generally the flared or the straight handle complements the shakerhand grip. The straight handle is for players who hold their paddle loosely while the flared handle is for players who prefer a firm grip. Also Check best Ping pong table
Style Of Gameplay:
The second important factor that should affect your choice is the style of gameplay. Different paddles are suited for different playing styles. Though this is not of much concern if you are choosing a beginner’s paddle. But if you are looking for an advanced paddle then this should be of prime concern. While some paddles enhance the speed of the game and support a more offensive gameplay others are designed to gain more control over the ball and relies on placements and thereby supports a defensive style. You need to choose your paddle in accordance with your style so that they complement one another.
Though we have already mentioned that the paddle should be chosen to complement your game style, one of the most important parts of a paddle is the blade. The blade forms the base of any paddle and gives firmness or rigidity to the paddle. The blade is responsible for the power. The lighter the blade the more offensive gameplay it supports. But an extremely light weight paddle would not be able to support the spin.The best blades for enhancing speed and generating a decent level of spin comprises of two layers of carbon along with 5 layers of light weight wood ply. An all wood blade on the other hand is heavier and is more suited for a defensive style. Some paddles have a hollow structure in the middle of the blade to take off the shock and disperse it to minimise the effect. The blade is also responsible for the sweet spot or the area of the paddle face that generates optimum speed and spin.
Though not much visible from the outside, the sponge plays a very definite role in the performance of the paddle. Sponge comes in three different variants, thick medium and thin. A thick 2mm sponge will give you a faster attacking paddle while a defensive paddle will sport a thinner sponge.
The rubber or the elastic forms the face of the paddle that comes in contact with the ball. The tackier the rubber the more it lets the ball stick to the paddle and increases the reaction time and enhances the control over the ball. The rubber is also responsible for generating spin and tackling them when forced from an opponent. Most advanced paddles have an inverted rubber on each side of the paddle. You need to choose a rubber that will support your game play or you can also choose a paddle that has two different rubbers on two faces. While the forehand rubber supports attack the backhand may complement defence.
the importance of the paddle handle is well known as the more ergonomic the design the more it will take away the fatigue from your hands. What we might not know is that the weight balance is also brought about by the handle. The weight of the blade and the rubber along with the handle should be such balanced so that the weight is shifted to the point of contact whenever you hit the ball. This will generate more power in each shot and will enhance the performance.
Pre-made or pre-assembled paddles may not allow for wider options and you can choose from the ones offered to suit your style but we have given you a list of some of the best premade paddles that range from the beginners choice through the intermediary level and all to the advanced level of the game. But if you are already an advanced player you can assemble or customise your racket, choosing each part carefully like the blade, the sponge the rubber on each side and the handle so that you paddle gives you an edge over the opponent in the competition.