Craziest thing about pickleball? It’s not that it’s the fastest growing sport in America, with nearly 5 million people playing now, two annual pro tournaments and a new generation of pickleball centers. The craziest thing about pickleball is that we’re all now discovering this sport, which has been around since the 1960s, when two dads invented it to entertain their families on weekends.
Falling in love with pickleball now, after all these years, feels a lot like the well-worn plot of a romantic comedy where the protagonist finally recognizes their best friend for who they really are. Who knows why it took us almost 60 years to fall in love with pickleball, the important thing is that we love the sport because pickleball is fun. Imagine if tennis and ping-pong had a baby, and that baby was raised by badminton. It’s pickleball. We believe no one should be left out of the fun, so we’ve found the best pickleball equipment on the market so you can jump headfirst into this growing sport and look good doing it. Here are our favorite pickleball picks, from the shoes on your feet to the ball you hit.
1. Zuma paddle set back
Your pickleball paddle is more than just a tool. It’s an accessory that says a lot about your personal style. The Zuma is gorgeous, with a leather-wrapped handle and an understated yet whimsical floral print. And this beauty performs as well; the composite paddle has a polypropylene honeycomb core wrapped in a fiberglass surface that has a sandblasted texture to help increase spin and ball control. It comes with a canvas case.[$86; recesspickleball.com]
2. Onix Pure 2 Outdoor Pickleball Balls
Not all balls are created equal. The Onix Pure 2 is specifically designed for outdoor play, with a heavier build and smaller holes to keep the ball flying straight in the wind, but still deliver that quintessential pickleball bounce. They are also durable and resist cracking, even in the hands of heavy hitters.[$17; onixpickleball.com]
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