The Top 10 Best Ping Pong Paddle Reviews: For Beginners And Rising Stars With Every Type Of Budget

The sport of table tennis has been increasing in popularity tremendously over the years. In fact, it has made it into the top-10 list of the most prevalent sports in the U.S.

There seems to be a constant desire to improve the sport and make the game more advanced for everyone who plays it. One of the aspects about ping pong that has made it so widely accessible is the fact you don’t need large funds to start.

A willing opponent, table, balls, and a paddle are all you need.

Having said that, rushing out and purchasing the cheapest bats may not be the best option. The paddle has an enormous affect on your skills, and cheap ping pong paddles will put a cap on your abilities.

As a novice, it can be difficult trying to find the best ping pong paddle for you. That’s why we’ve delved deep into extensive research to compile a quick guide of the top-10 table tennis bats available.

However, we’ve also taken into consideration that more experienced players will also be on the lookout for paddles. Therefore, we’ve made sure to include a wide range of paddle options that vary in skill level and budget.  

You may also be interested to find out what the best table tennis paddle is and what makes it a top pick…

Product

Features

Rating

1 - STIGA Pro

Professional Carbon Paddle

  • Carbon fibre materials
  • Fantastic balanced feel
  • ITTF certified

5.0 / 5

2 - Killerspin JET200

Top Brand Affordable Price 

  • 5-layer blade design
  • Tacky rubber
  • Comfortable handling

4.5 / 5

3 - STIGA Evolution

For Game Improvement

  • 6-layered blade
  • Evenly weight balanced
  • High performance design

4.5 / 5

Product

1 - STIGA Pro

Professional Carbon Paddle

  • Carbon fibre materials
  • Fantastic balanced feel
  • ITTF certified

2 - Killerspin JET200

Top Brand Affordable Price 

  • 5-layer blade design
  • Tacky rubber
  • Comfortable handling

3 - STIGA Evolution

For Game Improvement

  • 6-layered blade
  • Evenly weight balanced
  • High performance design

Our Top Ten Best Ping Pong Paddle Recommendations

While researching and putting this top-10 list together, we wanted to include a good variety of bats. They are all different in terms of what kind of player they’re best suited for and how much they cost.

It’s worth knowing that the bigger the budget you have, the higher-quality bat you’ll be able to get.

Think of it as an investment into the table tennis sport. The high-end ones are more likely to make the games more enjoyable. However, any of the more budget-focused paddles below are still great options too!

We have analysed the different budgets and skill levels of people interested in the sport of ping pong. So, you can be sure to find a paddle below that works great to improve your game.

1 - STIGA Pro: Professional Carbon Table Tennis Paddle

When it comes to the biggest brands in this sport, Stiga is considered to be among the top competitors. Their branding is splashed all over the big professional games that you see at the Olympics and on TV.

The rubber used with this paddle is ITFF certified to comply with the rules. A couple of the layers that make up the blade are constructed with carbon which have proven to be remarkably lightweight.

Players notice this bat is masterfully balanced too, which can make it feel natural to hold. This carbon material also works to enhance your speed and the overall rigidness of the bat.

As a result, players are able to put more spin and power onto their shots. However, since it is so extraordinarily lightweight, getting to grips with controlling it properly can take time.

That’s why we recommend this one for more advanced players. Furthermore, it’s on the pricey side, but you get a high-grade bat – we just don’t think it’s worth it for a complete beginner.

Pros

  • Carbon fibre materials for lightweight and powerful handling
  • Fantastically balanced to feel as natural in your hand as possible
  • ITTF certified to abide by table tennis rules

Cons

  • On the pricey side!
  • Lightweight and balanced design is hard to get used to for beginners

2 - Killerspin JET200: Top Brand With Affordable Price Tag

You have also most likely heard of the brand Killerspin. They have established a great reputation for themselves and ensure that most of the items they sell are of a high standard.

The JET200 bat in particular is considered to be on the low side of their high-end ping pong paddles. Therefore, beginners with some experience and intermediate level players will find this bat suits their needs well.

There is a total of five layers that make up the blade. You’ll notice you’re able to put a fair amount of spin onto your shots at the rubber is tacky.

As far as handling goes, most people find it to be comfortable, which is one of the most important things. You don’t want to be spending time in the middle of each game trying to get used to the feel of the paddle.

Some users have found that the JET200 bat is heavier than they expected. This will have a direct effect on how much speed and power you can put behind your shots. However, it can also work for you as it means getting used to controlling it is easier.

If you’re an intermediate or more experienced beginner, having good control is imperative. Killerspin’s JET200 is sold at a fair price considering the features it has to offer.

Pros

  • 5-layer blade design for a strong bat
  • Tacky rubber makes putting spin on the ball easier
  • Comfortable handling means you can focus on the game more
  • Priced fairly 

Cons

  • Too heavy for more professional players
  • Heaviness makes it harder to generate speed

3 - STIGA Evolution: Ideal For Game Improvement

The Evolution paddle from Stiga is a perfect choice for players wanting to advance into the higher ranks of table tennis. While it isn’t top of the range, like it’s carbon fibre counterpart, it does provide players with a lot of great advantages.

As far as the speed and spin rating are concerned, they are just a hair away from being 100. However, this can actually work in your favour. It means you’re able to experience an increase in control over your shots.

You can still boost the spin and speed compared to lower quality paddles, but have the control that just isn’t there with the elite bats. Stiga has ensured the Evolution paddle uses ITTF approved rubber which makes it suitable for all competitions.

There are six total layers that make up the blade that give you a sturdy feeling while holding the paddle. While it’s very firm, it is also able to remain lightweight at the same time. This combination of features is what makes the Evolution fantastic for increasing your speed and spin while having greater control.

Not to mention, the evenly distributed weight adds to the whole handling aspect too!

Pros

  • 6-layered blade for ultra-firmness and handling
  • Evenly weight balanced for a natural feel
  • High performance design ideal for advanced players
  • check-square-o
    Natural feel through superb balance

Cons

  • Six blade layers aren’t as durable as some had hoped for
  • Grip handle could be more comfortable

4 - Sport Game Pro Ping Pong Paddle

Are you looking for a cheap bat that isn’t completely lacking in quality? If so, this one will surprise you due to how affordable and great it is.

Plywood materials are used to construct the five layers that make up the blade of the paddle. If you’ve previously been using cheaper bats, you will quickly find this one lets you play at faster speeds better.

The rubber is extremely tack which is an excellent feature to help beginners learn how to but the most amount of spin onto their shots. Not to mention, the grip is awesome too. In the beginning, learning how to put spin on the ball can be tough, especially with a low-quality bat.

Anyone who has been struggling to add spin shots to their game would love how this one helps to improve their skills. Again, the affordable price is reflected in some of the ratings – but the ratings are still plentiful!

  • Speed is 82
  • Spin is 91
  • Control is 79

For people just starting out, these ratings will feel like a huge upgrade and are more than enough.

The boost beginners can experience in speed and spin are excellent, however, we like how this bat also keeps the control at a fairly high 79 too. You can try playing with all the spin and speed in the world, but without a good control rating, you’ll never be able to fully utilise them.

Pros

  • 5-layered blade for extra durability
  • Tacky rubber for enhanced spin abilities
  • Affordable price for beginners to level-up their game
  • Very cool design makes it stand out

Cons

  • Grips feels awkward for some and affects handling
  • May feel a little too heavy for some

5 - King Pro Table Tennis Bat

If you’re a beginner who is noticing your skill levels rapidly increasing weekly, the King Pro ping pong paddle reviews suggest it could be could be perfect for you. It is priced fairly, considering the amount of features it has on offer to improve your game.

A couple of the biggest standouts that this paddle has to offer come in the form of spin and speed. Both of them are rated at 80, which may not sound remarkable, however, you have to remember that this is also a more affordable option.

Novices who think they’re going to outgrow their current cheaper bats, would be better off with this one. The company have made sure to create a bat that will last you until you reach the intermediate level.

After upgrading to this paddle, you’ll notice you’re able to put a lot more spin and speed onto your shots. Your opponents have less time to react and even when they do, the increased spin still makes it difficult.

There is one slight flaw, however. The control is rated at 70. But, since this paddle is for beginners, it is very likely the control rating will not have much of an effect on their overall abilities. Improving your gameplay with practice will help you become a better player. Simply relying on the ratings and specifications of a bat won’t do much for you in the long-run.

Pros

  • Improved specs at a very fair price for beginners
  • Better speed and spin ratings for improving skills
  • A carry case provided to protect your bat from damage
  • check-square-o
    Great choice for limited budget

Cons

  • Higher spin and speed may take a while to adjust to
  • Low control rating which makes handling more challenging for some

6 - Thunderline 6-Star Premium Bat

Those of you able to expand your budget a little more past the affordable range would benefit by being able to use the Thunderline 6-Start Premium paddle.

Players who are on the verge of becoming intermediate players would love this paddle. It’s advanced enough to kick you through the last beginner stages and take you all the way through the intermediate ranks.

Once you’ve fully developed your skills as a beginner, there’s only so much that practice can do to make you a better player. This is where a paddle like this comes into play.

The rubber used with this bat is approved by the ITTF, making it suitable for competitions.

We appreciate how this paddle incorporates seven total layers of ply that make up the blade. As a result, you get a bat that’s firm and light. You are able to hit balls with more power than before with the 88-speed rating.

We were surprised to see the speed rating at such a high number as it’s border-lining the ratings of professional ping pong paddles. At the same time, the price remains affordable!

A tacky rubber surface ensures you’re able to maximise the amount of spin you can put onto the ball. The rating of spin is 90, which may be considerably more than cheaper bats you have used before. To ensure you can properly handle both the spin and speed ratings, the control rating is also fairly high at 86.

Pros

  • Seven layers for increased firmness
  • High performance ratings to boost your skill level
  • ITTF approved rubber suitable for competitions
  • Tacky rubber provides excellent spin

Cons

  • Material may not be durable enough to last you in the long-run
  • Some find the paddle to be a little heavy

7 - Kettler Advantage Indoor Paddle

Kettler is another one of the big brands in ping pong. They originate from Germany and have created a very reputable company name that table tennis players have come to trust.

Their Advantage Indoor set comes with four bats which are great for playing 2-on-2 matches. In order to protect each one of the bats, there is a storage bag included in the package. While you do get some balls with the bats too, we recommend getting some extra ones as they are low in quality.

All the handles of the four paddles can be gripped easily and comfortably. Comfort is one of the most important aspects in a beginner’s game. If the paddle doesn’t feel natural to hold, it’s likely to throw you off your game as you won’t be able to hit and defend shots as well.

Both sides of the bats are padded in rubber which is created specifically for beginners. It makes controlling shots easier to help you properly develop your abilities before progressing.

We found this paddle is likely to be outgrown by beginners who are learning at a fast pace, however, considering how cheap it is, you’re not making a long-term investment with this one. Overall, it’s a great kit for beginners that teaches them the basics of gripping the paddle and having control.

But it would be best to spend a little extra on the higher-end paddles if you’re more advanced.

Pros

  • Rubber material gives beginners better control
  • Comfortable handle is comfortable for improved gameplay
  • Affordable price that’s ideal for beginners
  • check-square-o
    Carry bag and balls are included

Cons

  • Balls provided in set are low-quality
  • Rubber begins to peel off with prolonged use

8 - Duplex 6-Star Ping Pong Bat

You receive two bats with the Duplex 6-Star set, meaning you can play against someone, or keep the second one as a spare. This paddle is one of the cheaper ones on the list, however, it provides you with some pretty great specs.

While these paddles aren’t the highest-quality, they will last beginners a lot longer than some of the even cheaper bats. Furthermore, even if you do wear one of them down, you have a back up handy.

Although, this shouldn’t be a major concern as these Duplex paddles are constructed to last you. All of the materials used are approved by the ITTF. Therefore, you can play in competitions and be within the rules. For a paddle so cheap, most people wouldn’t expect to be able to use it in competitive games.

The construction of the paddle uses a total of seven wood blends for ultra-strength. This also helps the bat feel firmer.

For such affordable paddles, many players are shocked to notice they are remarkably well balanced. The weight distribution across the bats feel even and comfortable to use. This lets you strike balls with more accuracy and recover quicker to prepare for the next play.

Along with the paddles, this kit comes with three high-quality balls. We were surprised to find these balls were such a high standard as many companies include cheap ones to reel customers in.

Pros

  • Weight balanced for more accurate shots
  • 7 layers of wood blends for strength and firmness
  • ITTF approve materials that are suitable for competitions
  • Some balls are included with OK quality

Cons

  • Low spin performance rating
  • On the heavy side for more experienced players

9 - Butterfly 603 Paddle

Butterfly’s 603 paddle is considered to be one of the brand’s highest-quality bats available. They are tailor made for the more experienced intermediate players. Therefore, you can expect the price to be towards the expensive ranges.

We like how the rubber is extremely tacky as it helps you to put tons of spin onto your shots. The spin rating is at an incredible 90! This aspect makes the paddle awesome for both defensive and offensive plays.

The speed rating of 80 isn’t quite as great as you may come to expect from an intermediate bat. However, it’ definitely enough to help you generate increased speed behind the ball.

This bat is extremely light, and the blade has been designed to be balanced exceptionally well. As a result, players are able to experience an 85-control rating. Having this amount of control, along with the higher spin and speed features, will undoubtedly improve your game.

Those of you who are playing in competitions would find the Butterfly 603 to be an excellent paddle. However, even those who are working on their skills before entering competitions would benefit from this bat.

It can help to fast-track your progress!

This brand takes things a step further and offer a free case to store your paddle in. they understand that a lot of damage can be inflicted onto bats when they’re being carried around.

Pros

  • Lightweight for better control
  • Extremely tacky rubber for increased spin
  • ITTF approved for use in competitions
  • check-square-o
    Case to prevent wear and tear

Cons

  • May be too narrow for players with bigger hands
  • Not suitable for defensive players

10 - Franklin Sports Industry Deluxe

This paddle is for those with the lowest budget. Finding paddles any cheaper than this will be extremely low in quality – for the price, this is about as good as it gets!

The rubber materials used on both sides vary slightly. One side uses pips that are out, and the other side has pips that go inwards. If you’re a complete beginner, these features let you experience some variety in playing styles.

Furthermore, the rubber enables you to start practicing putting spin on the balls. The earlier you start, the more time your spin abilities have to develop.

Customers have found the bat is very comfortable to hold, which is a major plus. Having a comfortable grip on the handle means you can put all your focus into how you strike the ball and recover in time to defend the next move.

As expected for the low price, there are some drawbacks to this bat. For one, it’s not approved by the ITTF, meaning you can’t use it in competitions.

While the rubber is great for developing basic spin shots, it’s very hard and limits the amount of control you have over shots. Overall, this paddle is best suited for complete newbies who are looking for a cheap, but effective bat.

It will not last you in the long-run, but it’s a good choice to get your foot in the door of the sport.

Pros

  • Rubber material for improving spin shots
  • Comfortable handle for better play
  • Cheapest paddle that’s perfect for newbies

Cons

  • Cannot be used in competitions
  • Prone to easy damage

Features You Need To Focus On

When you first step into the world of table tennis, it can be tricky identifying the main features that add up to make a great ping pong paddle.

As if this process isn’t complicated enough, the companies selling these bats all use various terms to sell you. One brand may dress up a certain feature and charge more, whereas another brand could offer the exact same, but at a lower price and without the jargon.

We also highly recommend that you consider what kind of player you are. The requirements for a beginner and someone looking to play in professional tournaments can be wildly different. So, once you’ve got a good idea on your skill level, you’ll be in a much better position to pick the paddle that’s best for you.

To make your table tennis experience the best that it can be, we’re about to delve into the top things to consider about ping pong paddles. You can use it as a small guide to help you navigate through the different items until you find the one that fits you best.

We also have a section specifically on Butterfly paddles.

The Blade

While discussing the different paddles above, you may have noticed we used the term “blade”. This is the round-shaped section of the bat that is constructed, typically, out of wood that’s light weight.

These materials are layered to ensure you get a firm feel while holding the paddle.

Ideally, a lighter and balanced paddle is much better. You may have noticed that the more high-end bats have up to seven layers. This ensures that the light weight feel, and stiffness of the paddles are up to par for professional players.

Some brands (like the very first one on the list) also incorporate carbon materials into the blade for added firmness – without making the paddle too heavy. However, these are the bats that professionals use, and they are expensive.

Therefore, beginners and intermediate players shouldn’t worry about spending that much money on those kinds of paddles. A bat that’s constructed using five layers is plenty before moving onto professional games.

The Handle

The handle is another crucial part of the bat that you need to take into full consideration. If it doesn’t feel comfortable to hold, it’s not right for you. It’s unlikely that you’ll get used to it over time and it will do nothing but lower your skill level. Instead, find paddles where the handle is comfortable, and you can grip it for long periods of time without your hand feeling stressed.

The more stressed the muscles in your hands are, the more sweat is produced – and that makes the bat slippery. This is quite a significant issue. Professional players have taken some more extreme measures to have the handles of their bats customized to their exact grip.

While beginners and intermediate players don’t need to go as far as this, it highlights how important the handle is.

Finding the right grip may require a little trial and error period of using different paddles. But once you find the one that feels natural to hold, you’ll realize how much easier it is to level-up your skills.

The Rubber

The amount of stickiness the rubber has will have a large impact on your ability to put spin onto your shots. If it’s tackier, you’ll have a better chance of generating more spin on the ball.

Having the skillset to put spin onto the ball is a fundamental part of ping pong. It’s not just something that professionals use. In fact, if you’re a beginner, we’d advise you to seek out a bat that has sticky rubber so that you can get to grips with spin.

You don’t necessarily have to spend more – just pay special attention to the rubber materials used on paddles. Avoid ones that are too hard as the hinder your ability to practice with spin shots.

Spin and rubber type play a significant role in the sport and can be an incredibly great asset to use against opponents. It can throw a wrench into their rhythm and make it hard to anticipate what the ball is going to do on their side of the table.

table tennis bat and ball

The Sponge

Sponge is the part of table tennis paddles that is sandwiched beneath the rubber and above the blade.

What does it do?

The sponge essentially works to dissolve the initial impact once the ball comes into contact with the bat. This means you’re able to handle attacking shots from opponents much better. Your control over how you can deal with them is improved, especially with the paddles that include thicker sponge.

However, this layer of sponge is also heavily involved in how much speed your able to put onto offensive shots too.

For the beginner paddles, we found they have a sponge layer that’s approximately 1.5mm in thickness. On the other end of the spectrum, the professional and intermediate bats use 2mm of sponge.

Final Thoughts

So, you’ve learned more about ping pong paddles and their features/benefits. You can now begin to form a better idea of the one that’s best for your playing style.

Take into consideration all the major points we’ve mentioned above. This means classing yourself as a beginner, intermediate, or advanced player. If you’re beginning to push the boundaries of beginner or intermediate, it’s time to look for the more high-end bats.

However, if you’re still feeling out of your depths a little and in the beginner stage, an inexpensive paddle would be best. It can still help you progress and learn the basics before improving even further.

Hopefully, we’ve given you all the information you need to enjoy ping pong and get the most out of your games. For more about this amazingly fun sport head back to our home page.