What Do You Need To Play Pickleball: Check Out 8 Must-Have Items

November 9, 2021

Pickleball pieces of equipment are not on the high side. Every player and fan knows that. But the question is, what do you need to play pickleball? 

Getting the right equipment is the first step to proving your seriousness to play pickleball. But that can only happen if you know the things you need to acquire for the sport. Isn’t that so?

This article will focus on what you require to play pickleball, whether for recreational purposes or competition.

Are you ready? Keep reading to learn more!

Things You Need To Play Pickleball

One reason many people are showing a strong interest in pickleball is the simplicity of the sport. And you won’t even have to spend handsomely to acquire the necessary equipment to play the sport. 

Let’s discuss the simple pieces of equipment you need.  

#1: Pickleball court:

There is no pickleball without a court. And the court must be according to the required standard. Otherwise, it’s not pickleball. 

The Pickleball court measures 44 feet long and 20 feet wide. In contrast, a singles tennis court measures 78 feet by 27 feet. However, they’re both courts identical. 

The pickleball court surface for concrete and asphalt courts is similar to basketball and tennis court surfaces. 

They boast a smooth texture, with round and smooth, non-aggressive silica sand. It helps to make the surface slip-free and ideal for wet and dry conditions. 

Is it possible to play pickleball on a tennis court? Yes, very likely. Many empty tennis courts in several parts of the United States are getting converted into pickleball courts. 

How can you convert a tennis court to a pickleball court? It is a simple process! Remove the tennis court net and replace it with a pickleball net. Let the net be 36 inches high on each side and 34 inches down the middle. 

Is playing pickleball on a grass surface possible? Yes, it is. But you have to consider using grass surfaces only when a more standard court isn’t available. 

Again, only consider playing pickleball on the grass surface where you’re not playing a serious game. Why? The bounce variability can be an issue during competitions.  

#2: Pickleball paddle:

The paddle is another crucial piece of equipment you need to play pickleball. You can’t play pickleball, let alone train if you don’t have a paddle. 

So, what are paddles made of? Firstly, pickleball paddles aren’t of the same size as a tennis racquet. They are much smaller than tennis racquets but slightly bigger than ping-pong paddles. 

Originally, pickleball paddles were made entirely from wood. However, paddles used in recent times have evolved, thanks to technological advancement. 

You can now find lighter, more balanced, and sturdier paddles made from other materials like graphite, fiberglass, composite, and carbon fibers.

The wood paddles are still very much available, but they’re commonly what most beginners use. 

By the way, training with a heavy paddle can make using the lighter ones a breeze. 

What should you consider when choosing a pickleball paddle? There is a lot to focus on when choosing a paddle for the game. Whether you’re playing in a competition or for recreational purposes, selecting the best paddle for you should be the priority. 

  • Brand of pickleball paddle:  Most paddles you’ll find on the market are made by pickleball players, who went on to establish companies to use their experience to produce top-quality paddles that meet the needs of players. But some companies only joined the party because of how profitable the business is. Brands like Head, Monarch, PRO-LITE and Amazin’ Aces are a wise choice. 
  • Paddle shape and size:  If you think paddle shape doesn’t count, you’re wrong. Choosing a paddle with the perfect size can elevate your game. And that’s why you need to consider all the crucial elements when selecting a paddle. Remember, there are round, square, teardrop, and diamond-shaped paddles. You’ll also find long and short paddle handles. 
  • Paddle weight: Many players ignore paddle weight when choosing the equipment. They believe they have the skills to play with any paddle. Paddle weight is crucial when selecting paddles. Do you want a heavy or lightweight paddle? Do you want your paddle to be quick or deliver more power? These are things to consider. Paddle weight also ranges from 7 to 9+ ounces.
  • Paddle grip: What grip would be best for you? Is it thin, ergo, contour, standard, or double grip? You have to decide before choosing your pickleball paddle. Do you want to feel the grip’s ridges or have a cushion instead? Do you prefer a large or small grip? Make your choice! It’s a matter of what you feel comfortable using.  

All these are crucial factors to consider when choosing a pickleball paddle. You can try out different paddles before splashing the cash. 

Ask friends, opponents, neighbors, relatives to lend you theirs. You can also sample their opinion on the best pickleball paddle to acquire. They might help you to pick a paddle that suits your skill level. 

#3: Pickleball balls: 

Balls are essential in pickleball, and choosing the right ones is equally crucial. You require balls to play the game. But please know that indoor and outdoor balls aren’t the same. And it won’t make sense to use indoor balls outdoors. 

 Balls’ diameter ranges from 2.87 to 2.97. And they have different numbers of holes, ranging from 26 to 40. 

What’s the difference between indoor and outdoor balls? Indoor balls have fewer holes and are lighter. Their holes are larger, and they’re generally softer. Furthermore, they’re pretty easy to control. 

Outdoor balls are the direct opposite. They have smaller holes, are heavier, and are more difficult to control. They have to be heavier, given the effect the elements would have on them. These include factors such as wind and temperature.

Furthermore, outdoor balls are also harder, given the nature of the court surface outdoors. 

A Handy Tip: Balls come in varied colors, but the International Pickleball Federation specifies that all pickleball must have only one color throughout. 

#4: Pickleball nets:

The simplicity of pickleball is one reason the sport is gaining popularity fast. You can set up a court anywhere, provided you have a portable net. 

When choosing a net, consider the quality and security. It should stand the test of time. 

Next is the setup. Any net you’re splashing the cash on should be a breeze to set up. It shouldn’t require any tool to set up. 

Your pickleball net should also be sturdy and meet the set regulation dimension, which is 22 feet wide, 36 inches high on both sides, and 34 inches high in the center of the net. 

#5: Pickleball gloves: 

Let’s be honest. Most pickleball players can do away with gloves. But that doesn’t mean gloves are useless. The hands get sweaty when playing pickleball, which could cause your paddle to slip off now and then. 

Imagine trying to fire a shot and your paddle slips off your hands unexpectedly. You’ll lose valuable points and could even get yourself injured. 

If you’re wearing gloves, the possibility of the paddle slipping off your grip is slim. You’ll even have a firmer grip on the paddle and be able to fire killer shots at your opponent at will. 

Have you witnessed blisters on your hands after playing pickleball? It often happens. But if you’re wearing gloves, you’re likely to end all pickleball games blisters-free. 

#6: Pickleball Shoes

You cannot play pickleball with no shoes on. You can’t run around the court barefooted. 

However, choosing the right shoes is equally important. It will help to make your movement around the court a breeze and prevent those nasty injuries from occurring. 

What are factors to consider when choosing shoes? Consider the sole traction and lateral stability, then cushioning. If these are good, you’ll find pickleball more enjoyable to play. 

Please, know that shoes used for indoor pickleball aren’t the same as the ones needed outdoors. Outdoor pickleball shoes would have better sole traction and be sturdier. 

#7: Pickleball bags:

No pickleball player would question the reason they need a bag. You would need to move a range of equipment to the court, and what better way to do so than using a bag?

Bags come in varied styles. And choosing the right one is a matter of personal preference. You may also want to consider the things you’re moving to the court. Would the bag you’re purchasing be enough to carry your equipment? Would the bag be sturdy enough to secure your gear while on transit?

You have to consider these things. You’ll come across different bag style includes duffel, sling, backpack, and the racquet-styled bags tennis players commonly use. 

#8: Pickleball protective glasses:

Protective glasses are essential equipment players should consider getting. It would protect the pickleball from hitting your eyes by mistake. 

You also require these glasses during sunny weather, as they would cause you not to strain your eyes under such conditions. 


So, what do you need to play pickleball? The main things you need are a paddle, balls, and a pickleball court. But that doesn’t mean the other things are not equally important.

Things like shoes, bags, eyeglasses, and even gloves are essential. Getting these items will help improve your game and enjoy extra protection throughout games.

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