How to choose the perfect Platform Tennis paddle!

Paddlepro - Nov 19th 2022

We know the thought of buying a new paddle can be daunting! That is why Paddlepro wants to give you a comprehensive guide, so you have all the information you need to know before you make your next paddle purchase.

For over 20 years Paddlepro has been recognized as an industry leader in paddle sports. Our knowledge, expertise, vast inventory, and superior customer service will make it easy for you to find the best equipment to take your game to the next level.

Let’s begin.

When do I need to buy a new paddle?

This is probably one of the most common questions we get…and it’s a good one! Unlike a tennis racket, that you can freshen up by getting it restrung every 6 months, a paddle is only going to wear down until it will eventually have to be replaced. The ball being heavier, and the points lasting so much longer are the two main reasons why over time the foam inside a paddle will eventually lose a lot of the responsiveness, or “pop” some people call it. For these reasons we recommend if you are playing 1-2 times a week over the season you will probably need to change paddles every 2 years. If you play 3 or more times a week you paddle will probably need changing every season.

What playing characteristics do you want the paddle to help you with?

Probably the most important question you need to be thinking about! Do you want more power, more control, more spin, a softer feel because of an elbow problem, and more space on the grip to hit a two-handed backhand? Once you have an idea about what you want the paddle to do for you then it is easier to start thinking about the correct Head Size, Foam Density, Weight, Grip Size and Grit.

Head Size

10 years ago the most popular head size in platform tennis was the standard size but with the introduction of more carbon-based paddles, the carbon material has allowed for paddles to get larger, lighter, and more durable so the most common head size today is the oversized paddle.

There are still three head sizes in the market, the most common being the Oversized. There is also a Mid Plus and then a smaller Standard size.

Oversize paddles have the largest sweet spot and produce more power: Normally 95 sq inches and above. This year both Master Athletics L1 and L2, and Wilson Ultra OS pushed that head size even more 

Mid Plus paddles have a nice blend of power and control: Normally 87-93 sq inches. Mid Plus size paddles include Master M1M2MProskullU Blue, Silver, Orange, PinkViking Re-Ignite & Axe models, Wilson Steam and Xenon Vortex models.

Standard-size paddles and more maneuverable and are more for players looking for control: Normally 86 sq inches and below. Standard size models include Master S1+S2skullU BronzeViking Ozone & OZ models, Wilson Blade & Xcel models, Xenon Prime.

Foam Density

This is probably the most important factor involved in choosing a paddle because this will truly determine how the paddles feel when you hit the ball. It can be very confusing because many of the companies call their foam density different names but it is actually pretty easy if you can translate the tech talk. Quiet simply, a softer density will give you more power and comfort, a firmer density will give you more control.

Densities by company:

Master Athletics:

  • MPro has the “Pro” foam which is dense, ideal for more control
  • M1L1S1+ has a mid-density foam that has the perfect blend of power and control
  • M2L2S2 is the softest core in the industry, ideal for ultimate power or for someone with an elbow problem


  • "Super soft" is the softest foam in the line, ideal for power
  • "Medium" core is the firmer core in the line, ideal for more control


  • PRO” models have dense foam, ideal for more control
  • LITE” models have mid-density foam, the perfect blend of power and control
  • PRODIGY” is the softest foam in the Viking line, ideal for power


  • LITE DENSITY” is the lightest and softest foam in their line, ideal for power
  • SMART DENSITY” is unique to the industry. It is two different foams sandwiched into one paddle, giving you a great blend of power and control
  • PRO DENSITY” is the firmest foam in their line, ideal for control



As we mentioned before, the mass introduction of carbon-made paddles has really changed the weight of paddles over the past decade. Paddle weights range from 345g/12.1 oz to 385g/13.6 oz. The average weight of a paddle today is around 370g / 12.7 oz

Pick-up weight (how the paddle feels when you first pick the paddle up) is going to be important when making your selection.

If you are looking for something to help at the net you should be looking for a lighter paddle so the paddle will be easy to maneuver when volleying.

The heavier the paddle the more power you will be able to get on your shots because there will be more mass going into each shot.

All Master Athletics paddles also have EDGE technology and a Tuning Kit which allows you to customize the weight and the vibration dampeners allow a player to reduce the vibration on every shot. 

I need more room for my two-handed backhand (or forehand!)

The two-hand backhand is now become quite common in the game as more tennis players have crossed over to play Platform Tennis.

The standard head shape reduces the size of the playing surface in order to give the grip more length for the additional hand. Each brand has a model that allows the player to do this.

Keep in mind that a longer handle is not always an added bonus! It does come at an expense. Since paddles are restricted to 18 inches, the additional grip length comes at the expense of a smaller head size, which reduces the size of the sweet spot.

Master Athletics S1+S2Viking Axe & OzoneWilson Blade & XcelXenon Vortex

How else can I get more spin with a paddle?

How sharp (or new) the holes on your paddle are the best way to help you create spin, but…additional grit on the paddle is also an effective way to help the ball grab on to your paddle.

The Master Athletics M1 Tour Edition is the most aggressively gritted paddle in the marketplace.

Are there different paddles for Juniors?

Absolutely! In the past few years, manufacturers have done a great job of making more options for junior players as the game has continued to grow.

For juniors 4-8 years old, the best option is the Viking Zombie paddle which is 16 inches and 250 grams.

For juniors 9 years old to 12 years old all of the manufacturers have good 17-inch paddle options. They all range a little in weight.

Master Athletics J1 is 320 grams, Viking Smash is 345 grams, Wilson Xcel Junior is 330 grams and the Xenon Vortex Junior is 335 grams.

Still unsure?

You can always buy a Wilson paddle with a bottle opener on the bottle to ensure your post-match game is elite!

With over 50 years of experience we know we can help you make the best decision on selecting a paddle. Give us a call at 1-800-211-0776 or email us at We look forward to helping you!