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Paddle Penetration

Lots of people ask me what's the best paddle to use and what the differences are. Without going into boring technical descriptions there are two basic paddle designs. Honeycomb and solid core.

Honeycomb are easily distinguished by the band or rim around the outside edge of the paddle. The core of the paddle is a honeycomb pattern sandwiched between two varying paddle face surfaces and held together by that outer band/rim/edge guard. These types of paddles play softer and offer more control against those bangers that like to blast every shot back across the net. They are lightweight and fairly durable. Typically the more economical choice and easily the most seen on the courts. The downside to this design is that the inside honeycomb layer will break down relatively quickly compaired to the solid core paddle, and the edge guard can separate from the paddle. Depending on the level and amount of play, honeycomb design paddle should be replaced as you hear the "dead" sound or even rattling of broken bits inside the paddle.

Solid core paddles are typically harder to control and take more skill to use in fast paced play. This type of paddle is usually slightly heavier than the honeycomb design, but substantially increases your power game. There is usually no discernable rim or protruding edge to the solid core paddle, which eliminates the separation of that edge guard from the paddle. Solid core paddles usually last longer than honeycomb, but are on average more expensive.

I have both in my bag, but prefer the solid core paddle.

I would not recommend the original solid core paddle (wood), as they provide litte touch for that perfect dink or drop shot, and the definitely aren't friendly to your elbow and forearm.

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