Kid’s Pickleball Paddles

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Best Pickleball Paddles for Kids

Picking the right paddle for your child can determine how successful they will be on the court.

If the paddle is too large, they will have a difficult time dealing with the weight and grip size to swing efficiently.

Luckily there are several pickleball paddles designed for everyone from toddlers to preteens.

Most Important Measurement for Ordering Kid’s Pickleball Paddle

You want to know your child’s hand length. This will give you an indicator of how big of stock grip they can hold. Most of the paddles come in 4″ circumference, which is good for an average 7-12 year old. The toddler sized paddles have a grip circumference of 3.5″ which is good for 4 to 7 years old.

You can measure your child’s grip size by doing the following:

  • Mesure the dominant hand
  • Take a ruler and measure from the top horizontal line on their palm to the tip of their ring finger
  • If it’s under 3.8in go with a toddler sized paddle
  • Over 3.8″ pick a junior series paddle
  • If their grip measurment is over 4.0in and you feel they have the wrist and arm strength, you can start looking at adult sized paddles

NOTE: you can always make a grip larger by applying overgrips, so when in doubt, go smaller at first. If you buy too big of grip, there is no way to reduce the grip size.

Our First Kid’s Pickleball Paddle

When Jett first started playing, he used an Onix Recruit 3.0 which was purchased at the local Big 5 sporting good store. It is NOT a kid’s paddle, but it’s what we had, so we played with it.

This paddle is heavy at 7.9 to 8.1 ounces. The paddle face feels rather smooth, so generating spin is difficult. The grip is flat and wide which can feel strange in the hand. The polypropelyne core gives the paddle a firm feel, so develping touch on dinks and drops is challenging.

Overall, this paddle is a basic recreational paddle aimed at adults. If it’s all you can get your hands on, use it. Learn the game, have fun. But be prepared to invest in a paddle that fits your child if you decide to pursue the game.

Onix Recruit v3.0 Manufacturer’s Specs:

15.5″ L x 7.8″ W x 1.25″ H; Medium-Weight 7.8-8.1 oz

Onix Recruit v3.0 Specifications (Measured)

Length 15.75″
Width 7.63″
Thickness, Paddle Face 0.375″
Thickness, Butt Cap 1.25″
Grip Circumference, Middle 4.125″
Grip Circumference, Butt Cap 4.875″
Grip Length, Stock 4.75″
Grip Length, Potential 5.625″
Weight 9.90 oz.

Onix Recruit v3.0 Price at Time of Publication: $49.99



OneShot Juniorshot

Once we decided we loved pickleball as a family, everyone upgrade their paddles. Jett picked out the Oneshot Juniorshot series in the kid’s size. This paddle is also available for toddlers. This paddle is much lighter than his original Onix paddle. The grip is also smaller which gives younger players more comfort, control, and confidence. Once Jett got this paddle his skills took off because he had the wrist strength to effectively hit backhands and roll his forehands.

Oneshot Juniorshot series pickleball paddles for kids

Another aspect that kids love about the Oneshot Juniorshot is the design. They come in a dinosaur or ocean theme. Jett loved to show people his new paddle and he was always eager to play.

We did have one problem with this paddle. One of the top corners suffered from an area where the edgeguard detached. I was able to use a small flat screwdriver to pop the guard back over the paddle core. However even with the edgeguard in place, the paddle felt like it had a dead spot and the sweet spot was definitely degraded in size. We could have glued the edgeguard back into place, but my feeling was that wouldn’t fully resolve the problem.

Oneshot Pickleball Juniorshot Series Manufacturer’s Specifications

Paddle Weight: 5.3 oz (Toddler)
Paddle Weight: 6.0 oz (Kids)
Grip Circumference: 4″ Actual grip sizes may vary up to 1/8″.
Grip Style: Cushioned, perforated grip
Grip Length: 3.4″ (Toddler)
Grip Length: 3.8″ (Kids)
Paddle Length: 12.4″ (Toddler)
Paddle Length: 14.3 (Kids)
Paddle Width: 6.9″ (Toddler)
Paddle Width: 7.4″ (Kids)
Paddle Face: Smooth Fiber Glass
Core Material: Polypropylene Honeycomb
Edge Guard: 1/8″ overlapping paddle face

OneShot Juniorshot Specifications (Measured)

Length 14.5″
Width 7.5
Thickness, Paddle Face 0.5″
Thickness, Butt Cap 1.31″
Grip Circumference, Middle 3.875″
Grip Circumference, Butt Cap 4.8125″
Grip Length, Stock 4″
Grip Length, Potential 4.5″
Weight 6.36 oz.

Oneshot Pickleball Juniorshot Series Price at Publication: $44.99


Baddle Junior Series

Jett purchased this paddle with a gift card from the holidays because he left his old paddle at the courts. A couple was nice enough to pick it up and we eventually got it back. But in between being lost and the recovery the couple went on vacation, so it took awhile. Instead of going back to the Onix, and because of the issue with the OneShot, Jett thought this would be a good fit.

Baddle Junior Series pickleball paddle in blue

It turns out he was right. The Baddle Junior shares many characteristics with the Oneshot Juniorshot. The length, width, and thickness are nearly identical, but the Baddle Junior has a slightly larger circumference in the grip. Jett picked up this paddle and never skipped a beat, performing immediately like he’d had the paddle for weeks.

My perception as a parent, just holding this paddle, it feels more robust and better made than the competition. If you’re looking for a good starter paddle for toddlers or kids this would by my recommendation for kids with hands under 4.1 inches.

Baddle Junior Series Manufacturer Specifications

Paddle Length 14.5” (36.83cm)
Paddle Width7.4” (18.8cm)
Grip Circumference 3.875” (9.84cm)
Weight 6.8 oz. (192.8grams ) (±.2oz)
Surface Fiberglass
Core Polymer Honeycomb
Paddle Thickness .41” (1.04cm)

Baddle Junior Series Specifications (Measured)

Length 14,4375″
Width 7.63″
Thickness, Paddle Face 0.5″
Thickness, Butt Cap 1.3125″
Grip Circumference, Middle 4.125″
Grip Circumference, Butt Cap 4.75″
Grip Length, Stock 4.0″
Grip Length, Potential 4.5″
Weight 6.86 oz.

Baddle Junior Series Price at Publication: $50

JOOLA Megladon Junior Paddle

I surprised Jett with this paddle after finding it online. I had no idea it would be so good. The JOOLA Megladon Junior Paddle is hands down the best pickleball paddle for kids out right now. Just picking this paddle up I could feel that it was well-built. When we went to do measurements, they matched the manufacturer’s specifications more than the other paddles. This leads us to believe they are manufacturing to tighter tolerances, thus crafting a superior product.

JOOLA Megalodon Kids PIckleball Paddle

Jett loved this paddle from the minute he got it into his hands. It has a huge shark on it and comes in a cool ocean blue-theme.

Just keep in mind, the grip size on this is slightly larger than the other paddles. Both circumference and length of the grip lean more towards a small adult-sized paddle compared to the other paddles. We put two overgrips on this paddle to match Jett’s preferences, so the original grip size with be smaller than we measured. That matches up with the 4.0 inches listed by the manufacturer.

While this paddle is over an ounce heavier than the Baddle and Oneshot kid’s paddles, it’s still manageable for bigger kids. The paddle seems well-balanced and Jett has had no problem with control or power. He simply loves it.

JOOLA Megladon Manufacturer’s Specifications

  • Average Weight: 7.9oz
  • Paddle Length: 15.75in
  • Paddle Width: 7.9in
  • Grip Type: Feel-Tec Pure
  • Grip Length: 4.75in
  • Grip Circumference*: 4in
  • Core:Response Honeycomb
  • Core (mm):12


JOOLA Megladon Specifications (Measured)

Length 15.75″
Width 7.875″
Thickness, Paddle Face 0.5625″
Thickness, Butt Cap 1.375″
Grip Circumference, Middle* (two overgrips applied) 4.5″
Grip Circumference, Butt Cap 5.325″
Grip Length, Stock (Estimated with overgrip) 4.5″
Grip Length, Potential 5.0″
Weight 8.03 oz.

JOOLA Megladon Price at Publication: $49.95

CRBN 2x 16mm

Jett is currently using the CRBN 2x 16mm power series. This is NOT a kid’s paddle. It’s actually used by some pros and it is an absolute beast. I would not recommend this for a child unless they are passionate about playing and are starting serious lessons or tournaments. It’s expensive and overkill for casual play.

But my goodness is it an amazing piece of technology. The first time Jett served to me with it the ball dipped right under my paddle because it had so much topspin. I had to adjust my game. The balls were coming faster and Jett was able to put much more shape on the ball.

CRBN 2x 16mm power series pickleball paddle

He became a beast at the kitchen, peppering opponents with flicks and drives.

He used this in his second tournament ever. It was a round-robin. He pickled the next two best players when he faced them. I actually felt kinda bad for the men he beat. In his first round, he scored a body bag on the biggest guy in the tournament and I thought, “What have I done?”

Jett continued to plow through opponents until his last match. He didn’t know it but he needed 1 point to seal the win. He ended up hitting a forehand drive right into the face of a guy standing in the ready position at the kitchen. The poor guy never knew what hit him. He had no time to react. I had to walk away because I was horrified (and maybe I said “Oh ****!” really loud and started laughing and I knew it was inappropriate.)

Jett’s now working on his two-handed backhand. It’s going to be a long summer for me, trying to hold my own on the court.

If you buy this for your kid, just know, you were warned!

CRBN 2xz 16mm Power Series Manufacturer’s Specs

  • Total Length: 15.75″
  • Width: 8″
  • Core Thickness: 14mm/16mm
  • Handle length: 4.75”
  • Handle grip circumference: 4.125″
  • Weight: 7.8-8.1 oz

CRBN 2xz 16mm Power Series Specifications (Measured)

Length 15.75″
Width 8.0″
Thickness, Paddle Face 0.75″
Thickness, Butt Cap 1.25″
Grip Circumference, Middle 4.00″
Grip Circumference, Butt Cap 5.0″
Grip Length, Stock 4.75″
Grip Length, Potential 5.25″
Weight 7.93 oz.

Notice how the specs of the actual paddle match the manufacturer’s specifications? This is a high-quality paddle crafted to the strictest tolerances. I bought the CRBN 1x 16mm and it’s just as good but better for bigger hands.

The One Trick to Get Your Kid Excited to Play

We obsess over specs like weight, dimensions, spin potential, grip length, and price. But what really matters the most to kids is that they like their paddle. Sure, you want to guide them to get something that fits their size and skill, but if you let them pick out their own paddle, they’ll be much more invested in hitting the courts.

My guess is if you let kids pick between a $240 pro paddle in all black, and another with a huge shark on it and cool graphics, the kids are going to pick the shark paddle every time.

As long as our kids are having fun, getting exercise, and getting outside, it’s the paddle they WANT to use that’s best.

Now that you know what paddle to get for your child, make sure you get them the best pickleball balls!

How We Measured

For the basic measurements like L, W, and Thickness we just used a tape measure. Took two measurements and averaged them.

For the grip circumference, we measured in the middle of the grip with tailor’s tape, then again on the end by the cap. This gives you an idea of the size of the main grip as well as how much it tapers at the end.

For grip length, we tried to measure to the end of the stock grip, excluding the protective tape over the top. For potential grip, we tried to estimate how much more grip length you could add with an overgrip. Paddles with no space between the end of the stock grip and the wide part of the paddle don’t offer much room to add extra length. Some paddles have a nice taper between the end of the stock grip and the flare to the wide bottom of the paddle, which offers more room to extend the grip.

For weight, we used a food scale accurate to 1/100th of an ounce over two measurements then averaged.