Pickleball is one of the fastest-growing sports in the United States and it’s no surprise why. From rowdy backyard rallies to serious tournament play, pickleball balls are essential to every game.
But with so many different types and brands out there, what are the best pickleball balls for your game? Did you even know there was an option to buy outdoor pickleball balls or indoor pickleball balls?
I’ve done some extensive digging to offer a comprehensive guide on what makes a great ball for pickleball — from its size and weight to durability and bounce. In addition, I’ve highlighted my favorite picks for anyone looking for the perfect ball for their next match.
So let’s take a closer look and choose the best ball for your game!
Why Are They the Best
Before we dive into our top picks, it’s important to understand why certain balls are considered the best.
Most pickleball balls used for tournaments and serious matches conform to USAPA regulations for size, weight, and number of holes:
- Size: 2.87″ to 2.97” in diameter
- Weight: Between 0.78 and 0.935 ounces
- Number of Holes: Minimum of 26 to a maximum of 40 circular holes
Of course, for backyard games or training, this isn’t necessarily a requirement.
Pickleball balls are typically made of a plastic material called polymer. Although, if noise is a concern (especially for indoor ball), you can also purchase foam pickleball balls.
When it comes to durability and bounce, you’ll want to look for balls made of high-quality materials that are designed with purposeful aerodynamic holes.
Now that we know what features to look for, let’s take a closer look at our top picks.
Best Pickleball Balls
When it comes to choosing the best pickleball ball, there are a few key factors to consider. One important factor is whether you will be playing indoors or outdoors.
Outdoor pickleball balls are typically made of a harder material, such as composite or polymer, which allows them to withstand the wear and tear of playing on rough outdoor surfaces.
Indoor pickleball balls are usually made of thinner plastic or a softer material, such as foam, which allows for a softer, quieter, more controlled game on a smooth indoor surface.
It’s important to choose a ball that is suitable for the level of play and the type of surface you will be playing on.
Best Outdoor Pickleball Balls
Outdoor pickleball balls are specifically designed to be used on outdoor courts, which are typically made of a hard surface such as concrete or asphalt. These balls are made of a durable polymer material. Outdoor pickleball balls are generally larger and more bouncy than indoor balls, and they tend to travel faster through the air.
#1 – Franklin X-40 Performance Outdoor Pickleball Balls
The Franklin X-40 Performance Outdoor Pickleball is one of the most popular outdoor pickleball balls used today! With its single-sized holes and unique design, this outdoor pickleball is unmatched in its accuracy and balance.
Not only that, its hardness is ideal for outdoor play, making sure it takes the physical impact of outdoor court surfaces. Plus, with its bright colors the ball is sure to stand out against darker courts with ease.
The ball measures 2.91” in diameter, has a weight of 0.88 ounces, and is designed as one piece so that it’s more durable during intense play. Plus, they meet USAPA specifications for bounce height!
- Great for advanced competitive play
- Rotationally molded for durability
- Bright colors to stand out
- Number of holes: 40 single-sized
- Size: 2.91″
- Weight: 0.88 ounces
- USAP Approved
- The official ball for USA Pickleball and US Open Pickleball Championships
$12.99 for a 3-pack
#2 – Wilson TRU 32 PRO Outdoor Pickleball Balls
The Wilson Tru 32 Pro pickleball ball is the ultimate outdoor pickleball ball. With its patented hole pattern, it offers remarkable consistency in flight and bounce characteristics, making it ideal for experienced competitive players.
Made of high-quality materials that ensure a fast yet responsive nature, the TRU 32 Pro is officially approved by USA Pickleball for outdoor play. This outdoor pickleball ball delivers an exciting and enjoyable experience – offering advanced players a higher level of precision and performance to elevate their gameplay!
- Best for advanced competitive play
- Injection-molded design for fast play and increased responsiveness
- Composed for durability
- Rough finish promotes fast outdoor play
- Neon infrared color to track with ease
- Number of holes: Patented 32-hole pattern for maximum flight and bounce capabilities
- Size: 2.92″
- Weight: 0.91 ounces
- Approved by USA Pickleball for competitive play
$7.49 for a 2-pack
#3 – ONIX Fuse G2 Outdoor Pickleballs
This model features three times the durability of the original, and with its precision drilled holes, it gives unparalleled flight that minimizes wind interference. Its bright colors mean you won’t lose track of it against nearly any surface!
Features an exceptional response and bounce during play with a gentle touch that many players love. Not only will this ball remain consistent in its response, but it also boasts outstanding seam welding that prevents easy splitting from prolonged use.
The Fuse G2 outdoor pickleball’s adaptability across multiple court surfaces and conditions makes it worth every penny!
- Excellent ball for beginners
- 3 times more durable than the original Fuse
- High quality seam welding to prevent splitting
- Number of holes: 40 small precision-drilled holes to combat wind
- Bright for great visibility
- Size: 2.90″
- Weight: 0.93 ounces
- Meets USAPA requirements for outdoor tournament pickleball play
$9.99 3-pack additional sizes available
#4 – CORE Outdoor Pickleballs
This outdoor pickleball from CORE is perfect for reliable, long-lasting outdoor play. It’s designed with a wind-resistant 40-hole pattern, ensuring your shots will travel where you aim them irrespective of outdoor conditions. This ball rebounds with a consistent bounce height so you can trust that your returns will be responsive.
The balls are made of a single piece for added durability to withstand outdoor conditions without cracking, and come in a striking neon color for better visibility – great for days when the lights aren’t ideal!
Not only is it perfect for casual play anyone in any outdoor setting, but they’re USA Pickleball approved and great for tournament play too.
- Great for players of all skill levels
- Extremely durable one-piece roto-molded construction
- Number of holes: 40
- Size: 2.913″
- Weight: 0.86 ounces
- Neon green color
- Approved by USA Pickleball
$10.99 for a 3-pack
#5 – Onix Sports Dura Fast 40 Outdoor Pickleballs
This ball has a seamless, one-piece rotationally molded design and thick walls made from hard plastic – this outdoor ball is designed to withstand the roughest outdoor conditions. The name of the ball, short for durable, lives up to its name!
A patented hole pattern designed by an aerospace engineer guarantees a reliable flight pattern. The two sizes of holes drilled into this outdoor pickleball ball helps make it more aerodynamic – ideal for unpredictable wind conditions!
In comparison to softer Jugs Indoor Pickleball balls which are lighter and slower, the heavy weight of the outdoor version allows it to maintain its straight trajectory even in windy conditions. And at 2.9375” in diameter, it’s a rather big ball!
This ball has been the official ball for the USA Pickleball Association’s National Championship Tournament for quite some time now.
- Engineered for tournament play
- Great for training
- Long-lasting and high-quality ball
- Number of holes: 40 (16 holes with a 0.335″ diameter and 24 holes with a 0.270″ diameter)
- Size: 2.9375″
- Weight: 0.881 ounces
- Official ball of PPA Tour tournaments, APP Tour tournaments and Pickleball Canada tournaments
$12.99 for a 4-pack
Best Indoor Pickleball Balls
Indoor pickleballs are specifically designed to be used on indoor courts, which are typically made of a softer surface such as wood or sport tile.
These balls are also made of polymer, but they may have a softer feel and a more controlled bounce due to the inclusion of foam or other materials in the construction.
Indoor pickleballs are generally smaller and less bouncy than outdoor balls, and they tend to travel more slowly through the air.
#1 – Jugs Indoor Pickleballs
Jugs indoor pickleball balls are best-sellers, and it’s no wonder why. The soft plastic material is specifically designed to perform exceptionally well during indoor play on tile, smooth hardwood, or cement surfaces.
The softness of these balls gives them an excellent grip and makes them bounce nicely off the ground.
Indoor balls like this have larger holes which make them lighter than outdoor ball versions. The Jugs Indoor pickleball balls measure 2.875” in diameter and weigh just 0.81 ounces!
In addition, the rebound offered by these indoor pickleball balls is impressive with an average bounce height of 37 inches. So if you’re looking for a particularly lively indoor ball, Jugs indoor pickleballs are a great option and the favorite of many indoor players!
- Great for beginners
- No conditioning required before use
- Soft and easy to control
- Number of holes: 26
- Size: 2.875”
- Weight: 0.81 ounces
- Colors: Lime Green or White
- No longer approved for USAPA tournament use
$17.99 for a 6-pack
#2 – ONIX Fuse Indoor Pickleballs
The ONIX Fuse indoor pickleball is the perfect update to their popular Pure 2 Balls, as it is fully USAPA approved.
Players can enjoy a soft touch and smooth, true flight thanks to the precision-drilled holes in each ball. Not only this, but these balls are made so that they last as long as possible, with seam welding making them incredibly durable.
With its highly visible yellow color, you’ll be able to see the balls no matter what sort of court you’re playing on easily. The holes are also larger than their outdoor counterparts, meaning that pace of play is kept fairly reasonable.
Constructed via an injection-mold process like the Pure 2s, it guarantees a consistent and even feel throughout your game. Whether you’re training for upcoming tournaments or just want a great indoor pickleball to enjoy playing with, the ONIX Fuse indoor pickleball has got you covered!
- Great for all skill levels
- Ready to play immediately out of box
- Exceptional seam welding for great durability
- Number of holes: 26
- Great balance with strategically aligned and precision drilled holes
- Size: 2.90″
- Weight: 0.92
- Meets USAPA requirements for tournament play
$9.99 for a 3-pack
#3 – Franklin X-26 Performance Indoor Pickleballs
The Franklin X-26 Performance Indoor Pickleball is popular for its extraordinary durability and quality construction; the ball is made from high-quality polymer material which keeps it bouncing and springy for hours.
The 26 holes drilled into the ball’s surface keep it flying true in the air, making it easy to play indoor pickleball with great control.
It is officially USAPA approved for indoor tournaments, so you can use this indoor pickleball ball for organized competition as well as recreation.
Not only is the X-26 Performance a long lasting indoor pickleball ball, but it comes in several bright color options that will make it easy to see no matter your court choice – even concrete! If you decide to try the X-26 Performance Indoor Pickleball you won’t regret it!
- Great for all skill levels
- Injection molded, seamed construction
- Strong polymer material for durability
- Number of holes: 26 precisely drilled holes for superb flight pattern and balance
- Size: 2.91″
- Weight: 0.92 ounces
- USAPA Approved
$12.99 for a 3-pack
The different types of pickleball balls available
There are several types of pickleball balls available on the market, including:
- Outdoor balls: These balls are made for use on outdoor courts and are usually made of a durable, weather-resistant material such as polymer. They have more holes than indoor balls but those holes are smaller in diameter than an the holes on the indoor ball. This helps to deal with wind while playing outdoors.
- Indoor balls: These balls are designed for use on indoor courts and are often made of either a softer, thinner plastic or a different material like foam. They typically have fewer holes drilled with a bigger diameter than outdoor balls as well as less bounce.
- Regulation balls: These balls are designed to meet the official size and weight standards set by the USA Pickleball Association. You can visit the USA Pickleball website for more information on standards.
- Practice balls: These balls are often made of a softer, more flexible material and are designed for use in practice and training sessions. They may have a softer bounce than regulation balls and may be slightly larger or lighter in weight.
- Specialty balls: There are also a variety of specialty pickleball balls available, including glow-in-the-dark balls, low-bounce balls, and heavy-duty balls for advanced players.
How do you choose a ball that is right for you
There are a few factors to consider when choosing a pickleball ball that is right for you:
- Material: Pickleballs can be made of different materials, including soft or hard plastic and foam. Plastic balls are the most common and approved by the USAPA.
- Size: Pickleballs come in different sizes, with the most common being in the range of 2.87″ to 2.97” in diameter.
- Weight: Pickleballs can also vary in weight, with the most common being between 0.78 and 0.935 ounces. It’s important to experiment with different weights to choose one that is comfortable for you.
- Bounce: The bounce of a pickleball can affect your gameplay, so it’s important to choose a ball that has a bounce that is suitable for your level of play. Balls with a lower bounce are generally better for beginners, while balls with a higher bounce are better for advanced players.
- Brand: Different brands of pickleball balls may have different characteristics, so it’s worth considering the brand when choosing a ball. Some players may prefer a particular brand based on their personal experiences with that brand’s balls. The brands recommended in this article are popular for their high quality.
Overall, the best pickleball ball for you will depend on your personal preferences and your level of play. It may be helpful to try out a few different balls to see which one works best for you.
Typical Cost of Pickleball Balls
The cost of pickleball balls can vary widely, depending on the material, size, and brand. In general, plastic balls can cost anywhere from $2 to $6 per ball.
It’s also worth noting that the cost of pickleball balls can vary based on where you purchase them. Retail stores and online retailers may have different price points for the same product.
Additionally, some retailers may offer discounts or sales on pickleball balls, so it may be worth checking for deals before making a purchase.
Overall, it’s important to consider the cost of pickleball balls when choosing a ball, but it’s also important to consider the other factors such as material, size, weight, and bounce. A more expensive ball may not necessarily be the best option for you if it doesn’t meet your needs or preferences.
The benefits of using the best balls on the market
Using the best pickleball balls on the market can provide a number of benefits for players, including:
- Improved performance: High-quality pickleball balls are designed to have better flight and spin characteristics, which can improve the overall performance of the ball and enhance the gameplay experience.
- Enhanced durability: The best pickleball balls are generally more durable and can withstand more wear and tear, which means they will last longer and need to be replaced less frequently.
- Consistent play: The best pickleball balls are designed to be more consistent in terms of size, weight, and bounce, which can lead to more predictable and consistent play.
- Enhanced ball visibility: Some high-quality pickleball balls are designed with bright colors or patterns, which can make them easier to see and track during gameplay.
Using the best pickleball balls on the market can provide a number of benefits for players, including improved performance, enhanced durability, consistent play, and enhanced ball visibility.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that the best pickleball balls may also be the most expensive, so it’s worth considering your budget and whether the added benefits are worth the added cost.
Choosing the best pickleball ball is an important decision for any player looking to improve their game. Using the best pickleball balls can greatly impact your gameplay and overall enjoyment of the sport.
When selecting a ball, it’s essential to consider factors such as material, size, weight, bounce and cost in order to find one that meets your needs and preferences. The benefits of using high-quality balls are numerous: improved performance, enhanced durability, consistent play and better visibility during gameplay.
However, these features come at a price – so be sure you’re willing to invest the extra money if need be! Ultimately though, using this research on what makes the perfect pickleball ball and giving a few different balls a try will help you take your game to the next level.
Thank you for reading!
If you would like to learn more about picking the best pickleball paddle for your game then check out this article.