Adding weight to pickleball to pickleball paddle is trendy these days. You may have seen many pro players having lead tape covered around the grips or the edge guard. It seems incredible, right? Besides, adding weight to sports gear has always been beneficial, like in badminton, tennis, and even in cricket.
In the same manner, lead tape has proven advantages for pickleball paddles. It can increase the weight of the paddle, which in turn, increases pop and power, boosts up the spin, enhances the sweet post, and gives you confidence in the court. However, there are certain pros and cons along with the procedure—why should you add the tape, where to add it, and whether it will turn out good or bad for you—that we’re going to discuss here. Let’s roll
Paddle weight Rules to keep in mind:
In truth, there is no weight limit for a pickleball paddle. You can add as much weight as you want. However, there’s one rule regarding the alterations of the paddle before you buy a bundle of lead tape.
2.E.5.b. Decals and tape can extend no farther than 1.0 inches (2.54 cm) above the top of the grip nor more than 0.5 inches (1.27 cm) inside the outer edge of a paddle, or if an edge guard is in place, 0.5 inches inside the edge guard.
That means the weight is a secondary factor, but the specification must be considered. You can add lead tape around the edge guard, top, sides, and grip wrap.
Where should you add the lead tape?
Your choice and preference. It depends on the results you want out of the paddle.
Do you want to increase the width of the paddle? Add tape to the sides. This means adding tape from the 3 o’clock to 9 o’clock direction of the paddle. This helps in creating more pop and power on the paddle. Plus, your block shots will improve through added surface balance.
Do you want a more brutal swing and powerful spins? Add tape to the top. This is called the 12 am paddle wrapping. An added lead tape to the top increases the swing and power of the paddle. However, you must measure the grips of the paddle too. If the head is unnecessarily heavy than the grip, it’ll be hard to maneuver.
Wants to increase the overall sweet spot? Cover the entire edge guard. This means starting from the top to the sides and the throat. It may also lead to a 1-2 ounce weight increase, as you’ll use too much tape to cover the entire paddle. Also, it’ll increase the overall specs of the surface, leaving room for a visible increase in the sweet spot. You can also cover the paddle’s mid-side, i.e., 10 o’clock to 2 o’clock if the sweet spot is your only focus.
Are your grips too small? Wrap the lead tape around the grips until it fits perfectly in your hand. If you want to add a visible weight without messing with the specifications stated by the USAPA, you can add several inches of tape to the grips and throat and let your paddle be extremely powerful.
Do you want to make your paddle more abuse-resistant? Wrap the throat with multiple layers of lead tape. This makes the paddle heavy and more durable; you can now swing it vigorously without fear of breaking it from the middle. Also, the throat wapping creates a balance between the surface and the handle. Plus, it also improves the feel of the paddle.
How to add weight to Pickleball Paddle:
Considering the 1.0” inch on the top and 0.5 inches inside the outer edge or in the edge guard, we have one strip of 4” of 1/2 lead tape. Each gram of lead tape unrolls 2” of ½” tape. Depending on the specs, you can take as much tape as you want if you’re altering the surface.
First, clean the sides and the handle with rubbing alcohol, and then wrap the tape around the paddle where you want. At last, cover the lead tape with one strip of electric tape so the paddle will be secured and the lead tape’s glue won’t come around.
Why bother adding weight to the Pickleball Paddle?
A tapered pickleball paddle, like a tapered cricket bat, looks cool and aesthetic. However, there are certain benefits you can enjoy by wrapping your paddle with lead tape.
To increase power
Additional weight in the pickleball paddle adds more power to it. This is the number 1 reason why tournament players prefer a heavier paddle. It maximizes the power of drive shots and gives the volleys a fierce touch. Overheads are better and farther, plus you can generate 4x more spin on a heavier paddle than on a lighter paddle. Above all, the power from a weighty gives a confidence boost that you got better equipment; you gotta play better and win the war!
Enlarge the sweet spot
Lead tape on the sides of the pickleball paddle increases the width of the paddle and, thus, adds a little more to the sweet spot. And who doesn’t like an added sweet spot? The increased center helps in blocking shots more effectively. Plus, your cross-dinks will get better with fewer errors and distance issues.
The grips are too small
The third reason players want to cover the paddle’s grip with lead tape is to make the grip the same size as their hands. Sometimes, the paddle grip is small, and the extra grip feels too extra. So, the midway is getting a lead tape and wrapping it till the paddle feels good in the hand.
Increase paddle swing
Last but not least, the added weight in the paddle adds extra swing to the paddle. This is because the top head is heavier, causing it to move easily with much power with gravitational force. Overall, it also enhances the feel of the paddle.
Cons of adding weight:
Because pro players use heavier paddles isn’t a good reason to increase several grams on your paddle. Blindly following any trend won’t give you positive results. You must sit back, assess the trend with positive and negative outcomes, and then decide whether you’re in or out. In the case of opting for a heavier paddle, you must consider the following drawbacks.
- A heavier paddle causes pickleball elbow (tennis elbow) if your muscles and joints aren’t much strong. This is why, if you’re a senior player with 55+ age, consider it a drop. You’re better off with a lightweight paddle. This is also applicable to kids.
- A weighty paddle is less control-oriented. If you naturally do not have enough control over shot placement, your entire game will be full of shots.
- Not ideal for beginners and intermediates. In a learning period, the important thing is getting stable and working on the faults. Speed and power are the last you’d want in your arsenal if you’re an amateur.
Conclusively, the best thing about adding weight to your pickleball paddle is it’s risk-free—unless you’ve health and physical issues. A tapered pickleball paddle so attracts you. Granted. You’ve learned how to add weight to the paddle. Excellent! Now try it out, and if it goes against your skill level, remove the tape, and you’re back to normal. That’s how simple it is.
We hope you enjoyed reading the entire thing and getting started to make your paddle eat some lead. For further questions and queries, just click the comment button, leave them there, and let us sort everything for you!
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