The worst mistake a player can make in pickleball is to rely on his skills on a pickleball paddle as his only source of winning. Well, Dexter, to make you win, you really need to get the best pickleball balls to complement your top-notch gears and skills. It is, in fact, an ideal pickleball ball that completes the equation of the best pickleball gears and wins you matches.
Pickleball ball is like the 4th Jonas brother that never got the spotlight. Among 4 million players of pickleball, 1/4th of the players don’t even bother looking out for the ball–just get any wiffle ball and you’re done. It was a common trend until we surveyed and found out 90 percent of the worst pickleball games are credited to the “poor quality balls”.
It was enough to make us test dozens of pickleball balls and (spoiler alert); we got the best ones and the worst ones! Well, we’d be telling you that across the reviews, collectively, with the best usage, characteristics, bounce rate, responsiveness, and their durability period.
- 1 Quick summary:
- 2 About Pickleball Balls:
- 3 Types of Pickleball Balls
- 4 6 Of The Best Pickleball Balls
- 4.1 Onix Fuse Indoor Pickleball Ball – Best Indoor Pickleball For playing in Dark
- 4.2 Dura Fast 40 Outdoor Pickleball Balls – Best Pickleball For a Professional
- 4.3 TOP Outdoor Pickleball Balls – Best Reasonable Outdoor Pickleball
- 4.4 Jugs Indoor Balls – Best Indoor Pickleball
- 4.5 Dura Big Hole Indoor Pickleball Ball – Dura’s Finest Indoor Pickleball
- 4.6 Onix Pure 2 Outdoor Pickleballs – Best Outdoor Pickleball
- 4.7 Worst Pickleball Balls:
- 5 Buying Guide: Best Pickleball Balls
- 5.1 Indoor or Outdoor
- 5.2 USAPA Requirement for The Pickleball Ball:
- 5.3 Durability
- 5.4 What is a good weight for a pickleball ball?
- 5.5 What size pickleball do I need?
- 5.6 What is the best material for a pickleball ball?
- 5.7 What is the best brand of pickleball balls?
- 5.8 What colors do pickleball balls come in?
- 5.9 How much should I pay for a Pickleball ball?
- 5.10 Color
- 6 FAQs
- 7 Final Verdict
- Onix Fuse Pickleball Ball: Best for both indoor and outdoor with a great responsiveness, bounce, and flight.
- Jugs Indoor Balls: Textured design that carries spins pretty nicely and excellent responsiveness to the drive shots.
- TOP Outdoor Pickleball Balls: Best for beginner and local players with great power and seamless design.
- Dura Fast 40 Outdoor Pickleball Balls: The official tournament plays pickleball.
- Dura Big Hole Indoor Pickleball Ball: Delivers the same performance as of Dura Fast 40 in a lightweight and softer feel.
- Onix Pure 2 Outdoor Pickleball Balls: The popular and most technological pickleballs for beginners to advanced, however, without being USAPA approved.
About Pickleball Balls:
It’s not 1963 when the Wiffle ball used to rule. You may still find some people playing with it, even in 2022, and that’s when you see their game getting boring, balls getting misplaced, errors, faults, and what’s not?
It is because the paddle’s technology is upgraded, pickleball is now moved from aged players game to the adults, children, and tennis players game–and so should a “pickleball ball” so that it can carry your skills, per your expectations.
Okay, but why do you need the guide?
Because most of the pickleball balls are not USAPA approved—and this is just one reason. The balls don’t come as advertised, and it’s the case with 60% of the brands, even the popular ones. Though, these cost just a few bucks but are responsible for 2/3rd of your gameplay. Also, their performance differs from situation to situation. That’s why you need to be extremely careful what to buy and what to ignore.
Types of Pickleball Balls
The two types of pickleballs are indoor and outdoor. Both of these balls have different weight, sizes, bounce rate, lifespan, structure, and both of them perform otherwise. Unfortunately, you can’t use both types of ball interchangeably. Let’s give you a detailed explanation of both types to make that clear, so you’ll pick the right ball for your indoor or outdoor game.
Indoor Pickleball Balls
The indoor pickleball balls are softer, lighter, and have wider holes. These features make this ball perform well for your game, but also at the same time, it’s not that strong that it might break anything inside your house. Try using a heavier ball, and we can not guarantee you the safety of your favorite centerpiece!
- They’re more forgiving.
- Have few and large holes
- Often feels softer with low bounce rate
Outdoor Pickleball Balls
When you’re playing outdoors, you don’t need to worry about playing cautiously because there’s not much that you can break, which is why most outdoor pickleball games are basically about players making power shots with their full strength. Hence, you can’t use the same ball as you used for indoor games because that ball will crack right after the first power shot. This is why there are specially designed outdoor pickleball balls that are heavier, strong, and have numerous holes that make them go full swing.
- Higher bounce rate
- Small and plenty of holes
- Heavier and compatible with harsh conditions
6 Of The Best Pickleball Balls
We are sure till now, you would have a pretty great idea about both the types of pickleball balls, and for your ease we’ve selected the 3 of the best balls of each type so that you know which one to get no matter which way you decide to go, indoor or outdoor. So let’s jump in;
Onix Fuse Indoor Pickleball Ball – Best Indoor Pickleball For playing in Dark
Onix Fuse’ series is the only pickleball ball lived up to meet the USAPA requirements. It’s an upgraded version of the Pure 2.
Onix Fuse G2 Outdoor:
The immediately noticeable thing is the flight of the ball. The two-piece construction creates a great seam in it, that’s what the manufacturer has referred to as the “exceptional seam welding”. It also ranks up as the most rigorous wielding in the entire pickleball market till date.
The heating and seamless design enhance its life as well, making them stay “non-rough” for 2 more months than the average life (2-3 months) of an outdoor ball.
The holes in the balls are in large quantities, keeping the outdoor play in mind, to create an excellent bounce and resist splitting. Although it’s only approved for outdoor play, the responsiveness and lightweight of the ball make it fit to play in the indoor courts.
Besides its responsiveness, its spin abilities are quite worth mentioning. It rolls just nicely, using a spin friendly paddle from the Paddletek, Onix, and Gamma’s lineup. Along with us, the ball intrigues ¾ of the players for its skillful performance–players really don’t need to care about the accuracy and focus on their strategies.
One potential drawback that we usually see with these balls is the quantity and the size they come in. Yet, it’s just one size and they count from 3 to 12–not enough for regular players.
Get two packs at once, and it’ll cost you the same as the 24-pack of the Onix Pure 2. They usually are at discount, too. You can check the current offers on this link.
Onix Fuse 2 Indoor:
Onix fuse is the only pickleball ball that got approval from the USAPA. It features technologies similar to its outdoor version, Fuse 2.
Weighing around 20 grams and using the identical sizable holes makes this ball the perfect fit for a fun and bouncy indoor game. It uses a seamless design, which adds to the durability. However, there have been some cases where the ball gets cracked even after a single use. It happened with 2 balls in the 100-pack, which makes us believe that a few balls might have some manufacturing defect, but overall, it’s one of the best balls designed for you to have an amazing indoor pickleball match.
The bright orange color of this ball is what makes it stand out among all the others, increasing visibility and making it ideal for a dim light environment as well–though, players like me aren’t very fond of the orange, but we’ve to bow down every time we see their performance and visibility, when we play under darker indoor environment.
- Weighs 20 grams
- Bright-orange color
- Seamless design
- Identical big holes
- Increased visibility
We can say that whether you want the best outdoor pickleball ball or an indoor one, Onix is a brand that you can trust blindly, because, as they promise, they do provide the best products and provide the exact quality as they advertise it. Onix Fuse Pickleball ball is the best example to prove that!
Dura Fast 40 Outdoor Pickleball Balls – Best Pickleball For a Professional
Dura Fast 40 is a globally accepted pickleball, being the dominant choice of PPA Tour tournaments, Pickleball Canada tournaments, and APP Tour tournaments.
These are 25g balls with excellent seam and bounce. The flight goes straight, unlike the Jugs balls that slightly travel in a curve. Their simplicity and responsiveness is the reason they’re the official pickleballs of the USAPA Pickleball National Championship, the US Open Pickleball Championship, too. They’ve also made their name in Canada and Spain, as well.
Shocking Thing: The performance differs from color to color of the ball. The white and yellow ball works as advertised, but the neon ball needs some improvement. It lacks the seam and can be improved if they tweak the rotational molds.
These balls weigh around 26 grams and are made up of a harder plastic which makes them more durable than others, and if you look at the size of the ball, you will see that this one is slightly bigger than the others which adds up the extra strength for your perfect power shot. There are two different sizes of holes drilled into the ball that make it extra bouncy and go higher.
These are the pricier pickleball, but in the meantime, save you from investing in baseball and softball drills. It’s for their versatility that these balls, besides the best tournament pickleballs, are the only balls complementing a proper sportsman having various sports backgrounds.
- Travels straight and fast
- Heavier and heftier
- Used in official pickleball tournaments worldwide
- Made with hard plastic
- Slightly bigger than other pickleball balls
- Two different sizes of holes
- Highly responsive seamless design
If you’re someone involved in various sports and a quality freak simultaneously, this ball is the right pick for you! It comes with a great bounce, seamless design, and quality that a pro could ever ask for.
TOP Outdoor Pickleball Balls – Best Reasonable Outdoor Pickleball
Just like the Onix Fuse 2 and Jugs Indoor, the TOP outdoor pickleball is setting the bars higher with quality bounce and fly. Its seamless design is one feature that attracts us the most. Other than that, it’s made of hard-wearing plastic and weighs around 25 grams.
They’re heavier and heftier. These balls can even hurt a person if hit on the body. This tells the power they’ve for hard strokes and back-to-back volleys with a great bounce. During a test play, the bounce we inspected was 30-32 inches from 75” height. That makes them perfectly maneuverable while being approved by the USAPA and IFP, collectively.
This ball seems to give the Onix pure 2 a tough competition as it’s getting popular with every passing day. In fact, it’s getting so much recognition that every time the stock of this ball gets finished just in a few days. We don’t know if that’s because of the features or the low price tag.
The ball uses 40 multi-sized holes, making it even more bouncy and powerful than it already is. This is the ball you need to have a consistent power play, and all of these things make it up to the mark with USAPA guidelines and standards.
However, there is one thing we’ve reviewed about this ball, and that is that it gets burst quite easily. One minute you’re having the best game of your life and poof! The next minute, your ball bursts in the air. This is the reason we think Top Pickleball is a substantial investment for the beginners and local players, but definitely not the pros.
- Meets USAPA Guidelines and standards
- 40 multi-sized holes
- Weighs 25 grams
- Made with hard-wearing plastic
- Comes at a lower price
- Seamless design
Even though Top pickleballs are prone to burst in the middle of your game, still it provides a pretty good gaming experience considering the technologies and price range it comes within. Overall performance of the ball is as good as the others on our list and makes it one of the top 3 best outdoor pickleball balls.
Jugs Indoor Balls – Best Indoor Pickleball
Jugs remain the most popular sports brand producing baseball, football, soccer, and other sports goods that speak for their quality all around the globe. For pickleball, it has manufactured indoor pickleball and, like its other sports goods; it got so famous that no other indoor ball had come up to the quality of that level up till now.
It weighs 22 grams and is made of soft plastic that contributes to providing a lightweight feel. There are large holes in the ball, which makes it suitable for all kinds of surfaces, including tiles, marbles, or hardwood. The compatibility with various surfaces makes them a good option for outdoor asphalt courts and concrete courts.
Unlike other indoor balls, the Jugs Indoor balls use a slightly textured design, which provides good friction when hitting the paddle, resulting in more direct and curvy shots. Players also speak about how the ball compliments their strategies with its own bounce and spin. While they can leverage these benefits. These are also USAPA-approved, so no more heartbreaks at the court entrance!
Their color choices are limited despite having three options. The white ones are totally inappropriate and the other ones don’t make much of a difference as one is lime color, while the rest is the combo of white and lime. Don’t forget to notice the low price tag attached to it.
To overcome that color issue, you can opt for their popular Jugs midnight indoor balls that come in bright and attractive blue color. It also performs similarly to that power, but some people have paddles with a darker color, so again, it becomes a hurdle for them.
- Weighs 22 grams
- Made with soft plastic
- Suitable for any surface, including tiles, marble, hardwood, etc.
- Large holes
- Textured design
- Low cost
These USAPA approved pickleball balls are the most multipurpose thing that your indoor pickleball is missing. At the cost, features, durability, and the performance they provide, they’re rightfully on the top of the list for indoor games.
Dura Big Hole Indoor Pickleball Ball – Dura’s Finest Indoor Pickleball
Dura is a brand that not only makes the best quality outdoor pickleball balls, but their indoor balls collection is also worth the attention. It makes one of the best kinds of indoor pickleball balls, providing all the features a good indoor pickleball ball must have, including a lightweight and soft build. It provides you with the same experience as the Dura Fast 40 but in an indoor setting.
The ball weighs around 20 grams and uses a seamless design, making it more durable than other indoor balls. Other than that, the large holes on the balls make them lightweight but also bouncy, so that you have the pickleball game experience you want. The best part about this ball is that it comes with a lot of color choices such as green, yellow, white, etc. So you can choose the one you like. Most importantly, the easy availability and the low cost of these balls make them the ideal choice for most indoor pickleball players.
- Weighs 20 grams
- Seamless design
- Easy availability
- Low cost
- Color variations
If you want to have the same swing and shot experience as you’ve with the Dura Fast 40 in an indoor game, of course, you cannot use a fast 40 but you can use the Dura Big hole indoor ball, and we’re sure that you might not even notice the difference. It provides the best outdoor-like indoor experience.
Onix Pure 2 Outdoor Pickleballs – Best Outdoor Pickleball
Hands down! Onix Pure 2 is the best pickleball ball, both indoor and outdoor. Pure 2 is a leading pickleball ball that almost all tournaments use. They’re technological, fly better, and stay longer than your career. (sorry not sorry).
Featuring Onix’ very own “true flight technology” enhances its consistency, length, and performance in the open court. It complements the concrete and asphalt floors as well, bouncing enough to be maneuvered easily.
These are the heftiest pickleballs with an average weight of 25 grams which not only makes it ideal for normal play, but this weight is suitable for having a fun game in bad weather conditions such as rain and wind, so you don’t have to stop if it’s raining and you want to have a game.
It’s designed using Onix’s Authentic Bounce Technology–which elevated its bounce rate. It’s basically the bounce rate that keeps it unapproved by the USAPA. The higher number of smaller holes make it even more durable and help it fly through in full swing. Well, they do make an ideal pick for a pickleball machine for its high-bouncing to practice spins and overhand smashes.
They also come in 5 different sizes and pack up to 100 balls. Also, don’t forget that money is no problem when you choose Onix because they deliver the best at the lowest costs. You can easily get packs of 3 to 100 at a very reasonable price.
In similar features, they’ve Onix indoor with wider holes and zero sound. It’s a bit sensitive compared to the outdoor one and responds slowly as well.
- Weighs 25 grams
- Ideal for outdoors even in rainy and windy weather
- Uses Onix’s Bounce technology
- A higher number of small holes makes it worth the power shot
- Comes at a reasonable price
Pure 2 is the best and the most reasonable outdoor pickleball ball you can get. Thanks to Onix, you don’t need to look anywhere else and have the perfect power shot you’ve been wishing for using this perfectly weighted and specially designed outdoor pickleball ball.
Worst Pickleball Balls:
As we promised, here’re the worst pickleball balls that are advertised very nicely, but they come in quality beyond the worst.
Day 1 pickleball balls:
Well, that’s going to be a bit conflictual, but we’re going to say it, anyway. First, these are outdoor balls, but the size totally depicts them as indoor ones. Even though it works kinda similar to the indoor one, having low power and bounce rate.
They’re not even USAPA-approved, while the manufacturer claims that they’re. Also, the durability is inferior–they get cracked up immediately even before the play.
While some people did have a pleasant experience with them, we found them to be the agile ones or the children who play once in a blue moon.
IUZIT Outdoor Pickleball Balls:
Again, these aren’t outdoor balls. The difference is quite clear about these having larger holes, and though, their performance lacks in the indoor game too. Also cracks very easily, despite having a heavier weight.
They’re also low-priced, so maybe it’s just the quality they’re able to provide in that budget., but obviously, there are better ones in the same price range.
Buying Guide: Best Pickleball Balls
Buying the right pickleball ball is as important as buying a paddle set or a net system, hence, you need to make sure you make the right decision so you don’t waste your money. And even if these balls do not cost so much money, having a bad quality pickleball ball can ruin your game mood. So avoid that, consider the following things before placing the order;
Indoor or Outdoor
Pickleball is a sport that can be played both indoor and outdoor, but the balls for both situations are different. We already discussed the difference between indoor and outdoor pickleball balls. Both of these balls are different from each other in terms of weight and design and perform differently. Indoor balls are control-oriented, have a reduced bounce, and are perhaps a way better option to start off your pickleball career. Indoor balls are also preferred when you play in a consistent environment, such as on an indoor court–of course, basketball, volleyball, or in a gymnasium. Outdoor balls are hard and wind-resistant. This is because the holes are in greater quantity, normally count to 40, and have a thicker plastic, which further makes them heavier.
You may wonder if you can use both balls interchangeably. Well, it depends. For formal play, you can’t play an outdoor game using an indoor ball and vice versa. It’s because the outcome will affect your game. You won’t have much power and bounce from an indoor ball playing outside. In fact, the ball won’t come off the paddle nicely. Let aside if there’s wind, then forget it completely. You stand no chance.
However, in a family-friendly game, and especially if there’s no wind, you can absolutely make use of an indoor ball outside. Similarly, if noise isn’t the concern and you’ve better control over the pace, then you won’t mind using a harder and more perforated ball inside. All in all, it’s you and your game on which your decision comes down to. So before you buy one, make sure you know how you plan to play the game and then get the indoor and outdoor ball accordingly.
USAPA Requirement for The Pickleball Ball:
Just like for the pickleball paddles, the USAPA also has the standard for the pickleball balls. For a pickleball to be labeled legal and approved by the USAPA for tournaments and clubs play, it should be;
- Pickleball balls must be molded and the ridge must not impact the bounce and flight.
- The size of the ball should be between 2.87 inches (7.29 cm) to 2.97 inches (7.54 cm) in diameter.
- It must carry the manufacturer’s name or logo.
- The out-of-round diameter variance shouldn’t be < +/-0.020 inch (0.51 mm).
- The ball must have a weight in the 0.78 to 0.935 ounces (22.1-26.5 grams) range.
- If the ball drops from 78 inches in height, it should bounce over 30 to 34 inches. That is the standard height of a Pickleball ball.
- The ball must have at least 26 to a maximum of 40 circular holes.
- It must have 1 uniform color.
At least 60% of the time, pickleball is played locally, between family and friends, so it doesn’t really matter if the ball is approved by USAPA or not. In fact, a great majority of balls aren’t approved by the USAPA and they’re popular in the courts. Let’s take an example of Onix Pure 2. It’s one of the best selling balls, and the tournament’s authorities can’t have them. However, in a competitive game, the USAPA approval is your first priority. Also, the USAPA approved balls are quite expensive and less durable.
For durability, there are mixed opinions. Experts will say a ball that is less durable, but solid. While the hobbyists prefer a more durable ball. The reason is the ball’s lifespan. After hardly 1 or two games, the ball will start to get rough and the bounce won’t be as effective as it used to be. Plus, the ball may also change its shape after which you can’t spin it perfectly like before. In short, the more you keep playing with a ball, the negative will be the effects of it on your game. Any hobbyist wouldn’t mind until he plays for fun, however, it’s quite an alarming concern if you play in competitive leagues.
However, we don’t say that the ball shouldn’t be durable at all. Of course, you’d not want a pickleball ball that cracks open right after the first game, because if that happens, you would need a new ball every time you play a game, which is a huge turnoff. A pickleball ball must be durable, at least so much so that it works well for a minimum of ten games. The durability depends on the quality of the material and the brand where it comes from. Don’t forget to have a good look at them.
Onix and Jugs have the most durable balls that might last a lifetime. However, the bounce won’t be so wow, but they won’t crack easily. Dura, on the other hand, cracks easily, but they’re one of the most solid balls, that’s why it’s popular among “Big Guy’s Games”. When the ball cracks, they can easily jump to a new ball, instead of relying on luck and weather while the existing ball is merely worn out. This way, the game also gets predictable and often brings wins to the players.
What is a good weight for a pickleball ball?
As mentioned by the USAPA, the ball weight must be in between 0.78 to 0.935 ounces. The baseline weight isn’t very wise, though, as we tested the balls, and the good pickleball balls have a 0.8z weight for the indoor and 0.9 for the outdoors. In grams, that’s 22 grams for the indoor and 24 for the outdoor. A too light ball is hard to maneuver, while a heavier ball may damage your paddle too, so it’s better staying in range for optimum results.
What size pickleball do I need?
Indoor pickleballs are 2.8 inches in diameter while the outdoor balls have 2.9 inches. This is the official size guide by the USAPA, although we recommend a slightly bigger ball for an outdoor play. Because it reacts and responds to the paddle quite effectively and has a greater feel. Anything above 2.9” will be illegal, but for friendly matches, you can have a good time with it.
What is the best material for a pickleball ball?
Despite every ball being made of plastic, you also need to consider the material or the plastic quality, since plastic has various types. The best plastics are Low Density Polyethylene (LDPE), epoxies, acrylic, and melamine, which makes the best pickleball balls. These materials have a greater bounce and, most importantly, less wear and tear. They’re also recyclable.
What is the best brand of pickleball balls?
The most trustworthy brands of pickleball balls are Onix, Dura, Top, and Jugs. These brands make the best pickleball balls for both indoor and outdoor games, having a seamless design, built from the industry-leading plastic material, have long-lasting durability, and most importantly, they’re all approved by the USA Pickleball Association for tournament play.
What colors do pickleball balls come in?
Pickleball balls come in all the colors and in all shades, from white, yellow, orange, to neon, cyan, magenta, and midnight purple. Although USAPA has no limitations for the Pickleball ball’s color, it’s now you who has to make sure to get a vibrant color ball, such as yellow, green, neon, or white. Because these colors increase the visibility of the ball even in the absence of natural light.
Also, learn about your environment first. Always prefer white or yellow for night, so you can see them easily, and if you like darker ones, keep them for the daylight’s play. If you go for a darker ball, you might not be able to see it at night and end up with a missed shot and lost point. This is because the paddles are also darker, usually, and that makes the ball hard to recognize, let alone it totally goes invisible in the low-light condition.
How much should I pay for a Pickleball ball?
That depends on how much you’re willing to pay. Pickleball balls can be as cheap as $1.25 each and $5 each. Now, you gotta decide which one you want, because the price will define the quality. A cheaper ball may be long-lasting, but the performance will gradually start to become a headache. Also, we suggest getting at least a 12-ball pack, so you won’t have to order the balls every other week.
You would think why the color of the ball is important. Well, it’s important because the color of the ball determines the visibility of the ball. Make sure you get a vibrant color ball, such as yellow, green, orange, or red. Because these colors increase the visibility of the ball even in the absence of natural light. If you go for a white ball, you might not be able to see it and end up with a missed shot and lost point.
We are sure till now, you must have got a pretty good idea of why having the perfect pickleball is as important as having all the other pickleball equipment. We provided you with all the best options and the terrible options you can get for both the indoor and outdoor pickleball games, and we are sure you would have the answers to all your queries by now. If you are on your way to getting the best pickleball ball, do tell us which one you chose.
While our list contains all the best products, if we still have to choose one for each situation we would go for the Onix Fuse G2 for the outdoor, and for indoor we would go for jugs indoor pickleball ball. However, that’s our choice, and your choice can differ from us, but make sure you choose the one from our list for the best experience. And did we mention that all of these balls that we mentioned do fulfill all the requirements of the USA Pickleball Association and meet all the criteria and guidelines set by USAPA.
- Best Pickleball Paddle for Spin Reviewed in 2022 - October 5, 2022
- Dink Pickleball | What is a Dink Shot in Pickleball? - October 3, 2022
- The History Of Pickleball | Timeline of 1965 – 2020 - October 3, 2022