Thinking of making your pickleball paddle heavy? Why? What is the best way to increase your pickleball weight?
How to add weight to the pickleball paddle? Lead tape is one of the best things you can use to add weight to the pickleball paddle.
A lead tape allows you to customize your pickleball paddle. However, not all players can do this task. But, it will surely improve your pickleball playability and help you control the ball more precisely.
What Exactly Is Lead Tape?
If you haven’t ever used lead tape in your pickleball paddle, you may be unfamiliar with it. So, what exactly is a lead tape, and why people use it?
Do you think lead tape is only used in pickleball paddles? No! Apart from pickleball paddle, it is also used in golf and tennis rackets.
By adding lead tape to the edges of your paddle, you can improve the feeling of holding it. As the tape itself is pretty heavy, you don’t need a considerable quantity.
How to add lead tape to a player paddle depends on his/her preference. You want to add lead tape to give you more stability, control, and solid feeling while holding it.
Generally, without lead tape, you will notice most weights are felt on the handle. But when you add lead tape on the head, the maximum weight will move to the head section from the handle.
Alternatively, if you feel more weight on the head section, you can add lead tape on the handle to distribute the weight more evenly.
Additionally, you can add lead tape to make a particular section weighty as per your preference and gaming requirements.
Should I Add Lead Tape to My Pickleball Paddle?
Adding lead tape to pickleball paddles benefits you in several ways. One of the most common ones is raising weight for a particular area of the pickleball paddle.
Do you think everyone should use lead tape in their pickleball paddles? A big NO! If you have only started to play a pickleball game or occasionally play it for entertainment purposes, adding lead tape won’t give you benefits.
Professional pickleball players will be benefitted by adding lead tape in their paddles most.
However, everyone is not a master of adding lead tape to their paddles. Plus, the improvement of one’s gameplay will not happen overnight.
First of all, you need to figure out why you want to add weight to your paddles and what benefits you want to have by increasing weight on a particular section.
If you are unsure about it, perhaps it will end up being more damaging than helpful.
Playing with a heavy paddle may lead to a wrist or arm injury. Therefore, it will be counterproductive to use a heavier paddle than you need.
If you are thinking of adding lead tape, include it in several parts of the paddle in a minimal quantity and check out whether it improves your gameplay and gives you more stability.
You can add or remove it as how you feel after adding or removing it.
Note that while using lead tape on different parts of paddles, make sure to cover it with black electric tape. By doing so, you’ll ensure that your paddle emits no reflective glare, and it will remain attached to the surface.
Reasons Why Pro Players Use Lead Tape On Their Paddles
Using lead tapes in their paddles has become a trendy thing among pro pickleball players. The most important thing you should first discover how much your performance improved after adding lead tape. If you didn’t notice any improvement, you have no reason to add it.
Most of us purchase ready-made paddles from the market. It may not have the perfect level of weight for all players. Additionally, you may feel it fits perfectly, but balance could be far better.
Customizing your pickleball paddle takes a lot of handworks as you first want to discover the best way to include value on the paddle. Often, though you have already purchased the perfect paddle, adding lead tape could be better.
Noted that for every inch of lead tape you use on your paddle, it will increase two grams of weight. Hence, your play will not be negatively affected by the tape as much as you believe.
Pro pickleball players use lead tape to change the feel of holding the paddle. Some reasons are:
Increase The Power
You have already known that the heavier your paddle is, the more powerful it will be. In order to play the shot perfectly, a player needs the right level of power.
Adding lead tape allows players to play more powerful shots even from the back of the court. So whether you want to play aggressive shots, defensive shots, or more spinning shots, you have options for all.
Most times, players add lead tape on the edges of the paddle to implement added head power and speed.
Generous Sweet Spot
Sometimes, players are not satisfied with the sweet spot their paddles have. They want to extend the sweet spot so that they can play most shots perfectly in their preferred direction.
Adding lead tape on the perfect spot will enhance the sweet spot. You will achieve more stability and can attack and defense the ball more precisely.
On top of that, it provides an increased margin for error while playing different types of shots, such as dinking shots.
More Balance And Stability
As we have already mentioned, a pickleball paddle is not made perfectly for all. Some may feel it could be more stable and weighty.
If someone thinks the paddle is a little bit weighty on the head section, he can add lead tape between 60° to the left to right of straight ahead of the paddle. It will raise the head speed while adding power to shots.
Is It Legal To Add Lead Tape On Paddles?
If you always play professional tournaments, you always need to follow the legal rules for paddles.
According to USAPA rule book 2021, it’s allowed to use lead tape on pickleball paddles.
How To Add Lead Tape To Your Pickleball Paddle
Have you already decided to attach the lead tape to pickleball paddles? If yes, you want to consider these two points.
1. How much add you will add
2. Which spot you are going to add it
As you already know, it will increase by two grams of weight for every inch of lead tape you use on your paddle. However, adding a few strips of lead tape will make the paddle at least slightly heavy that you can feel.
Adding Lead Tape To The Paddle Head
Adding a few inches of lead tape to the top of the pickleball paddle will create the head areas slightly heavy. However, you will have a noticeable amount of power and pop. But not all players can get used to it as it prevents quick swinging, unlike lightweight paddle.
Adding Lead Tape To The Paddle Sides
A pickleball paddle power, pop, and sweet spot will increase by adding lead tape on the sides. As a result, players will have enhanced control over the ball as they don’t always need to hit the ball to the centre point.
Adding Lead Tape To The Paddle Lower Side
This is not a common practice among pickleball players. Adding lead tape to the paddle’s lower side will not make the paddle weighty noticeably. It is because you are adding leap tape close to the grip area.
Adding Lead Tape To The Paddle “In-Between”
“In-between” position means adding lead tape in the 2 and 10 o’clock positions, like holding your hands on the steering wheel. It provides little extra power and enlarges the sweet spot broadly.
Adding Lead Tape To The Paddle All-around Edges
In this way, you add lead tape to the all-around edges of the paddle, making it significantly heavy compared to other methods. This option is effective when you think your pickleball paddle lacks balance.
While adding lead tape on all edges, you have to maintain a perfect balance to ensure decent control while playing. The precarious balance will prevent you from playing shots the way you want.
After adding lead tape, it supports you with extra power for every shot. Not only this, but the sound of playing shots also changed due to this.
The most impressive thing is that it gave you a good hold for playing defensive shots. It is a better idea to decide which is the best spot for adding lead tape.
After all, our playability and pickleball paddle structure vary. Hence, not everyone will add tape to the same spot and the exact quantities.
Don’t Add Too Much Lead Tape!
Just because you have options to add lead tape doesn’t necessarily mean you will make your paddle unnecessarily heavy.
It may lead to severe injuries as not everyone can handle heavy paddles while playing the game. If you are unsure on how much lead tape you should add, first add only a little.
Compare your performance and how you feel by adding the lead tape. Remember that add only lead tape if it benefits you without giving you any injury.
Add Lead Tape Carefully
It is pretty common to make mistakes while adding lead tape for the first time. You may need to try multiple times to figure out the best spot and correct quantity for adding lead tape.
Don’t forget to use electrical tape or edge guard tape at the top of the lead top to protect the lead tape. In addition, use hand gloves for adding, removing, and changing the spot of lead tape.
Which one is the best lead tape for pickleball?
Tourna lead tape is one of the most popular lead tapes for pickleball. Its 1/4 inch wide cut is best for any paddles.
Are you still wonder how to add weight to the pickleball paddle? We don’t see any reason for it, as you have already learned all the precise details for adding lead tape in pickleball paddles.
So, are you finally determined to include lead tape in your pickleball paddle? You should first need to ensure whether you feel balanced with your current pickleball paddle.
Having a balanced pickleball paddle means you don’t necessarily need to add lead tape. However, if you think you want extra power, pop, or enlarged sweet spot, you can add it without making it extremely heavy. The most important is giving you comfort while playing.