Different Types of Pickleball Balls: Easy Guide

Pickleball has been gaining tremendous popularity in recent years as a fun and competitive racquet sport.

Whether you are a seasoned pickleball player or just starting out, choosing the right pickleball ball is crucial to ensure optimal gameplay and enjoyment.

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the different types of pickleball balls, specifically the indoor and outdoor varieties, and help you make an informed decision.

Different Types of pickleball balls

types of pickleball balls: Complete List

Indoor Pickleball Balls Characteristics

Indoor pickleball balls are specifically designed for indoor courts and typically have a lighter weight and thinner plastic composition.

Indoor Pickleball Balls Characteristics

These balls have a softer impact and a delicate touch, making them ideal for precise shots and control on the indoor surface. The lighter weight of indoor balls allows for slower gameplay compared to outdoor balls.

Popular Brands

  1. DURA Fast-40: DURA is one of the most recognized brands in the pickleball community. Their Fast-40 indoor ball is widely used and known for its consistent bounce, durability, and performance.
  2. ONIX Fuse G2: The ONIX Fuse G2 is another popular choice for indoor play. It features a superior grip and excellent balance, providing players with enhanced control during the game.
  3. Franklin x40: The Franklin x40 indoor pickleball ball is known for its durability and well-rounded performance. It offers a comfortable feel and consistent bounce, making it a favorite among players of all skill levels.

Pros and Cons of Indoor Pickleball Balls


✅ Delicate touch and softer impact allow for precise shots and control.
✅ Slower gameplay allows players more time to react and strategize.
✅ Ideal for indoor courts with smooth surfaces.


❌ Lighter weight and slower gameplay may not suit players who prefer a faster pace.
❌ Less durable compared to outdoor balls due to their thinner plastic composition.
❌ Unsuitable for outdoor play due to their delicate nature.

Outdoor Pickleball Balls

Outdoor pickleball balls are designed to withstand outdoor conditions and have a more durable construction. These balls are made with harder plastics to ensure longevity against outdoor elements such as heat, wind, and uneven surfaces.

Outdoor Pickleball Balls

Outdoor balls are generally heavier than indoor balls, allowing for a faster game and improved performance outdoors.

Popular Brands

  1. DURA: DURA is a renowned brand that offers high-quality outdoor pickleball balls. Their balls are known for their durability, consistent bounce, and resistance to cracking even in extreme weather conditions.
  2. ONIX Pure 2: The ONIX Pure 2 outdoor pickleball ball is widely used by professionals and recreational players alike. It boasts superior balance and flight, coupled with durability and resilience on outdoor courts.
  3. TOP: TOP pickleball balls are designed for outdoor gameplay, offering durability and dependable performance. They feature a balanced flight pattern and consistent bounce, making them a popular choice among outdoor enthusiasts.

Pros and Cons of Outdoor Pickleball Balls


✅ More durable and resistant to cracking, suitable for rugged outdoor conditions.
✅ Heavier weight allows for faster gameplay and better performance against wind.
✅ Ideal for outdoor surfaces with rough textures or uneven playing fields.


❌ Harder impact may require some adjustment for players accustomed to indoor balls.
❌ Less control and finesse compared to indoor balls due to faster gameplay.
❌ Not recommended for indoor use as they may damage flooring surfaces.

Differences Between Indoor and Outdoor Pickleball Balls

Differences Between Indoor and Outdoor Pickleball Balls

Weight and Bounce

Indoor pickleball balls are typically lighter in weight compared to outdoor balls. The lighter weight results in a slower bounce, allowing players more time to react and strategize during the game.

On the other hand, outdoor balls are heavier, resulting in a faster bounce and gameplay. The weight and bounce of each ball type require players to adapt their technique and adjust their shots accordingly.

Material and Durability

Indoor balls are made with a thinner plastic composition, making them more delicate and prone to damage from rough surfaces or impacts.

On the other hand, outdoor balls are manufactured with harder plastics, providing them with increased durability to withstand the elements and rough outdoor conditions. Outdoor balls are less likely to crack or become damaged during gameplay.

Performance and Control

Indoor pickleball balls offer a delicate touch and softer impact, allowing for precise shots and enhanced control. The slower gameplay also gives players more control over their shots and strategies.

Outdoor balls, with their heavier weight and faster gameplay, require players to adjust their technique to maintain control and accuracy.

Noise and Sound

Indoor balls produce less noise and sound during gameplay, which can be beneficial for players who prefer a quieter playing environment.

Outdoor balls, due to their harder plastics and faster gameplay, produce more noise upon impact with the paddle, creating exhilarating and immersive auditory experiences on the court.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Pickleball Balls

Factors to Consider When Choosing Pickleball Balls

Skill Level and Playing Style

The skill level and playing style of a player play a significant role in determining the type of pickleball ball that suits them best.

Beginners may find it easier to start with indoor balls for their softer impact and slower gameplay, allowing more time to develop their skills. Advanced players who prefer faster-paced games may opt for outdoor balls to match their playing style and intensity.

Playing Surface and Conditions

The playing surface and conditions, whether indoor or outdoor, also influence the choice of pickleball ball. Indoor courts with smooth surfaces tend to favor indoor balls due to their delicate touch and controlled gameplay.

Outdoor courts with uneven surfaces, wind, or rough textures benefit from the durability and faster gameplay of outdoor balls.

Personal Preference and Feel

Ultimately, personal preference and feel are crucial factors when selecting pickleball balls. Trying out different ball types and brands can help players determine which ball offers the desired level of control, balance, and overall satisfaction during play.

Budget Considerations

Budget considerations can also play a role in selecting pickleball balls. While some may opt for premium, high-quality balls, others may choose more affordable options without compromising too much on performance and longevity.

If you want to know about Pickleball Courts: Can Pickleball Be Played On Artificial Turf? | 2 Types Of Pickleball Courts

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the difference between indoor and outdoor pickleball balls?

Indoor pickleball balls are lighter in weight and have a softer impact, ideal for controlled gameplay on indoor courts. Outdoor balls are heavier and made with harder plastics, offering durability and resistance to outdoor elements.

Which pickleball ball is best for beginners?

For beginners, the softer impact and slower gameplay of indoor pickleball balls are often recommended for easier skill development and control.

Can I use indoor pickleball balls for outdoor play?

Using indoor balls for outdoor play is not recommended as their delicate composition may lead to damage or cracking on rough surfaces.

What pickleball ball is used in tournaments?

Tournaments typically use outdoor pickleball balls due to their faster gameplay and adaptability to various outdoor court conditions.

Are there hybrid pickleball balls available?

Yes, some manufacturers offer hybrid pickleball balls that combine characteristics of both indoor and outdoor balls. These balls aim to strike a balance between control, durability, and gameplay speed.

What are the different types of pickleball paddles?

Pickleball paddles can vary in material, weight, and grip. Common types include graphite, composite, and wood paddles, each offering unique benefits suited to different playing styles and preferences.


Choosing the right pickleball ball is crucial for an enjoyable and competitive playing experience.

By understanding the characteristics, pros and cons, and differences between indoor and outdoor pickleball balls, players can make an informed decision based on their skill level, playing preferences, and court conditions.

Remember to consider factors such as weight, bounce, material, durability, and personal preference when selecting pickleball balls, ultimately enhancing your game and overall enjoyment of this exciting sport.

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