I have tested 20 paddles to find out that ProKennex Pro Flight is the best pickleball paddle for tennis elbow.
It has the best vibration-dampening technology, amazing performance, and great value for money.
Tennis elbow is a common injury for passionate pickleball players. The repetitive motions in pickleball can inflame the tendons in your elbow over time.
While rest and medical treatment are important, choosing the right pickleball paddle is vital to preventing and managing tennis elbow flare-ups.
In this guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know and provide pickleball paddle recommendations for elbow relief.
What is Tennis Elbow?
Tennis elbow is caused by overuse of the muscles and tendons in your forearm, which attach at the bony prominence on the outside of your elbow.
Repetitive grasping and wrist extension motions in activities like tennis and pickleball lead to small tears and inflammation. This causes pain focused on the outside of the elbow.
Some common symptoms include:
- Weakened elbow and grip strength
- Burning pain when grasping objects
- Discomfort lifting or twisting forearms
- Inability to shake hands without hurting
While called “tennis elbow”, this condition can happen to anyone doing repetitive arm, wrist, and hand motions. Pickleball’s swinging and ball striking can cause tennis elbow over time.
Can a Pickleball Paddle Help With Tennis Elbow?
There’s some debate about whether paddle choice makes a difference for tennis elbow. However, it definitely can help or hurt.
Various pickleball paddles have qualities that reduce or worsen arm vibration and impact shock during play:
Weight and Balance
Too light or too head-heavy, and tennis elbow can get worse. The ideal weight is around 8 ounces, balanced evenly or slightly handle-heavy. This gives stability and reduces vibration.
Thick grips prevent over-gripping, which strains forearms. Standard slim grips can be built up with tape/overgrips.
Advanced composites in modern paddles absorb vibration well. But some do better than others, using gel and other tech.
So, while paddle choice alone may not eliminate tennis elbow, the right one provides tangible relief by reducing the aggravation of your injury during play.
The Best Pickleball Paddles for Tennis Elbow
With an understanding of what to look for, here are top pickleball paddles providing elbow relief:
ProKennex Pro Flight/Ovation Flight
The Pro Flight paddle line from ProKennex is specially designed to absorb shock and vibration using their advanced “kinetic” technology. This makes it an excellent choice for players with tennis elbow issues.
I have been playing pickleball for over two years and have tried many different paddles, but the Pro Flight paddle line from ProKennex is one of my favorites.
I found out about the Pro Flight paddle line from a friend who recommended it to me. He said it was specially designed to absorb shock and vibration using their advanced “kinetic” technology. I decided to give it a try, and I was amazed by the difference it made.
The line has two models: the Pro Flight and the Ovation Flight. They are both very similar, except that the Ovation Flight has a slightly larger surface area and a more oval shape.
I prefer the Pro Flight because it has a more standard shape and balanced feel. The Pro Flight has a carbon fiber hitting surface that gives me touch and control over the ball. It also has a low torque design that limits the vibration transfer to my arm.
The Pro Flight has a lightweight swing weight that reduces strain on elbows. It’s evenly balanced for stability and has a carbon fiber hitting surface for touch and control. The low torque design limits vibration transfer to the arm.
- The best-in-class vibration-dampening
- Lightweight swing weight
- Perfect for managing irritation.
- Haven’t found it yet
The Pro Flight paddle line is perfect for players who have tennis elbow issues or who want to prevent them. I highly recommend the Pro Flight paddle line to anyone looking for a paddle that offers leading vibration-dampening technology and a great feel.
ProKennex Black Ace
The ProKennex Black Ace is a paddle that delivers power and stability with its innovative carbon fiber face and edgeless design. It differs from other power paddles like the Engage Poach, which has a dual-layered fiberglass face and a thick core.
The ProKennex Black Ace has a single piece of textured Toray T700 carbon fiber, making it aerodynamic and fast in hand. It also has a polymer honeycomb core that reduces vibration and enhances responsiveness.
It also has a thinner polymer honeycomb core, which reduces vibration and enhances responsiveness.
The ProKennex Black Ace is ideal for players who like to drive the ball hard and put pressure on their opponents. It has a weight range of 7.95oz, which gives it enough mass to plow through shots and generate force.
It has a standard shape with a 15.8″ length and a 7.6″ width, which provides a large sweet spot and a balanced feel. The handle length is 5.3″, and the grip circumference is 4″, which suits most hand sizes.
- A single piece of textured Toray T700 carbon fiber face that creates more spin and speed
- Edgeless design that eliminates mishits and increases aerodynamics- Polymer honeycomb core that absorbs shock and vibration
- Weight range of 7.95oz that provides power and stability
- Standard shape with a large sweet spot and a balanced feel
- Lack of control and touch for finesse shots
- difficult to control the ball on drops
The ProKennex Black Ace is ideal for players who have a strong arm and a fast swing, as it allows them to drive the ball hard and put pressure on their opponents. However, the ProKennex Black Ace might struggle in doubles games, where control and touch might be more important.
If you are looking for a paddle that offers power and stability, you might want to give the ProKennex Black Ace a try.
Engage Pursuit MX 6.0
A consistent top-tier paddle loved by enthusiasts and pros alike, the Pursuit from Engage provides all-around excellence alongside elbow relief.
At a midweight of 8.2oz in the standard length, the balance strikes that sweet spot between maneuverability and stability. The Pursuit’s core incorporates vibration control innovations while remaining responsive. A grippy carbon fiber skin offers spin and touch at a high level.
The Pursuit is different from other paddles in its category, such as the Selkirk Amped S2 or the Paddletek Bantam EX-L. The Pursuit has a more grippy and textured surface, which creates more spin and control.
The Pursuit also has a more balanced and even weight distribution, which enhances stability and consistency. The Pursuit has a more advanced and patented vibration control technology, which absorbs more shock and vibration than other paddles.
- excellent balance
- vibration tech
- premium performance
- and quality
- smaller sweet spot
- stiffer feel
With its comfort-focused tech integrated into a pro-level playing experience, the Pursuit is a premier pick for irritated elbows who still want tournament-quality play.
The Joola Radius paddle is a unique option for players who want to reduce the impact of pickleball on their elbows. It has a table tennis-inspired shape that gives it extra reach and surface area while also absorbing shock and vibration with its soft polymer honeycomb core.
The paddle has a textured carbon grip surface that allows for more spin and control, especially for players who like to arc their shots. The paddle weighs at 7.6oz, making it easy to maneuver and react quickly at the net.
The Joola Radius paddle is not the most powerful paddle on the market, but it makes up for it with its finesse and comfort. It is suitable for players who prioritize placement and touch over raw power and who want to protect their elbows from injury. The paddle is also affordable and durable, making it a great value for money.
The Joola Radius has a textured carbon grip surface, which creates more spin and control, while the fiberglass paddle, like the Selkirk Amped S2, offers more durability and pop.
- Table tennis-inspired shape that adds reach and surface area
- Soft polymer honeycomb core that absorbs shock and vibration
- Textured carbon grip surface that creates more spin and maximum control
- A lightweight and balanced design that enhances maneuverability and stability
- Affordable and durable construction that lasts long
- Less power and pop
The Joola Radius is suitable for players who prefer a soft game or a defensive strategy, as it allows them to place the ball with precision and touch.
The Legacy Pro was specially engineered to reduce arm strain by integrating excellent vibration-dampening technologies into its construction.
Weighing 8-8.4oz, the Legacy Pro has a midweight balanced design perfect for controllable stability without being heavy on elbows. Its compressed honeycomb core and perimeter edge buffers limit reverberation, while a carbon fiber face puts pop on shots.
Pros are custom construction for joint relief, quality components for performance, and reasonable pricing. No major cons.
For intermediate players seeking to ease tennis elbow woes alongside a powerful playing experience, the Legacy Pro checks all the boxes at a palatable price point.
$150 on Legacy
Selkirk Amped S2
The ever-popular Amped S2 paddle from Selkirk masterfully combines versatility, playability, and elbow care into one quality package.
At 7.9-8.4oz, the moderate swing weight swings quickly enough for developing players yet still plows through shots with its hefty sweet spot. The FiberTek face remains responsive on contact for control.
Pros of the S2 are reliability, well-distributed weight aiding sore elbows, pop at impact, and trusted quality. The cons are a grip on the thinner side.
For well-rounded paddle properties alongside arm-friendly tweaks, the Amped S2 accommodates many play styles comfortably while easing elbow inflammation.
Paddletek Tempest Wave Pro
Designed and weighted exceptionally well for former tennis players, the Paddletek Tempest Wave Pro resonates as an excellent midweight solution for nagging elbow discomfort.
At 7.8oz, the Tempest Pro has a forgiving sweet spot for off-center mishits common as players develop proper stroke technique. Its balance favors control over raw power, easing torque stresses. A graphite face retains great touch.
Perks include comfort-driven engineering, control-focused balance perfect for progressing play, and a durable Seacell core. No prominent negatives
For transitional racquet sport athletes seeking familiarity and joint relief in their pickleball journey, the Wave Pro delivers on all fronts, including protecting irritated elbows.
Players Rogue 2 Carbon
The Rogue 2 Carbon paddle incorporates helpful technologies to reduce shake and shock, making it a great budget-friendly choice for irritated elbows.
The midweight 7.8 Rogue 2 features a gel core and fortified throat area to absorb substantial vibration. This keeps things comfortable during rallies and impact. The carbon fiber face retains touch and control for finesse play.
Perks include impressive dampening, quality face materials, and wallet-friendly pricing. The con is it won’t match premium performance and durability.
For pickleball enthusiasts seeking armor for their aching elbows without breaking the bank, the Rogue 2 Carbon brings exceptional technologies and thoughtful engineering at a modest cost.
The Vice takes a unique approach with its ultra-flexible EV foam core, nearly eliminating vibration passed to the player for an irked elbow’s dream.
Despite its petite 7.6oz weight, the Vice retains stability and responsiveness for a healthy pace on shots. Its comfortable polypropylene honeycomb grip conforms nicely to various holds.
- Supreme comfort
- Mark V carbon fiber touch
- Distinct style
- Not USAPA Approved
For pure joint protection and pain alleviation, the Vice provides an elbow-nourishing paddle experience that is great for casual play and practice.
Gamma’s Compass paddle incorporates the excellent NeuCore vibration reduction system alongside an elongated shape, making it a unique choice to ease pickleball elbow.
Only 7.75oz, yet with extra length for added reach and stability, the Compass allows for free-flowing strokes without sacrificing reduced arm strain. Gamma’s proven NeuCore technology eats up unwanted shake and shock through the paddle.
Pros are arm-friendly innovations, enhanced coverage area and reach, and control. Cons are less spin and pop potential.
The Compass excels for players needing to reduce elbow stress but wanting added extension for their swinging comfort, which is especially helpful for older joints.
$159.99 on GAMMA
Caring for Your Pickleball Elbow
Choosing an elbow-friendly paddle gets you halfway there, but comprehensive care is vital in fighting tennis elbow:
See Your Doctor
Get properly diagnosed and discuss treatment options. You may receive anti-inflammatory meds, elbow straps, or be recommended for physical therapy.
Rest & Recovery
Giving your elbow periodic rest is key – this may mean taking pickleball breaks. Cross-train to maintain fitness without straining the elbow.
Get coaching on technique and footwork to use efficient, low-strain motions. Things like stroke mechanics and grip affect elbow irritation.
Exercise & Stretch
Strengthening exercises combined with stretching maintain flexibility and stability around elbow joints, preventing future flare-ups.
Tennis elbow braces work as counter-leverage support for active play. They remind you not to overwork your injured elbow.
With diligence across these areas alongside an appropriate pickleball paddle, you’ll get back swinging comfortably in no time. Don’t let tennis elbow ruin your enjoyment of this fantastic sport!
If you’re hesitant, I recommend going with the ProKennex Pro Flight. ProKennex paddles have the best reputation for relieving tennis elbow, and the Pro Flight line is one of their best paddles.
To learn more about selecting the best pickleball paddle, check out my How to Choose a Pickleball Paddle guide.