3 minutes reading time (537 words)

The Pickleball Ball

Do you have questions about the pickleball ball? How much do they cost? What is the difference between an indoor and an outdoor ball? How long do they last? We have the answers. 

Is a pickleball just a regular wiffle ball?       

Although the two are very similar the answer is no. Wiffle balls have oblong holes while pickleballs have round holes and also differ in size and weight. 

How does a pickleball compare to a tennis ball? 

As you can see in this picture, a pickleball is a bit larger than a tennis ball.

Although larger, a pickleball is actually lighter than a tennis ball. A tennis balls weights between 2 and 2 1/16 ounces, while a pickleball weighs between .78 and .93 ounces.

What is the difference between indoor and outdoor pickleballs? 

Outdoor balls are slightly heavier than indoor balls (about 1 ounce) so that they are less effected by wind, are harder, and have smaller holes. Outdoor balls travel significantly faster than indoor balls and have thick wall construction for added durability.

Indoor balls are lighter, softer and have larger holes than outdoor balls. As a result, indoor balls are easier to control and come off the paddle a little softer which typically results in longer ralleys. However, it is more difficult to hit the ball with the velocity required to put away easy volleys. 

For example, the Dura Fast 40 outdoor ball has 40 holes. The Dura Fast 26 indoor ball has, you guessed it, 26 holes. Pickleball ball colors include: white, yellow, neon yellow, red, green, lime green, blue, purple, orange and pink. 

How long do pickleballs last?

Reviews are very mixed on this subject. Some power players experience balls cracking in a matter of games, others enjoy weeks even months of play before this happens. Balls will become less bouncy over time and need to be replaced on a regular basis. Indoor balls tend to last longer than outdoor balls. 

How much do pickleball balls cost? 

Pickleballs cost on average between $2-$4 each. Buying in bulk is the best way to save on a purchase. The most popular pickleball ball brands are Top, Onix, Jugs and Dura. 

Do pickleballs break easier in cold weather? 

Weather conditions do effect how long pickleballs last. Outdoor balls tend to degrade quicker (compared to indoor balls) due to a rougher court surface and UV exposure. 

What are the IFP and USAPA regulations for official pickleballs?

  • ​The ball should be made of a durable molded material with a smooth surface and free of texturing.
  • The ball must be one uniform color, except for identification markings.
  • The ball may have a slight ridge at the seam as long as it does not significantly impact the ball's flight characteristics.
  • The ball should have a diameter between 2.87 and 2.97 inches (7.3-7.55 cm).
  • The ball should weigh between .78 and .93 ounces (22-26.5 grams).
  • When dropped from a height of 78 inches, the ball should bounce between 30-34 inches (76.2-86.4 cm). The test should be performed at a temperature between 75-80 degrees F (24-27 degrees C) and dropped onto a granite surface. 
  • Ball hardness should score between 40-50 on Durometer D scale at 75-80 degrees F (24-27 degrees C).
  • The ball shall have a minimum of 26 to a maximum of 40 circular holes, with spacing of the holes and overall design of the ball conforming to flight characteristics.
  • The ball must have a manufacturer's or suppliers name or logo printed or embossed on it. 
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