When it comes to pickleball, the choice of ball can significantly impact your play experience. Here in the UK where the weather often limits our outdoor game experience we often rely on playing in sports halls and on various different types of surfaces (other than Asphalt). As a result the choice of ball we tend to go for is usually an Indoor pickleball. Indoor Pickleballs in particular, have their own unique characteristics that cater to the nuances of playing within the confines of a sports center or gymnasium. In this blog, we'll delve into the various indoor pickleballs available, each with its own set of features and benefits.
*Note - All balls in this list are USAPA Approved meaning they meet certain standards and requirements to be used in tournament play.
Gamma Photon Indoor Ball (26 Holes): This ball is a store favourite and in our opinion the best all round indoor pickleball. The Gamma ball boasts 26 holes, making it an ideal choice for indoor play. Its consistent flight path ensures a predictable and enjoyable game. It's also reasonably priced. One of the best advantages of the Gamma indoor Pickleball is its quick flight through the air minimises the adjustment period when moving between different court surfaces, making it a top choice for many in the UK pickleball community.
Overall a solid ball and great for UK indoor surfaces - Buy them here
Jugs Indoor Balls: The Jugs indoor balls are popular in the UK, particularly among beginners and newcomers to the sport. Interestingly, these balls were originally designed for baseball batting cage practice. They are the softest indoor pickleballs available, which makes them slow through the air. This softness also contributes to their durability, as they tend to last longer than some alternatives. However, one drawback is the significant transition required when switching from Jugs to other balls or playing on different court surfaces. The learning curve can be quite steep, but for those just starting, they provide a forgiving introduction to the game.
Overall these balls a great for beginners, but thats about it!
Tourna Strike Indoor Pickleballs
Known for their durability and all-around play-ability, the Tourna Strike Pickleball is a great choice for all player abilities and formats. A good alternative to the Jugs balls yet slightly harder. These balls are great for those looking to learn the sport of Pickleball. these indoor balls are also the official balls of Tyson Mcguffins Signature Pickleball Camps (One of the best players in the world).
Overall a great beginner ball - Buy Tourna Strikes here
Penn 26 Holes: Penn's 26-hole indoor pickleballs offer a solid alternative to the Gamma balls. They are slightly heavier and made from a more solid plastic compared to the softer Jugs. The texture on the surface of Penn balls provides excellent grip, ensuring that spin remains an option during your play. These bright red balls are easily visible on the court and offer a decent amount of bounce. They are a reliable choice for indoor play, catering to a wide range of player preferences.
X26 Franklin: If you're seeking a hard and fast experience on the indoor court, the X26 Franklin balls are an excellent choice. These indoor balls closely mimic the characteristics of outdoor pickleballs, which can be a refreshing change for players accustomed to outdoor play. However, their speed and hardness might not be suitable for everyone, so they are not recommended for those who prefer a softer touch.
Overall a solid indoor ball and great for those looking to compete at tournaments - Buy them here
SLK Hybrids (40 Holes): For those who desire versatility in their pickleball game, the SLK Hybrid is a standout option. As the name suggests, it's a hybrid ball, designed to perform well on various court surfaces. If you only want to carry one type of ball to cater to all your pickleball needs, the SLK Hybrid is the perfect choice. It strikes a balance between the characteristics of indoor and outdoor balls, offering a seamless transition between different playing conditions.
Indoor Balls and Level of Play - Ranked in order from Beginner to Professional
- Jugs Indoor Balls - Joint best for Beginners
- Tourna Strike Indoor Balls - Joint best for Beginners
- Penn 26 Balls - Great for Improvers
- Gamma Photon Indoor Balls - The Best Indoor Ball for UK court surfaces
- SLK Hybrid - A superb ball for indoor and outdoor surfaces
- X26 Franklins - Hard and Fast
To conclude, the choice of indoor pickleball can greatly influence your enjoyment of the game. Each of these indoor balls - Gamma, Jugs, Tourna Strikes, Penn 26 Holes, X26 Franklins, and SLK Hybrids - comes with its own unique set of features and advantages. Consider your playing style, skill level, and personal preferences when selecting the ideal indoor pickleball for your game. Whether you prioritise softness, speed, or versatility, there's a perfect indoor pickleball waiting to enhance your pickleball experience.