Why do people put lead tape on their pickleball paddle?

Why do people put lead tape on their pickleball paddle?

Pickleball is a game of inches…and ounces.

Many professional pickleball players (and ambitious amateurs looking for every advantage) put lead tape on the rim of their paddles to increase the weight. 

The additional weight could improve your game by the slightest margin. And where you choose to put the tape determines the type of benefit you could experience.   

Adding weight to the top of your paddle, also known as the head of the paddle, increases power. A top-heavy paddle allows you to swing harder through the ball. 

Adding weight on the paddle's sides increases stability, reducing mishits and the vibration you feel when you do mishit. 

And adding tape near the handle increases your hand speed since the weight helps you whip the paddle quicker. 

So, what should you do?


Start by adding small amounts of tape and add or subtract once you find what works for you. Is adding lead tape to your paddle a placebo? Maybe. But we’re not against tricking our minds to improve our game. 

Here are three steps for applying lead tape to your pickleball paddle:

  • Clean the rim of your paddle with a towel
  • Apply 5” strips of lead tape on areas of your choosing
  • Cover the lead tape with electrical tape so it stays on longer (and you stay safe from lead poisoning)

Adding tape is also a fun way to customize your paddle. Because your paddle should be the perfect fit for your game.