Maybe you've been playing with your paddle for a couple of months and it's just not working out anymore. You could've started with a beginner paddle that now lacks finesse or you've developed into a different type of player and needs something better suited to your play style.
What's the best thing to do with a paddle that's lost some of its shine? We have a couple of ideas!
Donate to a Club
If you're part of a local pickleball group, then you likely know that organizers are always in need of paddles for newbies to play with. Consider donating your old equipment so that beginners will have more options to try and more opportunity to play with something that's a step above a wood paddle. If any local schools have pickleball programs or are even curious about trying the game, you could also help their program get rolling by giving them something to use.
Store a Backup
Another option is, of course, to not get rid of your original paddle at all. Friends and family members may get curious about pickleball the more you play, and it doesn't hurt to have a backup on hand so others can try it without having to invest first. As another plus, you know all the ins and outs of your first paddle, so you'll be able to better guide players who want to get serious about the game if they want to pick out their own equipment from there.
Return Your Paddle
This is contingent on how long you've had your paddle, but at PickleballCentral we offer a test drive policy that allows you to try out paddles for 30 days from the date of purchase. This means if you've had your paddle for a relatively short amount of time and have decided it's just not working for you, you can give us a call to set up a return or exchange it for something different.
Other suppliers or manufacturers may have similar policies in place, and it doesn't hurt to take advantage of them if you're unsure of what you want or just need to have a paddle in your hands before you know if it will work out.
This may seem a bit wasteful, but depending on how old and/or battered your paddle already is, it may make perfect sense! The interior design of paddles is quite interesting, and if you've never seen a honeycomb core before or are curious about the way a paddle's face 'sandwiches' its interior, then you may want to break your paddle apart to see what it looks like on the inside.
Yes, there are pictures of paddle cores and handles, but each model is a little different, and it's always interesting to be able to see things firsthand if you're curious about how paddles are structured!
What have you done with your old paddles, whether you've gifted them to friends or simply dumped them for a newer design?