Pickleballs: Indoor Vs Outdoor

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Often people wonder whether to play pickleball indoors or outdoors. Considering that this is a non-seasonal sport, your decision will be determined by your priorities and preferences.

Regardless of your choice, you will experience all that you are looking for in this game.  The excitement, fun, exhilaration, and above all, a chance to keep fit.

One consideration that is involved when choosing the right pickleball balls is between indoor and outdoor balls. Understanding their differences will help make sound choices at the end of the day.

While using the wrong pickleball ball is not a terrible thing, your experience will make the difference based on your choice. So is there anything wrong in using any ball for both outdoor or indoor play? Not really.

Nevertheless, we will take a look at some of the essential factors that distinguish the two categories and how to choose wisely.

Related Reading: Pickleball vs. Paddle Tennis – What’s The Difference?

Outdoor Pickleball Balls

Outdoor Pickleball Balls

Ideally an outdoor pickleball ball is best to play outdoors. It will maximize your pickleball playing experience.

What features should you identify for an outdoor pickleball ball? What makes it exceptional?

An excellent outdoor pickleball ball will often feature True Flight Technology. This technology usually ensures that the ball can fly without too much trouble, despite the conditions outside.

These balls are made of hard yet smooth plastic.  Its durability is essential for the ball’s longevity.

The balls are usually much smaller and with numerous holes. These holes could be of varying or similar sizes. This feature reduces wind resistance in your game.

The smaller size of the ball does not translate into a lighter ball. In a bid to avoid the effects of strong wind, these balls are much more massive than you might think.

You will also note that they tend to use lesser control. Despite this, they guarantee harder hitting as well as much faster shots in the long run.

While at it, you will appreciate how high these balls can bounce. This will contribute to a better game. Be ready that these balls produce a significant amount of noise.

Indoor Pickleball Balls

Indoor Pickleball Balls

Indoor pickleball balls, like their name suggests, are essential for indoor pickleball games.  Their distinct features and technology, will mean they are not ideal for outdoor play. Here are some of the distinctive aspects that are highlighted for these balls.

These are lighter balls because the weight factor is critical in the game.  Winds are not a concern when playing indoors so control of the ball is assured.

The material used is a lighter and much softer plastic. That won’t affect its durability when the ball is being hit repeatedly throughout the game. Don’t let its smooth surface fool you into thinking it is not reliable as well as durable.

They display larger but fewer holes. This is essential to cushion the balls against resistance. They do not bounce as high as their outdoor counter part. When you switch from outdoor to indoor play you will need to adjust your play accordingly.

For more control in your swerve, an indoor ball is more suitable. With these balls you will not need to gather as much power to hit the ball for guaranteed longer rallies throughout the game.

Further, being lightweight means you will not get hurt when the ball hits you.

How do you distinguish between indoor and outdoor balls?

One feature we mentioned earlier is that indoor balls come with larger holes than the outdoor ones. The reason for this distinction is that the smaller holes factor in wind resistance when playing outside.

An additional feature is that the indoor balls have approximately 26 holes, while outdoor balls have closer to 40 holes. Feel free to count them whenever necessary.

Further, it is clear to see that outdoor balls tend to be much bigger than the indoor ones. They are also harder. The reason for these features comes in handy when you want to ensure that the balls last.

Always plan on replacing your outdoor balls from time to time, especially if you are playing on rough terrain.

What you should do as a new player

Undoubtedly, anything that is new to undertake and learn will bring about its share of various challenges. That includes choosing the right ball in given instances.

For this reason, it will be prudent to consider trying different sets of balls before settling on a favorite. Besides, it would be best if you remembered that it takes some time when playing with a ball before it feels comfortable for you.

Indoor Balls vs. Outdoor Balls

Indoor Balls vs. Outdoor Balls

Evidently, some people will prefer particular types of balls regardless of where they are playing. If you are a fan of longer rallies and want more control over the ball, indoor ones will suit you better.

On the other hand, if you are after a harder-hitting experience, an outdoor ball will be suited for you. Know that this will come at the cost of maximum control over the ball. Whichever option offers you more satisfaction should be your priority.

Some would ask if the choice of balls be based on the success you enjoy in a game. Yes and no.

First, your comfort with the type of ball you choose will often be essential. Usually, you will need a ball that gives you an easier time during play. Then, you will want to consider what ball offers you the experience you are after. However, no ball will improve your expertise.


It is hard to say which ball is ideal for you. However, with all the aspects highlighted here, it will be much easier for you to choose a ball that offers you the desired results. Do not shy away from comparing all the options you have at hand.