what paddle grip should i use
what paddle grip should i use

Have you ever found yourself wondering about the best paddle grip to use when participating in water sports? Well, you’re in luck! In this article, we will be exploring different paddle grip options that are popular among water sports enthusiasts. So whether you’re an experienced paddler or just starting out, we’ve got you covered with all the information you need to find the perfect paddle grip for your next adventure. Let’s dive in and discover the ideal paddle grip for you!

Types of Paddle Grips

When it comes to table tennis, the paddle grip you use plays a significant role in your overall performance and comfort during gameplay. There are various types of paddle grips to choose from, but the two most common ones are the Shakehand grip and the Penhold grip. In this article, we will explore these two grips, along with a few other variations, to help you determine which grip might be the best fit for you.

Factors to Consider

Before delving into the specifics of each grip, it’s essential to consider a few factors that can help guide your decision. These factors include your playing style, comfort, control, and power.

  1. Playing Style: One of the most important factors to consider is your playing style. Are you an aggressive player who relies on powerful shots, or do you prefer a more defensive and controlled approach? Your playing style will dictate which grip allows you to execute your shots with precision and ease.

  2. Comfort: Comfort is another crucial aspect when choosing a paddle grip. You want a grip that feels natural in your hand and doesn’t strain your muscles or joints during extended gameplay sessions.

  3. Control: The level of control you have over the ball is directly impacted by your grip. Some grips offer more fine-tuned control, while others prioritize power or speed. Consider your preferred level of control when deciding on a grip.

  4. Power: Power is a crucial factor for players who rely on aggressive shots. Certain grips excel in generating power, allowing you to hit the ball with more force. If power is an essential aspect of your game, it should be considered when selecting a grip.

Shakehand Grip


The Shakehand grip is the most widely used grip in table tennis. It gets its name from the way the hand grip the paddle, resembling a handshake. To perform the Shakehand grip, place your index finger on the front of the blade, while the other fingers wrap around the handle.


The Shakehand grip offers several advantages, making it a popular choice among players:

  1. Versatility: The Shakehand grip allows for a wide range of shots, making it suitable for both offensive and defensive gameplay. Whether you prefer powerful smashes or controlled spin shots, this grip can accommodate various playing styles.

  2. Comfort: Many players find the Shakehand grip to be comfortable due to its natural hand position. The index finger placement on the front of the blade provides stability, while the other fingers offer a secure grip on the handle.

  3. Control: The Shakehand grip provides excellent control over the ball, making it easier to execute precise shots and maintain accuracy during rallies.


Despite its widespread popularity, the Shakehand grip does have a few disadvantages:

  1. Limited Backhand Range: While the Shakehand grip allows for versatility in forehand shots, players often find it more challenging to execute strong backhand shots using this grip. This limitation can be overcome with extensive training and practice.

  2. Reduced Reach: Compared to other grips, the Shakehand grip may restrict your reach, affecting your ability to defend against wide shots.

Penhold Grip


The Penhold grip is another widely used grip, especially in Asian countries. It derives its name from the way the hand holds the paddle, resembling a pen. To perform the Penhold grip, hold the paddle with your thumb and index finger on the rubber side, while the other three fingers grip the handle.


The Penhold grip offers several advantages that make it a popular choice for some players:

  1. Powerful Forehand Shots: The unique thumb and index finger positioning in the Penhold grip allows for powerful forehand shots. This grip enables players to generate substantial power and speed during attacks.

  2. Quick Wrist Movements: The Penhold grip allows for quick wrist movements, making it easier to produce deceptive spins and unexpected shots.

  3. Strong Backhand Shots: Unlike the Shakehand grip, the Penhold grip allows for better reach and control in backhand shots. This grip offers versatility in both forehand and backhand strokes, making it a suitable choice for players who prioritize agility.


While the Penhold grip has its advantages, there are a few drawbacks to consider:

  1. Limited Backhand Control: While the Penhold grip provides better reach and power in backhand shots, it may lack the same level of control as the Shakehand grip. This can make it challenging to execute precise shots consistently.

  2. Reduced Grip Stability: The Penhold grip may feel less secure and stable compared to the Shakehand grip. It may take some time and practice to develop a firm grip with this style.

Other Grips

In addition to the Shakehand and Penhold grips, there are a few other less common paddle grips that some players may find suitable for their playing styles:

  1. Seemiller Grip: The Seemiller grip originated from US player Danny Seemiller. It involves holding the paddle with all fingers on the same side, offering excellent reach, control, and power. However, it requires a significant level of training and dexterity to master.

  2. V-grip: The V-grip is a unique grip where the index finger forms a V shape by being placed along the vertical side of the blade. This grip allows players to produce spin shots with ease and provides good control over the ball.

  3. Japanese/Korean Penhold Grip: This grip is a modified version of the traditional Penhold grip, with variations in finger positioning. It combines the power of the Penhold grip with improved backhand control, making it a popular choice among Asian players.

  4. Reverse Penhold Backhand: The Reverse Penhold Backhand grip is an advanced technique where players utilize both sides of the paddle for backhand strokes. This grip allows for more flexibility and deceptive shots but requires extensive practice to master.

Recommendations for Beginners

For beginners, it is generally recommended to start with either the Shakehand grip or the Penhold grip. These two grips provide a good balance between control, power, and versatility, making them suitable for players of all playing styles. However, it’s essential to try both grips and see which one feels more comfortable and natural for you.

Tips for Grip Training

Once you have chosen a grip, it’s crucial to train and familiarize yourself with it. Here are a few tips to help you improve your grip:

  1. Practice Grip Changes: Practice switching between different grips during training sessions. This exercise will improve your hand’s flexibility and allow you to adapt to various playing situations.

  2. Experiment with Different Grips: Don’t be afraid to experiment with different grips during practice or friendly matches. Trying out different grips can help you discover new techniques and enhance your overall gameplay.

  3. Seek Professional Advice: If you’re serious about improving your grip and table tennis skills, consider seeking advice from a professional coach or experienced player. They can provide personalized guidance based on your playing style and help you fine-tune your grip technique.


Choosing the right paddle grip is a critical decision that can greatly impact your performance in table tennis. The Shakehand and Penhold grips have stood the test of time as the most popular choices. The Shakehand grip offers versatility and control, while the Penhold grip excels in power and agility. Additionally, there are other less common grips that may suit specific playing styles.

Ultimately, the best grip for you depends on your playing style, comfort, control, and power preferences. By considering these factors, experimenting with different grips, and seeking professional advice, you can find the perfect grip that enhances your table tennis skills and enjoyment of the game. So, grip your paddle firmly, and may your shots be accurate and powerful!

Diana Hanson
Hi there! I'm Diana Hanson, a SUP enthusiast and paddler with over ten years of experience. I have a deep love for exploring new places and trying out new things on my SUP board. Whether it's gliding across a peaceful lake, navigating a fast-moving river, or riding the exhilarating waves of the ocean, I'm always up for an adventure. As the author of the website SupNoob.com, I am passionate about sharing my knowledge and experience with others. My goal is to help beginners learn the skills needed to paddle safely and confidently. I understand the challenges that novices face when starting out, and I'm dedicated to providing them with valuable tips and advice. But my passion doesn't stop there. I also strive to assist experienced paddlers in taking their skills to the next level. Through SupNoob.com, I constantly update the site with the latest SUP gear reviews, insider tips, and expert advice. My aim is to ensure that everyone, regardless of their skill level, can get the most out of their paddling experience. I take great pride in my work, and I have been fortunate to receive recognition in the form of prizes and rewards for my contributions to the SUP community. It's an honor to be able to share my passion for this incredible sport with others, and I hope that through SupNoob.com, I can inspire and empower fellow SUP enthusiasts to embark on their own unforgettable journeys. Join me on SupNoob.com, and let's dive into the exciting world of SUP together!