Indoor vs Outdoor Pickleballs | Ultimate Guide

Pickleball is one of the fastest-growing games in the world, especially in the United States. Playable both indoors and outdoors. Playing pickleball indoors is the same as playing outside. But the balls used in playing indoors and outdoors are different. These balls are indoor and outdoor pickleball balls.

Indoor vs Outdoor Pickleball | Main Differences

There are two types of balls used in playing pickleball. Both of them are made from plastic.

  • One is indoor balls. These are usually smaller, lighter, softer and have 26 large holes. 
  • The second is outdoor balls. These are larger, heavier, harder and have 40 small holes.
indoor vs outdoor pickleballs

Based on the weather and the temperatures outside, you can either play with an indoor Pickleball or an outdoor Pickleball.

Here is a brief detailed difference between indoor vs outdoor pickleballs.


Typically, an indoor pickleball is made of soft plastic and has 26 larger holes. These are more durable and lightweight.

The ball’s weight is around 0.8 ouches. Indoor balls are less noisy and easy to control. Wooden or tile floors are ideal for indoor pickleball games because the ball can bounce and roll very far on these surfaces than on carpet.

When you play pickleball inside, you don’t have to worry about the temperature being too hot or too cold. Because of this, playing pickleball inside might be a better idea. Indoor pickleball is soft and can not be broken easily.


Outdoor balls are larger, heavier, and harder and have 40 small drilled holes.

They have a hard plastic surface that bounces well on outdoor courts. The ball’s weight is around 0.9 ouches. Due to their weight, outdoor pickleballs are noisier than indoor pickleballs. Because outdoor balls are harder and heavier, they go faster through the air and are harder to control.

Outdoor pickleballs don’t have a longer lifespan, and cracking is normal, so don’t be worried if this happens to your ball. When they get worn out, they fracture. A ball’s lifetime can also be affected by its playing surface, playing technique, and temperature.

Pros and Cons of Each Type of Balls | Indoor vs Outdoor Pickleballs

While choosing the right pickleball ball, you’ll need to consider whether you’ll be playing indoors or outdoors. Both indoor and outdoor pickleballs have pros and cons, so let’s take a closer look at each type of ball. 

Indoor pickleball is made of plastic and has a hollow core, which gives them a softer feel. It makes them ideal for indoor play because they won’t bounce as much as outdoor balls, so that they won’t damage walls or other surfaces. However, these balls are not suitable for outdoor play because they can easily be damaged by sun and rain. 

On the other hand, outdoor pickleball is rubber and has a solid core. Because of this, outdoor balls are more durable than indoor balls. They can also handle more aggressive shots and are less likely to break when bounced off hard surfaces. However, the solid core makes these balls much bouncier, which can overwhelm beginners. 

Ultimately, the type of ball you choose will depend on where you plan to play and your playing style. If you’re a beginner, indoor pickleballs may be a better option since they’re softer and easier to control. On the other hand, if you’re an experienced player who plays indoors and outdoors, outdoor pickleballs may be more suitable. 

Whichever ball you choose, make sure it meets all USAPA standards for official tournaments.

What to Consider When Choosing Indoor and outdoor Pickleballs??

When choosing between indoor vs outdoor pickleballs, one of the first decisions is whether to go with an indoor or outdoor ball. While both are technically used for the same sport, some important distinctions between the two could drastically affect your performance.

This section will discuss what to consider when deciding between indoor vs outdoor pickleball. 

  • The first factor to consider is your playing environment.

If you’re playing indoors, you will likely want a ball made specifically for the purpose. These balls typically have a softer feel and don’t bounce as much, which makes them easier to control in tight spaces. On the other hand, outdoor pickleball is designed to withstand tougher surfaces and last longer, but it may be too bouncy for indoor play.

  • The second factor to consider is size.

Indoor pickleball tends to be smaller than outdoor ones due to the tighter playing area. It can help you get a better feel for the ball and make more precise shots. Outdoor pickleball is typically larger and has more rebound to get more power behind your shots.

  • The third factor to consider is the type of material used for the pickleball.

Indoor balls are usually made from plastic, while outdoor balls are made from rubber or composite materials. Plastic balls are lightweight and quieter, while rubber and composite balls are heavier and create a louder sound. Depending on the sound level in your playing environment, this may be an important consideration.

  • Finally, it is important to consider pickleball’s cost as well.

Indoor pickleball is usually cheaper than outdoor ones, as they are made from simpler materials and tend to last less long. However, they may be better if you start or don’t play often. Outdoor pickleball costs more but will last longer, so it could be a better option if you plan to play frequently.


When deciding between indoor vs outdoor pickleballs, it’s important to consider all of these factors. Whatever your preference may be, make sure that you choose a quality ball that will help you maximize your performance on the court!


What is the main difference between indoor and outdoor pickleball?

The main difference between indoor and outdoor pickleball is its construction and materials. Indoor pickleball is made from a lightweight plastic material meant to bounce more on hard, smooth surfaces such as wood or tile. Outdoor pickleball is a more durable, heavier material designed to survive bumps and scratches from harsher court surfaces, such as concrete or asphalt. 

What factors should I consider when choosing an indoor or outdoor pickleball? 

The most important factor to consider when selecting a pickleball is the type of surface you’ll be playing on. If you’re planning to play on a hardwood or tile court, indoor pickleball is the way to go. On the other hand, if you plan to play outdoors on a concrete or asphalt court, you’ll need an outdoor pickleball. You should also consider the level of play and the type of game you’re playing when making your selection. Choosing a high-quality outdoor ball is a good idea for a competitive game.

Are there any additional tips for choosing the right pickleball? 

Yes! Aside from choosing the right type of pickleball based on your playing surface, there are other factors to consider. Check out reviews from other players to get an idea of how well a certain ball performs in various conditions. Additionally, select a ball certified by the USAPA (USA Pickleball Association). It ensures that the ball meets pickleball quality standards.

How many holes does an indoor pickleball have?

Indoor pickleball is made of soft plastic and has 26 larger holes. Indoor pickleballs are more durable and lightweight. The average weight of indoor pickleball is around 0.8 ouches.

How many holes in an outdoor pickleball?

Outdoor pickleballs are larger, heavier, harder and have 40 small drilled holes. These balls have a hard plastic surface that bounces well on outdoor courts. Outdoor pickleballs have a short lifespan, and cracking is normal. The average weight of outdoor pickleball is around 0.9 ouches.

Can you use indoor pickleballs outdoors?

Indoor pickleballs are not recommended to be used outdoors because indoor pickleballs are lightweight and highly affected by winds.

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