Pickleball Guides

Wiffle Ball Vs Pickleball – Comparisons of The Classics

Wiffle Ball Vs Pickleball
Written by Alex

When placed onto a scale for a side-by-side comparison both Wiffle Ball & Pickleball share the same nuance while barely having any discrepancies, in fact, some are even minuscule and they basically rely on the “blink and you will miss” factor.

Notwithstanding they even share the same learning curve, at least at the basic tier where both require the same skills and dexterity, and yet the appeal of these two distinctive sports is generally unique.

Taking that into account, today, in this article we will be taking a jab at Wiffle Ball vs Pickleball, their official governing rules as well as its gameplay dynamics.

Origin Backstory of Wiffleball

David N. Mullany, the founding father of Wiffleball created this sport in 1950 by mimicking the core mechanics of baseball, however, in a much safer way to be played by his son so that he won’t injure himself.

Wiffleball is seen more as a stepping stone for kids and players who want to learn the ropes of Baseball. Its lower learning curve caught attention exponentially all across the United States.

Right after its swift success in backyards, it received an abundance of praise and was cherished which is why it gained notoriety in bigger leagues.

The Inception of Pickleball

Unlike Wiffleball, Pickleball is a brainchild of more than one person, as it was founded by Joel Pritchard, Barney McCallum, and Bill Bell in 1965 after their dog named Pickles, residing in Washington.

Originally it was meant to be a makeshift sport as it nearly inherited rules from badminton, tennis, and ping pong. While, it was never intended to be as popular as it is now, its flexible learning curve and lenient scoring system made it notorious amongst families that want to enjoy it for recreational purposes.

In fact, most of its appeal made its way to retirement homes and to elderly demographics and since then it has been widely played across the nation with a casual prejudice.

Major Differences Between Wiffle Ball Vs Pickleball 

Let’s take a look at the equipment and the type of court utilized in both of these sports,

Ball Type

In a Wiffle ball, the ball is made from stiff plastic with 8 oval holes that are highly influenced by wind resistance, allowing it to spin effortlessly when spliced with the paddle. The ball is around 2.9 inches in diameter and produces a vortex of air when thrown in the air. 

The design is purposely kept fragile so that it would injure the player once it is hit with a robust shot since the sport was originally designed for kids.

As for, Pickleball, the ball is considerably smaller, almost 2.6 inches in diameter, and is also made from thin plastic with much broader bounce feedback since the game is played on a court with an asphalt surface. 

The ball has 20-40 holes and is way smaller than a Wiffleball, nevertheless, both of these balls are hollow, allowing wind to define its trajectory when played in outdoor sessions.

Paddle Type

As for the paddle type, in Wiffleball, a thin rod-shaped plastic bat is used for swinging and hitting the ball which almost resembles a baseball bat, however, its much lighter and fragile with a small knob to provide grip when holding it in hands when a player is wearing protective gloves.

The Wiffle bat is also pretty much hollow with minimal weight so young kids getting a hold of this bat can easily swing it without feeling fatigued.

On the other hand, in Pickleball, players are required to use a paddle that resembles a Ping pong paddle which has a textured surface on both sides with a wooden or graphite grip, depending on the brand you may be using.

It’s considerably heavier as compared to Wifflebat, and comes in rounded or oblong shapes, allowing players to easily manipulate swing, dice, splice, and groundstrokes implemented on the ball.

Court Size

In General, Wiffleball doesn’t really have any sort of ground rules that define the court dimensions which implies players can start playing in their backyard or public parks as long as the space allotted can accommodate two teams of four players at once. 

Typically, Wiffleball is termed as a scaled-down version of baseball which is why it has similar core mechanics as players the batter is required to hit the pitched ball and run into bases to score a point.

A pickleball court is more of a disciplined playing field which is basically built on a concrete court ranging up to 44 feet in length and 20 feet in width and is painted with either epoxy or acrylic, while white tape defines various zones in the court.

The court is usually divided with a net, which hangs 36 inches at the posts while being 34 inches high in the middle.

So, Which One Is Suitable for Me?

The first and foremost rule of both of these sports is its anti-discrimination feature which means both of these sports highly cater to anyone of any age, regardless of their playstyle or strategies. 

In other words, there are no hard and fast rules that will prohibit a player from playing these sports in assigned settings, as long as you are having fun and want to play it for recreational purposes, you can achieve your goal even in your own backyard.

On the other hand, if you want to raise the bar and want to play it competitively, as long as you adhere to official Equipment rules and regulations, you have the complete liberty to play it.

While both of these sports are supposed to be played casually, if you want to lose weight and stay healthy while partaking in strenuous cardio exercise, Pickleball should be your go-to choice.

However, if you want to take things slow or simply want to train your child to become a baseball athlete, you might want to stick to swinging the wiffle bat, as it offers a much more linear form of playstyle.

You can also read; Pickleball vs Racquetball Differences

Button Line

Regardless of the path you choose based on your preferences, it is safe to conclude that you would have a wholesome experience because when Wiffleball Vs Pickleball is compared on a scale, there is one thing that remains constant and that is its highly supportive community that adheres rules by the book and believes in having fun, regardless of the outcome of the session.

That being said, feel free to drop your queries in the comment section below, i would be much obliged to sort you out. 

About the author


Hello, I'm Alex, and welcome to PicklerSpot – your ultimate resource for all things pickleball! I've curated this blog to share my 5 years of expertise and tips to enhance your pickleball skills.

Leave a Comment