We have had a lot of comments on our Heritage 75 and the Retro 86 with people questioning why we designed a 7.125” profile instead of something wider.
We wanted to design a paddle that was light weight, extremely comfortable to play, and super agile, without sacrificing power. The teardrop shape did what we wanted but only when we narrowed the paddle significantly. It originally started as a 7.875” width.
During the design phase we produced, tested and played dozens of prototypes of various shapes and widths. In testing 90% of our testers would migrate back to the smaller lighter profile. It simply had a better feel, it was faster and just played better than the larger versions.
So we put performance ahead of marketing despite criticism that a narrow paddle would never sell. Today, it is one of our best selling paddles.
So in response to critics
A quarter of an inch either side of the paddle will not save a point. In most cases the extra torque caused by an outside edge strike on a wide paddle will lead to a twist in the paddle angle resulting in either a pop up or hitting the ball into the net. The wider the paddle the more margin for error.
Most players will be hitting 80% of their shots within an inch or two of the center of the paddles sweet spot. Don’t believe me, look at your existing paddle. The most wear on a paddle is and should be close to the center. If its not, a wider paddle isn’t going to help you.
Too many people play with paddles that are too wide and drag around a lot of extra bulk. The result is slower reaction time resulting in more errors and missed shots. You can’t hit it if you can’t get to it.
The design of the 86 and Heritage moves the sweet spot towards the head of the paddle which when using the wrist for extra snap generates more power due to paddle speed at point of contact.
Both paddles are extremely comfortable to play while their speed, agility and power makes both the 86 and the 75 formidable paddles for offense and defence.
The Retro 86 has a fiberglass substructure and as a result had more pop and plays softer than the carbon fibre based Heritage 75. The 75 has a much stiffer feel to it which is good for control.