Experts often say that the most important component of a padel racket is its foam, since it will have a strong impact on the way the “pala” behaves. That's why today we'll discuss the different foams used in padel rackets and their characteristics.
Two classes of materials
Padel companies often use two different materials for the core of their rackets : polyethylene and EVA. Each one of them can be created in different densities, but polyethylene foams are known for being softer. It means they are more comfortable, provide a better vibrations absorption and ball output but are not as precise and powerful as EVAs.
Polyethylene is not as widespread though some top brands choose to use it. Head is famous for its polyethylene foams such as the one that compounds the new Gravity series.
New generations of inner cores
As padel brands try to innovate as much as they can, they now create hybrid foams that are compounds of different foams densities. The aim of these new cores is to give you different sensations on fast and slow shots, so that you can feel comfortable both in offense and defense. As examples, you can see the new Bullpadel Hack and Vertex Series feature the MultiEva, while the Cartri Volcano 2 uses a mix of polyethylene and EVA !
In the end, what foam should you use ?
As we explained before, the softer a foam will be, the more comfort and absorption of vibrations it will bring, but it will also be less precise and powerful. You absolutely have to take this into account before making your choice.
The other thing you have to consider is that foams become harder when it's cold outside, and softer when it's hot. That's why Varlion premium models are available in two different densities : one for Winter (W) and the other one for Summer (S).
So in the end, it's all about choosing the good balance between comfort, precision, power, vibrations absorption and output. You need to consider your level, your style of play and the temperatures, so that you can realize what is the most important for you !
Then, let's remember that even though the inner core is considered the most important part of a “pala”, the sensations you will experiment when you hit the ball will depend on plenty of factors such as faces materials, shape, balance... As you can see, you need to consider different things before choosing a racket but don't worry, we will discuss these topics very soon. Stay tuned !