How Fast Do Racquetballs Go? | Paddle2Racket

Even if you’ve only seen it from an outsider’s perspective, you’d know that racquetball is a very fast-paced sport. But how fast do racquetballs go?

The game itself is already very fast-paced, but the real reason it becomes so fast-paced has to do with the speed of the ball.

The average speed of a racquetball, when served by an experienced player, can range anywhere between 150 and 160 mph. The fastest recorded serve was a little over 190 mph, but of course, amateurs and beginners will have lower serve speeds.

Racquetballs move extremely fast, so naturally, the whole game becomes fast as players work hard to keep up with it.

We researched the average speed of racquetballs and asked players whether different racquetballs can have different speeds.

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How Fast Do Racquetballs Go?

Racquetball is one of the fastest-growing indoor sports, and its popularity can be attributed to the fact that even if you’re not playing for competition, the game itself is so intense and fast-paced that it becomes fun to play and watch.

The game involves a rubber ball that bounces on the surface of the wall with the racket. The racket is meant to increase the velocity of the ball as it bounces, so you have to react very quickly to send the ball back to the wall when it comes towards you. In fact, the ball can travel back and forth within only a matter of seconds. If you slip up for half a second, you’ll probably miss it.

With a ball that fasts, anyone would want to know how fast that ball really travels. When talking about average speeds, it’s important to remember that the actual average speed of the ball isn’t really known to us.

Because most people don’t really record and measure the speed of the ball when playing, the most we can say is that racquetballs travel very fast. What we can look at is the speed of the racquetball in games where it’s played by professionals or top-level amateurs instead. Because these players will likely tend to practice their power serves and keep an eye on their stats and numbers, they are available to us.

The average speed at which these top professionals’ serves go lies somewhere between 150 and 160 mph. That’s about the same as a V8 engine car running at full speed. And if that’s not impressive enough, the fastest recorded serve for racquetball actually goes up to 190 mph!

This was back in the 80s, and there are now many professionals who are able to reach these speeds regularly. It is also very likely that there are speeds faster than this that haven’t been recorded yet – or at least made public.

Obviously, we can’t exactly call this an ‘average’ speed for every racquetball player around the world. Again, these are the speeds for professionals and amateurs who are working on power serves, who record their serve stats, and therefore are able to put those numbers out there. It’s reasonable to assume that most people will have serves (and thus racquetballs) that go at a slower pace than this, but there is always the possibility that naturally talented amateurs can hit much higher speeds.

But even if we assume that a regular racquetball player – not a total beginner, but also not an expert – has only about 60% of the power that a professional does, they can still reach speeds of about 100 mph with their serves, which is still pretty fast! A lot of cars on the road don’t go that fast, either!

So, while we can’t be sure of exactly how fast a racquetball really travels – for amateurs or for professionals – what we do know is that racquetball is definitely really fast!

This means that players don’t just have to be really strong to put in enough power to hit that ball back, but also extremely quick on their toes. The ball bounces back within a split second, and you have to be very fast to be able to react in time.

This is also why racquetball becomes so exciting: everything is fast, and as humans, we love fast things. Not to mention, for players, it also becomes an excellent workout. With all that speed and power involved, you’re sure to burn more than a few calories just playing a game or two of racquetball.

Do Different Racquetballs Have Different Speeds?

One thing to remember when talking about the speed of a racquetball is the type of ball it is. To an outsider, all racquetballs may seem the same, but to players, the color matters!

Black racquetballs, for example, are very slow because they’re designed to be played with longer rallies. Blue racquetballs are the most common type and have a moderate speed. You’re most likely to come across racquetball being played with a blue ball, especially if it is not competitive. Green balls are also about the same speed as blue ones, but slightly faster.

The fastest racquetballs, on the other hand, are the purple or pink ones. They are the ones most professionals play with, so the fastest recorded serves were most likely played with these types. This means that the same serve would have had a much lower speed if it had been played with a black or blue ball instead.

Red racquetballs are designed for outdoor play and are also very fast, though not as fast as the pink ones.



Michael Stevens

Michael Stevens

Since initially playing at the collegiate level, I have amassed several decades of experience playing racquetball, tennis, and pickleball. I have played thousands of matches and games, and won medals and awards in multiple tourantments. I am constantly improving my game and enjoy mentoring and coaching other players in strategy and technique. I have authored dozens of articles on the sport.

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