Choosing a Croquet Mallet
Handle Length is probably the best way of choosing a mallet for younger players. All but the shorter Executive Mallets are lighter and have smaller mallet heads.
Generally, the more you spend on a mallet the better quality product you get and we have a range to suit most budgets. Some mallets feature a protective brass ring that prevents splitting of the end grain which forms the hitting surface. However, these mallets tend to have a smaller hitting surface.
The best general advice when you start playing club croquet is to try out as many different mallets as you can, to try to find one which suits you best.
Once you have decided croquet is the sport for you and you have narrowed your preference down we would then recommend looking to purchase a mallet for yourself. Choice of the mallet is a very personal thing, and there are no hard and fast rules but here are some things to think about.
Most people will want to choose a mallet which is in the range of 2lb 12oz to 3lb 4oz. If in doubt, you should not go far wrong with a 3lb mallet. If you are choosing a mallet which is particularly long (or short) then you may want to add (or reduce) the weight a little since it is the head weight which is important, and of course, you will be adding (or reducing) weight in the handle.
A heavier mallet may make long shots easier, and you can hit harder and straighter with less effort. A lighter mallet will make stop-shots and delicate strokes on a fast lawn easier.
There are no hard and fast rules for choosing length, as a player’s style can significantly affect the length of mallet which is required. If possible, find a mallet which is too long for you, and adjust your grip to a height on the mallet which is comfortable for you. This will tell you how long you need. If this is not possible, then a general rule is to take the height of your wrist from the ground, when your arm is hanging down by your side. Add an inch to this. However, Solomon grip players will generally want a longer mallet (add about 4 inches) and an Irish grip player will generally want a shorter length. If in doubt, get a mallet which errs on the long side — you can always shorten the shaft if it proves too long, but you can’t add to it if it proves too short! Remember when specifying length, always give the total length of the mallet, from the ground to the tip of the handle (i.e. including the depth of the head).
We recommend a standard mallet has a head length of 9 to 10″, for beginners. A longer mallet head is thought to make aiming more accurate and makes it harder to accidentally twist the mallet during the stroke. However, the long head is more awkward to use, and beginners may find they are taking divots out of the lawn. It is better to start with a shorter head and increase the length once you have more experience. A sight line will help you line up your shot.
The mallets we sell have either wooden or carbon fibre handles. Mallets with carbon fibre handles are generally a bit more expensive but they are generally better balanced and can reduce jarring. Handles with an octagonal profile provide additional directional feedback and does help you line up your shot. Handles are usually fitted with a wrap-around grip or a moulded foam grip for comfort.