At Pensar, we’re typically working on a variety of consumer and medical technologies, allowing us to dive deep and craft a product from the ground up. During these long stretches of work, often measured in years, we get inspired by the everyday objects around us. Every so often, we’ll pursue an object as a study to allow us to experiment with process, interaction, form, or finish. The ping pong paddle shown here is purely an industrial design concept.
While not ITTF* compliant, it’s a paddle we would love to build and take for a spin. As an object, we were initially drawn to the fact that it is clearly divided into two distinct zones: tool (paddle portion) and the human contact area (handle). We wanted to explore what it would be like to blend the two zones, and utilize texture as the indicator of function. The texture of the pips is heaviest in the center then fades as it moves away to create a gentler grip and eventually a completely smooth reverse side. We understand changing the pip pattern will impact the ball contact dynamics, but in this exercise we’re playing with the design variables. The texture on the handle gives the player tactile feedback as to which side of the paddle is in play – smooth or textured.