Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Pickleball Paddle Review

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Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Pickleball Paddle Review

I recently had the chance to play with the Selkirk Vanguard Power Air and immediately knew it was one I needed to get a review up for on top of some of the other paddles I am still excited to bring into our pickleball paddle reviews category.

I'm sure you guys have probably seen players hitting with the Selkirk Vanguard Power Air (at least some variation of it) and have probably noticed that there is some mixed results.

The reason for this is that the Selkirk Vanguard Power Air is definitely a paddle that is really only effective in the right hands.

What I mean by that is: I wouldn't recommend this paddle for anyone who isn't an advanced level player - but it could help an advanced, aggressive player dominate the court.

You can find multiple top five pro players selecting this paddle as their paddle of choice on our Professional Pickleball Player Paddle Database.

I personally love using elongated or hybrid paddles, and I generally stick to thermoformed paddles with carbon fiber faced - with some of my personal favorite paddles being the CRBN Power Series, Vatic Pro, Ronbus Pulsar and a few others (though my first paddle was the Hyperion, and it's still up there with one of my favorites).

If I had to directly compare to these, I'd say the Selkirk Vanguard Power Air is up there in power with the CRBN 1X paddle (I play with the 14MM for singles), which is the hardest hitting paddle I have ever played with.

As a player, especially a player that very rarely plays singles, I generally gravitate towards 16MM paddles that lean more towards control but have the necessary power coming from the fact that they are thermoformed and plenty of spin from the carbon fiber faces, so the Selkirk Vanguard Power Air actually comes in a bit too poppy for my personal style.

That said, you'll find plenty of bangers LOVING this paddle, and a good mix of very advanced players taking advantage of it's unique strengths.

Do you play with the Selkirk Vanguard Power Air? Which variation do you use? How long have you been playing (and how long did you play before you switched to it?

Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Review - 

Full Paddle Technical Specifications

PRICE: $250

AMAZON: Yes - Click Here

MATERIALS: Hybrid Blend of Fiberglass and Carbon Fiber and Polymer Honeycomb Core


WEIGHT: 7.7-8.1 oz



S2 / Epic: 15.75 in

Invikta: 16.5 in


S2 / Epic: 8 in

Invikta: 7.375 in


Invikta/ Epic: 5.125 in

S2: 4.375 in



Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Review - 

Brief Introduction and Discussion (Plus Pros and Cons)

The Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Paddle comes in with three different styles: The S2, Epic, and Invikta - all catering to a different style of player - but all coming in poppy, powerful and ready for spinning the heck out of the ball.

While Selkirk generally has very high priced paddles, and the Vanguard Power Air line is no different, they also make up for a part of that with the fact that they have incredible customer service and a lifetime warranty.

Yes, you read that right: lifetime.

As I mentioned above: you likely won't want to grab one of these paddles if you're a beginner or even an intermediate player, but if you're pushing the advanced level and prefer a more poppy paddle that allows you to really drive the ball with ease, then this just might be your next favorite paddle.

It's going to feel different than the majority of paddles you've played with (probably), with the hybrid blend of fiberglass and carbon fiber allowing for a ton of spin, but the paddle itself coming in at 0.5 inches of thickness with no edge guard - giving it a unique play style.

The Pros

Extremely Powerful

Very High Spin Potential

Great For Advanced and Aggressive Players

Good For Hands Battles & Speed Ups

Selkirk's Lifetime Warranty

The Cons

Very High Price Point

Large Trade Off Of Control For Lots Of Power

Not Ideal Choice For Beginner To Intermediate Players

Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Review - 

Control and Feel Review: 6.5/10

As I mentioned above, the Selkirk Vanguard Power Air is best used in the hands of an advanced player.

The reason for that is because it leans towards power and spin, and isn't very forgiving, and definitely isn't going to do any of the control work for you.

One of the biggest weaknesses of this paddle is the lack of control you're going to get from it - but it makes up for it with power, and is made that way for a reason.

If you're looking for control you're likely going to want to check out the Joola Hyperion, Six Zero Double Black Diamond, or even the CRBN Control Series - just to make a few.

But, if you're ready to drive right through your opponent and have super quick hands at the kitchen, then the Vanguard Power Air has you covered.

Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Review - 

Power Review: 9.5/10

To reiterate, this paddle is right up there with the CRBN 1X paddle, which is the hardest hitting paddle I have played with to date.

It only misses a 10/10 in the power section because I do think some of the newer thermoformed paddles coming out in 2023 are pushing the power level among paddles to a new level - but the Vanguard Power Air is right there with them in terms of the top dawgs on the market.

This one is specifically known for it's pop and power in the hands of the right player.

The power can actually almost be a negative in the wrong hands, but that won't effect our power score, and will actually only effect the control score that we discussed above.

The effortless power gives you insane drives from the baseline, while also coming in with wicked hand speed at the kitchen coming from the aerodynamic tech that will have you winning hands battles with blazing speed.

So, if you're an advanced player, or a player that feels like they have the control down and want to take advantage of being an aggressor - then you'll want to check out this paddle for yourself.

Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Pickleball Paddle Review

Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Review - 

Spin Potential Review: 8.5/10

The Selkirk Vanguard Power Air is definitely a formidable paddle in terms of spin potential and being able to add as much spin and slice as you'd like with numerous shots.

It comes in within the top 25 paddles on Chris Olson's RPM list (from Pickleball Studio) at 1851, but that score did have it much higher only a handful of months ago.

As the paddle technology continues to improve with the T700 carbon fiber faces and thermoforming technology - the spin potential on these paddles continues to increase (for example, the Selkirk Labs Project 006 is currently number one at 2141).

That's just to say that it isn't within the top ten paddles, but at 1851 this baby is definitely adding enough spin for the vast majority of players.

Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Review - 

Aesthetic and Personal Opinion: 7/10

As I mention each time we get to this part of the reviews, I do want to reiterate the fact that I am a fan of a minimalistic design - similar to what brands like Vatic Pro, Ronbus, Six Zero, CRBN and other paddle companies are currently doing with their paddles.

But, I can definitely appreciate the Selkirk Vanguard Power Air as well, and it definitely stands out on the court not just because of the aerodynamic hole, but also the unique design overall.

They also recently released both the Tyson McGuffin Signature design (the tan colored paddle) AND the prestige design as well, which takes a completely different look to the courts for players who previously sported the black and white or red and white (prestige is blue and pink).

Aside from the fun aesthetic, though, I do bring this one in at a 7/10 being that I personally feel like I have more than enough power on the court, and typically prefer a control paddle that has the power potential behind it.

I like to play a slow and patient game, while still having the opportunity to smash hard drives from the baseline - and the Selkirk Vanguard Power Air typically resonates better with a much more aggressive style of play.

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Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Review - 

Everything Else: 6.5/10

The paddle industry is kind of insane right now, with thermoformed technology and T700 carbon fiber faced paddles coming in at $130 or less.

That makes it harder to give big brands like Selkirk, Joola and others (even CRBN, who comes in with much higher prices) an incredible score in this section, being that I typically lean towards discussing the price point or any other positive or negatives that don't fit in other categories here.

The only saving grace for this one, coming in at a steep $250 price is the fact that you get Selkirk's customer service, 30 day moneyback guarantee, and LIFETIME warranty. 

Not many brands are offering the lifetime warranty, especially with delamination issues with some brands - so that's a big plus that helps the price a bit.

On top of that, if it matters to you, another big selling point for some players is the fact that Selkirk's paddles are proudly made in the USA.

Selkirk Vanguard Power Air Review - 

Closing Thoughts: 38/50

To close out I'm going to beat a dead horse with this one and let you know that the Selkirk Vanguard Power Air is not a paddle that you want to play with if you're a beginner, or even an intermediate player (in most cases).

The Selkirk Vanguard Power Air is best in the hands of an aggressive and advanced player that can use the fact that this paddle is extremely poppy and powerful to take control of the game, speed it up with drives and hands battles and dominate a fast game.

What you get with insane power and great spin with this paddle you lose in control and forgiveness, but that can easily be made up for in the hands of a great player who likes this style.

What are your thoughts on the Selkirk Vanguard Power Air? Which style and color do you play with?

Selkirk Vanguard Pickleball Paddle Review

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About the Author

Owner and Creator of The Slice Pickleball and Superhero Jacked
Pickleball and Caffeine Addict, Bibliophile, Writer, Dog Dad

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