Table of Contents
- 1 4 Top Tennis Racquets for Beginners & Intermediate Players [Extra Power]- Comparison Table
- 2 4 Best Tennis Racquets for Intermediate & Advanced Players [Extra Control] – Comparison Table
- 3 4 Top Tennis Racquets for Beginners & Intermediate Players [Extra Power]- Detail Review
- 4 4 Best Tennis Racquets for Intermediate & Advanced Players [Extra Control] -Detail Review
- 5 Tennis Racquet Buying Guide
- 6 Conclusion
After completing 40+ hours of research on different tennis racquets for beginners to advanced players finally, we have prepared this best tennis racquet reviews for you.
By the combination of our own experience and reviews of other real users of the same products across the spectrum of power, spin, control, maneuverability, comfort, and the price we are confident that if you are a beginner then go for the Wilson Hyper Hammer 5.3. and if you are an intermediate or advanced player then the Babolat Pure Drive 2018 will act like a beast for you.
In this tennis racquet reviews article, we also included a comprehensive A-Z guide on the different buying factors and all the aspects of a racquet. You will find that guide at the last part of this article.
So let’s move forward.
4 Top Tennis Racquets for Beginners & Intermediate Players [Extra Power]- Comparison Table
4 Best Tennis Racquets for Intermediate & Advanced Players [Extra Control] – Comparison Table
When it is about choosing the top tennis racquet online, you must have to know the factors based on which you may proceed buying one. Now which way you want to decide? Based on the level of player you are (i.e., beginner, intermediate, advanced ) or based on the different features and benefits different tennis racquets have (i.e., weight, swing weight, balance, head size, length, string pattern, grip size, beam width, stiffness)?
We are going to guide you with every detail you need to know to choose the right tennis racquet. Hope you will find our guide useful and be able to make a decision quickly and proceed for buying one.
4 Top Tennis Racquets for Beginners & Intermediate Players [Extra Power]- Detail Review
1. Wilson Hyper Hammer 5.3 – Top Pick for Beginners & Intermediate Players
Head Size: 110 sq.in
Strung Weight: 9oz / 255g
Balance: 5 pts Head Heavy
Beam Width: 28mm/ 25mm
Length: 27.5 inches / 70 cm
String Pattern: 16X20
Swing Weight: 301
We found an impressive list of technical detail for this model. Now it’s time to judge the practical result and see if everything works as per the specification or not.
As we wanted to put this racquet on our list because of its ability to generate extra power, at first, our interest was to see if this model really can produce that promised added power.
You will have to hit the ball with your own power of course. But the question is “will the ball be traveling faster than your given power?”
The answer was “yes” with a big smile on our face.
The users and testers tried to play different shots including serves, baseline shots, some forehand shots from the middle of the court, and backhand shots. Every time it seemed like the power potential was entirely satisfactory.
To check the power you have to test the rebounding speed when the racquet is in the stationary mode. If the ball rebounds well when the racquet is in motionless position, that indicates the power of the racquet is good. That is exactly what happens in case of this model as well.
How about the sweet spot? We know that the Hammer technology offers a larger sweet spot. This technology maintains most of the mass in the frame head, resulting in reduced weight in the shaft and handle.
So, the Hammer technology proved it right. You will be able to find the sweet spot despite having not enough skill to find it by yourself during ball impact.
Next, we tried to find out how comfortable this model was. Comfortability also depends on the power of the racquet. As a beginner or intermediate player, you expect the desired comfortability from the racquet. During the ball impact, the racquet will not twist, rotate, or bend. That is the prove that the comfortability of this model is quite satisfactory.
But the problem that people including us found from this racquet is sometimes it vibrates during the ball impact particularly when you miss the sweet spot.
But we are not considering this as a severe downside because it will not cause any injury to your hand since a nice shock absorber rubber can solve this problem easily.
On the other hand, this is merely a rare incident because the sweet spot is quite large that very often you will be able to hit it without having too much skill.
After that, we wanted to see how much spin friendly this model is. We were expecting that the result would come out positive and it came out positive. The open string pattern with the stiffness of the frame was supporting to spin the ball quite well.
Spin depends on other factors as well including your skill, speed, the angle of the ball, etc. But we took the performance of the racquet into our consideration in this case as we are not reviewing anything else here but a racquet.
Next, we tried to find out the answer to these questions. Is this model light enough to provide the amount maneuverability, and stability that is required? Is this going to be a perfect choice for the young players to improve their game as well as an aged person’s game?
Fortunately, the answer was “yes.” The Hyper Carbon Material that has been used here is 65% lighter than the titanium. So, even a 50 years old player will not face any problem regarding maneuverability. This is a proven fact as per the review of real users.
So we got the green signal regarding the maneuverability. The swing weight is only 301; that is also a proof of good maneuverability.
With a higher swing weight, and stiffness this model was showing good stability as well. During the impact with the ball, the racquet did not bend or twist.
The size of this model is 27.5 inches, so it falls under large racquet category. As a result, you will find it easy to play the groundstrokes, and it will help you to make your serving better.
So, we think this is not only a good choice for single play but also for double play. Although practically we have not tested the possible benefits during the double play. But theoretically, if a racquet provides extra support during the groundstrokes and serves then it should be helpful during the double play.
Some Technological Details and Benefits
Hammer Technology: This technology provides higher and larger sweet spot.
Hyper Carbon Material: According to the claim hyper carbon is four times stronger, four times stiffer and 65% lighter than the titanium. No doubt this provides pure power and strength and obviously makes the racquet super light weight.
Stretch: This racquet is larger than the standard 27 inch. Stretched racquets offer you more power, extended reach to the ball and makes it serving friendly by offering a better angle.
Dual Taper Beam: This gives increased stability for extra power and extended sweet spot.
2. Head TiS6
Head Size: 115 sq.in.
Strung Weight: 8.9oz / 252g
Balance: 8 pts Head Heavy
Beam Width: 29mm
Length: 27.75 inches / 70 cm
String Pattern: 16X19
Swing Weight: 318
As this is a beginner friendly and head heavy model with open string pattern, that is why our first target was to find out how much extra power it could generate during the shot.
To test the extra power, you will have to hit the ball with your power then you will have to see if the racquet is amplifying the power or not. This racquet provided an entirely satisfactory result from this test. No matter if you serve or play any baseline shots, the ball will travel so fast.
This is a proof of its capability of delivering extra power.
A big smile on our face.
Next, we wanted to be confirmed about the maneuverability. We know that despite being a head heavy model the strung weight is only 8.90 oz. In general, this amount of strung weight is ideal for smooth maneuverability. This is what happened with this model as well. It seemed lightweight and easy to swing.
Another core benefits we were searching for the capability of this model to absorb shock. This racquet comes up with ShockStop system in the handle that works like a charm. You will not face any problem during serving, slicing or spinning. This is not only our review but also the review of the majority of the users.
As we found this model lightweight, we next wanted to check the stability of it. We wanted to see if this model would be suitable for both young players and old players.
We knew that the Titanium technology with high modulus Graphite gives this model good amount of stability. Anyways this fact has been proven by not only young players but also by old players of 55 years of age.
So we can tell that because of the lightweight and stability, this model could come handy to improve anyone’s performance. That means this is a beginner-friendly model as well as helpful for the aged person to improve his performance.
Some Technological Details of This Model
- The Titanium technology with high modulus Graphite gives this model extreme stiffness, which gives you more power. This technology also improves the stability and maneuverability of the racquet.
- It has the ShockStop system in the handle, which offers excellent shock absorption.
- The SOFTAC grip provides additional vibration dampening and protects the player’s hand from unintentional twisting.
- No wonder why this is an excellent choice for a beginner or intermediate or advanced player. It gives almost everything you want including, power, mobility, durability, stiffness, shock absorbance and also good control.
3. Wilson [K] Zero Performance Value Tennis Racquet
Head Size: 118 sq.in.
Strung Weight: 9.1 oz / 258g
Balance: 4 pts Head Heavy
Beam Width: 26mm/29mm
Length: 27.5 inches / 70 cm
String Pattern: 16X19
Swing Weight: 298
The first thing that attracted us most was the super oversized head of 118 square inches. This is big. Another fact that took our attention was the thickness of the beam. Visibly these two factors will give you a good feel and make you believe this can be a good choice for you to play with.
The above two factors that we discussed is directly related to some benefits of any racquet. The benefits are the power and the larger sweet spot. These are the two most significant benefits a beginner or learner or part time players always want to have.
According to our experiment, and also reviews of the real users that we found online a teenager who is just learning the game can hit the ball quite well and the ball rebounds even better. That happens because of the larger sweet spot that is offered by this model.
Apparently, the extra thickness of the beam will help you to generate more power as well.
How about the comfort, and stability?
Well, the stiffness of this racquet is 70, that indicates how stiff this racquet is. Only this value is enough to prove the stability. In addition to the stiffness, the extra beam width also plays a significant role to increase the stability of this model.
The weight of this model is light. Only 9.1 oz. Anything below 10 oz is considered as lightweight. Besides that, it has the swing weight of only 298. So you will find it very easy to maneuver.
Next, we wanted to analyze how much spin this model can produce, and the result was entirely satisfactory.
According to our research, this model is handy for any defensive shots. Players or testers who played defensive lob used to get an adequate support from the racquet because of the extra large head.
Some Technological Detail
The following technologies are used in this racquet:[K]arophite Black: This ensures strength, stability, and feel. [K]ontour Yoke: This enhances stiffness at the key stress point, resulting in improved torsional stability. [K]ompact Center: This gives great maneuverability, improves handling.
So a beginner who wants both control and power with a high amount of maneuverability, this is a perfect choice for them.
4. Head LiquidMetal 8
Head Size: 112 sq.in.
Strung Weight: 10oz / 266g
Balance: 4 pts Head Heavy
Beam Width: 28mm/ 26mm
Length: 27.25 inches / 69 cm
String Pattern: 16X19
Swing Weight: 328
We read the feature of this model during our online research and found that this model offers the Total Sweetspot Construction (TSC) to provide extended sweet spot. According to the real users of this model, this is true.
If you are not that much skilled but still able to hit the sweet spot, it proves that the model has an extended sweet spot. At the same time, if you miss the sweet spot but the ball still reacts very similar during the impact; it is an indication of forgiving sweet spot.
While hitting the sweet spot frequently depends on your skill, an extended sweet spot and large head size make up the lack of skill. As a beginner you want that, right?
Next thing we wanted to see the amount of power this model could generate for each shot. We know that this is a head heavy model with an oversized head of 112 square inches, 28/26 mm beam width, open string pattern (16X19). These are the indications of having added power from the racquet.
Not only its construction but also the “LiquidMetal” technology utilizes the whole energy you put during the swing, confirming no power loss on ball impact.
All these are just theories; We wanted to have practical confirmation of these benefits. Again not only us but also other users of this model agreed on these benefits. The ball rebounds quite well, because of the open string pattern. Altogether the ball travels fast after the serve, and also after other baseline shots.
Next, we were focusing on the stability, weight, and control. It is a lightweight racquet, no doubt about that.
But some users have complained that they sometimes hear sound during the shots. According to them, the sound is a bit buzzing, hence distracting. Although they found this type of sound rarely but we think you should be aware of the fact.
This model comes with NoShox Dampening system. The core responsibility of this feature is to reduce the vibration during the ball impact. It does not mean that you will not feel any vibration whatsoever. But it will be quite negligible. We can’t put negative marking because of this factor as the amount of vibration is not too much and it occurs rarely.
The control was quite ok but could have been even better.
Some Technological Details of This Model
“LiquidMetal,” it is a material that provides 29% more power than the Titanium. LiquidMetal gives ultimate energy return because it does not deform on impact.
The Total Sweetspot Construction (TSC) offers you extended sweet spot and increases torsional stability in the head. So this technology gives you ultimate control as well.
NoShox Dampening system is another exciting technology that reduces 27% vibration than other conventional racquets. This technology is integrated into the handle of this model.
The Integrated String Dampener (ISD) technology is used to absorb string vibration, which gives you the desired comfort on the arm regardless of your style of play.
Another technology that is used here is TWINTUBE. This technology increases the ball’s acceleration, as well as makes a good overall feeling.
4 Best Tennis Racquets for Intermediate & Advanced Players [Extra Control] -Detail Review
1. Babolat Pure Drive 2018 – For Intermediate & Advanced Players
Head Size: 100 sq.in
Strung Weight: 11.20 oz/ 317.51 g
Balance: 4 pts head light
Beam Width: 23mm/26mm/23mm
Length: 27 inches
String Pattern: 16×19
Swing Weight: 321
A good news for you.
Even if you haven’t tried the previous versions of Babolat pure drive, you will find this new version as a perfect one to get introduced to the pure drive family.
On the other hand, if you are a regular user of the Babolat’s pure drive family, this paragraph is for you folks. Certainly, there are a number improvements from the previous version, and we are going to point them out soon. You will find enough reason to switch to this version if you haven’t done it yet. Of course, there are some changes that you may not find good. But those are not any major changes that may keep you away from switching.
Let’s move forward!
Let’s analyze the extra benefits that this version provides in general than the previous version.
Extra Power and Spin
Because of the wider string spacing and diamond shape grommet hole, we found this newest version as a provider of a remarkable amount of power and spin.
If you are a beginner or intermediate tennis player then power is something that you want to have out of your racquet.
On the other hand, if you are a regular Pure Drive user then the downside is that you may have to go through a short adjustment period to get used to with the extra power this version is providing.
Did I miss talking about spin?
Oh yes, the wider string spacing is helping to play the topspin remarkably well. Overall you are going to have very satisfactory support to play spin shots.
By the way, don’t mess up wider string spacing with string pattern. The string pattern is 16×19 that is known as the open string pattern, and this type of open pattern boosts the power and spin by default. But here you will get some more power and spin due to the wider spacing.
Improved Vibration Dampening System
Previously it was “Active Cortex Technology” that was responsible for preventing painful shock and vibration to the player’s arm. This time they have introduced an improved version of it and they are calling it “Cortex pure feel”. That means they have improved the dampening system than the previous version.
The downside is if you love the crisp feeling of racquet and ball contact, then you may not like this version as you have just read about its new technology called “Cortex pure feel”. Particularly when you will hit the ball from the baseline. Nonetheless, this is taking care of your arm more than before. Cheers!
Ok, now let’s come to the main points. How will this version of Babolat Pure Drive perform in terms of some of your favorite shots?
Serve ( Our marking is 9.5 out of 10 )
The immense support that this racquet provides for service is one of the main reasons behind keeping this on our list for the beginners.
Not sure if you are already good at flat bomb or big kickers, but this model will make it as good as you would have expected to put your opponent on defense.
We must say, with the combination of power and precision that this racquet provides, this is one of the best service racquets you will likely to find.
Flat serve and kick serve are the two you will be able to perform really well with the help of the support that this model provides. Don’t worry about slice serves as well.
At the end of the day, it is your capability of playing shots, a racquet can only boost and support your effort. Babolat Pure Drive 2018 will do that job perfectly in terms of service.
Returns ( Will give it 8.5 out of 10 )
Probably after reading the review on service support that you will get from this version, now you are asking yourself the definite next question. That is, how much support will you get in terms of returns, right?
As this racquet boosts the power and spin, ultimately this will help you to play defensive shots as well, particularly when you will play a return shot against your opponent’s serve. You will find it a lot easier to hit the forehand returns. Its strength will help you to get good depth as well.
You won’t face any problem to take a good cut as well. However, from our observation, this is not the best of the best in terms of return, but quite ok and acceptable piece of a weapon for you.
Groundstrokes (We will give 9.0 out of 10)
The only bad thing you may feel while hitting from the baseline is the ultra dampening feeling that this racquet provides after implementing the “Cortex Pure Feel” technology. Especially if you are someone who tends to find the crisp feeling during the ball contact.
You may have to go through with some adjustment regarding power control due to the extra power that it generates for your groundstrokes.
Except those, from our analysis, this version of Babolat Pure Drive plays a vital role in helping you to hit the groundstrokes. The main reason is the extra power and spin that this model helps to generate. Once you hit some shots and adjust your control over the extra power, this will become your best buddy for the groundstrokes and put your opponent on defense.
So don’t worry about hitting powerful balls from the baseline. You won’t find any problem during the pickup from the baseline as well.
Volley ( Our marking on this is 8.8 out of 10)
As compared to the previous versions of pure drive series, this a faster, lighter, and more solid option for playing volley. No doubt, you will like the stability during the play. We think during the deep volley you will have fun due to the power and control combination provided by this version.
As you know that the volley is a kind of shot where precision and placement are the keys; the stability and the stiffness of the racquet helps a lot in this regard.
Watch out what tennis star Kim Clijsters said about this version of Babolat Pure Drive series. Video courtesy : Holabird Sports
Some Technological Details
FSI Technology:Gives more responsive contact without sacrificing the control, also ensures more power and comfort.
GT Technology: Increases the stability, power, and precision.
Woofer: Usually in the standard racquets the string provides the power, but the frame is static. The Woofer is the first dynamic system that makes the frame and string talk to each other when hitting the ball.
In the case of other tennis racquets, only some strings participate during the contact with the ball. Babolat invented a frame that makes sure the use of the full potential of the racquet by allowing all the strings to become active to their full potential during the ball contact.
The Pulley Function increases the sweet spot, absorbs unwanted vibration, stimulate more strings to react while striking the ball and improves forgiveness during off-center shots.
The Piston Function increases the trampoline effect and absorbs the shock.
Evo Beam: Provides better responsiveness.
Cortex Pure Feel: This technology is responsible for preventing painful shock and vibration to reach to player’s arm and hand. This is an improved version of previous technology named “Active Cortex Technology“. This time it increases the dampening feeling during the ball contact.
Elliptic Geometry: Elliptical frame shape is designed to remove the added weight, racquet bending, and frame twisting, resulting in power with exceptional maneuverability.
2. Wilson Pro Staff RF97
Head Size: 97 sq.in
Strung Weight: 12.6oz / 357.2g
Balance: 9 pts Head Light
Beam Width: 21.5mm/ 21.5mm / 21.5 mm
Length: 27 inches/ 68.5 cm
String Pattern: 16X19
Swing Weight: 335
After doing an extensive research, we were compelled to keep this model on our list to analyze the facts. As per our study, this is one of the most popular and classic racquets in the control racquets category.
This is considered as a new generation of Pro Staff and co-designed by the all-time great Roger Federer. It took 18 months to produce the result of collaboration, co-creation process between Wilson and Federer.
We started with serving to see how it performs. Not too surprised. It was doing just fantastic. According to our observation, it was helping a lot by giving high precision on serves.
We must say this is a handy buddy for the aggressive players. You can continuously attack your opponent and the racquet will allow you to hit the ball heavier by providing a lot of weight behind the ball. As a result, you will be pushing your opposite player further very often while attacking.
Not to mention, the head light balance offers you the classic feel as well as excellent control. The string pattern (16X19) helps in providing a good balance in spin and control.
So, what’s next? So far we have tested the control, power, and spin.
Now we wanted to see how it performed for defensive shots as well as to return the serves. This racquet performed well for these type of shots too.
Contributing to generate great counter pouch and rock solid volleys turned this Wilson Pro Staff RF97 model into a great court buddy to the players.
Despite having good support during the defense, we still want to believe this performs better when you attack (at least as per our observation).
One disadvantage we must say regarding the swing. As per the opinion of some real users, this racquet is only rewarding to those who have the ability to swing it properly. A beginner will face difficulty in this case.
That is why we recommend this model to intermediate to advanced players.
One of the great benefits we should include is the feel that this racquet can provide. The ProStaff technology will give you amazing control and feel.
The amplified technology introduced by Wilson provides the extra control in the handle with vibration absorbing power. Well engineered foam material filters out unwanted vibration.
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3. Head Graphene Touch Speed Pro
Head Size: 100 sq.in
Strung Weight: 11.6oz / 328.85g
Balance: 6 pts Head Light
Beam Width: 22mm/ 22mm / 22mm
Length: 27 inches / 68.58 cm
String Pattern: 18X20
Swing Weight: 322
As we are trying to find the best control tennis racquet, in this case our first experiment was to analyze the control of this ever-popular Speed Pro model.
In order to pass the control test, a racquet should perform well during different shots including volleys, groundstrokes, top spin, etc. You should be able to control this model while playing any of the shots.
Well, how good the shots will be? It depends highly on your skill. But when it comes to providing additional control, this racquet supports you for sure.
Next, we tried to see how much additional power this racquet can produce. In this case, we think it failed undoubtedly. That means you will get a bare minimum contribution from this model to generate the extra power.
That is why this is an ideal choice for intermediate and advanced players as they mostly don’t need any support from racquet to generate power. They mainly need the control.
After that, we tried to focus on to check the maneuverability and the stability. This time we are happy to inform you that this model has provided more than enough maneuverability and stability. You will be able to swing the racquet quite easily too.
The best part is the majority of the users of this model can keep their biggest swing inside the court very often regardless of the skills they have.
A downside we should tell you is the overly dampened feeling of this racquet.
We think this is too muted for our likings. Anyone who likes crisp feeling during the ball impact will not like the feeling of this model.
This model is updated with the softer material for improved shock absorbance and comfortable feel. The dense string pattern of 18X20 gives excellent control to the players and provide good stability.
4. Head Graphene XT Radical Pro
Head Size: 98 sq.in
Strung Weight: 11.6oz / 328.85g
Balance: 6 pts Head Light
Beam Width: 20mm/ 23mm / 21mm
Length: 27 inches / 68.5 cm
String Pattern: 16X19
Swing Weight: 332
We must say, the control is something that makes this model outstanding.
As per the manual, the strung weight is 11.6 oz which is quite heavy. But surprisingly practically it seemed very light to the real users. Thanks to the “Graphene XT” technology that has been integrated here by Head.
Graphene XT is the latest update of Graphene technology. This ensures optimal weight distribution for a faster swing and more power.
You will get a good crisp feeling during the ball impact. Besides that, you will be able to swing the racquet very easily from all corners of the court. That means the maneuverability, control, easy to swing benefit, power, feel; these are the most positive aspects of this model.
This is a stable racquet but a bit unforgiving when you hit outside the sweet spot. But don’t worry. It has the larger sweet spot to help you finding it more frequently.
Some Technological Detail
“Graphene XT,” is the latest update of Graphene technology. Head introduced this technology that ensures optimal weight distribution for a faster swing and more power.
World’s strongest and lightest material are used here; as a result, this is 20% lighter and 30% stronger compared to others of same swing weight.
Since the weight has been distributed from the shaft to the tip and grip, hence the maneuverability and swing weight have been better than before. On top of that energy transfer is 10% better because the weight has been put where it matters.
Now, comes the fun part. In case you don’t know the different features of your best buddy on the court (i.e. good tennis racquet) reading each point below thoroughly will help you to come to a complete understanding of the different corners that you should consider to choose the perfect tennis racquet.
Tennis Racquet Buying Guide
In general the weight of a tennis racquet varies from 8 oz to about 13 oz. You can tell anything more than or equal 10 oz, is heavy and if the weight is less than 10 oz you should consider it light.
Why the weight matters? It is because a heavier one will provide you more control and will reduce vibration or shock than a lighter one. Heavier racquets are for more power and spin. But you may find it difficult to maneuver, and they are harder to swing.
On the other hand, lighter ones are easier to move and swing. But they provide less power and less spin.
A beginner needs power but lighter ones provide less power than heavier ones. This problem can be solved if the head size of the racquet is big. The vibration dampener will reduce the vibration as well. So as a beginner you should buy the lighter racquets with a vibration damper. Lighter racquet becuase for a beginner easy maneuverability is a big factor to consider.
So actually intermediate and advanced players are suggested to buy heavier racquets and beginners should consider the lighter ones to buy.
Let’s have a look at the following table to see the weight ranges suitable for the different level of players.
|8 – 8.9 oz ( Very Light )||Beginner ( Kid )|
|9 – 9.8 oz (Light)||Beginner ( Adult )|
|10 – 10.9 ( Medium )||Intermediate ( Adult )|
|11 + ( Heavy )||Advanced (Adult)|
So when you are choosing the top tennis racquets for you or looking for tennis racquet reviews, you may want to keep the concept of different weight factors in mind.
- Weight ranges from 8 oz to 13 oz.
- More than or equal 10 oz is considered as a heavy weight, and less than 10 oz is considered as light weight.
- Heavy racquets give more power, control, and reduce vibration or shock. But difficult to maneuver.
- Lighter racquets are easier to move and swing but provide less power and spin.
- Beginners should go for the lighter ones. An intermediate or an advanced player may choose heavier ones.
While weight plays a crucial role in choosing the top tennis racquet, it is not the only factor. Swing weight is another factor that also plays a significant role in selecting a suitable one. Let’s see what a swing weight is.
As the title says, Swing weight is the weight when you swing the racquet. That just means how heavy it feels when you are swinging to hit a tennis ball. Don’t be confused with strung weight in this case. It is entirely different.
Well, you may ask that why it is needed to consider swing weight before buying. It is important and let us tell you why. It is because different racquets have different length and weight distribution.
Some are head heavy ones where the weight is distributed more at the head and less in the handle, on the other hand, some are head light, where the scenario is opposite. In this case, the weight is distributed more in the handle than at the head. In some cases, the weight is evenly distributed. So these parameters change the feel when you swing the racquet.
In practical, swing weight is a rating number anywhere from 0 to 1000. Typically it is 200 – 350. If you are looking for more power and stability then you have to go for a higher swing weight, on the other hand, lower swing weight provides support for more spin and faster swing.
- Swing weight is a rating number from 0 to 1000. Typically 200 – 350.
- Higher swing weight will provide more power and stability.
- Lower swing weight is helpful for more spin and faster swing.
When you are reading any tennis racquet reviews, knowing about balance is vital, especially if you are looking for the racquet for control and power. We can divide their balance into three types (Head heavy, Head light, and Balanced).
Head Heavy: Racquets that have a heavy head provide more power and stability. When you hit the ball, the heavy head, meaning the extra weight of the head helps to provide greater force and also helps to keep the head stable, meaning resists the twisting and moving of the head. So, in summary, this is helpful for stability and control.
Head Light: In this case, the weight is distributed in the handle. That obviously allows you to swing faster. Plus you will feel less vibration and shock in your arm.
Balanced: Here the weight is distributed equally throughout the racquet, meaning no extra weight at the head neither in the handle. But very much evenly distributed. This characteristic will help you to hit the ball with enough power and stability as well as preventing excessive vibration and shock.
- Head heavy racquets give you more power, stability, and control.
- Head light racquets allow you to swing faster and you will feel less vibration and shock in your arm.
- Balanced racquet helps to hit the ball with power and stability and prevent excessive vibration and shock.
While we discussed the importance of head weight in the last point, head size is another factor that is related to the performance to some extent.
The term “sweet spot” comes to mind when we talk about the head size. By definition, the sweet spot is the point where the majority of the power is transferred to the ball. Meaning it is an optimum spot to impact the ball. If the ball hits the sweet spot, then minimum force will be transformed to your hand, resulting in less vibration and greater comfort.
So by now, you know that if you can hit the ball in the sweet spot then you will feel more confident and have more power. The larger the head size is, the more chance you have, to hit the sweet spot.
Getting the sweet spot while hitting the tennis ball will give you comfort, and larger head size increases the chance of getting the sweet spot, but on the other hand, larger head size may hamper the control parameter.
That is why, the bigger head is good for a beginner and below average player, but advanced players will like to have the smaller head size to get more control because they are the expert in hitting the sweet spot frequently; no matter what the head size is.
The head size varies from 80 – 135 square inches. We can break down the head size range into four parts.
- Mid ( 80 – 94 sq inch ).
- Mid Plus ( 95 – 105 sq inch).
- Oversized ( 106 – 119 sq inch).
- Super oversized ( 120 – 135 sq inch).
- The sweet spot is the point where the majority of the power is transferred to the ball.
- That means it is an optimum spot to impact the ball.
- The larger the head size is, the more chance there is to hit the sweet spot. The Larger head gives more power but may hamper the controlling capability.
- Smaller head size gives more control.
- Beginners should go for larger head size to take advantage of larger sweet spot and power. On the other hand, intermediate and advanced players may go for smaller head size to get more control.
For tournament play, the legal limit of racquet length is 27 – 29 inches ( 68.58 cm – 73.66 cm). The standard length is 27 inches. Lower than 27 inches is considered as a junior tennis racquet.
Higher than 27 inches is considered as a longer tennis racquet. Although it does not matter a lot if you use ½ – 1 inch longer than the standard size of 27 inches, but there are some advantages and disadvantages associated with it.
Longer ones are good for groundstrokes, have higher than usual serving power and can generate more power than the standard sized ones. This characteristic will provide you the momentum on the swing.
Having said that, longer racquets may give you lower handling, on the other hand, standard-sized ones are easier to maneuver. The length is responsible for the swing weight too. The longer racquet has got more dynamic swing weight.
- The standard length is 27 inches. Less than 27 inches is considered as a junior tennis racquet. Greater than 27 inches is considered as a longer adult tennis racquet.
- Longer ones are good for groundstrokes, have higher than usual serving power.
- Longer racquets have got more dynamic swing weight.
- Standard sized racquets are easier to maneuver.
String pattern is another crucial factor for you to consider while choosing the perfect tennis racquet. Very often strings are underrated while people do tennis racquet reviews.
But in reality, after deciding the head size, weight, etc., the string pattern is the most important thing as the tennis ball will actually hit the string. So definitely it affects overall performance and feels.
By definition string pattern is the number of cross strings you see on the racquet, that means it is the total of vertical ( main ) and horizontal ( cross ). So if you see a string pattern 18X20, that means there are 18 mains and 20 crosses. Patterns can vary widely, but the most common patterns are: 16X18, 16X19, 16X20, 18X20
We can divide string patterns into two types; open string pattern, and closed / dense string pattern.
Open String Pattern: You can consider the 16X18 as open string pattern. Open string means, you will find more space between strings. It confirms the tennis ball will sink into the string more and rebound more, resulting in more power.
Open string pattern is flexible, as a result, it allows the string to bite the ball more deeply, resulting in more spin. In addition to this, you will get softer feelings. But keep in mind, the open string pattern is less durable.
Closed / Dense String Pattern: 18X20 can be considered as closed / dense string pattern. Unlike open string pattern, in this case, you will find less space between strings. This type of pattern adds extra control as the flexibility of the strings is less here. That means the string gets a lot more stiffer; that is because each string has got a certain amount of tension. So more the string is, more the tension is.
This string pattern will give you more crisp feeling. While the benefits of dense string pattern are durability and control, you have to sacrifice the benefit of having added power and spin in this case.
- Open string pattern produces more power but gives a bit less control compared to closed/dense string pattern.
- Dense/Closed string pattern provides more control but produces a bit less power compared to open string pattern.
Most of the tennis racquet reviews discuss only the different grip sizes available. But here we will first guide you to measure your grip size, and then we will introduce you with the various grip sizes available for you.
Wondering how to measure tennis grip size?
It is very easy actually. Using a ruler, you can measure your grip size. Yes, you have to play with a ruler and your dominant playing hand. Your playing hand has three major creases. By holding a ruler on the middle crease, while keeping the playing / dominant hand flat having your fingers fully extended and close to each other, record the distance from the middle crease of your palm up to the top of your ring finger. Choose a grip size that is closest to your measurement.
Your measure usually will fall in between 4 inches and 4 ⅝ inches if you are an adult. For the juniors, the grip size will fall in the range of 3 inches and 4 ⅛ inches. Below is the list of different conventional grip sizes both in US and European standards.
|US standard (Unit inch)||European Standard|
There are two types of racquets concerning beam width. One is thick beam width, and another one is thin beam width. Beam width is nothing but the width of the racquet if you see it sidewise.
Regarding thicker beam racquet the width of the beam from side to side is wider than the usual beam. Thicker beam makes it stiffer and provides more power. On the other hand, thinner beam makes a racquet flexible, and less powerful than a thicker beam, but thinner beam provides more control. Usually, beamwidth ranges from 22mm to 28mm.
- Beam width ranges from 22mm to 28mm.
- Thin beam gives more control but produces a bit less power compared to a thick beam.
- Thick beam provides more power but gives a bit less control compared to a thin beam.
Frame Stiffness or Flex
Stiffness or flex refers to the resistance, a racquet can produce against bending upon the impact of the tennis ball. In other words, it is the flexibility of the tennis racquet.
Frames are given a rating number ranging from 0-100, most fall in between 50 to 80. The bigger the number is, the more stiffer your tennis racquet is. You can consider a racquet stiff if the rating is greater than 69 and flexible if the rating is lower than 60.
The stiffer ones offer extra power, and the flexible ones offer more control. Although stiffer ones offer extra power, they are the cause of more shock to the arms, wrist, elbow, and shoulders.
An advanced player may want to have a flexible racquet because they don’t need the extra power offered by the stiffer ones. They can produce enough power during their shot. So more control provided by the flexible racquets is what matters to them mainly.
But the beginner or intermediate players may go for the stiffer racquets as these can be useful for them because of the extra power. This will depend on your personal preference as the extra power offered by the stiffer racquets are not that much higher. You have to generate your power; the stiffer racquet will just enhance it a bit more.
- Stiffness refers to the resistance a racquet can produce against bending upon the impact of the tennis ball.
- Frames are given a rating number ranging from 0-100. Most racquets fall in between 50 to 80.
- Racquets having a rating greater than 69 are called stiff racquets and lower than 60 are called flexible.
- Stiff racquets offer more power.
- Flexible racquets offer more control.
- Beginners should go for stiffer ones as they will be able to get extra power from the racquet.
- Intermediate and advanced players may want to go for the flexible ones to have extra control.
Still Confused? Here is the whole story in short, read on
If you are a beginner, then you should search for the power tennis racquet because you need to have some extra power from it. On the other hand, if you are an intermediate or advanced player then you should look for control tennis racquet as you can generate enough of your power during the shot. So mainly you need the control from your racquet. But the final choice is entirely up to you.
Please be noted that the power racquets do not mean only to help the power boost. They are also helpful regarding providing the control, but the primary responsibility of these type of racquets are that they ensure the additional power.
Same theory applies to the control racquets. A control racquet does not mean to just enhance the control. The actual scenario is they are also helpful to generate power sometimes, but their primary responsibility is to ensure the additional control for you.
You should also keep in mind that the power and control that you get from your best buddy on the court act just like your supporting hand. It just can add the power with the original power generated by you. It is not that you hit the ball without any power at all and the racquet will automatically create superpower for you.
Considering the facts that are related to choosing the best tennis racquet, we hope, this list was helpful for you to decide and buy one. No matter whether you are a beginner or intermediate or advanced player, or even if you are looking to gift someone, we are confident that, this list and guideline will be helpful to choose the perfect one according to your need.
We also covered and tried our best to educate you about different features like weight, swing weight, balance, head size, length, string pattern, grip size, beam width, frame stiffness. Learning about these factors should also be helpful to you to make a wise, and educated decision.
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