How to smack it home with the perfect tennis racquet

December 22, 2014

Buying the right tennis racquet can be a challenge, especially considering the huge range of models available on the market. Here's how to find the right one to match your skills, abilities and interest in the sport of tennis.

How to smack it home with the perfect tennis racquet

Asking the right questions

Beginning the process of finding a suitable racquet starts with a few questions.

  • Do you prefer a heavy racquet or a lighter one?
  • Do you want a basic racquet or one that includes the latest technology?
  • Is an oversize racquet going to help you improve your game or hinder your skills?

Perhaps you believe that with the perfect tennis racquet, you’ll play the perfect match. It’s up to you to make the right choice. Of course, budget also plays a factor in the decision.

Power or control?

The first thing you have to decide is whether you prefer powerful shots, controlled shots or a bit of both.

  • In order to make this decision you’ll need to evaluate various parameters, such as the weight of the racquet, its length and if the string pattern is open or dense.

Keep in mind the best choice of racquet may also vary depending on your age and abilities.

For beginners

If you're a beginner, you should play with a racquet that’s fairly light and easy to handle. It will allow you to focus on developing technique without having to worry about manhandling a too-big racquet.

  • Opt for a racquet weighing about 285 grams (approximately 10 ounces) with an oversized head measuring at least 645 square cm (100 square inches).
  • Make sure the beam width (thickness of the frame) is about 2.5 cm (one inch).

A racquet falling into these dimensions will give you both more power and better contact with the ball.

For intermediate players

If you’re an intermediate player, you could try a racquet that offers a blend of power and precision but that has a thinner beam width for better control.

  • For most levels of play, you'll need a racquet that focuses more on control than power. This will make it easier for you to direct the ball accurately and hit winning shots.

As most top tennis players would tell you, hitting with power is one thing but aiming the ball in the right direction is quite another.

What about the strings?

Most strings on the market are 15-gauge or 18-gauge (15 being the thickest and 18 the finest), although there are other sizes.

  • Thinner strings offer greater control and more "feel" when hitting, which allows you to better direct your ball.
  • Conversely, thinner strings are less durable, which means you’ll probably have to change them more often.

If you're a confident beginner- or intermediate-level player, why not compromise by using 17-gauge strings.

  • That way, you’ll feel the ball and you’ll also benefit from more durable strings.

Game, set and match

If you're in the market for a tennis racquet, whether for the first time or to replace a worn one, your tennis club pro or in-store experts at your local sports store can help answer any further questions you may have.

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
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