Getting started in any sport is complicated, we fail a lot, it is difficult for us to enter the dynamics of the game and other things happen to us that make us despair. But if we talk about tennis, maybe all this difficulty multiplies a little more. The reason is quite clear, to learn to handle the tennis racket you have to be patient. So we must think carefully and know how to choose a tennis racquet for beginners, not just anyone is valid, there are several factors that influence to choose the correct one, more than you might believe.
To find out which racket to buy, we are going to help you a little by explaining the parameters to take into account so as not to regret your first steps playing t
Types of tennis rackets
The first thing is to know what types of tennis rackets exist on the market and which ones will be able to help us improve in our first classes. Racket manufacturers usually talk about three variants:
Improvement and power rackets
To start to control the ball and not despair in the attempt, there are rackets for the initiation, designed with oversize or super-oversize heads, this means that the striking surface, where we put the string, is larger than normal, around at 700-900 square cm. These are perfect for tennis exercises for children who begin their journey in this sport, where the important thing is to begin to become familiar with the racket and not to perfect strokes.
This type of tennis racket is rigid, long, and with a neutral or light head balance, which favors it to contain a greater weight in the hitting area.
As an extra detail, we comment that they are oriented for tennis players with a short and slow swing who are looking for more power, although a little later we will explain the subject of the types of swings.
Intermediate and advanced rackets
They combine various characteristics for tennis players who have been playing for a long time but need to continue improving their strokes. The intermediate ones are light, with varied balance, a mid plus head (613-658 cm2), and a length slightly greater than the standard ones. As for the power of the hit, it is never very high, it ranges between low-medium and medium-high, so they are usually used by tennis players who want to have more handling and room for maneuver.
This is where the tennis rackets that the most experienced buy, those who have spent many years passing the ball from one field to another, the coaches and semi-professionals and tennis players of the ATP circuit, the famous ones that we see every week in the big tournaments,
The control models weigh more, have a smaller head and the frame profile is usually thinner and more flexible. In addition, the head balance is lighter so that the tennis player has more handling and precision in the blows. Each professional seeks to personalize their racket, such as Rafa Nadal, who in early 2017 added more weight to his. It seems that it has given good results …
The main features to choose a tennis racket
Weight is one of the most important parameters to consider when choosing a tennis racket. The heaviest ones require more force to move them, generate more power when hitting, and transmit fewer vibrations. But along with these pros they also have important cons, which are less manageable. One tip to take advantage of the advantages is to extend your swing and maintain a good speed.
Regarding the weight we can make a division between two types, we can choose a heavy tennis racket with a light head or on the contrary, a lighter racket but with more weight on the head.
The former are considered control rackets with which the professionals give their own strength to the ball. The latter has a lighter handle and more weight in the part where the ball is hit, so the tennis player will control the blows better and will not lose much power.
Balance or equilibrium
Balance is closely related to weight, its distribution on the racket. The balance conditions the “balance” that exists in the racket and with it the control with which it can be performed in each hit. For example, when the racket is “big-headed” – that is, it has a greater weight in the hitting area than in the grip – the power is much greater but so is the lack of precision. The ideal would be to seek a balance where we have power and control in equal parts, without one standing out over the other.
Sieve (Head Size)
In tennis, we call the hitting surface a sieve, where the stringing is located, which we will talk about later. If the size of the head is wide, the control that we are going to have over the hit will be less, but the power greater. In the opposite hypothesis, the racket with a small head will provide us with more precision, the negative part is that we will have to give more force to the blow to achieve a good speed.
As extra information, tennis rackets with a small head are generally used by more experienced players looking for control of the ball, and those with a large head are intended for intermediate players who need more power.
In professional and semi-professional tennis, the regulations dictate that the length of the racket must be between 68.58 cm and 77.66 cm. A longer racket will help us to reach the groundstrokes better and obtain more power, on the other hand, handling is more complicated and control over the hit will be less.
This is because the weight is further from the hand, so it will affect us when volleying and returning closer shots. As for the handles, the rackets are becoming lighter thanks to the innovation in the materials, so that the main manufacturers in the world of tennis are in constant search not to increase the weight of the rackets excessively.
Currently, and this is constantly changing, the handle of the racket is incorporating a damping system for vibrations and shock, which benefits the game of tennis players.
There are some players who are forced to use a long racket despite obtaining less control, such as David Ferrer, who due to his short stature, 1.75 meters, uses a longer racket than other tennis players usually use. of ranking, about 70.8 cm.
Stiffness is a factor that greatly affects the sensations of the tennis player and the vibration when hitting the ball. Rackets that are characterized by being flexible tend to provide less power, as they tend to roll backward on impact. Despite this, the flexibility also means that the player receives fewer vibrations in the racket.
Rigid tennis rackets, in addition to power, provide directional control. However, stiffness is a parameter that will increase the vibrations that the racket transmits to the player’s arm. Very flexible tennis rackets are less powerful since the frame tends to beat back at the moment of impact but they absorb vibrations better.
There is less talk of another consequence derived from the stiffness of the frames, which is the number of effects that the racket can provide. The most rigid ones do not give as much effect as the flexible ones, and the reason is simple since being harder the ball repels itself from the string in less time.
This is where racket stringing comes into the picture, where many tennis players spend their time to find the one that best suits their game. When choosing a tennis racket for the first time, it may not be given much importance, but as we progress and play assiduously, we realize how to get the one that does not benefit the most.
The sieve of the racket is the hitting surface, where the stringing is intertwined, which depending on how we have it, will affect our strokes in one way or another.
Here the number of strings and the distance between them influence, mainly the string can be more open or closed.
We are going to explain the differences so that you can decide for yourself how to configure your tennis racket.
First, we talk about the open string pattern, with which the ball deflects more than with a closed one. This type of string is not as tight, so the ball is embedded more between the strings and comes out of the racket with more power. A point against that we are going to find is a greater abrasion of the strings and more possibilities of breakage in the string, since the strings of the tennis racket have more freedom to move.
With a closed string pattern the opposite happens, the ball is repelled with less power but we have more control in the shot. We will achieve less effect, although with a closed string we will not have many breaks. As we could deduce, this string is more aimed at tennis players looking for more control and those who base their game more on power will use tennis rackets with a more open string.
The main racquet brands launch different ranges of similar models that differ mainly by the material from which they are made. Logically, depending on the range of the racket, the sale price will fluctuate enormously. Here we have the main three
- Low-end rackets are made mainly of aluminum and usually cost between 30 and 50 euros. These types of rackets are indicated for very occasional players looking for entertainment in tennis.
- The mid-range ones have a higher quality and their price ranges between 60 and 120 euros. They are composed of graphite and fiberglass and are the most used by players who are training in tennis.
- The price of the high-end ones rises from 120 to 400 euros, and they are composed of a mixture of very resistant materials such as graphite, titanium, or carbon. There are many players who choose this type of racket, whether they are professionals, semi-professionals, or beginners since these rackets allow you to make a good hit and achieve maximum control when hitting.
One of the most recognized brands, Babolat, started a new era in tennis by including revolutionary new technologies to help professionals. The brand provides the rackets to Rafa Nadal and in this video, he presents his model to analyze the entire game of tennis players.
After knowing which are the most important parameters to take into account and reviewing the ranges that exist in the market and their prices, the last and most important step in choosing a tennis racket is to know what type of swing the player has. player. The swing is the characteristic gesture that every tennis player makes with his arm when hitting the ball and greatly determines the racket he must buy. The swing can be:
- Short and slow swing: characteristic of beginner or very veteran players. For players with a short and slow swing, the rackets are very light, with a wide head, a high balance (weight towards the head), and an open pattern. These features provide great power with little effort and maximum comfort. These are usually high-end, high-quality rackets.
- Medium swing: typical of intermediate level players. For players with a medium swing, rackets also have medium parameters, with medium weight, head and balance. They are the most used thanks to the fact that they adapt to a large number of players, whether they are initiation, intermediate, or competition. These types of rackets are usually found in all ranges, from the lowest to the highest.
- Long Swing: used by highly experienced professional players. Rackets designed for players with a long, fast swing are considerably heavier, with a smaller head and low balance (weight towards the grip). The control of the hit is much greater and so is the precision. Normally these rackets are designed in both medium and high range.
Despite being able to be born with talent, the diamond must be polished and we must know when is a good time to start playing tennis, we should not rush, so in this post of our blog, you will see a little information to know when children they can start playing tennis.
With all these tips you can now take the step and choose the racket that best suits your game or the moment of learning in which you find yourself, but remember, the racket is not magic and it takes a lot of work to master it. So cheer up and most importantly, enjoy playing tennis.