Rarely do I get into the equipment side of tennis in these
articles but it is a very important part of the game.
When is the last time you changed racquets or even changed
your strings? Are you constantly complaining that your grip
is too slick to keep that continental grip on your volleys?
There are several new racquets on the market these days.
There is a racquet made for every style of play and every
ability level. It is important to find the racquet that
best suits your game. You might be looking for more power,
control, or to ease the pain from some elbow or shoulder
I would always suggest consulting your teaching professional
or pro shop owner about the advantages to each of the
different frames. Game improvement racquets are those that
are usually wider and oversized and made for players with
more compact swings. This doesn't mean that other racquets
won't improve your game -- it simply means that the players
that use these racquets are usually looking for the
equipment to make an immediate change in their play. There
is also what would be considered "players" racquets. These
racquets are usually used by better players and not as big
as the game improvement frames. They may not have as much
power but the better player will be able to feel the ball
Depending on your level and style of play you might want to
get a racquet that combines a few characteristics of both
types of frames. If you consult a member of the United
States Racquet Stringers Association, they will have the
tools to help you narrow down your choices based on weight,
flexibility, and price in comparison to your current model,
if it isn't several years old. Do some research before
upgrading and you'll be happy you did.
A fresh string job can make a world of difference. Most
players just say "string it" without putting much thought
into the different benefits of strings. As with racquets,
there are strings that can give you more power, ease elbow
pain, etc. The tension and gauge is also very important.
Spend some time learning about strings and you can really
change the way your racquet feels. I've had customers that
came in to buy the latest and greatest racquet but found
that a new string job and fresh grip made their racquet
Take the time to learn your equipment. You current racquet
might be fine but at least consult with an expert to see if
it is the right thing for your game. Take a tip from the
pros on this one. Although some have lucrative deals through
endorsements, you are not going to see a person that makes their
living with the racquet use something that doesn't match their
game. Make sure when you walk on the court that your equipment
is right for you. Remember that the equipment should never be
an excuse for bad play.