Over the years, public perception of what is reality and what is mythical when it comes to tennis racquets has largely been formed by the major tennis racquet companies. It’s been a mixed and clouded message, simply because of lack of information, data and a forcing of agenda. With that in mind, we’d like to address a few of the more pervasive tennis racquet myths.
The racquet industry has been pushing lighter racquet for years. Today the average racquet is 2 to 3 ounces lighter than it was 20 years ago. For what benefit? Unfortunately, the lighter the racquet is, the more the shock from the ball's impact reaches your arm. The strength that it takes to swing a heavier racquet rarely causes an injury, and the heavier racquet will improve your control as well.
People often think that they are hitting the ball harder with the lighter racquet. They may feel that false impression but our research has shown that the greater shock provides them with the sensation that the ball is moving faster, when in fact the heavier racquet will actually produce a stronger shot with greater ease and less potential shoulder, arm and elbow damage.
Feedback from our custom racquet fitting sessions has given us remarkable data to support that most players, from world-class professionals, juniors, tournament and club players get better power, playability and results from a custom-fit racquet set-up that weighs more than performance racquets available from major racquet manufacturers.
In fact, every one of our pro player clients has added weight to the racquets we’ve custom finished. That’s over 100 Grand Slam championships - all won with additional weight added!
No it doesn’t. Racquet manufacturers make their racquet models in only 4 or 5 grip sizes and usually only one shape. If your optimal grip shape or size isn’t included within that particular frame style, you’re simply playing with a racquet that isn’t best for you. Grip shape is the most overlooked and toughest area to assess and fit. In general, a player will hold the racquet slightly differently depending upon the shape of the handle. The alignment of your shoulder, arm and wrist will depend upon how you are holding the handle. If you are playing with the wrong shape handle, you will be placing one or more of your joints in a weakened position to compensate. The correct handle shape for you depends upon your swing style, as well as your height and arm length.
It takes more pressure to hold a smaller handle stable than it does to hold a larger handle. This is of course relative to your hand size. A handle that is too small will cause you to squeeze too tight, setting you up for greater shock to your wrist and elbow. If you suffer from arm problems, play with the largest handle that you can comfortably hold.
We’ve custom-fit hundreds of players for grip shape and size enabling us to get a grip shape and size that will work best for you.
No, they actually sell “marketing.” Do you change your game to suit your racquet? If so, you’re not alone. With each selling season, racquet manufacturers attempt to sell a “new” technology. From season to season the message changes, sometimes with a completely opposite selling feature than their previous model. The pitch changes: more power, more control, better and more sophisticated materials, bigger is better, smaller is smarter, wide beam, thin beam, extra-long and ultra-light are the most popular.
The best players know what works best. They don’t change racquets often because they demand performance. Top players don’t play “off the shelf” racquets. Why not? Because those racquets aren’t customized for them.
The greatest player of the Open era, Roger Federer, plays with a racquet style that came out 30 years ago. Thirty years! During that time, racquet manufacturers have come up with dozens and dozens of “breakthroughs.” We know, because we’ve seen and tested every single one. Over the years, we’ve consulted with every major manufacturer to assist in determining what works best for the average player and the touring pro.
What we discovered? Evaluation and customization, not gimmicks are the solution. Because each player has an individual style of play – each racquet needs to be individualized for that player. That’s what we do. We maximize the racquet for the player. Not the other way around. Bosworth Tennis, building better players – one racquet at a time.