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View Full Version : Why change?


BMG
01-12-2008, 07:29 AM
I've been posting here for about 4 months and have enjoyed very much the feedback and experiences of everyone regarding their search & choices of frames. Also posts by Jo11yRoger, NoBadMojo, Craig Clark, drakulie, etc. have been very informative and sometimes pretty funny. What is puzzling is the way people seem to want to change frames so often (and I am tempted on occassion, too). There is currently a huge buzz about the MG Prestige..everyone wants to demo/buy one when they come out. What is wrong with their current stick? Why is a racquet switch so important? (obviously the racquet is important, but I am not a believer that it will "change your game" in most cases; especially if you have been using the same stick for a while). People flock to buy the nCode 95 but as soon as the k95 comes out the big buzz starts and people are switching. I know that the racquet companies love this, but are racquets truly becoming "better" with each revision? I am using, and like, the LM Prestige MP. I have tried the FXP Prestige and the BB 11 and really like them both. I played well with them and especially liked the comfort of the Becker. But is that enough to totally change racquets after years with the same frame? I know that I am ranting a bit, but I just don't think people spend enough time working on their game (and even string setups) but rather focus on the "next best thing" in racquet technology. There are specs for every player out there already. Well built sticks at good prices. Why spend almost $200/frame and risk taking a step back in your game by always attempting to improve via the racquet?

PackardDell
01-12-2008, 07:34 AM
Question is wat matters more. Specs or tech? I believe in specs and therefore won't easily update my frame (currently lm prestige mp)

TonyB
01-12-2008, 07:35 AM
Speaking only for myself, I typically demo racquets because there is *something* lacking in the racquet that I'm currently using. Either it doesn't have quite enough power, not quite comfortable enough, doesn't hit with enough spin, balance feels a little off, swingweight is too high, or maybe doesn't have quite the exact flex that I'm looking for.

Either way, if you'e satisfied with your current racquet and can "work around" the minor performance issues, then you don't bother with demos. But if you're like me, and ALWAYS seem to have SOMETHING missing in your current racquet, then you'll gladly go for a test drive with a new frame that might just have what you're looking for.

It can be somewhat of a crap shoot. Maybe the new frame has even MORE shortcomings, who knows. But you'll never know if you don't try it.

But I think I know what you're saying... some people just automatically switch to the next hot frame. I don't know why. Maybe they're not as technical as I am when it comes to trying new racquets. Maybe they're just looking at the paint job. Does it really matter, though? People buying new racquets, especially when they don't need them, is what keeps this industry going!

PackardDell
01-12-2008, 07:42 AM
Speaking only for myself, I typically demo racquets because there is *something* lacking in the racquet that I'm currently using. Either it doesn't have quite enough power, not quite comfortable enough, doesn't hit with enough spin, balance feels a little off, swingweight is too high, or maybe doesn't have quite the exact flex that I'm looking for.

Either way, if you'e satisfied with your current racquet and can "work around" the minor performance issues, then you don't bother with demos. But if you're like me, and ALWAYS seem to have SOMETHING missing in your current racquet,

Points could be valid however you might consider to spent some time getting used to a new stick

TonyB
01-12-2008, 07:52 AM
Who ever said not to spend time getting used to a new racquet? Not me.

Of course you need to establish your own comfort level with the racquet that you're currently using. That can vary from one person to another. Nobody can tell you that you have to spend "X" number of hours playing with a racquet before you make your judgement. It might be as quick as an hour or 30 minutes before you decide a racquet just isn't going to work for you. Or maybe after a year or more with a new racquet, you decide that there's just something about it that doesn't suit your game.

Just as everyone's game is different (and always improving/evolving), everyone's tolerance of how a racquet performs for them is different as well.

I'll never criticize anyone for trying to find a new frame that better suits their style of play. Sure, you have to give it a chance, but it's a very personal decision.

BMG
01-12-2008, 08:08 AM
...I'll never criticize anyone for trying to find a new frame that better suits their style of play. Sure, you have to give it a chance, but it's a very personal decision.

I agree with that and I am sure that sometime in the next year or two I will be looking to change when I can't get anymore LM's; and yes it is a personal case x case issue. Heck, I am usually quick (too quick?) to give some new frame a hit just to see how it feels. I also believe that you really do not know how a racquet will play for you unless you use your regular string setup and have an extended demo period...possibly a month or two. It's quite a committment. I also agree with Packard Dell that the specs that work best for your game are the priority (it is sometimes the journey to finally find those specs that can be fun.:).). But once you have found the best specs, IMO it is best to stay with the same frame for the long term - regardless of "new technologies" that are marketed at you.

McLovin
01-12-2008, 08:13 AM
I know that I'm always interested in the new technology, but I have made the mistake in the past of switching just to use the latest and my game has suffered for it.
I've dialed in my specs (12.3 oz, 71 RDC, 8 points HL, 350 SW), and it seems that, barring spending $$ for someone to customize, manufacturers aren't producing anything near that. As a result, I'm now using sticks that were discontinued over 5 years ago (Babolat Pure Control + "2001") and am currently prowling the usual auction sites in order to pick up a few more.

Rory G
01-12-2008, 08:18 AM
I am a huge fan of finding your best specifications (not an overwhelming task), finding that racquet, getting a few of them, tweaking strings, and staying with them for years. I had been switching racquets almost yearly and d*cking around with the newest, best racquets that were introduced. My on court success never increased (its not about the racquet anyway, is it.:)) and it usually went downhill for a while. I finally matched three Vantage sticks a couple of years ago and focused on my game. I have gone up a level or so and am enjoying tennis more than ever....especially since I am not worried about/blaming my gear all of the time.

jazar
01-12-2008, 08:31 AM
i hit with differnent rackets all the time, as i work in a tennis shop. i've hit with pretty much every racket on the market and i havent found anything i want to switch to. in fact, instead of buying a new racket i'll just end up buying more i.prestiges until the supply of them runs out. and to be honest, i prefer the feel of slightly older rackets to the new ones as i dont want a lot of technology to "help" improve my game

i always find it really funny when people come and buy a new racket every time a new technology comes out. but, i'm not complaining, as if these people didnt buy so many new frames then i would be out of the job

jayrlo
01-12-2008, 08:50 AM
I am a huge fan of finding your best specifications (not an overwhelming task), finding that racquet, getting a few of them, tweaking strings, and staying with them for years. I had been switching racquets almost yearly and d*cking around with the newest, best racquets that were introduced. My on court success never increased (its not about the racquet anyway, is it.:)) and it usually went downhill for a while. I finally matched three Vantage sticks a couple of years ago and focused on my game. I have gone up a level or so and am enjoying tennis more than ever....especially since I am not worried about/blaming my gear all of the time.

Thats so true. Im a huge racket collector and i constantly try frames and to be honest the real reason as to why i do this is to to not give myself any other excuses other than my lack of fitness when i lose. I think finding your best specifications will help your game so much. It is too easy to blame external factors to your performance. I have yet to match any rackets except for my PC 600's and Radical Tours but when i did that my game went up a good notch because they are rackets I play with during my matches. In other words try not to make too many excuses for yourself:)

roller~
01-12-2008, 11:18 AM
I think that it's a hobby for them and it does a person pleasure.
And it is just that the companies bring out the new products like a clock..:)

hawaiirgv
01-12-2008, 11:22 AM
I think people in general in everything we do always want to see what's new and improved out there. Like they say, the grass always seems to be greener on the other side. I'm the perfect example...I'm 40 years old, played tennis since I was 8. High school, D1 college but not good enough to make a living on tour...so I do the next best thing... I teach. I've tried just about every racquet that I can get my hands on... but at the end of the day when I really need to be competitive, I go back to the stick that I've used since high school...the POG

racquet_jedi
01-12-2008, 11:27 AM
I think that it's a hobby for them and it does a person pleasure.
And it is just that the companies bring out the new products like a clock..:)

Exactly, people are tricked by manufacturing companies into believing that their frame is dated by bringing out the new products with the new technology, which some people think will help improve their game automatically; that's why some people right now really want the K-Blade, the K-Blade Tour, and the Microgel Prestige...

You should be proud of yourself, to the OP, for having such a strong mind to resist the corporate advertising of those big names...:wink:

ollinger
01-12-2008, 11:56 AM
The psychological defenses most commonly active in this process are rationalization ("I'm not playing as well as I'm really capable, I must have a racquet that's either inadequate or not suited to my game") and projection (unconscious realization of defects in oneself, consciously experienced as finding fault in the racquet). Biologically, men tend to seek novelty, probably an evolutionary adaptation to aid hunting behaviors and encourage exploration that increases the likelihood of finding resources (water, shelter, etc.) There is even evidence now of specific "novelty genes" that promote exploratory and experimenting behaviors in some more than others. (This suggests that in the near future you may be able to claim your compulsive racquet demo tendencies as a disorder and perhaps even a disability).

bluetrain4
01-12-2008, 12:09 PM
I think it's just curiosity. I love to try new frames just to see what they feel like, and even try the older frames of my playing partners.

But, I rarely actually change, because I'm too old (35) and have played too long (since I was eight) to believe that there is a magic bullet.

Don't get me wrong, picking the right racquet is very important and change can be good. But picking the "right" racquet year after year seems ridiculous.

I still play competitively - leagues and tournaments, and I play a lot, so I can't just have one racquet that I break out every few weeks - I really need 3 of whatever frame I'm using. So changing racquets is also a significant financial commitment. I could do it, but I'll save my money until my current frame becomes obsolete.

Shashwat
01-12-2008, 12:16 PM
Have people ever considered there is something lacking in their game rather the racquet?

I mean it is what you play with but ever thought of how you can improve your game rather than just getting a new racquet?

That's what i don't understand. I demo around racquets just to try them out for fun but never really switched from my K95. I only switched from N95 to K95 because i like the stiffer, raw-er feel of the K95.

nickb
01-12-2008, 12:48 PM
"Why change?"

I often wonder that after ive used a new racket or a different stick for a few days and then go back to the same Fischer that I love and play best with.

Hoping I resist any new frames that come out and stick with what works and helps me bring my A game to the court (the fischers).

For me its mids that tempt me (I used the nsix-one 90 for a year)..I need to keep telling myself that it will only make my game worse...which it does.

Nick

bruinduke
01-12-2008, 01:13 PM
Because skill sports such as tennis and maybe even more so golf, are as mental a conflict as it a physical contest. Any psychological edge you can give yourself like having the newest and best fitting racquet to your game might be enough to get you past your next opponent (or keeping with the golf analogy, shoot your lowest score).

BounceHitBounceHit
01-12-2008, 07:07 PM
I've been posting here for about 4 months and have enjoyed very much the feedback and experiences of everyone regarding their search & choices of frames. Also posts by Jo11yRoger, NoBadMojo, Craig Clark, drakulie, etc. have been very informative and sometimes pretty funny. What is puzzling is the way people seem to want to change frames so often (and I am tempted on occassion, too). There is currently a huge buzz about the MG Prestige..everyone wants to demo/buy one when they come out. What is wrong with their current stick? Why is a racquet switch so important? (obviously the racquet is important, but I am not a believer that it will "change your game" in most cases; especially if you have been using the same stick for a while). People flock to buy the nCode 95 but as soon as the k95 comes out the big buzz starts and people are switching. I know that the racquet companies love this, but are racquets truly becoming "better" with each revision? I am using, and like, the LM Prestige MP. I have tried the FXP Prestige and the BB 11 and really like them both. I played well with them and especially liked the comfort of the Becker. But is that enough to totally change racquets after years with the same frame? I know that I am ranting a bit, but I just don't think people spend enough time working on their game (and even string setups) but rather focus on the "next best thing" in racquet technology. There are specs for every player out there already. Well built sticks at good prices. Why spend almost $200/frame and risk taking a step back in your game by always attempting to improve via the racquet?

Thanks for the props. Glad you have enjoyed the reading. I try. ;)

Just for the record: I played the PS 6.0 85 for 20 years+ before falling (temporarily, thankfully) into 'racquet purgatory' a few years back. Over a period of app. two and a half years I demo'd umpteen frames. Ultimately I found my way back 'home' (and to the endless amusement of my hitting partners) to the K90. The K90 is, of course, more or less the same frame I used for the two decades before I decided I 'needed to switch'. ;)

I learned quite a bit along the way. I had a great deal of fun. I found that in truth I like and play well w/ TOO MANY frames (the various Volkl 10 series, LM Prestige Mid/MP, Estusa PBP, Dunlop MW 100, to name a few).But I'm glad I 'settled in' again. I play better tennis when I use the same frame over and over.

Yes Jo11y, I DO still hit the occasional frame here and there (most recently the AG 100 and 200, the BB11, etc). I'll probably take the MG Prestige mid and MP out for a drive, but I seriously doubt I'd consider a change. Just too much hassle. I've bought 10 K90's and rotate 'em to keep 'em fresh. I'm set for a good long while I think.

Ultimately, as somone pointed out in another thread, tennis is a hobby for me. Being a 'gear-head' and part time racquet consultant (right Bill? right Bolt?) is strictly an avocation. ;)

Best,

CC

bad_call
01-13-2008, 06:23 AM
why change? - cause change is inevitable...:shock:

on a less serious note, it's fun to demo and see how different racquets work...but that doesn't mean a racquet change is forthcoming. so many player styles and racquets especially on the pro level...contemplation gets rooted.

J011yroger
01-14-2008, 04:59 PM
Yes Jo11y, I DO still hit the occasional frame here and there (most recently the AG 100 and 200, the BB11, etc). I'll probably take the MG Prestige mid and MP out for a drive, but I seriously doubt I'd consider a change. Just too much hassle. I've bought 10 K90's and rotate 'em to keep 'em fresh. I'm set for a good long while I think.

I thrashed the MG mid plus thought it was not bad, but wierd weight distribution wise, still waitin on the mid, and the BB11 mid.

Of course I playtest the Wilsons too, the better to sell them :)

Just picked up all my freshly strung freshly customized K90s and we will see if that can't rekindle some competence from my otherwise full on mid winter slump. I am upset, but I know once warm weather comes around in 2 weeks I will be rockin and rollin again.

J

Bengt
01-14-2008, 05:05 PM
Racquets are like wine to some folks.

BounceHitBounceHit
01-14-2008, 07:05 PM
I thrashed the MG mid plus thought it was not bad, but wierd weight distribution wise, still waitin on the mid, and the BB11 mid.

Of course I playtest the Wilsons too, the better to sell them :)

Just picked up all my freshly strung freshly customized K90s and we will see if that can't rekindle some competence from my otherwise full on mid winter slump. I am upset, but I know once warm weather comes around in 2 weeks I will be rockin and rollin again.

J

What happened to the 16x19 Prestige Pro? That sounded like a good frame. I actually liked the LM Prestige MP and FXP Prestige MP, but both gave me strange arm pain after a while...........CC

J011yroger
01-14-2008, 07:50 PM
What happened to the 16x19 Prestige Pro? That sounded like a good frame. I actually liked the LM Prestige MP and FXP Prestige MP, but both gave me strange arm pain after a while...........CC

I was this close to playing the LM Prestiege mid. Really could wail off the ground with it, and hit bombs for serves, but my junk serves were better with the N90.

My logic was that I could win matches without the cannonball, but I couldn't win matches without my kicker and slider.

Pretty sure I made the right choice ;)

J

BounceHitBounceHit
01-14-2008, 08:00 PM
I was this close to playing the LM Prestiege mid. Really could wail off the ground with it, and hit bombs for serves, but my junk serves were better with the N90.

My logic was that I could win matches without the cannonball, but I couldn't win matches without my kicker and slider.

Pretty sure I made the right choice ;)

J

That is EXACTLY what I found with the LM Prestige mid when serving. :) CC

Vin2
01-15-2008, 03:25 AM
well, I suppose new models have different feelings, doesn't mean they are better... I still like my old Wilson Hammer 5.2 but using an Nblade now...

And I found that I've been changing and updating my racquets every season cos it seems by the time the news ones come out my old ones are all cracked - either from rage or courtesy of my doubles partner's crazy drive volleys... :D

Zachol82
01-15-2008, 08:19 AM
Question is wat matters more. Specs or tech? I believe in specs and therefore won't easily update my frame (currently lm prestige mp)

Specs and tech both matter to me. If a frame has similar spec but better tech, I will definitely switch. For example, I have a Flexpoint Prestige MP, the Microgel Prestige MP has similar spec but better tech. Chances are I will switch to the Microgel Prestige MP BUT NOT BEFORE I demo it out first.

$200 is a lot of money, that's why there are such thing as demoing a racquet. If it is indeed better for my game, then I will switch; if it is not, then I wont switch. There is really no risk in switching to a different racquet if you take the time to demo it first.