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matchmaker
11-06-2008, 02:19 PM
Today I went out to play with my Donnay Pro 1, which I had leaded up a little more for the occasion. It has about 15 grams in the handle and 10 grams in the hoop, divided over 9 and 3 o'clock. I was getting more depth and court penetration but obviously the racquet was a little harder to swing.

Two days ago my strings snapped and a friend lent me his Dunlop HM 200 g, without lead at about 338 grams and a swingweight of around 316 according to specs. It also played a little stiffer then the Donnay.

Anyway, I won both matches, so that is not the point but obviously a lower swingweight makes it easier to play short balls and whip them over the net with enough topspin as the racquet is easier to swing.

My experience is that if you play a lot, swingweight becomes less of an issue, as your forearm muscles develop and your coordination improves.

A year ago I was playing with my Wilson Reflex mids, of which I do not have the specs, except that their static weight is huge (360 grams stock) and their balance point around 5/6 points HL. Having played with many frames I do not need an RDC machine to tell you these racquets have a huge swingweight.

When I played over 3 times a week, I would be crushing the ball with the Reflexes, they have incredible plow through and are rock solid. I remember a game, I hit 4 backhand winners in a row, twice getting under a low ball and putting it away, one serve return inside out and one crosscourt passing. That was a game for an anthology.

But whenever I played less than 3 times a week, the racquet would begin to feel sluggish on the backhand side (OHBH). And often I would be forced to slice or would hit just a little long as I couldn't generate enough head speed due to the swingweight and lack of practice.

Now, I wanted to do a little poll related to the hours of practice people have and the swingweight of their racquets of choice. Often in this forum we talk about costumization and adding weight but is that really worthwhile for a weekend warrior?

phoenicks
11-06-2008, 03:18 PM
13 grams in the 3,9 that's a hell lot, I tried adding 9 grams,6 grams and 3 grams to this position, but my forearm still pain like hell wielding them, esp without shock dampener.

And obviously adding lead depends on the situation,

1)if your frame is not stable, tend to twist a lot, then it's better to lead it.
2)If you are facing fast pace and heavy spin shot, it helps leading them up to counter this kind of shot, however I doubt many people will be facing this type of shot, esp weekend warrior.
3)just lead for the fun of it??? go ahead if it doesn't hurt your arm.

Bubba
11-06-2008, 03:29 PM
I play 4x per week. My K90's are 384g strung and gripped.

Djokovicfan4life
11-06-2008, 03:31 PM
I like racquets that are heavy enough to be stable (let's say 330 grams or more), but I like them to be very head light. My M Pro has a swing-weight of 307, and is 10 points head light.

I play 3 times or more per week and I've never had any arm problems so far. Of course, I also play with full Babolat VS at 50 lbs., which obviously helps a lot.

P.S. I'm not 100% sure on the accuracy of the specs I listed, I'm just going by what I've seen on this site.

Trevor
11-06-2008, 03:57 PM
Prince Graphite Mid, 328 SW and I play 5-7 days a week (2-4 hrs per day).

matchmaker
11-06-2008, 04:09 PM
13 grams in the 3,9 that's a hell lot, I tried adding 9 grams,6 grams and 3 grams to this position, but my forearm still pain like hell wielding them, esp without shock dampener.

And obviously adding lead depends on the situation,

1)if your frame is not stable, tend to twist a lot, then it's better to lead it.
2)If you are facing fast pace and heavy spin shot, it helps leading them up to counter this kind of shot, however I doubt many people will be facing this type of shot, esp weekend warrior.
3)just lead for the fun of it??? go ahead if it doesn't hurt your arm.

Your post makes quite some sense. I think lead tape in excess may actually hurt some people's arms. You can only benefit from added weight if your swing is perfectly timed IMO. Then again, adding very small quantities probably is of little avail. When I lead up, I add 8 to 10 grams, otherwise it hardly makes a difference.

My question is exactly if a weekend warrior, someone who plays only a couple times a week, benefits from lead tape? Adding lead tape will inevitably increase swingweight, wherever you place it, in some locations it gives a high increase for small amounts e.g. at 12 o'clock, at other places, e.g. the throat section, it will only increase the SW very modestly but still, adding lead will make the frame more difficult to swing in most cases.

Well, in my case it doesn't hurt my arm, otherwise I would take it off, which I have done in the past if I felt I couldn't handle it. Lead tape adding certainly forces one to take a well-coordinated and timed swing path. If one of the elements is off, it will certainly cause strain on muscles, joints and tendons.

Obviously leading up has advantages as it comes to stability and putaway power. One thing that was clear today, was that volleys were easier to block back and place without swinging the racquet, just by using the racquet weight and also applying the correct transfer of body weight.

But do these advantages outweigh the disadvantages? I am asking that as someone who does use lead and will probably not take it off as it does not seem to bother me for now.

phoenicks
11-06-2008, 07:28 PM
For me, I find an increase in power on serve from adding lead, I was actually able to ace more easily, simple physics here, mass at the upper hoop and a fast swing in serve.

But, I actually have late contact issue when I face fast pace shot ( and forearm pain), the swingweight slows down my swing quite a bit, esp when I applied 9 grams of lead. I played quite regularly yet I face this issue, so weekend warrior might find the weight even harder to handle. Or maybe I am too weak :confused:???

matchmaker
11-06-2008, 07:50 PM
I like racquets that are heavy enough to be stable (let's say 330 grams or more), but I like them to be very head light. My M Pro has a swing-weight of 307, and is 10 points head light.

I play 3 times or more per week and I've never had any arm problems so far. Of course, I also play with full Babolat VS at 50 lbs., which obviously helps a lot.

P.S. I'm not 100% sure on the accuracy of the specs I listed, I'm just going by what I've seen on this site.

I checked the specs on the M Pro and it is supposed to have a SW of 317, 307 seemed a bit lowish to me.

matchmaker
11-06-2008, 08:01 PM
For me, I find an increase in power on serve from adding lead, I was actually able to ace more easily, simple physics here, mass at the upper hoop and a fast swing in serve.

But, I actually have late contact issue when I face fast pace shot ( and forearm pain), the swingweight slows down my swing quite a bit, esp when I applied 9 grams of lead. I played quite regularly yet I face this issue, so weekend warrior might find the weight even harder to handle. Or maybe I am too weak :confused:???

My findings too. Serve power is benefited by adding lead, however that still requires that you swing the racquet quite fast, which may be hindered by the weight you add, so it is a bit of a paradox.

In my case, today my serve worked quite well with the leaded up Donnay (364 gr. static weight, strung with overgrip, dampener and 25 gr of lead between handle and hoop; swingweight? somewhere between 325-330 I guesstimate), but then again two days ago I played with a stock Dunlop Hotmelt 200g stock (338 static weight, 316 SW) and my serve was also flowing, probably because I could move the racquet quicker through the air and because the Hotmelt is stiffer in the hoop.

The problem of misstiming you mention is exactly the point I am trying to make: if adding lead causes a player to be late on his swings, it is going to cause more injuries than it is going to raise his level.

phoenicks
11-06-2008, 08:23 PM
My findings too. Serve power is benefited by adding lead, however that still requires that you swing the racquet quite fast, which may be hindered by the weight you add, so it is a bit of a paradox.



The problem of misstiming you mention is exactly the point I am trying to make: if adding lead causes a player to be late on his swings, it is going to cause more injuries than it is going to raise his level.

paradox, I don't think so, because, for serve, you can actually have all the time in the world, even though it's heavier to swing but you can afford to swing faster ( at least you only serve twice for each point ) or adjust your swing, plus, you can adjust the toss to maximize the swingpeed and timing, so serve definitely improve from adding lead. In short, you are in control of everything, every variable ( except under windy condition )

But for groundstrokes, I am not able to control all the variables, If the ball comes so much faster to me, or i might mistime or swing late due to heavy weight or I might be able to handle initially, but as the times goes on, I might not be able to swing as fast as before. things like these happen in normal rally and match.

So for serve, you are in control and only have to serve at most twice per point, but for groundstrokes, you have to swing longer with the stick and you are not in control of everything, so the result is definitely very different. at least for me.

matchmaker
11-07-2008, 03:36 AM
paradox, I don't think so, because, for serve, you can actually have all the time in the world, even though it's heavier to swing but you can afford to swing faster ( at least you only serve twice for each point ) or adjust your swing, plus, you can adjust the toss to maximize the swingpeed and timing, so serve definitely improve from adding lead. In short, you are in control of everything, every variable ( except under windy condition )

But for groundstrokes, I am not able to control all the variables, If the ball comes so much faster to me, or i might mistime or swing late due to heavy weight or I might be able to handle initially, but as the times goes on, I might not be able to swing as fast as before. things like these happen in normal rally and match.

So for serve, you are in control and only have to serve at most twice per point, but for groundstrokes, you have to swing longer with the stick and you are not in control of everything, so the result is definitely very different. at least for me.

Often I have the impression that serving with a lighter or lower swingweight racquet creates a very fast ball, hell, I even served bombs once with a stock Wilson nFury; on the contrary, serving with a very heavy or high swingweight racquet seems to give a very heavy ball that is very difficult to handle for the opponent.

But I guess you are right. On serve you can adapt to a higher swingweight as you control everything yourself.

On groundies, much will depend on your opponent. If its a flat hitter who takes away time frome you to set up correctly, you might get in trouble.

matchmaker
11-08-2008, 03:52 AM
Thanks for the reactions to all. I am hoping to get some more, so I have enough data to draw somekind of conclusion of preferred swingweight according to time spent on the court.

Swingweight is not the same as static weight I have the impression some posters may have confounded that.