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View Full Version : From AeroPro Drive to k90


NoBadMojo
03-10-2009, 07:00 AM
I very recently gave a hitting lesson to a semi regular and here are my findings. Think this thread is appropriate in light of the other threads about 'how to know when a racquet is too heavy', 'anyone switch from a heavy racquet to light', and of course all the hype about the k88 racquet.

Guy is a typical 4.0. Been playing tennis for many years..took lots of lessons over the years. very fit and plays several times a week. He emailed me to set it up and said he just got a new racquet which he is playing great with. He had been playing the AeroPro for some while and it was suited to his ability level. I was surprised to see him show up w. the k90 as he really studies the game and is very intelligent (a pretty renowned surgeon).

Anywho, here are some of the things that happened to his game as a result of using a too demanding racquet.
-Serve went way off and lacked pace. Function of not being able to get enough snap in his serve because racquet is too heavy. so his balls either landed well deep (a tell tell sign the racquet is too heavy) or very short in the box
-Return of serve. he couldnt get many of my medium paced serves back because he was late because the racquet is too high of a swingweight for him. the ones he got back were short weak returns because of misshits because the sweetzone is too small for him
-Groundstrokes. Ones hit solid which he had to time to set up on were deep and powerful. Anything other than that resulted in a short weak shot. He no longer had the ability to hit a decent recovery shot.
-Lack of conditioning - We did a couple movement drills and the racquet really sucked his energy far more so than his AeroPro.
-General inconsistency - in abundance
-Lack of topspin - due to lack of batspeed
-Lack of depth control - due to slight and serious misshits and hitting late - was coughing up lolli's that a decent player would have no problem putting away or at least creating a point altering shot
-etc

These are the very typical/classic things that happen as a result of using a too demanding racquet

jrod
03-10-2009, 07:03 AM
^^^^ Did he agree with your assessment and go back to the AeroPro Drive?

saram
03-10-2009, 07:27 AM
Did you hit with him prior to the k90? I'm just curious if his shots were like this with the APD.

Winners or Errors
03-10-2009, 07:59 AM
Yup. Playing with a heavier stick definitely demands that I play with someone who can't put me on the defensive.

That's why, instead of looking for heavier sticks than my Tour 9VE's, I'm looking for some just a teeny bit heavier with a balance that feels better. I fully agree with your findings, being in the midst of experimenting with that scenario myself.

Eager to see if the Babolat PSL or the Wilson KPro Tour are the answer. Thanks for posting.

jelle v
03-10-2009, 08:05 AM
Sounds very familiar..

I normally play with Wilson nBlade and I once tried the Wilson n90 from a friend. I think I'm a little better than 4.0, from what I've seen from American tennisplayers on Youtube. I'm probably 4.5, although it's difficult to tell from videos alone.

Anyway, hitting with the n90 was easier than I had thought. I immediately noticed an increase in "plough through", but I also had to work very hard to be consistent with the n90. Basically I was able to hit pretty well with the racket, if circumstances were easy (no difficult shots). But as soon as I had to hit recovery-shots with little time or other difficult shots, I found myself in trouble.

I have played with an Prince NXG 100" couple of years, which I found to be less demanding, so with the n90 I think it also had a lot to do with the smaller headsize of the n90. By the way.. hitting with a smaller headsize isn't more difficult or something, it's just more demanding.

So although the ploughtrough of a racket like the n90 is very appealing at first, people should always ask themselves if they hit comfortable with a certain racket at all time and not just when exchanging baselineshots. If you don't feel comfortable with the racket at all time, one shouldn't be hitting with the racket in my opinion.

I want to add however, that in my experience playing with more demanding rackets, does make you a better player when you pick up a racket that is better suited for you. The demanding racket demands you to better watch your technique and footwork, which pays of when you hit with your normal racket. So maybe, the guy in the openingspost, will have some benefits from playing with a k90 from time to time, but only in training.

NoBadMojo
03-10-2009, 08:08 AM
^^^^ Did he agree with your assessment and go back to the AeroPro Drive?

i wont know if he went back or went on to something else or decided to stay with the k90 until the next time i work him

Did you hit with him prior to the k90? I'm just curious if his shots were like this with the APD.

of course...as i said, he is a semi regular lesson. the only reason why i created this thread is because i had a basis for comparison, and thought it might be useful to some people who dont post here, but who follow some of the threads

saram
03-10-2009, 08:43 AM
^^Ok. Didn't know what you meant by 'semi regular'. Thanks for that clarification.

NoBadMojo
03-10-2009, 09:23 AM
Yup. Playing with a heavier stick definitely demands that I play with someone who can't put me on the defensive.

That's why, instead of looking for heavier sticks than my Tour 9VE's, I'm looking for some just a teeny bit heavier with a balance that feels better. I fully agree with your findings, being in the midst of experimenting with that scenario myself.

Eager to see if the Babolat PSL or the Wilson KPro Tour are the answer. Thanks for posting.

^^Ok. Didn't know what you meant by 'semi regular'. Thanks for that clarification.

sure..you're welcome

NoBadMojo
03-10-2009, 09:41 AM
Anyway, hitting with the n90 was easier than I had thought. I immediately noticed an increase in "plough through", but I also had to work very hard to be consistent with the n90. Basically I was able to hit pretty well with the racket, if circumstances were easy (no difficult shots). But as soon as I had to hit recovery-shots with little time or other difficult shots, I found myself in trouble.For sure.....


I want to add however, that in my experience playing with more demanding rackets, does make you a better player when you pick up a racket that is better suited for you. The demanding racket demands you to better watch your technique and footwork, which pays of when you hit with your normal racket. So maybe, the guy in the openingspost, will have some benefits from playing with a k90 from time to time, but only in training.

I never see it work this way. It is the opposite and the timing will be all different..if anything, you want to start out with something well matched to your skillset, then as you get better,<possibly> go to something more demanding <also matched to your current skillset>
People learn by hitting a good shot w. good technique and the sensory feedback from doing that. The key is to repeat that...that doesnt happen with a racquet which is too demanding, and more often than not people ending up doing some sort of contrived bad technique in an effort to try and get a decent result from a racquet which is too demanding for their skillset.
Additionally, if people need to use something which is too demanding for them to try and force themselves to focus and concentrate, then they really are off base and are very mentally frail....most people tend to try and hit the sweetzone to the best of their ability with whatever sized racquet they are using, and tennis isnt really an easy game to play.
Hey, maybe put on a scuba belt and heavy workboots and play tennis...when you take all that stuff off, your footwork will be so much better? ;O i am joking of course, but not much different than making an already hard game even harder by stuffing yourself w. your gear...

Mick
03-10-2009, 09:53 AM
i own an apdc and a k90 and I think the apdc is a much easier racquet to use. just the weight alone makes it easier to use and it also has a bigger sweetspot and more power.

NoBadMojo
03-10-2009, 10:29 AM
Sounds very familiar..

. Basically I was able to hit pretty well with the racket, if circumstances were easy (no difficult shots). .

This is worth a comment I think. In the real world, in a real match, people usually receive very few perfect balls for them to hit...there is a human opponent on the other side of the net ensuring that doesnt happen.

jrod
03-10-2009, 11:09 AM
NBMJ- Just curious....did you ask the Doc why he changed frames? Was he unhappy with a particular aspect of his game with the APD?

I remember switching from the APD to the k90 and thinking, man, this thing sure is heavy. My reasons for switching were lack of depth with the APD, although I now realize this was in large part due to my stroke technique and not the frame. I realized instantly that it was going to take some time and lots of practice with the k90 in order to be able to engage in match play with it, so I used it almost exclusively for baseline practice sessions for the better part of a year before finally switching to it for singles play. I could never really make it work for doubles so I ended up using a weighted Fischer MPro #1 98 for doubles. Just recently I found a frame that I could use for both singles and doubles that worked for me (BB11 mid).

The takeaways from my experience are that it can take some time to discover what works well for your own game. Often experimentation can lead one in a number of different directions. However, I feel that you ultimately figure out what works for you in several basic categories: head size, swingweight and balance, flex, and string pattern density.

NoBadMojo
03-10-2009, 11:52 AM
NBMJ- Just curious....did you ask the Doc why he changed frames? Was he unhappy with a particular aspect of his game with the APD?

I remember switching from the APD to the k90 and thinking, man, this thing sure is heavy. My reasons for switching were lack of depth with the APD, although I now realize this was in large part due to my stroke technique and not the frame. I realized instantly that it was going to take some time and lots of practice with the k90 in order to be able to engage in match play with it, so I used it almost exclusively for baseline practice sessions for the better part of a year before finally switching to it for singles play. I could never really make it work for doubles so I ended up using a weighted Fischer MPro #1 98 for doubles. Just recently I found a frame that I could use for both singles and doubles that worked for me (BB11 mid).

The takeaways from my experience are that it can take some time to discover what works well for your own game. Often experimentation can lead one in a number of different directions. However, I feel that you ultimately figure out what works for you in several basic categories: head size, swingweight and balance, flex, and string pattern density.

no man..contrary to popular belief around here i dont spend much time at all with my lessons talking about gear as most of them are smart enough to play with something reasonable. it is here...in the racquets section of a tennis forum where i talk a lot about racquets....some people cant understand that it is reasonable for a person <even a teaching pro> to talk about racquets in the racquets section of a tennis forum.

i thought this real practical on court experience was worth passing along.

i agree it is good to occassionaly try the type of racquet you dont normally use if you dont know/arent sure what racquet you honestly need..it can be revealing.

Pushmaster
03-10-2009, 11:56 AM
I don't think he'll stick with the K90 for long, sounds like it's way too demanding for him. Should go back to the APD, or start hitting the weights very hard.

gsquicksilver
03-10-2009, 12:11 PM
the k90 is not that heavy.

wooden racquets were heavier and you had little kids use them growing up.

vkartikv
03-10-2009, 12:18 PM
What did people do in the pre-sub-11 oz. frame days? The problems you mentioned - poor serve, lack of depth and topspin, - these were common even before APDs and k90s, right?

NoBadMojo
03-10-2009, 12:25 PM
What did people do in the pre-sub-11 oz. frame days? The problems you mentioned - poor serve, lack of depth and topspin, - these were common even before APDs and k90s, right?

they spent a lot more time picking up the balls and a lot less time hitting the balls

Keifers
03-10-2009, 12:39 PM
no man..contrary to popular belief around here i dont spend much time at all with my lessons talking about gear as most of them are smart enough to play with something reasonable.
I can understand that you don't usually talk much to your students about their gear, but in this case, where the racquet was clearly not appropriate for his game, I wonder why you didn't say anything? He might have appreciated your observations and expression of concern.

Mick
03-10-2009, 12:49 PM
the k90 is not that heavy.

wooden racquets were heavier and you had little kids use them growing up.

i think the point is not whether or not people can play with a k90. my belief is anybody can play with a k90, even a 10 year old kid. but the point that nobadmojo conveys is the k90 is not the best racquet for some people to use if they want to reach their maximum potential.

there are people on this board who feel they play their best tennis with a k90, more power to them.

drakulie
03-10-2009, 01:07 PM
As below:::::

if you want to take tennis lessons from coach nobadmojo and you bring a k90 tennis racquet to the court, you are going to have problem :)

fortunately i havent had to give one of those types of lessons for quite some while....we used to flip a coin to see who would get stuck giving that type of lesson....sometimes it just isnt worth the money..those types of lessons are the worst..worse than a pantyhose lesson

jelle v
03-10-2009, 01:35 PM
This is worth a comment I think. In the real world, in a real match, people usually receive very few perfect balls for them to hit...there is a human opponent on the other side of the net ensuring that doesnt happen.

Well.. that was my point when I mentioned that..

GPB
03-10-2009, 01:41 PM
What's a pantyhose lesson? My mind wanders...

drakulie
03-10-2009, 01:42 PM
^^^^That's a very good point, and I agree. However, one must consider that this is true for both players on opposite sides of the net>>> not just one.

Mick
03-10-2009, 01:48 PM
As below:::::

i gave two coaches a tennis lesson with a donnay borg pro :)

they were not the caliber of nobadmojo.
i think they were 3.5 and their students were all beginners.

if you play against players with lesser skills, you can pretty much use anything.
Andy Roddick used a frying pan.

NoBadMojo
03-10-2009, 01:49 PM
Well.. that was my point when I mentioned that..

right..i thought you made a good point worth commenting on and reinforcing

sureshs
03-10-2009, 02:15 PM
I very recently gave a hitting lesson to a semi regular and here are my findings. Think this thread is appropriate in light of the other threads about 'how to know when a racquet is too heavy', 'anyone switch from a heavy racquet to light', and of course all the hype about the k88 racquet.

Guy is a typical 4.0. Been playing tennis for many years..took lots of lessons over the years. very fit and plays several times a week. He emailed me to set it up and said he just got a new racquet which he is playing great with. He had been playing the AeroPro for some while and it was suited to his ability level. I was surprised to see him show up w. the k90 as he really studies the game and is very intelligent (a pretty renowned surgeon).

Anywho, here are some of the things that happened to his game as a result of using a too demanding racquet.
-Serve went way off and lacked pace. Function of not being able to get enough snap in his serve because racquet is too heavy. so his balls either landed well deep (a tell tell sign the racquet is too heavy) or very short in the box
-Return of serve. he couldnt get many of my medium paced serves back because he was late because the racquet is too high of a swingweight for him. the ones he got back were short weak returns because of misshits because the sweetzone is too small for him
-Groundstrokes. Ones hit solid which he had to time to set up on were deep and powerful. Anything other than that resulted in a short weak shot. He no longer had the ability to hit a decent recovery shot.
-Lack of conditioning - We did a couple movement drills and the racquet really sucked his energy far more so than his AeroPro.
-General inconsistency - in abundance
-Lack of topspin - due to lack of batspeed
-Lack of depth control - due to slight and serious misshits and hitting late - was coughing up lolli's that a decent player would have no problem putting away or at least creating a point altering shot
-etc

These are the very typical/classic things that happen as a result of using a too demanding racquet

Noticed the serve going long when I used the K88 for the first time. And falling very short sometimes. Weight combined with being late. With tighter strings, it is better. And getting used to it too. Higher weight requires better snap and topspin to control the serve depth or else the balls are going to fly.

I hope the surgeon doesn't suddenly decide to go for a heavier scalpel to match his K90. A cut which goes long or short will not be appreciated by the patient ...

NoBadMojo
03-11-2009, 06:05 AM
Noticed the serve going long when I used the K88 for the first time. And falling very short sometimes. Weight combined with being late. With tighter strings, it is better. And getting used to it too. Higher weight requires better snap and topspin to control the serve depth or else the balls are going to fly.

I hope the surgeon doesn't suddenly decide to go for a heavier scalpel to match his K90. A cut which goes long or short will not be appreciated by the patient ...

the tradeoff with the tighter strings is the sweetzone becomes smaller....not what most people need in an alreeady small headed frame.
i would trust this guy to cut me open, buit prefer to remain a sealed unit ;O

Sup2Dresq
03-11-2009, 06:33 AM
I actually went the other way around. Went from a K90 to an APDC. The k90 is a precise weapon, but I personally felt I couldn't stay all day long on the court playing, teaching, or doing racquet guitar with it.

My Apdc is leaded up, but the Swingweight drop helps me last longer. Is there a technique to feeding ( besides choking up on the throat) to keep away fatigue?

origmarm
03-11-2009, 06:45 AM
NBMJ- Just curious....did you ask the Doc why he changed frames? Was he unhappy with a particular aspect of his game with the APD?

He heard it was more scalpel like as a racquet :)

jrod
03-11-2009, 07:20 AM
He heard it was more scalpel like as a racquet :)

I'm suprised it took until the 29th post for someone to make this comment...hell, I even thought Granville might chime in evenutally.

jmverdugo
03-11-2009, 07:30 AM
I actually went the other way around. Went from a K90 to an APDC. The k90 is a precise weapon, but I personally felt I couldn't stay all day long on the court playing, teaching, or doing racquet guitar with it.

My Apdc is leaded up, but the Swingweight drop helps me last longer. Is there a technique to feeding ( besides choking up on the throat) to keep away fatigue?

Some pros have a "feeding" racket, something ligthter.

sureshs
03-11-2009, 08:57 AM
Two GOATS fighting each other all the time

http://farm1.static.flickr.com/130/328700484_505920caec_o.jpg

origmarm
03-11-2009, 09:25 AM
I'm suprised it took until the 29th post for someone to make this comment...hell, I even thought Granville might chime in evenutally.

Spotted the reference I see :)....

Yeah I only found the thread today, I'm always late to the party as I'm on Euro time

Micky
03-11-2009, 11:24 PM
Two GOATS fighting each other all the time

http://farm1.static.flickr.com/130/328700484_505920caec_o.jpg

But you know exactly who the real and true GOAT is.

NoBadMojo
04-22-2009, 10:09 AM
Thought to update this as I just concluded hitting lessons w. this guy

Conclusions:
The guy's game went and stayed into the dumper as a result of his racquet switch, and he still doesnt acknowledge he was far better off using the APD which was a much better match to his skillset.
So he got some tough love from me as I <finally> directly told him we really werent being productive doing the hitting lessons with him using the wrong gear (he is also using poly and is def not a good candidate for poly either)...he wasnt getting my previous subtle cues I offered up because I didnt want to disturb the huge but frail ego of a tennis player ;) he still wasnt buying it, but we parted on good terms.

Winners or Errors
04-22-2009, 11:06 AM
This thread coming back up has reminded me of my own "journey" looking for a racquet since coming back to the game last Summer. I started light, with the Volkl Tour 9 VE 18x20, but something about the racquet never clicked. Something in the way the weight is distributed made it awkward for me to swing coming over on the backhand side (1hbh), and that pretty much killed it. It also didn't have quite enough mass to hit my punch/slice defensive backhand.

The experiment pointed me back to my old Prince Equipe MP (a headlight stick with a swingweight in the upper 330s), my old Dunlop Max Impact Mids (I'm guessing those are in the high 320s), and a new Prince NXG Mid (the one I have is obviously the result of Prince's less than stellar QC, as it's heavier than the KPS88). In doing so, I noticed some key things. First, proper grip size is critical. The NXG Mid is a L2 and the others are L5, and the small grip made it very hard to control the mass of the racquet. I also demoed a ton of newer frames, from light (Pure Storm) to heavy (K95 6.1 18x20).

That said, against the opponents I play, I find the steadier, smoother beat of the heavier frames much easier to work with. My own tendencies to overswing are subdued by the extra weight, and even though it's hard to make offensive service returns, I found a compromise, which is standing a bit further back when I want to take a whack at it. That works well, no matter what the frame weight, and freaks out my opponents when they see me moving forward and back during their toss. ;-)

Long story short, I just purchased three racquets in the 330+ range, soft flex, 18x20 string pattern, 95 sqin. Though I may not be able to keep up with 5.0 players hitting with them, I can easily keep up with the 4.5s I've played, and being a 4.0+ player, I don't see why I should target my racquet search toward frames that will help me play against competitors I will never play...

Just my 2 cents, FWIW. YMMV.

NoBadMojo
04-22-2009, 11:16 AM
What's a pantyhose lesson? My mind wanders...

sorry to have missed your post and others because of the usual troll(s) doing the usual trolling creating the usual whack..after reading this you may be sorry you asked...;)

a 'Panyhose Lesson' is a lesson given to some woman wearing pantyhose...they are usually significantly overweight and the friction caused by the panty hose rubbing together as they 'run' as they try and contain their thunderous thighs within the pantyhose results in sounds audible from the other side of the net....kinda like khhhhhlitchs.....khhhhhlllitchz....... :0 I think the friction must create a tremendous amount of heat....perhaps almost enough to start a fire <thought of a bad joke here>...when they bend over to pick up balls you try your best not to look...;) it's kinda like trying to avoid watching a car accident as you drive by.

all up, these lessons are still better than giving a lesson to some know it all 3.5 swinging Pete's racquet

sorry this post isnt so politically correct and no offense against chubby women TW posters wearing pantyhose to take tennis lessons (or chubby men TW posters wearing pantyhose)...or wearing pantyhose for any other sort of activity regardless of gender, political affiliation, or religious preference...

hoahuyen
04-22-2009, 12:02 PM
sorry to have missed your post and others because of the usual troll(s) doing the usual trolling creating the usual whack..after reading this you may be sorry you asked...;)

a 'Panyhose Lesson' is a lesson given to some woman wearing pantyhose...they are usually significantly overweight and the friction caused by the panty hose rubbing together as they 'run' as they try and contain their thunderous thighs within the pantyhose results in sounds audible from the other side of the net....kinda like khhhhhlitchs.....khhhhhlllitchz....... :0 I think the friction must create a tremendous amount of heat....perhaps almost enough to start a fire <thought of a bad joke here>...when they bend over to pick up balls you try your best not to look...;) it's kinda like trying to avoid watching a car accident as you drive by.

all up, these lessons are still better than giving a lesson to some know it all 3.5 swinging Pete's racquet

sorry this post isnt so politically correct and no offense against chubby women TW posters wearing pantyhose to take tennis lessons (or chubby men TW posters wearing pantyhose)...or wearing pantyhose for any other sort of activity regardless of gender, political affiliation, or religious preference...

You are funny.

Thanks for the story. I actually started playing tennis with a 95, then 90 and 85 (thanks to this board). Now I know that although the 85 Sampras is great, it's better for me to play tournament with something >=95. I'm a 3.5-4.0.

Keep up the good work and ignore the trolls.

NoBadMojo
04-22-2009, 02:31 PM
You are funny.

Thanks for the story. I actually started playing tennis with a 95, then 90 and 85 (thanks to this board). Now I know that although the 85 Sampras is great, it's better for me to play tournament with something >=95. I'm a 3.5-4.0.

Keep up the good work and ignore the trolls.

thanks man...appreciate it

jules2
04-23-2009, 04:28 AM
sorry to have missed your post and others because of the usual troll(s) doing the usual trolling creating the usual whack..after reading this you may be sorry you asked...;)

a 'Panyhose Lesson' is a lesson given to some woman wearing pantyhose...they are usually significantly overweight and the friction caused by the panty hose rubbing together as they 'run' as they try and contain their thunderous thighs within the pantyhose results in sounds audible from the other side of the net....kinda like khhhhhlitchs.....khhhhhlllitchz....... :0 I think the friction must create a tremendous amount of heat....perhaps almost enough to start a fire <thought of a bad joke here>...when they bend over to pick up balls you try your best not to look...;) it's kinda like trying to avoid watching a car accident as you drive by.

all up, these lessons are still better than giving a lesson to some know it all 3.5 swinging Pete's racquet

sorry this post isnt so politically correct and no offense against chubby women TW posters wearing pantyhose to take tennis lessons (or chubby men TW posters wearing pantyhose)...or wearing pantyhose for any other sort of activity regardless of gender, political affiliation, or religious preference...

I'm sure you have customers queuing round the block with an attitude like that.

origmarm
04-23-2009, 04:39 AM
a 'Panyhose Lesson' is a lesson given to some woman wearing pantyhose...they are usually significantly overweight and the friction caused by the panty hose rubbing together as they 'run' as they try and contain their thunderous thighs within the pantyhose results in sounds audible from the other side of the net....kinda like khhhhhlitchs.....khhhhhlllitchz....... :0 I think the friction must create a tremendous amount of heat....perhaps almost enough to start a fire <thought of a bad joke here>...when they bend over to pick up balls you try your best not to look...;) it's kinda like trying to avoid watching a car accident as you drive by.

Good grief that sounds horrendous. Why would anyone want to wear pantyhose to play sports! Very strange alltogether.

Federer's cat
04-23-2009, 04:44 AM
Try to recommend for him to go back to the AeroPro Drive. If not, just break his chops and tell him to work out because he's too weak to hold a racquet.

Or just say nothing and let him fail.

If he changed from the AeroPro Drive to the K90 he's probably just a Federer fanboy, let him realize himself.

v205
04-23-2009, 04:55 AM
I say give him a fair chance (reasonable amount of time) to play into the more demanding racket. Most will give up if it doesn't work well (ie..frequently losing to people around the same level.)

Lefty78
04-23-2009, 05:55 AM
By the way.. hitting with a smaller headsize isn't more difficult or something, it's just more demanding.


By the way.. saying that ^^ isn't enlightening or something, it's just ridiculous.