View Full Version : Coming out of a 20 year break...looking for new Racquet.

09-08-2009, 07:14 AM
I recently came out of a 20 year break. When I quit, I was a strong advanced junior, I am now a 29 year old man. LOL.

Last racquet I used with success was the original Wilson Pro Staff. I was also a Yonex user, using both R-22s and R-27s. I actually picked up an R-22 on E-Bay since I figured something familiar would help. I then decided to try something new. Based on the positive words and reviews, I picked up a Babolat Aero Prodrive Cortex. I am a baseliner with a big whipping forehand, so I thought this would be for me. I am having a hard time bonding though. It came strung quite loose, and I could not control it all. I went up to 62 pounds with Prince Synthetic Gut, and it is killing me. Too stiff for my current level of play. I am willing to try a few more string changes before I give up on it. Anyone have a suggestion?

Also, what about a different racquet? Keep in mind that I am a player who developed in the '80s, with '80s racquets. These modern racquets do feel somewhat odd to me. Basically I am a baseliner with a big topspin forehand, a slice backhand (or two handed topspin) and I can serve flat, slice or topspin. I could use something that would help with serves as I am struggling to get that back. I do not need a rocket launcher racquet though a I like to swing big, I can still generate good pace, even with the R-22.

I read alot of love for the Pro Storm Ltd. Many saying it has '80s characteristics. Perhaps this one is worth trying? What about Wilson? Is there something in the lineup that is similar to the original Pro Staff? I played my best tennis with that racquet.

Anyway, thanks for the help!


09-08-2009, 07:15 AM
I meant to say 39 year old man. LOL.

09-08-2009, 08:38 AM
Hi Mike, I am a 44 YO player who grew up with wood rackets and the early Donnay Graphites. I stopped playing after HS and just started seriously again this summer.

The expert and intermediate Babolat racquets are very light and very stiff compared to racquets 25 years ago. I recently bought a new Pure Drive GT after a short demo and had some difficulties adjusting. I personally think that the PDGT is not that forgiving and demands a more experienced player than I am at the moment. Also, when I demo'ed the PDGT the expert there told me the PDGT was much more forgiving than the APDC. Maybe you just happened to buy a great racquet that needs much more time to get accustomed too?

You could also try to customize your racquet to change its weight and swingweight to match what you were more used too, and then gradually remove the weights as you perfect your strokes again.

I will say I am getting my strokes back rather quickly now that I switched to this racket from my old Prince Graphite Comp XB, which also gave me bad TE. This PDGT, for all its stiffness, is surprising easy on my arm. I think the Cortex and the Woofer technologies really do work.

HTH, Ken

09-08-2009, 10:48 AM
Hi Mike, I like you, did the same thing, quit in my early 20's and started back again in my early 40's. I really like Dunlop, 200 or 300. 200 is a little heavier, I use the 300 with a little lead tape and think the racket has a great feel. I'm currently using the Aerogel 300. While in a funk, I demoed, Wilson K95, Prince Speedport Black, and Head Prestige, nothing felt as good as the Dunlop so I stuck with em. I did buy a new 4D 300 but haven't played with it much due to injury.

09-08-2009, 11:00 AM
Why not just go on fleabay and buy one or two of your old racquets? I took a 15 year break and came back and started with the n6.1 90, but am now back to playing with the Ultra 2. I don't like most modern frames, but of the ones I've tried, the kBlade Tour, k90, and k88 from Wilson are pretty good and kind of have that old school feel, and the Yonex RDS and RDiS mid are good. From Babolat, the only one I liked is the Pure Storm Tour. The new Prince Exos are supposed to be good, but I haven't tried them; I think Prince is finally phasing out the Prince Graphite (too bad as it's the only Prince frame I've liked).

09-08-2009, 11:07 AM
The K pro staff 88 has the old racket feel and is what pete sampres uses. It is very similar to the old prostaff buy that one its awesome.

09-08-2009, 11:11 AM
You'll love Prince Rebel EXO95 (the 12oz one) - promise.

09-08-2009, 11:25 AM
The K pro staff 88 has the old racket feel and is what pete sampres uses. It is very similar to the old prostaff buy that one its awesome.

I checked that out and, damn, that thing weighs more than my R-22!! 12.8 oz compared to 12.5. I had to go weigh the R-22 on the postal scale here at work. The R-22 is a club compared to the Babolat (10.5 oz strung). Has anyone used that racquet? How much did the original Pro Staff weigh?


09-08-2009, 06:28 PM

Liking the oldschool feel? Other than the Wilson K's, try Donnay Pro 1 Intl and ProKennex Redondo and may be other rackets of similar specs, like the Avery M3 Control and the Volkl 10 series (low flex, headlight, around 12 oz). The Prince Rebel EXO95 is also a fine stick.

I'm 43 and I prefer the PK Redondo mid.

09-08-2009, 08:25 PM
I beg you to try the K Prostaff 88, I love it more than any racquet I've ever used before. And as an 80's racquet guy, it'll be great for you too...if the headsize is too small, try the K6.1 95, it has open and dense string patterns.

But the KPS 88 isn't as stiff as it's flex indicates, it's pretty much in the middle of flexible and stiff. It's perfect, no question.

09-08-2009, 08:32 PM
I have a k 6.1 95 with the dense string pattern. I learned on my parents old racquets. This ones weight is similar. Its a heavier racquet fo sho.

Tennis Man
09-09-2009, 03:36 AM
If I were you I'd stick to the old school racquets. There is nothing out there that feels better.

09-09-2009, 06:08 AM
I hit yesterday with the Babolat again and I hit quite well with it. I think I need to drop the tension a bit though as 62 is truly brutal with this racquet. I will see if my local shop has any of the aforementioned that I can demo. I also want to experiment with adding some weight to the Babolat, it is really light.

As for the old school racquets, I can still crank away quite well with my R-22. I was just thinking that maybe with all the new technology, I could step up.