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View Full Version : I'm 5'9" with a 4 5/8 grip


AeroFan
02-10-2012, 06:51 PM
I use a babolat APDGT, n many o my friends say 5 is too large. All have smaller hands then me, some by a lot and some by a little. Anyway is 4 5/8 too big?

Chace
02-10-2012, 06:56 PM
If it feels comfortable and you like it then use it. It doesn't matter what your friends say. As long as it works for you.

AeroFan
02-10-2012, 07:01 PM
It does but it made me think that maybe I was selling myself short or something, like they looked at me like I was a tennis heretic or something

LeeD
02-10-2012, 07:09 PM
Just hit a few with their rackets.
I'm 2" taller, and use a 5/8 also, because I'm a volleyer at heart, and a poor groundstroker.

Fed Kennedy
02-10-2012, 07:12 PM
http://rittenhoused.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/dirk.jpg

Ramon
02-10-2012, 07:15 PM
That sounds like me. I'm between 5'9"-5'10" but my hands are fairly large because of my long, slender fingers. In high school, I used a racquet with a 4-3/4" grip, and I had the hardest serve on the team (some say that if your grip is too large your serve will slow down). Today I use a 4-5/8" grip with an overgrip. I read somewhere that if you hold the racquet in your playing hand, the index finger of your non-playing hand should fit snugly between your fingers and the area under your thumb. According to that test, I'm using the right size grip.

I think racquet manufacturers should make bigger grips available (like they did several years ago). If your grip is too small, you are more likely to get tennis elbow, and your shots may be inconsistent because you might use too much wrist movement. If 4-5/8" is comfortable for you, don't listen to your friends. Just tell them their fingers are too short and fat. :)

AeroFan
02-10-2012, 07:45 PM
Ram on we may have been separated at birth or something. I've hit slender fingers and I pass the test as well. I'm worried about my serve as well

tlm
02-10-2012, 07:50 PM
I use a babolat APDGT, n many o my friends say 5 is too large. All have smaller hands then me, some by a lot and some by a little. Anyway is 4 5/8 too big?

Do you think that your hands are bigger that fed and rafa's? They use 4 3/8 and 4 1/4, the days of the log size grips are gone.

r5d3
02-10-2012, 08:00 PM
Whatever feels comfortable. I'm 6'2" and I use a 4 1/4 grip because it feels the most solid to me.

AeroFan
02-10-2012, 08:05 PM
My problem with smaller grips is that I can't get a good grip on it cuz it slips n spins

klementine79
02-10-2012, 08:07 PM
http://rittenhoused.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/dirk.jpg


:smile: HAHAHAHAHAH..... HA...... HA..HA.HA.............ha..

EDIT: Fed... the sig is very foreign to me and makes me feel unwanted... at least write...'Vcore95 creator and destroyer of worlds'.

sansaephanh
02-10-2012, 08:58 PM
smaller grips work for more relaxed shots IMO. Thicker grips make me want to swing more compact and rip things like a REAL man. I stick with my 3/8 cause of how much more relaxed my forearm is swinging through the ball.

NLBwell
02-10-2012, 09:37 PM
Don't switch your grip size because of what someone else says. Just go with what seems best to you.

tata
02-10-2012, 11:36 PM
Im about the same size and i must use a 5/8 with overgrip. Without that overgrip as the final adjustment to arrive at my ideal size i lose stability, especially on the 1hb. Feels like i need to muscle more

backhander
02-11-2012, 12:08 AM
I'm 5'5'' with small hands, and I used to use 4 5/8 with an overgrip. I used to like bigger grips because it felt right to me with my two handed backhand and for groundstrokes.

However, I slowly transitioned to a 4 1/2 grip and now to a 4 3/8 with overgrip. I really do like the smaller grip now, it feels more versatile. Helps on serves and to me, makes the racquet feel more maneuverable.

I saw it wouldn't hurt to try smaller grips.....but if you are comfortable and don't feel like tweaking anything, just stick with what you've been using.

Clemsonfan
02-11-2012, 03:45 AM
I recently returned to the game after a 20-year absence and the smaller grips in use today was a big change for me. In high school I used a 5/8 grip with another grip wrapped around it. A few days ago I purchased two racquets with 4-3/8 grip and use an over grip.

I compared it with one of my old racquets and there is a huge difference. No gap btw finger and palm with modern racquets and a finger width with the classic racquets.

fuzz nation
02-11-2012, 04:00 AM
Do you think that your hands are bigger that fed and rafa's? They use 4 3/8 and 4 1/4, the days of the log size grips are gone.

Yeah because after all, we all play just like those guys, don't we?...

What a revelation! My foot usually works in a shoe that's a size 12, but I'll bet that if I follow this logic, I could put on a pair of Rafa's sneak's and start flying around the court... even if he only wears a size 9 or 10!!!

Sorry for the excursion to grumpy-ville, amigo. Haven't finished my first cup of coffee yet. I try to respect everyone's opinion around here, but yikes, you're painting with a terribly broad brush there.

fuzz nation
02-11-2012, 04:02 AM
My problem with smaller grips is that I can't get a good grip on it cuz it slips n spins

That answers your question right there - the smaller grips are a problem for you.

Champs990411
02-11-2012, 04:23 AM
Don't listen to your buddies. I'm 6'4" and people always say, "Woah, big grip" when they pick up my 4 5/8. No kidding....

Ramon
02-11-2012, 04:23 AM
Yeah because after all, we all play just like those guys, don't we?...

What a revelation! My foot usually works in a shoe that's a size 12, but I'll bet that if I follow this logic, I could put on a pair of Rafa's sneak's and start flying around the court... even if he only wears a size 9 or 10!!!

Sorry for the excursion to grumpy-ville, amigo. Haven't finished my first cup of coffee yet. I try to respect everyone's opinion around here, but yikes, you're painting with a terribly broad brush there.

Wait a minute! You got it all wrong. Most of us suck at tennis because our grips are too big. If we use 4-1/4" grips, that means we will play like Rafa! LOL

fuzz nation
02-11-2012, 04:25 AM
Wait a minute! You got it all wrong. Most of us suck at tennis because our grips are too big. If we use 4-1/4" grips, that means we will play like Rafa! LOL

10-4, good buddy!!!

Ramon
02-11-2012, 04:40 AM
Don't listen to your buddies. I'm 6'4" and people always say, "Woah, big grip" when they pick up my 4 5/8. No kidding....

There was a guy in my high school team who played basketball and he was about your height or maybe taller. He used a Jack Kramer Pro Staff, put lead weights in the handle, lead tape in the head, and built up the grip to about a 5". I tried hitting with it for a little while, and it actually felt pretty good! I never felt such a stable wooden racquet before.

Jack Romeo
02-11-2012, 04:42 AM
i play with some people who build their grips up to 4-3/4 or even 5 (approximately). they just add and add overgrips until you can't discern the bevels anymore. personally, i don't understand it. but that's what they're comfortable with. and these aren't big people. they're all below 6 ft i think.

i used to use a 4-5/8 grip. i'm about 5'10". i was originally taught to use the biggest grip i can hold comfortably. i first learned using a 4-3/8. i found that i could hold larger grips comfortably so for a long time i was using 5/8.

when i switched rackets, i went down to 3/8 again and found that i could just as easily play with it. it was also easier to change grips and use a more relaxed grip. i found that i was holding too tightly before and it led to some arm, elbow and wrist injuries on and off. with the smaller grip size and more relaxed grip, i have been having less issues in these areas.

the only problem i encountered was that i began to develop more calluses. but once i got comfortable, i think i am playing better now with the smaller grip than the old larger grips. but i don't think i can go down to 1/4. i tried it and it felt unstable in my hand, especially at net, where i spend most of my time since i am primarily a doubles player.

movdqa
02-11-2012, 05:02 AM
I've used a 4 1/2 and 4 5/8 grips for a while and there are variations by manufacturer. I use an overgrip over these and I have experimented with sleeves and half-sleeves on 4 1/2s but they cause weight and balance problems.

My current favorite racquets are 4 1/2 with two overgrips - the feel is the same as a 4 5/8s. I just picked up two 4 3/8s frames and plan to go with two overgrips and well see how that goes. I could always replace the pallets if it's too small. It's just a major pain buying 4 5/8s racquets as they are fairly hard to come by in the buy/sell forums.

BTW, I like the two overgrips approach over the larger grip size. The overall feel is a little better. I'm using Wilson Pro Overgrips.

tlm
02-11-2012, 05:37 AM
Yeah because after all, we all play just like those guys, don't we?...

What a revelation! My foot usually works in a shoe that's a size 12, but I'll bet that if I follow this logic, I could put on a pair of Rafa's sneak's and start flying around the court... even if he only wears a size 9 or 10!!!

Sorry for the excursion to grumpy-ville, amigo. Haven't finished my first cup of coffee yet. I try to respect everyone's opinion around here, but yikes, you're painting with a terribly broad brush there.


Ya you are a grump, it has nothing to do with wether we play like them. I don't know were you dreamed that up at, i never said anything like that. Let me explain for those that are pretty slow and not very smart.

My point is that i don't know how this guys hands can be bigger than pro players hands that are over 6' tall. But yet these guys do not use a grip anywhere near the size he is talking about. This is what would be considered common sense for anyone with half a brain. Most pro players today do not use these 1970's size grips anymore and most are tall lanky guys. Which would mean that most of them would have large hands, but yet they do not use large grips. This does not have anything to do with a smaller grip making us play like we are rafa or fed or any other pro player.

So then the question would be if most of the best players in the world are using smaller grips than what their recommended size would be then there must be something to it. But hey i guess that does not make any sense to some of you here who are so smart and know more than what the top players in the world know.

When i started i used a 4 1/2 inch grip size which is what was my measured grip was. Later i tried a 4 3/8 grip on a demo and noticed it felt better, so i then experimented with 4 1/4 grips also and used them for a while. But now i have settled on a 4 3/8 size which seems about right. I demo a lot of rackets and i can play with a smaller or larger grip than what i normally use without any big problems.

But when some of these guys bring out these log grips that are pushing a size 5 they feel like crap and play like crap. It is impossible to tell where you are at when trying to make grip changes and the racket is very hard to whip. I cannot see any advantage that these monster grips can provide, and obviously the top players in the world don't either. But hey if that is what turns you on then go for it, i would suggest trying to build one up to at least a 6 1/2 or 7.

Now does that explain it so even an old grouch like you can understand it? I know there are players out there that think because they use a bigger grip they are more macho or something. I really think it may have something to do with something else being pretty small, this way at least they can say they have a big grip.

So fuzz i would suggest that you finish your coffee and take all your meds. in the morning before posting. Because you are not with it this early in the day.

Jack Romeo
02-11-2012, 06:52 AM
i've read here in these forums before that the trend towards smaller grip sizes started with clay courters like sergi bruguera. the theory is that the smaller grip sizes somehow allows these players to be more whippy with their strokes and thus generate more topspin.

there was an article in tennis magazine a few years ago where they mentioned that federer and nadal use 4-3/8 and 4-1/4, respectively; while sampras and becker used 4-3/4 and 4-5/8. obviously nadal uses a lot of spin. but even the "classical" federer hits spinnier shots than sampras and becker.

on the other hand, among the women, monica seles used 4-1/2. today, marion bartoli, who plays with similar strokes, uses a grip size of 4. she doesn't hit with any more spin than monica did and one may argue that seles actually used more spin occasionally.

so i guess the trend to smaller grips is not all about having more spinny strokes.

with regards to my own experience, when i went down from a larger grip size to a smaller one, i did not notice that my shots had more or less spin than they did before. i just noticed that my grip on the handle tended to be more relaxed, and this contributed to a reduction in the soreness that i felt after playing for an extended period of time, especially in the wrist and forearm area.

movdqa
02-11-2012, 07:03 AM
The thing that I notice with the larger grip is more callouses and my backhand has a little more precision.

Don't many pros use two overgrips with th 4 3/8 grips?

Larrysümmers
02-11-2012, 07:15 AM
its fine. im around your ht and i prefer big grips. like you said, smaller grips dont feel as stable for me.

Fuji
02-11-2012, 08:19 AM
Meh I use 4 1/2 comfortably, as that's my natural grip size.

I've always been in the train of thought, if the grip is too small and you have to squeeze too tightly, you'll be getting some nasty Tennis Elbow straight away. Proper sized grips / slightly larger grips promote relaxation in the hand.

(Btw, I'm 6'0 with a 4 1/2 natural grip.)

Also for the people arguing with the pro's grip size, there were some pictures a while of of Simon I think it was, who used a grip around a size 5, (anyone else see it?) and he seems to be a pretty high level player. ;)

-Fuji

Larrysümmers
02-11-2012, 08:34 AM
lol TLM-yes i have small hands, but thats why i need a bigger grip. its weird to explain because its one of those "feel" things, but a bigger grip does "feel" more stable.

tlm
02-11-2012, 09:02 AM
lol TLM-yes i have small hands, but thats why i need a bigger grip. its weird to explain because its one of those "feel" things, but a bigger grip does "feel" more stable.

Really do you also wear shoes that are 2 sizes larger than your size and gloves and shirts also?

Hey if it works for you then great, don't really understand having smaller hands but needing a larger grip but whatever.

I think some of it has to do with the different playing styles. If you are a doubles player and rush to the net as fast as possible and you are using mostly a continental grip and volleying then it probably does not make much difference.

But if you are a single player that stays back and whips a lot of top spin then it is a different story.

Larrysümmers
02-11-2012, 09:46 AM
well, if the shoes made my feet feel more stable, then i would, yes.

Ramon
02-11-2012, 10:54 AM
Pete Sampras used a grip that was between 4-5/8" and 4-3/4", and apparently his serve didn't suffer. Guys like Nadal use extremely small grips because they use a lot of wrist action. Most of us don't play like Nadal and don't even have the capability to play like Nadal. For most of us, excessive wrist action means you lose control, and most recreational players lose points because they lose control, not because they can't put enough spin on the ball or couldn't make the impossible flick-of-the-wrist winner from an off-balance position. To say that we should all use smaller grips because certain pros use smaller grips is an invalid argument because what works for Nadal isn't necessarily going to work for the rest of us.

tlm
02-11-2012, 11:04 AM
Pete Sampras used a grip that was between 4-5/8" and 4-3/4", and apparently his serve didn't suffer. Guys like Nadal use extremely small grips because they use a lot of wrist action. Most of us don't play like Nadal and don't even have the capability to play like Nadal. For most of us, excessive wrist action means you lose control, and most recreational players lose points because they lose control, not because they can't put enough spin on the ball or couldn't make the impossible flick-of-the-wrist winner from an off-balance position. To say that we should all use smaller grips because certain pros use smaller grips is an invalid argument because what works for Nadal isn't necessarily going to work for the rest of us.

How about fed then he also uses a smaller grip? As far as sampras goes he also used an 85 sq. inch racket strung at 70 lbs. with nat. gut. So the sampras comparison is a little out dated just like the large grip sizes are.

tlm
02-11-2012, 11:12 AM
Pete Sampras used a grip that was between 4-5/8" and 4-3/4", and apparently his serve didn't suffer. Guys like Nadal use extremely small grips because they use a lot of wrist action. Most of us don't play like Nadal and don't even have the capability to play like Nadal. For most of us, excessive wrist action means you lose control, and most recreational players lose points because they lose control, not because they can't put enough spin on the ball or couldn't make the impossible flick-of-the-wrist winner from an off-balance position. To say that we should all use smaller grips because certain pros use smaller grips is an invalid argument because what works for Nadal isn't necessarily going to work for the rest of us.


How about this article Ramon? Like i said we are out of the 1970's now it is time to move forward.



SHRINKING GRIPS of modern day player from TENNIS magazine. Don't get it???
New article from Tennis states modern day pros are all going to smaller grips than they used to in the old days. Why ? It is apparently easier to put topspin on the ball with smaller grips. I don't get this since i use much larger grip size than i should and i find it easier to put topspin with bigger grip. What is physics behind this ? Does anyone know ? Why is it easier to put more topspin with smaller grips ?














The Incredible Shrinking Grip

As racquet handles get smaller, spin gets bigger.

By Bill Gray

Get a grip on this: Racquet handles are downsizing faster than General Motors among both pros and recreational players.

The tree-trunk grips of the Boris Becker (4 5/8 inches) and Monica Seles (4 1/2) era are out. Thin is in.

For example, according to Prince, the average grip size for racquets bought by recreational players has plummeted since 1980, when 58 percent of the company’s racquets sold came with either 4 1/2- or 4 5/8-inch grips. Now 69 percent are either 4 1/4 or 4 3/8, with only 5 percent of grips as large as 4 5/8. Head reports that 4 1/2-inch grips have been shrinking in popularity, so it now produces about the same number of 4 1/4- as 4 1/2-inch grips.

“It’s been a dramatic shift to smaller sizes,” says John McBride, who has worked at Prince for more than 30 years, including 17 years as the company’s purchasing manager.

The reason for the change? Thinner grips make it easier to play in today’s wild-Western forehand, open-stance, wristy style. Rafael Nadal has become the poster player of the skinny gripster set with his 4 1/4 grip, which allows him to snap his wrists into his ground strokes with more ferocity than Alex Rodriguez smacking a home run.

“Players like the thin grips because they can come over the ball much more and whip it,” says Roman Prokes, owner of RPNY Tennis in New York City and stringer to many pro players.

Wilson and Yonex estimate that almost two-thirds of their male pro players are opting for 4 3/8-inch grips these days, while the majority of women who use Babolat frames are going for 4 1/4-inch grips.

“No question, the trend to smaller grips is real,” says Rick Macci, who has coached Jennifer Capriati and Venus and Serena Williams. “The best of the best are using them and there’s been a trickle-down effect to recreational players.”

If you’ve got the skill to generate fast racquethead speed, a smaller grip might be for you. “It increases the whip in the racquet head, and allows you to wrap the heel of your hand below the handle to create more snap and speed on the serve,” Macci says.

Back in the day, thin grips didn’t make any sense. The heavy and clunky wooden clubs of yore required you to use the biggest grip you could hold to lock your wrist in place and prevent the racquet from twisting in your hand when you made contact outside of the small sweet spot.

“Trying to generate spin with those old racquets was practically impossible, like trying to swing a rock with a rope,” says TENNIS racquet adviser Bruce Levine. “Now frames are lighter and more aerodynamic, with open string patterns that put more grab on the ball, making it easy for just about anybody to generate spin.”

And today’s smaller grips make it even easier, helping players put action on the ball with their wrists.

Who has gone the lowest so far on tour? France’s Marion Bartoli plays with a light Prince Speedport Red with an open string pattern and—ready for this—a 4-inch grip, believed to be the thinnest handle used by a pro.

08-17-2009, 02:54 AM

Ramon
02-11-2012, 11:25 AM
SHRINKING GRIPS of modern day player from TENNIS magazine. Don't get it???
New article from Tennis states modern day pros are all going to smaller grips than they used to in the old days. Why ? It is apparently easier to put topspin on the ball with smaller grips. I don't get this since i use much larger grip size than i should and i find it easier to put topspin with bigger grip. What is physics behind this ? Does anyone know ? Why is it easier to put more topspin with smaller grips ?


It all makes sense to me. I agree that smaller grips make it easier to play the modern pro game with excessive topspin and today's racquets. Just put a racquet in your hand with a large grip and make a motion of rolling your wrist on the forehand, then do the same with a smaller grip and see how much easier it is.

What does that have to do with the typical recreational player who loses control when he uses excessive wrist motions?

tlm
02-11-2012, 11:36 AM
It all makes sense to me. I agree that smaller grips make it easier to play the modern pro game with excessive topspin and today's racquets. Just put a racquet in your hand with a large grip and make a motion of rolling your wrist on the forehand, then do the same with a smaller grip and see how much easier it is.

What does that have to do with the typical recreational player who loses control when he uses excessive wrist motions?

If you read the article it states that the rec players of today are using smaller handles by a big margin also compared to the past.

I don't know were you come up with this rec players losing control by using excessive wrist motion, i never heard that one before.

Larrysümmers
02-11-2012, 11:39 AM
well, i guess ima hipster.

Ramon
02-11-2012, 12:21 PM
I don't know were you come up with this rec players losing control by using excessive wrist motion, i never heard that one before.

Well...it's kinda like stating that a person can get fat by excessively eating. I make the assumption that certain things are obvious to the vast majority of people.

tlm
02-11-2012, 12:59 PM
Well...it's kinda like stating that a person can get fat by excessively eating. I make the assumption that certain things are obvious to the vast majority of people.


Really well i have rarely seen rec players use excessive wrist motion that causes loss of control. I have seen some that try to wrist it to much which usually leads to weak shots but not necessarily control loss.

Most rec players i see do not use their wrists very much, in fact they have stiff robot like swings that are not fast enough to even break their wrist on the follow through. Which of coarse means they are not putting much spin on the ball which hurts control.

So what you say is so obvious is what i would call incorrect. But i thought it was obvious that it was common knowledge that most players are using smaller grips today which you had no idea of until i showed you the article from tennis magazine.

NLBwell
02-11-2012, 05:38 PM
With a smaller grip you are more likely to injure your wrist or elbow since on off-center hits you have a smaller lever-arm to resist the torqueing of the racket. (not saying it is likely, just more likely) I tore up my inner elbow tendon this way using a friend's wife's racket and now any time I hit with a smaller grip I can feel the extra strain on my tendon.

Ramon
02-12-2012, 03:30 AM
Really well i have rarely seen rec players use excessive wrist motion that causes loss of control. I have seen some that try to wrist it to much which usually leads to weak shots but not necessarily control loss.

Most rec players i see do not use their wrists very much, in fact they have stiff robot like swings that are not fast enough to even break their wrist on the follow through. Which of coarse means they are not putting much spin on the ball which hurts control.

So what you say is so obvious is what i would call incorrect. But i thought it was obvious that it was common knowledge that most players are using smaller grips today which you had no idea of until i showed you the article from tennis magazine.

Here's the definition of "recreation":

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recreation

If you are a 5.5 player and you play tennis for fun, and not for money, then you are a recreational player. If you rarely see recreational players who lose control because they use too much wrist action, you haven't played enough.

Some players do better by using their wrist a lot. Other players are better off hitting a flatter ball with a firm wrist to maintain control. You can't just lump everyone together and say they will all do better by playing a modern western style game and using a small grip.

fuzz nation
02-12-2012, 05:08 AM
Do you think that your hands are bigger that fed and rafa's? They use 4 3/8 and 4 1/4, the days of the log size grips are gone.

Gee, for a minute there, I thought I actually was dreaming.

By the way, you're a handsome devil!!!

I caught your line of thinking on the first go 'round my man (SOOOOO handsome!), but my opinion is that I doubt that those guys or their peers who rank at the top of the game are using grips that are uncomfortable... wait for it... uncomfortable for them. I'd hate to think that they're suffering like that to simply hit a better ball, but then again, they're playing to earn their lunch money, so there's that.

If a grip is small enough to help with racquet speed, etc., that's great. Really! I've used grips that were too small... you guessed it... for me, but the biggest problem wasn't with stability when hitting volleys with that gear. The grips - especially by Prince - were too small for me to get decent feel of the bevels. That makes bigger swings around the baseline a whole lot less consistent (yep, for me).

I agree that there's a trend around the pros toward those smaller grips and I wish them well, but I also have wondered how much custom work they have done on their grips to help with their feel. Someone posted a really cool article here some time ago that described how the Fed-man would pick out his most comfortable grip and have every racquet in that new arsenal molded to the exact same shape. Again, his resources put him in a much different situation than mere mortals like ourselves. Very cool though.

The trend in grip sizes around the pros is what it is and I'm not out to stop it, but think about the trend in strings, specifically polys and poly hybrids. Those are great for a large number of the pros, college killers, etc., but that absolutely does not make them "better" for everyone. Some rec. players have enjoyed them in good health while others have been sidelined with serious cases of tennis elbow in the wake of using what the pros use. The string setups that work for them are in some instances a horrible option for amateurs. Some will also do great with smaller grips, but others won't.

...coffee coffee coffee...

tlm
02-12-2012, 06:29 AM
Gee, for a minute there, I thought I actually was dreaming.

By the way, you're a handsome devil!!!

I caught your line of thinking on the first go 'round my man (SOOOOO handsome!), but my opinion is that I doubt that those guys or their peers who rank at the top of the game are using grips that are uncomfortable... wait for it... uncomfortable for them. I'd hate to think that they're suffering like that to simply hit a better ball, but then again, they're playing to earn their lunch money, so there's that.

If a grip is small enough to help with racquet speed, etc., that's great. Really! I've used grips that were too small... you guessed it... for me, but the biggest problem wasn't with stability when hitting volleys with that gear. The grips - especially by Prince - were too small for me to get decent feel of the bevels. That makes bigger swings around the baseline a whole lot less consistent (yep, for me).

I agree that there's a trend around the pros toward those smaller grips and I wish them well, but I also have wondered how much custom work they have done on their grips to help with their feel. Someone posted a really cool article here some time ago that described how the Fed-man would pick out his most comfortable grip and have every racquet in that new arsenal molded to the exact same shape. Again, his resources put him in a much different situation than mere mortals like ourselves. Very cool though.

The trend in grip sizes around the pros is what it is and I'm not out to stop it, but think about the trend in strings, specifically polys and poly hybrids. Those are great for a large number of the pros, college killers, etc., but that absolutely does not make them "better" for everyone. Some rec. players have enjoyed them in good health while others have been sidelined with serious cases of tennis elbow in the wake of using what the pros use. The string setups that work for them are in some instances a horrible option for amateurs. Some will also do great with smaller grips, but others won't.

...coffee coffee coffee...

So lets see because the pros use poly string and then amateur players followed and developed elbow problems, the same thing is going to happen with the smaller grips also. Okay fuzz whatever you say.

If you read the article below fuzz this trend for smaller grips began in the 80's. So even though many here have not evolved from that decade the majority of players have, as is shown by what size grips were sold back in the day compared to after 1980.

So believe it or not this is not some new trend that just started last year, it has been going on for decades, kind of shows that there are some here who really need to catch up to what is going on after the 70's.

Note that prince stated that only 5% of their sales are in a 4 5/8 grip size. So that would make you large grip lovers in a very small minority of the players today.

The Incredible Shrinking Grip

As racquet handles get smaller, spin gets bigger.

By Bill Gray

Get a grip on this: Racquet handles are downsizing faster than General Motors among both pros and recreational players.

The tree-trunk grips of the Boris Becker (4 5/8 inches) and Monica Seles (4 1/2) era are out. Thin is in.

For example, according to Prince, the average grip size for racquets bought by recreational players has plummeted since 1980, when 58 percent of the company’s racquets sold came with either 4 1/2- or 4 5/8-inch grips. Now 69 percent are either 4 1/4 or 4 3/8, with only 5 percent of grips as large as 4 5/8. Head reports that 4 1/2-inch grips have been shrinking in popularity, so it now produces about the same number of 4 1/4- as 4 1/2-inch grips.

“It’s been a dramatic shift to smaller sizes,” says John McBride, who has worked at Prince for more than 30 years, including 17 years as the company’s purchasing manager.

The reason for the change? Thinner grips make it easier to play in today’s wild-Western forehand, open-stance, wristy style. Rafael Nadal has become the poster player of the skinny gripster set with his 4 1/4 grip, which allows him to snap his wrists into his ground strokes with more ferocity than Alex Rodriguez smacking a home run.

“Players like the thin grips because they can come over the ball much more and whip it,” says Roman Prokes, owner of RPNY Tennis in New York City and stringer to many pro players.

Wilson and Yonex estimate that almost two-thirds of their male pro players are opting for 4 3/8-inch grips these days, while the majority of women who use Babolat frames are going for 4 1/4-inch grips.

“No question, the trend to smaller grips is real,” says Rick Macci, who has coached Jennifer Capriati and Venus and Serena Williams. “The best of the best are using them and there’s been a trickle-down effect to recreational players.”

If you’ve got the skill to generate fast racquethead speed, a smaller grip might be for you. “It increases the whip in the racquet head, and allows you to wrap the heel of your hand below the handle to create more snap and speed on the serve,” Macci says.

Back in the day, thin grips didn’t make any sense. The heavy and clunky wooden clubs of yore required you to use the biggest grip you could hold to lock your wrist in place and prevent the racquet from twisting in your hand when you made contact outside of the small sweet spot.

“Trying to generate spin with those old racquets was practically impossible, like trying to swing a rock with a rope,” says TENNIS racquet adviser Bruce Levine. “Now frames are lighter and more aerodynamic, with open string patterns that put more grab on the ball, making it easy for just about anybody to generate spin.”

And today’s smaller grips make it even easier, helping players put action on the ball with their wrists.

Who has gone the lowest so far on tour? France’s Marion Bartoli plays with a light Prince Speedport Red with an open string pattern and—ready for this—a 4-inch grip, believed to be the thinnest handle used by a pro.

movdqa
02-12-2012, 06:34 AM
I've tried smaller and keep going back to larger. There are pros out there using larger grips - if you're in the pro stock market, you run across them from time to time. There are pros with custom molded grips. The majority of pro stocks on the secondary market are 4 3/8 so that's appears to be the trend at the pro level. But it's not universal.

tlm
02-12-2012, 06:46 AM
I've tried smaller and keep going back to larger. There are pros out there using larger grips - if you're in the pro stock market, you run across them from time to time. There are pros with custom molded grips. The majority of pro stocks on the secondary market are 4 3/8 so that's appears to be the trend at the pro level. But it's not universal.



Did you read the article above? You know were it actually has there sales statistics listed. Would those not represent what is going in the market today?

You guys can try to twist things all you want, but when the manufacturers list the % of what size grips they are selling it would seem that would make it hard to debate. But i guess that those that are in the 5% somehow feel that they are a majority.

Larrysümmers
02-12-2012, 06:56 AM
im going to stick with my 1/2 grip. i can comfortably hold my grip, i can get plenty of wrist action for my style, i dont see an increased amount of wrist whipping with smaller grips, and it makes me a hipster i guess. all right, big grip ftw

ben123
02-12-2012, 08:33 AM
the traditional way of measuring a grip size... "1finger should fit into your grip blabla" is totally outdated i agree with tlm. this rule is from 1900 where people played with big fat wood racquets.

i try to explain what people seem to not get. yes there are still pros with bigger grip sizes. its not impossible to do that lol (and most pros are tall... taller than the average guy here) but the thing is if you really want to improve and play the game serious. wanting to play in tournaments where you get some money etc. that means you want to learn how modern tennis is played to be competitive. and modern tennis with modern racquets is played with smaller grips. if you just go out and play horrible tennis everyday and have your fun without the want to improve then who cares about racquets thats right

for someone who played with a big grip size all his life, already being a pro. he wont change because he is a pro, happy with his game and earns money. but most people are no pros. you can still choose and adjust
its not comfortable sometimes at the beginning. but then you get blisters. then cornea and it wont hurt anymore..
if you think the pros take the grip size by comfort just look at a close up nadal picture. his fingers are taped everywhere with whatever that is. his overgrip after playing is shredded like hell. ofc thats bc of his playing style too but thats not all


The trend in grip sizes around the pros is what it is and I'm not out to stop it, but think about the trend in strings, specifically polys and poly hybrids. Those are great for a large number of the pros, college killers, etc., but that absolutely does not make them "better" for everyone. Some rec. players have enjoyed them in good health while others have been sidelined with serious cases of tennis elbow in the wake of using what the pros use. The string setups that work for them are in some instances a horrible option for amateurs. Some will also do great with smaller grips, but others won't.

if you use this argument. why are you on this forum in this thread? if you think amateurs are crap and will never improve ofc it doesnt matter. then nothing matters just go out with your grip 7 wood racquet and have fun. but if you have a junior who wants to improve i would recommend him the small grip size.

tlm
02-12-2012, 11:14 AM
the traditional way of measuring a grip size... "1finger should fit into your grip blabla" is totally outdated i agree with tlm. this rule is from 1900 where people played with big fat wood racquets.

i try to explain what people seem to not get. yes there are still pros with bigger grip sizes. its not impossible to do that lol (and most pros are tall... taller than the average guy here) but the thing is if you really want to improve and play the game serious. wanting to play in tournaments where you get some money etc. that means you want to learn how modern tennis is played to be competitive. and modern tennis with modern racquets is played with smaller grips. if you just go out and play horrible tennis everyday and have your fun without the want to improve then who cares about racquets thats right

for someone who played with a big grip size all his life, already being a pro. he wont change because he is a pro, happy with his game and earns money. but most people are no pros. you can still choose and adjust
its not comfortable sometimes at the beginning. but then you get blisters. then cornea and it wont hurt anymore..
if you think the pros take the grip size by comfort just look at a close up nadal picture. his fingers are taped everywhere with whatever that is. his overgrip after playing is shredded like hell. ofc thats bc of his playing style too but thats not all




if you use this argument. why are you on this forum in this thread? if you think amateurs are crap and will never improve ofc it doesnt matter. then nothing matters just go out with your grip 7 wood racquet and have fun. but if you have a junior who wants to improve i would recommend him the small grip size.



Excellent post i am sure glad that there are some players here who have evolved out of the 70's.

fuzz nation
02-12-2012, 02:39 PM
So lets see because the pros use poly string and then amateur players followed and developed elbow problems, the same thing is going to happen with the smaller grips also. Okay fuzz whatever you say.


Nope. My obvious point there is that some gear isn't appropriate for everyone just because it's more popular among the pros. It works for some folks, as I've said here all along, just not for everyone. Cool?

Be careful with accusing some of us of being "pretty slow and not very smart". I could bury you in your own mountain of irony with that one, but I'm just trying to have a discussion. The nasty crap is just boring (I even apologized in my grumpy post).

Yes, I honestly hope you're having success with whatever grip size on whatever racquet in whatever style of play at whatever level you enjoy these days. For the record, I've never forced a racquet with a 4 5/8" grip on a little kid, but I've had more than one chance to do it!!!

tlm
02-12-2012, 03:37 PM
Nope. My obvious point there is that some gear isn't appropriate for everyone just because it's more popular among the pros. It works for some folks, as I've said here all along, just not for everyone. Cool?

Be careful with accusing some of us of being "pretty slow and not very smart". I could bury you in your own mountain of irony with that one, but I'm just trying to have a discussion. The nasty crap is just boring (I even apologized in my grumpy post).

Yes, I honestly hope you're having success with whatever grip size on whatever racquet in whatever style of play at whatever level you enjoy these days. For the record, I've never forced a racquet with a 4 5/8" grip on a little kid, but I've had more than one chance to do it!!!


What do you mean nope? Your obvious point sure seemed to be that because people followed the pros in using polys and injuries resulted which by the way i do agree with that point, that then the same thing could happen with smaller grips.

Now you are warning me about accusing you and some others of not being to smart, after the smart *** posts you and a few others aimed at me. Thats pretty hilarious i guess you can dish it out but can't take it quite as well.

The big difference is after you and a few others made attacks on me like i did not no what i was talking about, i backed my claims up with facts right from the manufacturers sales reports. They were not just talking about what the pro players are using it was about their total sales, kind of hard to dispute that one huh.

Now that is what i call a mountain of irony, you attack me like i don't have any idea of what i am talking about. But in reality i proved that it was the other way around, but now you threaten me to be careful of accusing you of being slow.

Thats all i was trying to do was have a discussion, but when i am attacked and made fun of by people that are totally wrong and i am not going to take it. This site sometimes amazes me in that some things that are so obvious and the majority of players i know agree on can be disputed endlessly here.

AeroFan
02-12-2012, 03:51 PM
Gentlemen, there is no need for this animosity. lol

fuzz nation
02-12-2012, 04:11 PM
Gentlemen, there is no need for this animosity. lol

You have my sincere apology for gettin' all crazy train here. How are things at the eye of the storm? Any new and controversial threads you want to fire up?

Captain Tezuka
02-12-2012, 11:11 PM
the traditional way of measuring a grip size... "1finger should fit into your grip blabla" is totally outdated i agree with tlm. this rule is from 1900 where people played with big fat wood racquets.

i try to explain what people seem to not get. yes there are still pros with bigger grip sizes. its not impossible to do that lol (and most pros are tall... taller than the average guy here) but the thing is if you really want to improve and play the game serious. wanting to play in tournaments where you get some money etc. that means you want to learn how modern tennis is played to be competitive. and modern tennis with modern racquets is played with smaller grips. if you just go out and play horrible tennis everyday and have your fun without the want to improve then who cares about racquets thats right

for someone who played with a big grip size all his life, already being a pro. he wont change because he is a pro, happy with his game and earns money. but most people are no pros. you can still choose and adjust
its not comfortable sometimes at the beginning. but then you get blisters. then cornea and it wont hurt anymore..
if you think the pros take the grip size by comfort just look at a close up nadal picture. his fingers are taped everywhere with whatever that is. his overgrip after playing is shredded like hell. ofc thats bc of his playing style too but thats not all




if you use this argument. why are you on this forum in this thread? if you think amateurs are crap and will never improve ofc it doesnt matter. then nothing matters just go out with your grip 7 wood racquet and have fun. but if you have a junior who wants to improve i would recommend him the small grip size.

Hi ben123,

So this is a good conversation and I want to know how would poeple measure grip size in modern times. I'm 18 and the finger method is also recommended by TW in there grip size section. http://www.tennis-warehouse.com/LC/Gripsize.html unless you mean by measuring and so I use a 4 1/8 inch grip currently so that's considered small yeah? Just curious that's all.

Thanks

-Tezuka

AeroFan
02-13-2012, 12:58 AM
I apologize fuzz, I just wanted some help was all.

Swingweight
02-13-2012, 03:12 AM
Personally I can feel comfortable playing with anything from 4 1/4 up to 4 7/8. My friend plays with the tiny grip and I play with the large one. It's actually 4 7/8 with an overgrip. Do what feels comfortable IMO. I have to say when I pick up the smaller one I love the whippy feel that it gives, but I've got very large hands, so 4 5/8 still feels small to me, which is what I'll be switching to eventually.

jonestim
02-15-2012, 09:43 PM
AeroFan,
I'm curious if you have measured from the bottom lateral crease in your palm to the tip of your ring finger as mentioned at http://www.tennis-warehouse.com/LC/Gripsize.html .

I'm 5'10" and use a 5/8 grip (or a 1/2 with OG) and I measure out to just over 5" using the above method. I have big hands for my height and wear an XL glove.

If it works for you, roll with it. You can always try a grip like a Prince ResiThin to feel what a smaller size feels like.

PrinceMoron
02-16-2012, 04:37 AM
Grip sizes for doubles players on the tour tend to be slightly bigger on average, which suggests that a bigger grip helps with volleys.

At least if you play with a grip 5, you can buy second hand rackets knowing they are not fake, as that grip size is not made by the fake shops.

If you sell a grip 5 second hand, there is a smaller 2nd hand market, so you can get a better price ie there are fewer 5s floating around.

Buy a racket with a pallet system eg Volkl or Head, so you can buy one racket and 4 other pallets, and try out every size there is, and see what if any difference it makes to your play.

Personally, I find a large or conversely a small grip allow me to hit bigger serves, so a 5 or a 2, but then I lose something on goundstrokes.
Very large grips can make backhands harder as getting the racket round depends more on the wrist, and you lose some of the help you get from the fingers, if that makes any sense.

Finally, always buy small, and then you can build up the grip, it is a bit of a pain trying to make a grip 5 Wilson into a grip 4 or 3.

movdqa
02-16-2012, 04:46 AM
The pallet system by Head is nice but it's pretty expensive ordering them from TWE.

I bought my first 4 3/8s frames recently and just put two overgrips on them and it feels quite good. I also have 4 1/2 frames that I use two overgrips on too and one 4 5/8 that I use just one overgrip on. I will probably tend to 4 3/8s in the future just because they have the best liquidity.

Champs990411
02-16-2012, 10:07 AM
Why don't we say what we prefer with respect to the gap between our ring finger and the hand?

The benchmark test says you need a finger's width for correct sizing. I like that ring finger to just barely touch my racket hand on the other side. I guess I prefer small.

AeroFan
02-16-2012, 07:18 PM
Jonestim, I did the ruler test and my finger was was past 4 3/4 and when using the ruler was just 1/16 under the 5" mark

AeroFan
02-16-2012, 07:21 PM
*was way past the 4 3/4

sabala
02-18-2012, 11:42 PM
I'm 5' 9" and my grip measures at just under 5 1/4". I used to build up to 4 7/8" but now build up to 4 3/4" so I guess that's like 2 full sizes smaller(?).

I like the racket butt flared out a bit as well since I only use 4 fingers on my grip, (pinky hangs off). Otherwise it feels like the racket is gonna go flyin' outta my hands.

Just use what feels comfortable to you - don't let those Carnies with the tiny hands give you a hard time! :razz:

I do wish they sold stock 4 3/4" grips though, I hate building my grips up every time. I remember seeing a BB Delta Core for sale on TW with 4 3/4" grip size but someone must have grabbed it.

I did manage to grab this sucker on the Bay recently and it feels great!

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v78/Silvertone/TennisForumPics/stingGrip.jpg

TREX
02-19-2012, 07:07 AM
Nadal has little hands.

Besides he hits 100's of thousands of balls.

Topspin is not created by spinning or fliping your wrist over. Sure you can time that sort of thing on occasion but that is not the norm. It is created by racket preperation and taking the racket low to high.

Use the 4 5/8. you using a 4 1/4 would be like putting bicycle tires or a Ferrari.

I measure 5 1/8" to 5 1/4" I build up my own grips

PrinceMoron
05-12-2012, 01:01 AM
Buy a volkl grip 1 plus pallets for 2,3,4,5.

Swap out the pallets and try them out, then you know the strengths of each eg bigger serve, softer volleys.