(Dis)Advantages of Extended Length Racquets

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by Pinocchio, Jun 5, 2008.

  1. Pinocchio

    Pinocchio New User

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    Okay, we know that bigger headsize generally means more power, tighter strings = more control, thinner gauge = more spin, thicker gauge = greater string durability, etc, but if one is playing with a 27.5 inch stick as opposed to the same model that is 27 inches in length, what would the main differences - all other factors being equal - really be?

    Your opinions are very much appreciated.

    p.s.
    Does anybody know any pros within the top 100 that use 27.5 inch racquets, beside Nalbandian?
     
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  2. soyizgood

    soyizgood G.O.A.T.

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    I might be wrong, but I read somewhere Roddick uses a 28" racquet.

    For guys with big hands as well as 2HBH, an extended length racquet comes in handy. The swingweight is likely to be higher than with standard length, but with a fairly flexible racquet this can translate into some nice cross-court angles as well as for longer swing motions. That's just my .02.
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2008
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  3. nickb

    nickb Banned

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    Advantages:

    - More power
    - Better reach
    - Good for 2HBH
    - Good for shorter players
    - Helps get more power on serve

    Disadvantages:

    - Higher SW
    - Hard to move around at net
    - Can make the player hit late (if they are not used to it)
    - Can hurt some players arms..

    Roddick uses 27.5, Ferrer is close to 28...there are many many pros using rackets over 27.5 in the top 100..they are very popular.

    Nick
     
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  4. LanEvo

    LanEvo Hall of Fame

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    disadvantages of a long racquet to me is that its too long period
     
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  5. nickb

    nickb Banned

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    ^ Fair enough. :shock::)
     
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  6. kalic

    kalic Professional

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    Davydenko uses 28''
     
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  7. martin

    martin Banned

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    Didn't notice more power on serve. In a test with philippoussis and some good players and amateurs it was proven that you don't get any more pace with longer rackets Even a superlong widebody powerracket didn't serve noticably harder than a classic flexible wooden racket but you might create better angles. Groundstrokes might be more powerful but how can you measure that?
    Personally i like standard rackets because it's more maneuverable.
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2008
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  8. elee3

    elee3 Rookie

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    Biggest advantage by far is the higher racquet head speed you can get if you ever get comfortable with an extended length racquet. My forehand is vastly better with a 28 inch POG. The higher racquet head speed gets me more spin so I can hit the ball flatter without a problem.

    Biggest disadvantage is most people don't ever get comfortable with an extended length to take advantage of the extended length. This is where you get the complaints about extended lengths being the worse racquets ever.

    It's pretty much like a shoe. If you are comfortable with it you won't feel or barely feel the disadvantages.If you aren't comfortable with it, it feels like there's no advantages at all.
     
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  9. vndesu

    vndesu Hall of Fame

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    didnt michael chang use a 28 in at the french?
     
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  10. ledor

    ledor Professional

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    yes, prince made him his own signature graphite racquet, which came in 95 sq in. and 107 sq in. and both were 28 long, and had a blue paintjob. I grew up with this racquet so i'm used to extended length racquets.
     
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  11. ericsson

    ericsson Hall of Fame

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    Malisse uses 28 " too.
     
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  12. Bottle Rocket

    Bottle Rocket Hall of Fame

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    Care to share this test with us? A link? A book? An article?

    The laws of physics don't quite agree. The results of that test would also say that you can produce just as much pace with a 15 inch racket as you can with a 27 inch racket, or a ping pong paddle for that matter. I would be very interested in reading more about this little test.

    To the OP, please check this thread

    http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=168561&highlight=

    Here was my response to the original question:

    The ball comes off the stringbed of a 28 inch racket the exact same way as it would an indentical racket with an inch or even two inches cut off. There is no change in "control". The only change is in your head, your own perception. It is due to the fact that your own inaccuracy is exposed. I would go so far as to say you have more control with an extended length racket. Becuase of the increased reach, there is the possibility to hit shots that are not possible with a shorter frame. That is not the whole story though.

    The increase in length and the increase in leverage makes it easier to miss. If you miss a little bit with a 26 inch racket, you're going to miss a lot with a 28 inch racket. Timing is much easier with a shorter racket, as is the margin for error. Because of the smaller margin for error, It is most likely easier to have a bad day with an extended length rackets. You can miss by a significantly larger distance than you might otherwise, causing you to feel a like the court is shrinking around you, which I think can easily to lead to a feeling of less precision and even a loss of confidence.

    As far as length goes in other aspects, it is extremely important. The increase in pace on serves without a comparable increase in effort can be significant, same with groundstrokes. The increase in leverage has a larger impact than an increases in weight when it comes to a racket swing. The same speed swing relative to your wrist/arm gives a higher speed at the tip of the racket. A shortened racket can put you at a tremendous disadvantage once you get to a certain level in this game. Why 27 inches works out to be the magic number, I have no idea...
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2008
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  13. HyperHorse

    HyperHorse Banned

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    I read the article myself when that particular issue came out.
    Finally enough, Flip got more power from a wooden racquet, but it wasn't so great for groundstrokes because of the smaller head.
    I believe he also tested with a Gamma Big Bubba (29" long monster OS)...
    So you can throw out your backyard amateur physics.
    In the real world you dont get any extra power from a longer racquet.
    You do get MORE MARGIN FOR ERROR. I used a Chang OS Longbody so i know what i'm talking about.
     
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  14. martin

    martin Banned

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  15. Nellie

    Nellie Hall of Fame

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    I like longer racquets because I can get more head speed for faster servers with more action. I als get more power on ground strokes, but this is often bad for my control. I particularly like the extra length on my 2 handed backhand. the balance simply feels better. I think if you look at pros as a whole, many of the players with the better 2-handed backhands use extended racquets.

    On the big down side, I notice less touch/feel on volleys.

    The longer racquets also have a lot more swing weight. I was trying a K6.1 X that has a swing weight of 360 stock, and it was a beast to get around after a while.
     
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  16. mishin900

    mishin900 Rookie

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    so is it better to use extended length rackets if you feel comfortable with it? i demoed TF320 XL last month and i actually felt fairly comfortable with it. The best thing was better margin of error and control on serves. I got more control on flat serves and more spin on spin serves.
     
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  17. Bottle Rocket

    Bottle Rocket Hall of Fame

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    Mark hit serves with his standard frame, a wooden frame, and a 29 1/4 inch Dunlop.

    That test really settles it for you?

    Because they compared COMPLETELY different frames of differing size, composition, stiffness, swingweight, and balance, with only the handle shape and strings being the same? A 29 1/4 inch frame?

    Really?
     
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  18. feyya

    feyya Banned

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    Less manueverability, but thats an obvious one.
     
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  19. martin

    martin Banned

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    Actually they should have tested with an extended racket and a standard racket with same stiffness, composition and swingweight. In this case they compared different rackets and the results was more or less the same but the stiffness and swingweight actually favoured the longer racket because this was a superhigh powered widebody instead of the low powered standard racket that was used as comparison. Not a fair comparison i think.
    So what does this tell you Bottle Rocket??
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2008
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  20. Douggo

    Douggo Semi-Pro

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    Anybody know the weight of the Dunlop Max Superlong +2.25? And do we know if Scud was allowed to lead it up to his liking? And should we really be surprised that a professional tennis player hits as well with his own chosen racquet when compared to some random racquet?
    It's an interesting case, but it's not much more than that.
     
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  21. martin

    martin Banned

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    It was not only philppoussis who took part in this test.
     
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  22. dunlopfan

    dunlopfan Rookie

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    doesn't marion bartoli use a 29" racquet?
     
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  23. elee3

    elee3 Rookie

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    Totally agree. Takes a long time to get use to any racquet. Few hours of testing is going to say much.

    Another flaw with the test is the tiny sample size. They recorded 15 serves on Philippoussis's tests. With such a small sample size, if he ever gets on a hot streak or a cold streak the data is going to be way off. You need to take samples in the realm of thousands so streaks don't throw the results off.

    From my experience if a 27 inch racquet is more powerful then a 28 inch racquet, the 27 inch racquet is going to hit bigger serves.

    If the only difference between 2 racquets is just the length than the longer one is going to give more pop if the player ever gets accustomed to it. And it takes a long time to get accustomed to changes on the racquet, else pros wouldn't need paintjobs all the time.
     
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  24. Mansewerz

    Mansewerz Legend

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    I thought Nalbandian's stick (rds 001 2008 ) was 27 in.
     
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  25. SFrazeur

    SFrazeur Legend

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    Word around the Pro Player gear section is that he uses a 28" racquet as he previously used, as I recall a POG Longbody, which is 28".

    -SF
     
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  26. Mansewerz

    Mansewerz Legend

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    So he's not even using the rds 001 2008? Figures.


    By the way, do you guys actually say all of the zeros when saying that racquets names or just call it the rds 1?
     
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  27. SFrazeur

    SFrazeur Legend

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    I've mentioned the racquet a couple of times and when I did I said "RDS zero, zero, one" But then again I liked the sound of the word "zero." :)

    -SF
     
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  28. martin

    martin Banned

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    Ofcourse there are some flaws in this test but that only favored the longer racket because it was a super high powered widebody. It was not only longer but had a power advantage. Why not the same racket extended and standard, this would be more fair.
    And if it's not surprising that philippoussis hits the same serve with his own racket it is surprising that he hits the same speed with a classic wooden racket. A racket that he never uses. The amateurs had similar results as Philippoussis. some people here just react without reading the article.
     
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  29. d-quik

    d-quik Rookie

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    oh man extended length racquets on clay courts is a dream
     
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  30. kaiser

    kaiser Semi-Pro

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    Higher swingspeed with extended length racket (say 28") over normal racket?
    With same swing 1/27 = 3.7% higher swingspeed, congratulations...
     
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  31. boramiNYC

    boramiNYC Hall of Fame

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    Not very intuitive but I believe longer racquet is more suited to taller and bigger players not shorter players. Shorter players strength is fast (high frequency) swing and longer racquet slows this down. Reach can be covered by faster feet.
     
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  32. 2ndServe

    2ndServe Professional

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    Theoretically you can get a higher swing speed but an extended racket also slows down your swing speed with the higher swingweight. I play with a 28.5 and some days it feels like I'm swinging a tree.
     
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  33. travlerajm

    travlerajm Hall of Fame

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    The optimum length for serves is somewhere in the neighborood of 27.5" for a midplus frame. Going longer than this has negligible advantage for serve speed.

    For a given swingweight, the increase in tipspeed due to the extra leverage of longer length is offset by the decrease in head mass. And decrease in head mass has the disadvantage of lower stability.

    And if the head mass is kept constant, then the increase in leverage may not result in an increase in tipspeed, because the higher swingweight may result in lower angular velocity.
     
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  34. 2ndServe

    2ndServe Professional

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    ^ I really have to agree with this. My game is heavily dependant on a decent serve to come in on. When I sawed off my 28.5 to 27.5 I served much better. I hit with a bunch of spin so I gained oodles of racket head speed going -1 inch. I thought returns and volleys were much more responsive too. I've been using a longbody racket for sometime and I always thought a 28+ racket would be great for returns but I'm beginning to think about even going to 26.75. The extra length is pretty detrimental on quick returns.

    And choking up an inch didn't feel right as your wrist doesn't have the same range of motion with an inch+ of handle below your wrist, at least for me.
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2013
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  35. Ramon

    Ramon Hall of Fame

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    I read somewhere that David Ferrer uses a customized 29" racquet.

    I use a 27.5" Pro Kennex Ki 5x, and I also demoed the 27" Ki 5. I think the only difference is the length of the handle. The longer racquet feels noticeably heavier due to what the extra length does to the swingweight. It also feels more stable, probably because the extra length alters the angle at impact so your hands don't feel as much of the bending force. Other obvious benefits include serve power and reach. The main drawback is maneuverability.
     
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  36. DirtBaller4

    DirtBaller4 Rookie

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    I used to play with a Wilson hyper hammer stretch OS. I didn't even notice the extra .5 inches until I went to a 27 inch racket and noticed it was ever so slightly faster to bring around on the one handed backhand.

    But it could also be the fact that I went from 110 to 100 square inches head size wise.

    I would have to agree that the difference is negligible due to the offset of the higher swing weight. But I have never tried a 28 or 29 inch racket
     
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  37. The Isomotion31

    The Isomotion31 Semi-Pro

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    I use a 27.5 and it took me a little time to get used to. Since I'm shorter 5'8" it really helps me get that pop on my serves.
     
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