Does Grip Size Matter?

Discussion in 'Pros' Racquets and Gear' started by zorg, Mar 18, 2010.

  1. zorg

    zorg Professional

    Mar 21, 2005
    I was thinking about if I should play with a 4 1/4 grip size for slightly more spin or 4 3/8, which is technically the correct size for me. Then I did a thought experiment about if the actual size matters, other than for comfort.

    Lets say you have really tiny hands, such that a grip that is the thickness of a pencil is perfect for you (but the racket is usual size). When you hit the ball, I would think that the racket would twist a lot.

    On the other hand, if you a hand that is a meter long, it would be really really sturdy.

    These are the extremes...but would there really be this recognizable a difference between 4 1/4 and, say, 4 1/2?
  2. slicefox

    slicefox Banned

    Aug 19, 2007
    the hood
    the increase in radius allows more torque per shear force on the grip... so it helps when you shank or don't hit the sweet spot.

    if it is too big then you can't curl your fingers around it enough, so u need to balance it.

    I haven't seen your hand so I can't tell you what to pick.
  3. dincuss

    dincuss Hall of Fame

    Mar 23, 2009
    I find it doesnt matter that much, but smaller grips are apparently better for spin
  4. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

    Feb 11, 2004
    at the bottom of every hill I come to
    It's not the size of your's how you use it.

    It ain't how big your grip is, it's how well you swing your racquet...

    I could go on, but it would be pointless..
  5. PED

    PED Legend

    Mar 12, 2007
    I think it totally depends on what type of swing you have and what grip you use. I'm full western FH and I moved down to a 1/4 three years ago from a 3/8. It really helps with my type of swing, but if you are a flatter hitter than maybe the larger grip works better.

    I could see dropping one size but 2 would be a stretch.
  6. TnTBigman

    TnTBigman Professional

    Jan 26, 2005
    South Florida
    Unless you don't get any wrist pain from using different grip sizes and your game level (playing experience) meets or exceeds the latter, you should be fine.
    However, I've found that going down a grip size, even for specs matched frames, gives you the perception that the racquet is lighter. Even though the "maths" says otherwise. Weird. Some days 4 1/2 seems big. Other days it too seems small. Taking into account replacement wrap or original wrap compression from usage.
  7. JRstriker12

    JRstriker12 Hall of Fame

    Mar 31, 2006
    Grip size matter in terms of your own comfort.

    Sure, I could play with a handle two sizes too small, but I might have to put up with blisters and the racquet twisting in my hand. I could play with a grip two sizes too big, but I may not feel like I have a secure grip.

    It's really down to personal prefernce. You want something comfortable which doesn't require a death grip to hold onto.

    If you are between sizes and you are not sure, go smaller as you can always increase grip size a bit if needed.
  8. slice bh compliment

    slice bh compliment G.O.A.T.

    Jul 13, 2004
    LOL at Rabbit's post. He kept it G rated, but I was thinking the same thing.

    ANyway, yeah, it's personal preference. Pretty wild, though, how many larger guys are going down to a 3 or a 4.

    Rafa and Roger look like they could use a size 4 or 5 and they use a 2 and a 3 respectively, right?

    Two of the guys I play with are 6ft 3 or 4...and their hands are large enough for my grips (4 and 3/4, or 4 and 7/8). They have gone down gradually to size 3. Not the best for the volleys, but so good for whipping groundstokes. Then you see an extra-large guy like Boris Becker (who has little hands) using a really little grip, probably a size 3 or smaller.

    I haven't gone down yet, but I'm considering going down to a 4 and 5/8 just for fun. Tried it on a new frame recently. Crazy whip.
  9. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

    Dec 28, 2008
    East side of San Francisco Bay
    Personally, I don't win more points with a crazy whipping groundie.
    However, I DO win more points with a well placed volley, a strong first serve, and a second that hiss's and makes the ball go oval.
    So at 5'11", I'm using, since 1974, a 4 and 5/8 gripsize with an added overgrip.
  10. mec46205

    mec46205 New User

    Jan 10, 2008
    I recently just went down from 5/8 to a 1/2 and have found it to make a huge difference in a good way. I'm able to get much more spin on the forehand, and I'm able to get a much shorter angle on my serves to the ad court (I'm a lefty). I played with a 5/8 for probably 20+ years and never really ever thought about switching until I started to read about the recent trends. If you're unsure, I agree that you can go smaller and always build up with an overgrip; with the composition of the rackets today, it would be pretty difficult to take it down.
  11. Nanshiki

    Nanshiki Hall of Fame

    Jul 4, 2008
    Grip size is about preference and how big your hands are...

    Personally I use a 1/2 with an overgrip, which is like a 5/8.

    But go with the biggest grip you're comfortable with, to start out. If you think a 3/8 feels fine but could be just a tiny bit bigger, use an overgrip... if it feels too small with an overgrip, get a 1/2.
  12. zorg

    zorg Professional

    Mar 21, 2005
    Lol Rabbit...its not the size of the wave, its the motion of the ocean.

    But really, I wasn't starting a is my "grip" to small because today in the locker room...thread.

    I was just thinking about if there is a (corny but only way I can describe it) if you are in 2 different universes, and in one your hand is a perfect fit for a 4 1/4, and in the other it is perfect for a 4 1/2, will that make a difference in spin/ stability, or no?
  13. Jchurch

    Jchurch Guest

    I have constantly gone back between a 4 1/4 with an overgrip and a 4 3/8 with an overgrip. My hands measure so I should be 4 3/8. I personally feel more comfortable with the 4 1/4. The only time I lose comfort is when the overgrip starts to become a bit slick and compressed from use. I feel the 4 1/4 give me a bit more head speed and control over movement of the racket.

    That said, TRY BOTH!
  14. zorg

    zorg Professional

    Mar 21, 2005
    And woops, I just noticed that I put this in the wrong part of the forum. Is there any way to move it?
  15. Thepowerofchoice

    Thepowerofchoice Semi-Pro

    Jun 27, 2007
    I can use both 4 3/8 or 4 1/4 with overgrip BUT I'm a bit more sensitive to buttcap size. If I go down to 4 1/4, my buttcap need to be slightly bit larger. I wrap my overgrip around twice on my 4 1/4 grip buttcap and that's perfect for me. Anyone else do this?
  16. ilikephobo

    ilikephobo Semi-Pro

    Mar 28, 2009
    i used to play with Babolat Leather on a PDR 4 3/8 so the grip was in between a 3/8 and a 1/2

    however after tennis practice i would go hang out with my friends in badminton and hit and occasionally hit with a 4 1/4 racquet. Whenever i would go back to my racquet the handle would feel strangely large. So i ended up taking the leather off and using 2 OGs. but then i expiriemented with 1 OG and so far im diggin it

    @ Thepowerofchoice, yeah i think i'm gonna try that.
  17. Slazenger07

    Slazenger07 Banned

    Sep 29, 2009
    Grip size matters ALOT I personally prefer a smaller grip so I use 4 3/8"
  18. Big_Dangerous

    Big_Dangerous Legend

    Jan 27, 2010
    Houston, TX
    Yeah I can use a few sizes as well, in fact, I really don't notice that big of a difference from 1/4 to 1/2 and even 3/4 isn't so bad. The only thing I probably wouldn't be able to do is play with a grip size that's way too small, but since they don't really make many adult rackets at least not the major kind below 4 that's not an issue.

    One thing I do notice is that Babolat grip sizes run way bigger. I used to own a Youtek Speed Pro 3/8 and I demoed a Youtek Prestige MP 3/8 and a Wilson BLX 6.1 95 in 1/2. I compared my Roddick Pure Drive 1/4 and it was like the same size maybe even a bit bigger than both of the 3/8 Head rackets.

    And just the other day I compared my Pure Drive Gt + which is 3/8 to my friends Prince that's 3/4, and my Pure Drive was actually larger than his grip, and I only use one Replacement Grip and one over grip, same as him.
  19. brownbearfalling

    brownbearfalling Hall of Fame

    Jan 12, 2006
    Another thing that goes along with this comparison is the size and build of the person using the racquet. A person that has a bigger hand is taller, bulkier etc in general. The racquet size doesn't change. Bigger people can do more with a racquet. I think what you are also getting to is that bigger people are using smaller gripsizes (nadal). In this case, if he has proper grip on the racquet and doesn't have wrist or arm problems, I think other aspects of his game out weigh the gripsize he uses. I am sure he could play just as well if he had a grip size that was slightly different.

    To rec players, having a gripsize you are comfortable with is important. Again it is what you are comfortable with which includes if you get injuries from your grip.
  20. Tennis_Crazed

    Tennis_Crazed Semi-Pro

    Sep 23, 2008
    Grind City
    Comfort is most important. but personally ive found you get used to whatever you keep using. and after tinkering aroudn a bit with grip sizes, i've found myself going smaller and smaller.
  21. charliefedererer

    charliefedererer Legend

    Feb 13, 2009
    Too small or large a grip can lead to tennis elbow.

    "A too-small grip requires more muscle strength to keep the racquet from twisting in your hand. Prolonged use of a grip that's too small can contribute to tennis elbow problems. A grip that's too large inhibits wrist snap on serves, makes changing grips more difficult and also requires more muscle strength. Prolonged use of a grip that's too big can also contribute to tennis elbow problems."
  22. fireice

    fireice New User

    Feb 19, 2010
    Yeah, grip sizes, based on your size and strength, can cause strain on your arm and tennis elbow.
  23. Wilander Fan

    Wilander Fan Hall of Fame

    Jan 26, 2010
    i thought going with a smaller grip would be better but alot of things were going wrong with my forehand. Although the racket felt more secure and comfortable in my hand, I found it would twist after contact. Also, I felt I had a good grip on the racket that I tried to muscle the ball. Not only was I shanking alot, I could not hit with any real pace despite swinging as hard as I could. I also started feeling pain in my elbow for the first time ever.

    It was actually someone here that diagnosed the problem as the smaller grip. I wrapped the grip with some thick tape and my normal stroke came back naturally right away and have not had the elbow issues since.
  24. dasob85

    dasob85 New User

    Mar 19, 2010
    New Jersey
    with 1/4 my middle finger almost touches my palm and with 1/2 i can slip my index finger from my left hand in the open space, so yes i think its pretty recognizable. i used to use small grips because i was used to ping pong handles and sometimes badminton. however i found that the racquet was always twisting in my hand and i got a little bit of golfers elbow. so i changed up to a bigger grip
  25. Ocean Drive

    Ocean Drive Hall of Fame

    Jul 24, 2007
    And grip size makes a difference with how you hit the ball...

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