Heavier racquets needed for hardhitting juniors?

Discussion in 'Junior League & Tournament Talk' started by Jackofalltrades, Feb 18, 2013.

  1. Jackofalltrades

    Jackofalltrades New User

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    When would be the time to switch to a new, heavier, racquet for an advancing hardhitting junior?

    In my case:
    my daughter 14 years old, hardhitter, just starting to grow fast, plays for the last 3 years with standard lenght 270grams /9,5 oz? unstrung weight racquets. Solid strokes with easy racquethandling.

    I'm convinced she can handle heavier racquets easily, but dont want to risk injuries. What's the best thing to do?
    - Experiment with leadtape?
    - Try a heavier racquet with similar swingweight?
    - Demo different racquets and then try the racquet she most likes?
    - Other?
     
    #1
  2. HRB

    HRB Professional

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    I've always heard the best advice is swing with the heaviest stick you can handle until performance drops. Anything less than 12oz for me feels like a toy that I can't control or penetrate the court with.

    Please remember, kids have been playing tennis for years, but light stiff racquets are a relatively new product. Chrissy and Steffi grew up with 12oz plus sticks and they kinda turned out "ok"!
     
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  3. t135

    t135 Semi-Pro

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    14 should be plenty ready for regular weight racquet.
     
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  4. Jackofalltrades

    Jackofalltrades New User

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    I agree with HRB; play with the heaviest stick you can handle.

    But what is a 'regular weight' for a 14 year old? And as I mentioned, do I risk injuries if it's too much weight?
     
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  5. tommyfr

    tommyfr Rookie

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    Why do you think a heavier racket can cause injury? Probably the other way around.

    The force of the incoming ball is a result of the weight of the ball (which is a constant) and the pace of the ball (and her opponents are going to hit faster balls).

    The collision effect with the incoming ball is reduced with a heavier racket, and therefore less stress on hand, wrist, elbow, shoulder.

    It is more the strings, string tension, gripsize and frame stiffness that are the equipment related risk factors.
     
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  6. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    First of all, age is only ONE factor.
    What is her actual size? And what is her build? Is she slight and twiggy? Is she built like a linebacker? (Don't laugh, my g/f is).
    Does she rely on fast swing speed for her power, or does she swing slowly and hit the ball flat?
    What does SHE want?
    Give her a list of WTA racket weights with the corresponding player weight.
    FEW use rackets heavier than 11.4 oz.
    If she has a fast swing speed, loopy modern strokes, a lighter racket is fine, but maybe not sub 10oz.
    If she has a slow swing speed, meets the ball flat to get pace, then a heavier racket is in order.
     
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  7. NLBwell

    NLBwell Legend

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    You actually said this publicly? I'm not sure she'll be happy with that.
     
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  8. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    5'5" + a half, 140 lbs. Shoulder's almost as wide as mine, ankles, calves, and thighs bigger, and bigger boned in general.
    OTOH, until I hit 35, I was 5'11" and 132 lbs max.
    Everyone has a different build. Her Dad is 5'9" and 240, really powerful.
    My Dad was 5'6" and 120 max.
     
    #8
  9. Jackofalltrades

    Jackofalltrades New User

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    I agree. Only because she seems to start growing fast now, I'm afraid she will be more sensitive to injuries. I've seen fast growing teenagers with huge problems on knees, wrists, etc.. I've already lowered string tension but intend to switch strings too.
     
    #9
  10. Jackofalltrades

    Jackofalltrades New User

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    5'2, 108lbs, in between slight and linebacker(not laughing,:)); broad shoulders, but still build as a child.
    Pretty fast swing, but not superfast (coach says she hits so hard because of her excellent 'touch')
    She is happy with her current racquet&strings, apparel/shoes have her priority,like many girls of her age. If I would let her play with full Alu Power strung on highest tension possible, she probably wouldnt complain. But fact is, I'm convinced her game will benefit (in future) using a heavier racquet.
     
    #10
  11. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Racket's are cheap here on TW.
    You can get her a YoutekRadHeadMid+ for 39 bucks used, low 11 oz, 62 flex, 98 head size for her to try.
    In the end, the decision is up to her and her game. Long loopy swings can use lighter rackets, while more direct swings need more mass to hit hard.
    Heck, you can buy her a NEW Dunlop300Lite for 70 bucks, 9.8 oz and colors to die for.
     
    #11

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