Nadal's strength has caught up to his swingweight

Discussion in 'Pros' Racquets and Gear' started by travlerajm, Jul 3, 2006.

  1. travlerajm

    travlerajm Hall of Fame

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    Nadal's serve has made tremendous strides just in the last 6 months. He used to just muscle it over the net, but now he's starting to hammer it down at 120 mph with lots of spin.

    His racquet has a high swingweight even for a pro (370 kg-cm^2). I think that his shoulder strength has improved enough that he is finally able to get his high swingweight to pay dividends on his serve, whereas before the swingweight was visibly too high for him on the serve.
     
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  2. chess9

    chess9 Hall of Fame

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    That's an interesting theory. I suspect a more likely one. He has been able to serve very hard for two to three years, but saw himself as a clay court specialist principally. On clay, the high metabolic cost of hard serving pays small dividends. On grass, the dividends are substantial.

    So, I'll bet the kid was hitting 120 mph serves two-three years ago. Also, he shows no recent evidence of increased shoulder, chest, back, etc. muscling. He's been this big for about one year now.

    BUT, now he has more confidence and more experience on grass, two important considerations at Wimbledon, IMHO.

    Nonetheless, we may both be correct. :) More hard serving translates into more hard serving, eh? :)

    -Robert
     
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  3. thomas martinez

    thomas martinez Professional

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    His swingweight is NOWHERE NEAR that high. That much I can promise.
     
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  4. scotus

    scotus Legend

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    Isn't it funny how Nadal retires from Stella Artois (sp?) citing a shoulder injury only to come back at Wimbledon with a dramatically improved serve?

    Perhaps the injury helped put his shoulder in the correct alignment?
     
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  5. travlerajm

    travlerajm Hall of Fame

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    Thomas,

    Then are you saying that he is not telling the truth that he puts 15g under the bumper and 5g in the butt?

    If you do the calculation, it comes out to about 370, and that is a conservative estimate. It's probably higher than that.
     
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  6. DoubleHanded&LovinIt

    DoubleHanded&LovinIt Professional

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    Swingweight must be measured. It cannot be calculated. thomas martinez is a pro stringer who has probably measured Nadal's swingweight on a machine and not calculated it with a formula. Not to say the formula is wrong or anything, but the machine is a more reliable measure and is the standard used to compare racquets. That's all.
     
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  7. MasterTS

    MasterTS Professional

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    Nice theory but completely wrong.

    Nadal has been developing his serve for a very long time it has taken it to new levels over the past 24 months. Simple as that.. Also he was much younger before and it takes tiem to adapt and learn new techniques. If you noticed Nadal now uses an abv motion on his serve too. He has been specifically training to add more pace..

    Look at Baggy 2005 AO vs 2006 AO. McEnroe mentioned baggy increased his average first serve speed by over 10MPH in just 12 months, a feat that is very rare!
     
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  8. thomas martinez

    thomas martinez Professional

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    Calculations are all well and good, but it's not the case with his frame. First off saying all his frames have Xg of lead here and Xg of lead there, again are wrong as well. Why? Well, Rafa's frames start out as a stock AeroPro Drive. Usually in a case like this, you try to select the most closest within the tolerance allowed by the factory to get his frames as close as possible. Within this "batch" you can still have variances between each frame. Some might require X+3g at point A, and no lead at point B. Even a frame with the same balance and weight, can even have a different swingweight. In the end, his frame does not swing that high. I don't remember the numbers, but it is not that high. Just a bit higher than a standard frame.
     
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  9. chess9

    chess9 Hall of Fame

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    Yes, this makes sense to me. Also, I knew a lot of guys back in my college days who could serve lights out, but rarely did so. They wanted to get the ball in play on the FIRST serve, particularly on clay. And, they didn't just develop a hard serve overnight. I also happen to think Nadal IS serving harder at Wimbledon, but that's what is called for in that venue. If he's like most of us were as kids he was having "serving contests" with his training buddies. You know, I can serve harder than you-that kind of stuff. I did this from age 14 on, plus we see the threads by the young boys on this topic all the time. So, how much chance do you think there is that Nadal didn't have a 120 mph serve by, say, age 18?

    -Robert
     
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  10. Ripper

    Ripper Hall of Fame

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    Different grass surfaces. He had little chance over there. He had his practice and prefered to save face. At Wimbly, it's a different story.
     
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  11. mowcopian

    mowcopian Banned

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    can you imagine how fast he could hit his serve if he hit it flat.
     
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  12. Ash Doyle

    Ash Doyle Professional

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    There is one explanation for his faster serves this tournament and that is he is using a different strategy for grass.
     
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